We recently spent some time exploring southern Iceland. We’ll have a lot more to say about the trip in the coming days, but for now here are a few of my first impressions:

1. Iceland is really, really green.

2. Daylight all the time is incredible.

3. Except when trying to sleep.

4. There are several huge wastelands along the south coast. I wasn’t expecting that.

5. These geysers are pretty great. Especially at 1 am when it’s still light outside.


6. How does anyone keep track of their sheep when they all run free?

7. I wonder how far a sheep can walk.

8. So, Reykjavik is really small.

9. Where are all the cheap hotels?

10. I wish I had done more booking in advance.

11. What is “langoustine”? Is that an English word?

12. Whatever it is, it’s the best lobster I’ve ever had.


13. I’m really glad I brought that scarf. And those gloves. And that poncho.

14. Oh wait, it’s 2 am? I thought it was, like, maybe dinner time.

15. Is that another waterfall? (Yes)


16. Is that another waterfall? (Yes again)

17. And that? (Yes)

18. So, this is the birthplace of icebergs.


19. What was that popping sound? (It was an iceberg breaking off of a glacier.)

20. Camping anywhere you want is apparently not a problem here.

21. All the hot tap water smells like sulfur.

22. Wildflowers: they just keep going and going and going.

23. Fields of stack rocks: what do they mean and how long have they been here?


24. I never thought two two continental plates splitting apart could look so… peaceful.

25. Everyone really does speak English.

26. Grass roofs: how exactly does that work?

27. No one uses cash, which means Iceland may be the greatest country on earth.

28. Wow, I never thought I could actually like pickled fish.

29. How can there be so many waterfalls? Like, where is all this water coming from?

30. Oh, from the unreal-sized glacier that is pouring out of numerous giant canyons.

— Jim Dalrymple II


Written by Jim Dalrymple II

Urbanism and travel writer. Also a journalist covering the news.


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