So you wanna drive Iceland's ring road? Wicked mate!
We did it too! We went in May - not classed as summer or winter in Iceland, but still a bit nippy.
It was one of our favourite holidays to date! Iceland is like no other country, it can't be compared to anything.. maybe magic. Where else can you find 500 foot spouting blue waterfalls and explosive melting hot geysirs in one place?!
So important stuff you might want to know before going to Iceland:
- The Icelandic currency is Krona and 1000ISK is around £5.50.
- Most people speak English.
- Summer is June - August.
- During the summer months it does not get dark. There is 24/7 sunlight.
- Winter is November - March.
- During the winter months there may only be 2-4 hours of sunlight a day.
- Bonus is their cheapest supermarket with a bottle of coke costing around 89p.
- Everywhere in Iceland take any kind of credit or debit cards, no need to take money.
- An average cup of coffee costs around 250-500 which is about £1.40 - 2.50.
OKAY! If you're about to embark on a brilliant Icelandic adventure you're guna wanna get yourself a camper van mate.
We used Cozy Campers.
These are hands down the best campers in Iceland. With their sleek, sexy but most of all comfy interior, you will come back to it with a line of Japanese tourists poking their noses in seeing what it's all about! (Yes, this actually happened, we thought they were breaking in).
Prices start from around £1200 for the week in the summer months (June - Aug) and discounts are offered for the lower seasons (Sept-May). They include everything you'll ever need for an adventure around Iceland including:
- Sink with running water
- Cookware & kitchenware / Cooker
They even have a high quality heating system in the back!! So do not fear! If you fancy going in the winter - Cozy Campers got ya back! (it's bloomin toasty too, trust me, we've used it!) This price also includes insurance - result.
So now you've got your wheels you need to know where the hell you're going. We hit up Iceland's ring road in around 6-7 days. People say it can't be done or give yourself 10 days but I don't feel like we rushed and got to see all of the main bits!
This is how we did it:
We flew into Reykjavik spent the night then started the Golden Circle the next day.
Reykjavik - þingvellir National Park - Kerid Crater - Hrunalaug Geothermal pool - Strokkur Geysir - Gullfoss.
Yep - we got ALLLL of this done in just one single day and it wasn't really a rushed job.
Drive from Reykjavik around 35 mins.
Our first stop was þingvellir National Park.
So i'm gunna be real and say, the þingvellir national park is cool, it's vast and you can see for miles and miles.. BUT if you're in a rush, you can probably miss out the stop.. you're driving through it anyway! The stop is just a little overlook of the whole thing, which is just barren land - cool photo ops, but again, if you're on a time schedule there is better stuff to photograph and show all ya mates.
We also found out later on in the trip - you can't park here overnight in a campervan. All national parks are off limits and we were shoo'ed off to find somewhere else to sleep.
þingvellir National Park.
Drive 30 mins.
We then headed down to the volcanic Kerid Crater lake and it was mental! We were really shocked at how big it was! You do have to pay for this one - it was 800kr which is around £4 - don't worry it won't break the bank. We'd seen nothing like it before and you can walk all the way around the bottom, or top of it! Later on in the trip we went to Viti crater - now i'd recommend this one over the Kerid crater - BUT only if you go in the summer! When we went to viti (May) it was full of snow and you couldn't see a thing but in the summer supposedly you can swim in it, it's MEGA blue and heated by the volcanoes around it. I've seen pictures but do't quote me!! Test it before you get in yeh!!
Kerid Crater Lake.
Drive another 30 mins.
We ended up at Hrunalaug geothermal pool - YES it's still open, contrary to some other website blog posts!
So to get there.. It's about an hours drive from Reykjavik and it's close to the village of Flùdir. So drive on road no.344 (Hrunavegur) from Flúdir then take the turning for Solheimer. You will pass a church, keep going and you'll eventually come over a cattle grid and to your left will be the car park after about 1-2 mins driving. Then it's literally north of the 'no pooing and no camping' sign and wallah...
Hrunalaug Geothermal Hot Pool.
We got there when no one was about too! Just as well because it's so small you couldn't really share it with anyone! It's just off the beaten track and over a small hill. It's not hard to find as there are road signs too. It's pretty warm - not boiling with a little shed/shack to keep your clothes in. Remember your bathers and a towel which you can hang in the little shake just next to the.. well it's not really a pool, more like one of those stand up baths old people have.
I've seen on trip advisor that the owners are a bit pissed off because tourists seem to be wrecking it.. so pick up all your rubbish and just generally be nice when you're there okay. Don't break nothing. There is also a small kind of honesty box, asking for 1000kr for your dip. So chuck some monies in there yeh.
Drive up around 25 mins.
We moved on to the highlight of the day - Strokkur Geysir. These things are incredible. We were only walking up the track to see it when it first went off, drenching the people who were stood the wrong side of the wind! It goes off every like 4-6 minutes i'd say, not very long at all. We could stand and watch it all day. First it (as Craig describes it) whomps.. then it gives a big sky blue bubble before launching. It's a crazy thing to see because it's natural - mental mate.
Just 10 mins drive down the road.
We then headed for Gullfoss waterfall which was gorgeous. When we arrived we were greeting with a massive colourful rainbow over the waterfall (which is always there apaz). It was huge and loud and the sprays of the waterfall came over the barriers. It's also a crazy colour blue. It's amazing how untouched Iceland is everything is so clean!
Day two in Iceland done and dusted! And what a corker of a day it was! Jam bloomin packed mate! We've already fallen in love with the country and the people. Watch our full vlog here to see it all on the big screen!