Iceland experiences

Iceland Adventure - Part 3 where to go?

Dettifoss was on my 'must-see' list
Even though it doesn’t look that big on the map, with just under two weeks there was no way that we were going to be able to see everything in one trip. There were certain locations that I really wanted to shoot (and visit), including some off the iconic Icelandic landscapes such as Kirkjufell, Dettifoss, Goðafoss and Geysir, but I also wanted to be able to discover some ‘new’ places (or at least some that hadn’t been shot by every visitor!)
So, after a couple of week's research on Google maps, Lonely Planet and many other websites and books, we narrowed down our trip to three main areas, which I pinned on the Google map shown below.

The first few days were spent on the Snaefellsness peninsula, around 100 miles (150km) north of Reykjavik. The main draw for this was obviously Kirkjufell, so we found a hostel in Grundarfjörður, just a couple of minutes away from this majestic mountain. But there was also the amazing coast, mountains and lava fields to keep us busy.
From here we travelled to Lake Myvatn, a drive of around 6 hours from Grundarfjörður (including several stops along the way). This area offered plenty of truly amazing sights. From the spectacular Goðafoss just off Route 1 on the way there, Lake Myvatn itself, then just further east there was the Hverir geothermal area and then Dettifoss.
This whole area was pretty magical, and the variety of landscapes and sights was very special. Being out of season, it was very quiet, which made it feel even more remote from the pressures and worries of the ‘normal’ world.
Finally, we drove down to the Golden Circle, to our hotel just north-east of Selfoss. To be honest, after the wild, open space of the previous locations, I was initially a little underwhelmed by the area. Firstly, there was too much traffic and too many people (although it was nothing compared to most areas in the UK). Then, the landscape was largely flat, with just a glimpse of mountains and volcanoes in the distance.
But travel a little further into the interior, and the landscape became more interesting. The main areas that we visited were Gullfoss, Geysir and the surrounding areas. After the wilder landscapes of the north, this whole area felt much more touristy although, as we were there before the main tourist season, there were only a handful of other people around especially at sunset. Even though I’m glad we visited this final area, with hindsight more time in Snaefellsness and Myvatn would have probably produced more interesting photo opportunities.
With only 10 full days spent in these locations, there were plenty of areas and iconic locations that we didn't get a chance to visit, such as Vik and the waterfalls on the south coast, the Westfjords and the Highlands, to name but a few. But that's all the more reason to come back to this amazing country!
In total we drove around 2000 miles (3000km), so before you book it make sure that your hire car is unlimited mileage, as the distances between the main areas of the island can run into several hundred miles.