Wednesday, 27 December 2017

3 gems in the Highlands of Iceland to visit this summer!

Landmannalaugar

Landmannalaugar is a pearl of the highlands of Iceland, located in the nature reserve of Fjallabak. It is found at the extremity of the lava field of Laugahraun and was formed during a volcanic eruption in 1477. This place is known for the beauty of its landscape, its geothermal sources and hiking trails - the surrounding nature is breathtaking.

3 gems in the Highlands of Iceland to visit this summer!

You can take three roads to reach the site, but it is not accessible by 2x4 vehicle, and it is advisable to have a 4x4 of sufficient size to reach it. You can also take a bus to Landmannalaugar (from Reykjavík, Selfoss, Hella or Leirubakki) or join a super jeep excursion.

3 gems in the Highlands of Iceland to visit this summer!

Þórsmörk

Thórsmörk or Þórsmörk, a small mountain range in southern Iceland, is a beautiful area where you can enjoy Icelandic nature to the fullest. Surrounded by the Krossá valley to the south and Þrönga and Markafljót to the north, the region is one of the most popular in the country for hiking. The vegetation of the region is lush because it is a protected area, and the climate is very mild because the valley is surrounded by glaciers. It is therefore generally better weather in Thórsmörk than in the rest of southern Iceland.

3 gems in the Highlands of Iceland to visit this summer!

Thórsmörk offers stunning views of the surrounding mountains and the valley offers many hiking opportunities. The most popular hikes are well signposted and information is available to find out which hiking route is best suited to your level and desires.

3 gems in the Highlands of Iceland to visit this summer!

From 1 May to 15 October, a daily 4x4 bus journey takes you from BSI Reykjavík to Thórsmörk. You can also join a super-jeep tour to get to the site.

Askja

Located in Iceland's remote highlands, Askja is a caldera of 45 km² (a crater formed by the collapse of a volcano) and it is filled with a splendid limpid blue lake: the Öskjuvatn, which, with its 217 m depth, is the deepest lake in Iceland. Right next to this lake is a second lake with green and milky waters in the Vìti crater. The volcanic zone is active (the last eruption dates from 1961).

3 gems in the Highlands of Iceland to visit this summer!

The discovery of this giant crater offers a true lesson in volcanology, a must-see experience on a trip to Iceland. Many travelers also descend to the crater to bathe in its warm waters despite the surrounding snows that never really leave the area. An unusual experience and memories are guaranteed!

3 gems in the Highlands of Iceland to visit this summer!

Access to Askja requires an all-terrain vehicle (4x4) whether you come from the North or from the East. You can also join a 4x4 or super jeep tour.

Iceland24
© All rights reserved

Monday, 25 December 2017

How is Christmas celebrated in Iceland? - New Year's Eve in Iceland

For thirteen nights from December 12th until 24th, Icelandic children leave one shoe in the window, and while sleeping, the thirteen Icelandic “Santa Clauses" arrive one by one to drop a small gift in the shoe of well-behaved kids, and a potato in the shoe of the naughty ones. The thirteen Santa Clauses are the children of the trolls Leppalúði and Grýla, and leave one by one after Christmas to go back to the mountains where they live.

How is Christmas celebrated in Iceland? - New Year's Eve in Iceland

Þórlaksmessa is on December 23rd; it's the day where you can enjoy Skata or Skate (a fish related to sharks and has a strange smell). Many Icelanders boil smoked meat, hangikjöt, so their house smells of good food. Most shops stay open until 23 hours to allow those last minute shoppers to buy their christmas gifts.

How is Christmas celebrated in Iceland? - New Year's Eve in Iceland

Aðfangadagur is Christmas Eve, December 24th, and it is the most important day of the Christmas calendar in Iceland. This evening the family gathers to share a meal, hear Mass on the radio or go to the local church and this is also the time when people exchange and open their Christmas presents. The evening is spent reading the new books received as gifts, playing board games and eating chocolate.

How is Christmas celebrated in Iceland? - New Year's Eve in Iceland

The story goes that the Christmas Cat, Jólakötturinn, carries children who do not receive new clothes as a gift into the mountains!

How is Christmas celebrated in Iceland? - New Year's Eve in Iceland

On the Icelandic Christmas dinner table, you can find smoked meat, hangikjöt, the laufabrauð (bread that resembles a cracker decorated with motifs drawn by hand before baking with a small knife). The meat is usually pork, hamborgarhryggur, but some people eat ptarmigan (rjúpa) they have hunted themselves. For dessert, they often serve homemade cookies, known as smákökur, and the number and variety often show the baking skills of the hostess.

How is Christmas celebrated in Iceland? - New Year's Eve in Iceland

On Christmas Day, Jóladagur, December 25th, is a repeat of the previous day. Icelanders meet with their families and share a good meal together… December 26th( is the second Christmas) annar í jólum.

How is Christmas celebrated in Iceland? - New Year's Eve in Iceland

Gamlársdagur, literally "the day of the old year" is on 31st December. The festivities begin at 18 o'clock, just like on Christmas Eve. Some people go to church or attend a big bomb fire. On this night, everyone is enjoying a good meal and afterward, look at the comedy Áramótaskaupið on television, a satirical program that includes all the past year's events. At midnight, the Icelandic set off the fireworks they’ve purchased the previous days leading up to the New Year. Nýársdagur is January 1.

How is Christmas celebrated in Iceland? - New Year's Eve in Iceland

Þrettándinn is January 6, and it is the last day of the festivities. Everyone takes down their Christmas trees and decorations, and the last Christmas elf goes back into mountains. The last of the fireworks go off this day.

Iceland24
© All rights reserved

Saturday, 23 December 2017

January in Iceland. What to do in Iceland?

It's difficult to choose the right time to go to Iceland because each month and each season has its own charm. The month of January reveals the winter in all its splendor, and marks the beginning of long months of cold, darkness and snow.

January in Iceland. What to do in Iceland?

Temperatures in January oscillate between -1 ° C and 1 ° C; This is the coldest month of the year, and temperatures can drop to -10 ° C. The sun rises at about 11 am and sets at around 3 pm, and on a grey day you may get the impression that there is no daylight at all! The phenomenon is reversed in summer, where the bright nights give the impression that it is never night!

January in Iceland. What to do in Iceland?

In winter, roads and trails leading to the highlands are inaccessible, as are most of the secondary roads - always check the road conditions on the Icelandic road administration site. If you stay on the main road a 4x4 is not compulsory but highly recommended. It is not a good idea to travel in Iceland in the winter with a small city car - if you decide not to rent a 4x4 make sure you take a large car and not a small sedan.

January in Iceland. What to do in Iceland?

When traveling in January, do not expect to make the round trip to Jökulsárlón during the day or the tour of the island via road number one in six days. Travel times increase by about a third when travelling on snow, ice and in the dark. However, the snowy scenery is magnificent and the month of January is one of the snowiest of the year! With caution and organization, it is quite possible to explore the country in this season. If you are not comfortable driving on the snow, you can enjoy day trips that will take you to northern Iceland, for example.

January in Iceland. What to do in Iceland?

The month of January will give you the opportunity to observe the Northern Lights, provided the sky is clear. Follow our tips to maximize your chances of seeing them, or join an excursion. There is no shortage of winter activities: snow scooters, sled dogs, excursions to the northern lights, walks in the city or in the countryside, and discovery of cultural life are all possible choices at this time of year. If you like skiing, it is also a very good time to come to Iceland! In Reykjavik, you can ice skate on the frozen lake in the city centre.

January in Iceland. What to do in Iceland?

We can not repeat it enough: go to the pool! It is a wonderful way to experience the joy of bathing and to get acquainted with the Icelandic way of life. Can you imagine a better way to relax than basking in a bath at 40 ° C, surrounded by snow and darkness? If you prefer a more luxurious experience, the blue lagoon or the Mývatn baths are good options for bathing.

January in Iceland. What to do in Iceland?

The Icelandic authorities seem to be anxious to promote Iceland in the off-season but there is plenty to occupy travellers and locals during this dark period. The Icelandic capital is always full of events and exhibitions.

January in Iceland. What to do in Iceland?

The festival "Dark Music Days" is a contemporary music festival that was created in 1980 and continues today, on the darkest days of the year. You can also participate in the Icelandic tradition of swimming in the Atlantic on the first day of the year. See you on the 1st of January, along with other brave people, on Nauthólsvík beach! Rest assured, a hot-pot awaits you after the swim!

January in Iceland. What to do in Iceland?

Iceland24
© All rights reserved

Tuesday, 19 December 2017

Over 100,000 celebrate at Reykjavik Gay Pride every year!

Iceland is fairly progressive in its equality policies compared to other European countries, and same-sex couples have been able to marry there civilly since 2010 – and religiously since 2015. Also since 2006, same-sex couples have had equal access to adoption and IVF.

Over 100,000 celebrate at Reykjavik Gay Pride every year!

To celebrate this diversity, the Icelandic capital Reykjavik organizes a festival, which takes place every year in August. In recent years, the "Gay Pride" has been renamed "Reykjavik Pride", because as well as the LGBTQI rights that are highlighted, it is also a celebration for all Icelanders, where families and friends meet to celebrate love and friendship. It provides an opportunity to discuss the fundamental rights of individuals, including the right to choose one's sexual orientation.

Over 100,000 celebrate at Reykjavik Gay Pride every year!

This year Reykjavik will celebrate its 19th pride. During the festivities, concerts, games, exhibitions and discussions are organised by the city and the organising committee. A parade is organized in the city and usually begins at the bus station BSI and ends at Arnarhóll. It is a feast where good spirit and tolerance are kings.

Over 100,000 celebrate at Reykjavik Gay Pride every year!

Former mayor of the capital, Jón Gnarr, appeared on a gay pride float in 2010 disguised as drag queen, and it is now commonplace for politicians to participate in this event. The current mayor of Reykjavik, Dagur B. Eggertsson, has participated every year since his election. In 2016, the Icelandic former President, Guðni Th. Jóhannesson, addressed the crowd during the festivities; He had been elected president six days previously. He is the first Icelandic president (and the first president in the world) to intervene publicly during a gay pride.

Over 100,000 celebrate at Reykjavik Gay Pride every year!

At its inception in 1999, the gay pride was not nearly as successful as it is today. This event brings together up to 100,000 people on the streets of the capital, nearly one third of Iceland's population. The festival lasts six days, during which the whole town is celebrating and it is very exciting to visit during this time! Theatre, dance, comedy, sports, games and excursions are on the program of events.

Over 100,000 celebrate at Reykjavik Gay Pride every year!

You can, for example, join a special boat trip, go to a fairy-tale evening, attend a cabaret, paint a street in Reykjavik, join a guided tour of the city, or learn more about the history and the rights of the LGBTQI community in Iceland. In the evening, it goes without saying that the party continues in the cafés and clubs of the city.

Over 100,000 celebrate at Reykjavik Gay Pride every year!

Many events during the festival are free, but concerts, performances and excursions are not. If you want to make the most of it, you can get a pass that will give you access to all events for six days!

Iceland24
© All rights reserved

Sunday, 17 December 2017

Is Iceland dangerous? Top places that can be dangerous for tourists

It was in February 2016 when the Ministry of Industries and Innovation took the initiative to compile a list of the most dangerous 24 sites in Iceland. At that time there was an incident on the beach Reynisfjara, in which a man died. Some other accidents have happen in the same spot since then. Here you are some safety measures you can't miss in order to have a fully successful experience in the nordic country!

Is Iceland dangerous? Top places that can be dangerous for tourists

Reykjadalur

Reykjadalur, “The Valley Of Smoke", is a beautiful valley in southern Iceland, characterised by its intense geothermal activity and known for its hot river in which it is possible to bask. Located 40 kilometers from the capital Reykjavík, near the small town of Hveragerdi, Reykjadalur is a favorite place for hikers and nature lovers. Be careful, though, because some parts of the hot river have extremely high temperatures, and not suitable for swimming.

Is Iceland dangerous? Top places that can be dangerous for tourists

Reynisfjara

The beautiful beach of Reynisfjara became infamous when a man was killed there in February 2016 when he took advantage of the beautiful location. In 2007, a woman from the United States also lost her life there, when she was swept away by a wave. The winds and waves of the beach can be very violent and dangerous; we will repeat ourselves again by advising that you can enjoy the wonders of Icelandic nature, but, at a respectful distance.

Is Iceland dangerous? Top places that can be dangerous for tourists

Seljalandsfoss

Seljalandsfoss and Gljufrabui are beautiful waterfalls in southern Iceland, thirty kilometres from Skógar. Seljalandsfoss is 60 meters high and is especially popular because you can walk behind the waterfall, we recommend only in summertime. In winter the ice on the path can be very slippery and dangerous, and gigantic stalactites can fall at any time and cause injury.

Is Iceland dangerous? Top places that can be dangerous for tourists

Seltun

Seltun is a geothermal area located on Route 42 on the Reykjanes peninsula in the south of Iceland; the temperature is high there because the area is home to dozens of fumaroles and hot pots. You can wander around the landscape using marked paths provided, but don't go off the trail because hot mud and smoke explosions can severely burn.

Is Iceland dangerous? Top places that can be dangerous for tourists

Skógafoss

Near the small village of Skógar on the number one road, is a beautiful waterfall named Skógafoss. Very popular among the sights to see in Iceland with many steps leading to the top of the waterfall, 60 meters high. In winter, these steps are slippery and dangerous -prudence!

Is Iceland dangerous? Top places that can be dangerous for tourists

Sólheimajökull

The glacier tongue of the glacier Sólheimajökull is an extension of Mýrdalsjökull glacier, a little after Skogar, on the number one road in southern Iceland. If you venture without a guide on the glacier tongue, even just a few meters, it will be the last thing you'll do, since cracks are not visible the glacier can swallow you up.

Is Iceland dangerous? Top places that can be dangerous for tourists

Svínafellsjökull

The same recommendations apply to the Svínafellsjökull glacier, a glacier forming the glacier tongue of Vatnajökull. It is easily reached by a short walk on a trail not far from Skaftafell.

Is Iceland dangerous? Top places that can be dangerous for tourists

Víti / Askja / Drekagil

Askja is a popular destination for travellers; it ’s a set of calderas most recently erupted in 1961. Askja is best known for one of its caldera, Öskuvatn. It is possible to swim in some parts of the crater Víti 20 - 60 ° C depending on the location. The road to Askja is located in the highlands and is only open during summer; the road is only accessible by 4x4 (smaller vehicles will not pass the Fords), and the journey may seem long and tortuous. You will cross several rivers, and we strongly recommend traveling with several cars when crossing fords.

Is Iceland dangerous? Top places that can be dangerous for tourists

The driver on the road must have experience; drive slowly and be aware of the obstacles that may arise on the way. If you decide to get there without going through a tourism company, make sure to be sufficiently informed and well equipped. An alternative is to use a professional travel services in the region, i.e. the team http://www.visitaskja.com.

If you intend (or by opportunity) to bask in Víti, know that its centre water depth is up to eight meters deep. The path to the swimming area may be slippery, muddy and on the way down can be a little hot. Also, look out for occasional rocks sliding down the crater.

Is Iceland dangerous? Top places that can be dangerous for tourists

Latest tips

Always check road conditions on the website of the Icelandic Road Administration, www.road.is and the http://en.vedur.is weather.

Respect barriers, instructions and listen to the advice of locals.

If you are traveling in winter, in remote locations, or if you go to the Highlands (in any season), be prepared, do your research before departure and use common sense when on your journey.

Is Iceland dangerous? Top places that can be dangerous for tourists

In an emergency, call for help by dialing 112.

As this is the part 3/3 of the list compiled by the Government, you can go over the previous sites here: Top dangerous places in iceland (Part 1/3). 8 Most dangerous sites in Iceland. Tips to stay safe in Iceland! (Part 2/3)

Iceland24
© All rights reserved

Wednesday, 13 December 2017

Eat cheap in Reykjavík! - Best bars and cafes

We have already told you about the Icelandic capital, activities to do, museums to visit and restaurants to eat at. But the Icelandic capital is a changing city, and the tourist influx in recent years has transformed its image. Here, we guide you through the streets of Reykjavik in 2017 to find the bars and restaurants that have either been here forever, or who aspire to ...

Eat cheap in Reykjavík! - Best bars and cafes

Bæjarins Beztu Pylsur

Since 1937, the company Bæjarins beztu pylsur has been offering its specialties in the Icelandic capital. Their famous hot dogs are known around the world (or almost!) It is very popular and it can sometimes be possible to have to wait a long time for this Icelandic specialty. Even Bill Clinton grabbed one of its famous sandwiches! The small stand is located opposite the Harpa concert hall. You can also "rent" one of their booths with the services of one of their employees for your private parties and events.

Eat cheap in Reykjavík! - Best bars and cafes

Sandholt

The oldest bakery in Reykjavik opened its doors in 1920, and has remained in the same location since. Located on the main street Laugavegur, it expanded in 2016 and you can have breakfast, lunch or a snack there. Ásgeir Sandholt is waiting for you to taste delicious chocolate, pastries and other delicacies – or even a full meal.

Eat cheap in Reykjavík! - Best bars and cafes

Grái Kötturinn

This little cafe is best known for its American breakfasts and its delicious pancakes. Located in the basement of a house in Hverfisgata, this little gem that doesn't cost a fortune offers a simple and friendly menu for breakfast or lunch. Since 1997, Grái kötturinn has delighted the taste buds of the Icelandic capital.

Eat cheap in Reykjavík! - Best bars and cafes

Mokka-Kaffi

Located on Skólavörðurstígur Street, this small café opened its doors in 1958 and has not changed much since. One of the few (the only?) places where Wi-Fi is not available, it is a favorite place for locals and those who want to log out for a while. There is always an exhibition of an Icelandic artist, which you can admire on the walls of Mokka-Kaffi.

Eat cheap in Reykjavík! - Best bars and cafes

Saegreifinn (The Sea Baron)

The "Sea Baron" refers to Kristján Halldórsson, who after a sailor's career opened this small restaurant in the port of Reykjavík in 2003. His lobster soup is often described as "the best in the world" -you can go there to decide for yourself but you may have to stand in line at this busy eatery. In 2011, Kristján sold his restaurant to one of his employees, and he died in 2015 - but his mind, as well as a statue of wax, are still on site!

Eat cheap in Reykjavík! - Best bars and cafes

Kaffibarinn

Since 1993, Kaffibarinn has been an atmospheric coffee house during the day, and an intense party place at night! On weekend nights, after midnight, you can queue for quite a while before you can get in. A rumor has circulated that Damon Albarn, the singer of Blur, is the co-owner of the bar, but it seems (still a rumor! ) that it may have been more a matter of marketing than anything else.

Eat cheap in Reykjavík! - Best bars and cafes

Iceland24
© All rights reserved

Monday, 11 December 2017

Work in Iceland! Jobs for foreigners in Iceland

To find a job in Iceland, check out our previous article on the subject, and learn more about wages and working conditions in the country.

Here are some addresses to look for a job in Iceland: talent.is, job.is or vinna.is are three sites that lists job opportunities in Iceland.

Work in Iceland! Jobs for foreigners in Iceland

The EURES website identifies jobs available across the country and puts the ads in English first, which means jobs are open to foreigners.

Icelandic dailies publish a list of jobs to be filled each week. For the online version, visir.is and Morgunblaðið, both of which have a classified ads section. The first is the site of the daily Frettablaðið, which every Saturday devotes tens of pages to employment.


Work in Iceland! Jobs for foreigners in Iceland

Reykjavik.is and akureyri.is will give you access to advertisements from Icelandic municipalities; Examples of jobs listed there would include; assistant cook in a school, assistant in a nursing home or ski lift operator in winter.

Work in Iceland! Jobs for foreigners in Iceland

If you have a particular degree, whether you are a doctor or a university lecturer, check the websites of hospitals and universities directly or contact their administration by email. "Störf í bóði" means that a list of advertisements for vacancies is available. You can also go through a recruitment agency like Capacent or Island Recruiting if you are looking for a long term job in Iceland.

Work in Iceland! Jobs for foreigners in Iceland

For jobs in tourism, you do not necessarily need to have experience or a diploma in this field. It is mainly your motivation and your skills that are important - in particular, language skills are very welcome. English, French, German and Spanish are great assets to working in Iceland. Guesthouses and farms easily hire in the summer, and it is also possible to work at picking or producing fruit and vegetables in one of the many greenhouses of the country. Contact guesthouses, hotels and tourist offices directly or check the EURES website for jobs available.

Work in Iceland! Jobs for foreigners in Iceland

Your motivation and your will are your greatest assets - your CV and experience are often relegated to second place. Finding a job by going “door-to-door" will give you the greatest chance of success.

Iceland24
© All rights reserved