Ísland

I consider myself a person that travels quite a bit. But I travel mostly with someone or meeting someone at my final destination. I’ve never really done a solo adventure. So I went online and searched cheap places to travel to, and that’s how I decided to go to Ísland, aka Iceland.

The tickets there were relatively affordable, and I thought.. heck why not. I knew very little about the country, I didn’t know anyone there, and it gave me the opportunity to get outside of a city setting. Booked my flight and two months later it was time for my adventure!

When I boarded the airplane to Reykjavik, I knew that there was no going back. This was it.  I didn’t know what to expect or what I was going to experience… but I knew that this was worth the trip.

I managed to make a friend on the plane. He ended up having issues with his car, so we decided to spend the first day together with the car I rented and adventure off to the Golden Circle. I’m so glad that I wasn’t alone at first because it allowed me to ease into being comfortable in diving alone.

Our first stop on the Golden Circle was Þingvellir National Park. It was overwhelmingly beautiful. The formation of the rocks and the scenery leaves you in awe. If you plan on travelling here make sure you are ready to pay for parking (if you decide to stay longer than 20 mins). We didn’t pay since we weren’t planning to stay long. W/C are available, but you’ll have to pay 200ISK.

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ÞINGVELLIR NATIONAL PARK

The second stop was the Geysir. Oh, how wonderful it smelled there. The strong sulphur is very prominent here, so heads up to that awesome smell. I personally enjoyed it considering this is how Iceland occasionally smells like. As soon as I stepped out of the airplane, that was the first thing that I smelled. But not everyone smells this. At the Geysir, there is a lot of tourists here waiting for it to erupt. You’ll be waiting for a bit… and you may miss capturing the eruption since there is no warning of it happening. Regardless, it’s a cool experience to see nature run its course.

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Geysir; 5 seconds after eruption

 

3rd stop was Gullfoss. Falls on falls on falls. 16684394_10209816685907505_6377496634847137716_n.jpg

The 4th and 5th stop were mostly thanks to my travel buddy because I did not know they existed. When we got to the Volcanic Crater, supposeably you have to pay to walk around… but we kind of walked right pass that and walked around. So take that into consideration when you go!

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4th stop: Kerið

 

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5th stop: Kerið

When the trip was done, I dropped Eric off at his hostel, wished him well on the rest of his travel journey, and went off to my hostel. This was my first experience at a hostel. I was completely alone this time, so I had NO idea what to expect. It was an okay experience. I managed to meet a few cool people and one I can consider a friend. By the time I got to the hostel, it had been a good 36hrs since I last slept. So I was desperate for some sleep. Unfortunately, people kept coming in and out from the dorm I was in at all hours of the night. So I was only able to get about 5hrs of sleep.

The next morning, I woke up and decided to have breakfast at this cute cafe called Bergsson Mathús. From there I was off to my real solo adventure! I thought about going to the Blue Lagoon but thought how expensive it was and how many people would actually be there. So I decided to go to this Hot Springs between Reykjavik and Selfoss called Reykjadalur Hot Spring Trailhead. When I got there, it was a bit chilly and drizzling, but that didn’t stop me from going to the springs. I set forth and walked that uphill with pride. And then 20mins in, I realized I was alone. 100% alone in the middle of nowhere on this mountain. I was so scared. I realized that if something were to happen to me, I was fucked. I thought about going back, but then I figured I came all the way here for nothing?! No! So I kept on walking until I reached the hot springs an hour later. I got to the springs and boy did I ever feel accomplished. It was a challenge to change into my bathing suit and then regular clothing since there is NO changing room. I was butt naked in the middle of nowhere in Iceland. The hike back was where my body wanted to give up. I was NOT ready for the hike. I didn’t bring proper hiking shoes since I wasn’t expecting to hike on my trip. But it still didn’t stop me.

On my hike!
On my hike!
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Hot springs

After the 2 hour hike, I still had one more destination to go to, Seljalandsfoss. It was about an hour and 10min drive from Reykjadalur, but it was worth the drive!

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Seljalandsfoss

Another big thing on my list was seeing Icelandic Horses. These horses are absolutely the cutest things ever! You can easily approach them on the side of the road. As soon as I saw the opportunity to go to them, I merged to the side. As I got out and ran up to them, they stood still, eating and being cool. When one of the horses noticed me there and came my way to be petted. Needless to say, it was a special bonding moment we had together.

 

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16711662_10209816737508795_520771591820817046_n Icelandic Horses

My journey was almost complete! The only thing I was missing was Reykjavik. So I decided to dedicate Monday morning before I was to leave, to the city. The city is very easy to do on foot. There are constant free walking tours that go around the city. I manage to take in as much of the city in about 2 hours. I know that this isn’t enough to fully grasp the city, but I felt satisfied with my trip. Not only that but my body and feet couldn’t handle anymore walking. So I headed to the airport, Keflavik. Before going to the airport, I decided to squeeze one last city; Reykjanesbær. Relatively small and really nothing too special comparing it to Reykjavik but still a cute town. I tanked my car rental (almost died when I saw what the total cost was for a full tank of gas) and went straight to the airport. Keflavik is by far one of the most modern and advanced airports I’ve ever been too. The amount of technology that this airport has is insane, and it makes the whole airport experience less stressful.

So this was my solo adventure to Iceland. A lot of people say “how brave to go by yourself” and all that stuff and yes it was brave of me to go on my own. But after going and actually doing this on my own I thought it wasn’t much of a being deal but rather something anyone can do. Don’t let travelling by yourself ever stop you from your own adventures. I’m at a point where I need to learn to be okay with being alone to overcome challenges in my life. These small but very substantial adventures help with my development into being the person I want to be.

Overall Iceland is beautiful and will leave you speechless. But it is one hell of an expensive country, which was something I didn’t fully grasp until I was there. I recommend going to Bonus supermarket and getting a good amount of groceries for your stay and plan out your trips if you’re renting a car because gas isn’t cheap.

If you have any questions, let me know, and I’ll be happy to help you in your future adventure!

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Yours,

Natalia.

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