Happy Friday! I’m back today with Part 2 of my Iceland Travel Diary. If you missed Part 1, you can read it here. We were in Iceland for seven full days. Here’s what we did during our last four days there:
On our fourth day in South Iceland, we drove from Hrifunes Guesthouse to Fjaðrárgljúfur, which is a canyon. It’s 100 meters deep with a river flowing right through the middle. I must say, this is one of the most beautiful sights we saw while we were there! The canyon is simply breathtaking. We spent quite a lot of time there taking it all in. We then made our way to Kirkjubæjarklaustur where Systrafoss is located. Systrafoss is quite a small waterfall relative to the ones we saw before, but there are several hikes around it. We decided to follow one of the hikes and ended up climbing the mountain where the path was about a foot wide! It was so scary because the side of the path just dropped off without any barriers. We took the steep path up to the top where we walked around the top of the mountain! The views up there were incredible – we could see for miles! We spent some time in the little town at the foot of the waterfall and had an incredible meal at one of the restaurants there. We then made our way to Systrastapi, which is another waterfall. It was a lot larger than it appeared on the walk there. Afterward, we drove to Fosshotel Glacier Lagoon where we spent the night. Fosshotel was so modern and sleek! The rooms were a really good size and everything was brand new. There’s even a waterfall on the property!
On our fifth day, we woke up to bad weather! The winds were over 50 mph and the roads were shut down all around us, so we couldn’t leave! We spend the next 24 hours stuck in our hotel room, unfortunately.
On day 6, we woke up so eager to finally get out of our hotel room! The wind was still bad, but manageable. When we walked outside, the cars were shaking furiously and I almost got blown away! We hurried into our car and drove to Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon. This was one of my favorite parts of our trip! It was freezing outside and the wind was crazy, but the glacier lagoon was one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever seen. The icebergs are from the nearby glacier and the flow through a waterway into the Atlantic Ocean. We drove over to Diamond/Crystal Beach that had several ice-chunks scattered on the black sand. It was gorgeous! We then had to make the long drive back West but stopped at Svartifoss on the way. It was a really intense hike because the wind was blowing so hard, it was freezing, and it started snowing! Once we made it all the way back to Svartifoss, the views completely made up for the battle we had with the wind! It was absolutely beautiful, though quite crowded. Making our way Westward, we drove to Hjálparfoss, which is in the middle of lava fields. The drive there was absolutely the most bizarre road trip I’ve ever taken. There was no one in sight! Once at Hjálparfoss, we were the only ones there! It’s a double waterfall that meets at its base and then descends into a large pool. We spent a little while there taking in the quiet surroundings and then we drove to the Highland Center in Hrauneyjar. The drive there looked like we were on the moon – all that was out there were machines and cranes with a gravel landscape! So eerie.
On our last full day in Iceland, we started the morning off at the Secret Lagoon in Flúðir. It’s the oldest public pool in Iceland made in 1891! It was cold outside, so the hot water felt extra nice. We got there when they opened and by the time we left there was maybe around 20 people total in the pool. What’s great about the Secret Lagoon is that there are several geothermal spots and even a geyser right next to the pool! The surrounding area is ultra natural, which makes it that much more magical. After our relaxing time there, we drove to Gullfoss. This waterfall was enormous – it’s 105 feet tall and the tallest drop is 21 meters! We then made our way to Strokkur and Geysir but decided to stay in the car and watch them because it started pouring with rain. We had plans to visit Pingvellir National Park, but it was so cloudy and rainy that we ended up skipping it. We made the trip to Reykjavik and spent some time in the city. With all the driving we did the past two days and the bad weather we decided to head to our hotel for the night. We stayed at the Keflavik Bed and Breakfast right next to our car rental and the airport.
Overall, we had a great trip in South Iceland! Everyone was extremely friendly and helpful and the country was absolutely breathtaking. I’ve never traveled to a place that has the kind of terrain that Iceland has, I’ve always been to tropical locations. However, experiencing Iceland was completely eye-opening. If you’re thinking about visiting Iceland, just book your flights and go!
If you’re planning a trip to Iceland, don’t miss my Iceland Packing List!