While still a ways to go before we adjust back to west coast time, Trevor and I ventured out at 5 am to a 24-hour breakfast joint for some tasty pancakes while Kelly continued to rest. Although tired, I wanted to conclude our Ring Road journey with a few takeaways from our trip to Viking country.
TOP 8 TAKEAWAYS
1. ICELAND IS STUNNINGLY BEAUTIFUL
Iceland has some of the most dynamic and breathtaking landscapes we have ever seen in our life. From heart-pounding waterfalls to geothermal pools, this country has it all. If you have never visited this stunningly beautiful Viking country, we urge you to put it on your bucket list.
2. ICELAND IS EXPENSIVE
Despite the county having the worse financial crisis in history relative to the size of its economy (2008-2011), it appears thing are turning around, because we found Iceland very expensive! A tank of gas was about $150, most dinners for the three of us averaged $75 to $125, and many accommodations were in the $250/night range. While we could have gotten away with less, nothing we did felt like splurging. Iceland country is just very expensive.
3. ICELANDIC FOOD WAS BETTER THAN EXPECTED
Going into the trip we knew eating vegan would be challenging, but it turned out not to be as hard as we thought. We did compromise our normal habits by eating dairy products, because cheese is perhaps the top staple food in the country! On two occasions we also ate fish, but managed to avoid all meat. While the food was better than expected, we did tire of so much bread and cheese.
4. ICELANDERS ARE NOT THE BEST DRIVERS
So much of the Ring Road is two-lane, which meant that cars very often would ride very close to my bumper just waiting for the right moment to pass. After a few days it really became annoying, and was almost always locals, because tourists never were in such a hurry. While we experienced no problems with our car or driving around Iceland, some of the dirt roads were tiresome.
5. ICELANDERS ARE KIND
Among the most important reasons we travel as a family is to meet locals from the places we visit. And wherever we went in Iceland, we found the people polite, kind and charming, except of course for their driving practices. Trevor was so fortunate to befriend a number of Icelandic kids, which made our trip all the more special.
6. ICELAND IS THE LAND OF WATERFALLS
While Oregon has more waterfalls per acre than any other state, none would even come close the size and magnitude of falls we saw in Iceland. And I am sure Iceland has more per acre of land as well. As we drove the Ring Road, not a day went by where we did not see some very cool falls coming off a mountain. If you are into falls, this is the country to visit!
7. ICELAND HAS DYNAMIC WEATHER
They say if you are not happy with the weather in Iceland just wait a few minutes, because that’s how long it will take to change – and we agree! While we were blessed with amazingly beautiful weather for most of our trip, we did have times where rain, wind, and fog hampered our experience. As to the temperature, we loved the low humidity and temperatures in the 50’s to 70’s F.
8. SHEEP ARE EVERYWHERE IN ICELAND
Yes, the cute little fur balls were everywhere we went, and surprisingly often munching on grass right next to the road! On a few occasions they were actually standing in the middle of the road, and were never quick to get out of the way. So if you are driving around Iceland, the moral of the story is watch out for sheep!
PLANNING A TRIP TO ICELAND?
Take a look at our Iceland Ring Road Itinerary. Let us know if you have any questions as you plan your trip, we would love to help make it a memorable trip!