Iceland summer wonders for backpackers

A summer holiday to Iceland is the perfect place for backpackers. You will experience a world of contrasting landscapes when you travel up north. Travellers arriving in Iceland can expect to walk amongst live volcanoes, glaciers, waterfalls, lava fields, geysers, and snowy mountains.

Here’s a round up of five summer wonders that will have you reaching for your camera.

Seljalandsfoss

Image by Andrés Nieto Porras (Flickr/Creative Commons)
Image by Andrés Nieto Porras (Flickr/Creative Commons)

Seljalandsfoss is one of Iceland’s best known waterfalls. It’s 65 metres high and cascades over a former-sea cliff so you’ll have the unique privilege of walking underneath it.

Where is it?  From Reykjavik, take a tour bus (ask at your hostel reception) on the motorway to the south coast of Iceland (marked with “Vík) and you’ll be there in just under two hours. The waterfall is clearly visible from the motorway.

Godafoss

Image by Brook Ward (Flickr/Creative Commons)
Image by Brook Ward (Flickr/Creative Commons)

Godafoss the ‘waterfall of the gods’ is one of Iceland’s most beautiful falls – and attracts thousands of visitors every year. Its cascade is 30 metre wide and has a 12 metre drop. The waterfall runs across a lava field which is approximately 7000 years old.

It’s also intimately connected with one of the most important events in Icelandic history, the conversion to Christianity from paganism in the year 1000. After his conversion, Lawspeaker Þorgeir Ljósvetningagoð, threw his Norse gods statues into the waterfall.

Where is it? You’ll find the waterfall in northeast Iceland.

Landmannalaugar

Image by Vincent Moschetti (Flickr/Creative Commons)
Image by Vincent Moschetti (Flickr/Creative Commons)

Laugavegur is famous worldwide for its breathtaking landscapes. Its rhyolite lava sparkles in the sunshine and there’s a natural hot river that is perfect for swimming.

Where is it? It’s situated in a remote area of the southern highlands. Backpackers are recommended to visit here only as part of a guided bus tour.

Strokkur

Image by SkandyQC (Flickr/Creative Commons)
Image by SkandyQC (Flickr/Creative Commons)

Geysir is in southwest Iceland, close to Reykjavik, where the term ‘geysir’ originates. Strokkur regularly erupts to a height of around 30 metres and attracts visitors from all over the world.

Where it it? It’s on Iceland’s famous Golden Circle route in the southwest of the country.

Snaefellsnes

Image by Kris Williams (Flickr/Creative Commons)
Image by Kris Williams (Flickr/Creative Commons)

150 kilometres northeast of Reykjavik lies the Snaefellsnes Peninsula. The landscape is home to majestic sea cliffs, dark lava flows, spectacular volcanic peaks and Snaefellsjökull National Park, made famous by Jules Verne in the movie ‘Journey To The Centre Of The Earth’.

Where is it? Northeast Iceland – most people visit as part of a guided tour.

Header image by Vincent Moschetti (Flickr/Creative Commons)