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PBaruch: https://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=60568.0
Aurora, Storms, and Snowpants: An Icelandic Saga by Something Fishy, whYME, and ChAiM'l
@Yehuda
BrachaB
Ponash123

Airlines that fly to Iceland direct from NY:
1. Iceland Air
2. Delta
3. Wow Air
4. United (May 23 - Oct 4)

Hotels in the Reykjavik Area:
1. 101 Hotel (supposedly one of the best spas in Iceland)
2. Ion (set on a lava field and one of Iceland's newest luxury hotels)
3. Hotel Ranga
4. Blue Lagoon Clinic Hotel (provides exclusive access to a private lagoon for hotel guests only)
5. Radisson BLU 1919 (Can use Club carlson points and in the middle of town) Will warm and store food for a nominal fee.

Camper/RV Rentals:
There are several places where you can rent a camper truck or motorhome, including here:  http://www.campericeland.is/

Campgrounds:
The campgrounds in Iceland are large and never feel crowded.  Many offer excellent facilities and amenities.  You can drive in at any time of the day or night and pay the nominal fee whenever the office opens.

Kosher Food:
Kosher food is pretty much non existent in Iceland.  Even many American brands do not have a hechsher.  Some foods that have been found with a hechsher are Cheerios Cereal, Nature Valley Granola Bars, and Powerade.  That being said, several DDF members have been able to bring in kosher food/meat without being checked or stopped.  Just walk through the "nothing to declare" line.

Language
Most of the populace speaks English and children are taught English starting in the sixth grade.  It is rare but you might find some older folks that do not speak English.

Communications:
The Iceland Air Saga shop sells starter Síminn branded sim cards for a nominal amount.  If you order in advance, they will even deliver the sim cards to you on your Icelandair flight (one of the cheapest options to get a starter sim card).  You can also find stores in the airport that sell sim cards.  Vodafone is the other major carrier in Iceland and also sells sim cards.  You can purchase the Saga Shop sim starter here:

http://www.sagashop.net/men/detail/?id=57860-0009

GPS - Navigation
Garmin Nordic Maps includes Iceland and can be purchased here:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000BS4Q3I?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_search_detailpage

Voltage
Iceland uses 220v.  Most cell phones, cameras and laptops come with a multi switching power supply (verify by looking at power supply) so you will only need to buy a cheap adapter such as this:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0058EG0KC?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o05_s01

Currency/Credit Cards
Credit cards are almost universally accepted in Iceland.  As a result, you may find no need to exchange currency for the Icelandic Kroner (ISK).  If you use a credit card that does not charge foreign transaction fees, you should be set.  If you do decide to exchange currency, there are ATM machines in the airport right outside customs.

Activities:
1.  The Golden Circle Tour is very popular and takes you to Geysir (lame compared to Yellowstone), Gulfoss Waterfalls, and Thingvellir (where the continental drift between the North American and Eurasian Plates can be clearly seen in the cracks or faults which traverse the region.  You can dive in a lake and touch both plates). 

2.  Inside the volcano tour to Thrihnukagigur Volcano.  In this tour, you either hike ( a few kilometers) or take a helicopter charter from the Reykjavik airport to the volcano.  Once there, you are lowered by a construction type lift into the magma chamber.  The least expensive way to get a semi private tour of the magma chamber is with the helicopter, which takes you there in between the regularly scheduled tours.

3.  There are various Super Jeep Tours (vans and SUV's with tractor tires), including a tour to Langjokull Glacier, where you drive onto the glacier.  Private tours can be arranged.

4. Jokulsarlon - a large glacial lake in southeast Iceland, on the edge of Vatnajokull National Park.  Here, you can take a duck boat tour or a zodiac boat tour of the lake where you will see icebergs, seals, and various birds.  Across the road from Jokulsarlon is a black sand beach where you can see icebergs on the beach.

5. The Blue Lagoon - the public lagoon gets very crowded and if you go it is recommended to get there when they open.  If you can manage a stay at the Blue Lagoon Clinic Hotel (currently 15 rooms but they are expanding to 30 rooms) you will get exclusive access to the private lagoon for hotel guests only.  Since there are only 15 rooms at present, the private lagoon rarely has more than a handful of people in it at any time. Most people do not make a full day out of the Blue Lagoon and instead go on your arrival into Iceland or upon departure before the airport. All the Bus lines have stops to and from the airport. 3-4 hours is ample time.

6. Waterfalls abound including Skogafoss and Seljalandsfoss.

7. Dog sledding in Skallafell.

8. Icelandic Horses - Horse back riding is extremely popular in Iceland. Most residents actually own a horse. Iceland is the only place in the world where you will find the Icelandic horse. It has 5 Gaits oppose to the 3 that most other horses have. They are gentle animals and very comfortable to ride.
« Last edited by PBaruch on July 08, 2018, 11:56:07 AM »

Author Topic: Iceland Master Thread  (Read 76369 times)

Offline Something Fishy

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Re: Iceland Master Thread
« Reply #765 on: August 12, 2019, 07:59:16 PM »
Also, once we're asking questions, where would you recommend doing the glacial boat ride: Fjallsarlon or Jokulsarlon, and why?

Zodiac, Fjallsarlon. Quieter (as of last time I was there, at least/, and you can get closer  the actual glacier.

All other types of boats (which I would recommend to you, having been in Antarctica and all), Jokulsarlon - simply because I don't think any of those are offered at Fjallsarlon.
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Offline Something Fishy

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Re: Iceland Master Thread
« Reply #766 on: August 13, 2019, 09:36:56 PM »
Thanks for the list. Here are some other places along the route that I saw recommended. Any feedback on whether to include them or not:

Kvernufoss Never heard of it, but looks really nice. Added to my own to-do list.
Reynishverfi That's Reynisfjara Beach, a must-do in my list above.
Foss a Sidu Very underwhelming IME, but it's right off the road so why not.
Sólheimasandur Airplane Wreck Long hike to Cliche Central. I'd skip.
Svínafellsjökull Glacier Good option if you're doing a guided glacier trek.
Stokksnes Lovely place at sunrise and sunset, but out of the way. Been on my list forever, but haven't made it out there yet so far.
Fjadrangljurfur On my list above to do if you have the time.
HALSANEFSHELLIR That's just another spot on Reynisfjara Beach
Sólheimajökull glacier I'd rather do Svínafellsjökull.

See bolded.
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Offline whYME

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Re: Iceland Master Thread
« Reply #767 on: August 13, 2019, 10:18:44 PM »
Kvernufoss Never heard of it, but looks really nice. Added to my own to-do list.
I'm guessing the orientation doesn't quite match up or it'd be an epic sunset spot. Like Seljalandsfoss but much better.
« Last Edit: August 14, 2019, 01:07:56 PM by Something Fishy »

Offline Something Fishy

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Re: Iceland Master Thread
« Reply #768 on: August 13, 2019, 11:15:32 PM »
I'm guessing the orenentation doesn't quite match up or it'd be an epic sunset spot. Like Seljalandsfoss but much better.

It actually lines up perfectly on the days right around the winter solstice. So provided the snow and ice cooperates, we could have something epic on our hands.
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Offline ushdadude

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Re: Iceland Master Thread
« Reply #769 on: August 14, 2019, 12:35:31 PM »
Do you really remember all these names or do you have to google it each time? @Something Fishy
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Offline Something Fishy

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Re: Iceland Master Thread
« Reply #770 on: August 14, 2019, 12:37:10 PM »
Do you really remember all these names or do you have to google it each time? @Something Fishy

Mostly remember, but needed to Google a couple.
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Offline Traveler718

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Re: Iceland Master Thread
« Reply #771 on: August 19, 2019, 06:23:46 PM »
Is it worth an extra $200 to get a 4x4 for summer driving (full loop road + Snaefellsnes)? Also, if paying with a cc that gives primary coverage, are there any optional coverages you wold still recommend paying for?

Offline Something Fishy

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Re: Iceland Master Thread
« Reply #772 on: August 20, 2019, 12:08:28 AM »
Is it worth an extra $200 to get a 4x4 for summer driving (full loop road + Snaefellsnes)? Also, if paying with a cc that gives primary coverage, are there any optional coverages you wold still recommend paying for?

No point for 4x4 on the RR.

Since when are you doing the entire loop? I thought you were sticking to the south. At least it sounded that way based on your questions.
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Offline Traveler718

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Re: Iceland Master Thread
« Reply #773 on: September 09, 2019, 05:52:19 PM »
When we realized that we weren't going to do several of the activities in the south, either because my daughter is too young (5) for the age limits or because we've already done similar activities elsewhere (e.g. glacier walk in Alaska), we decided to drive the full Ring Road, a decision which turned out to be great for us, as several of our favorite waterfalls were in the north (Detifoss and adjacent Selfoss, and Godafoss), as were the really cool geothermal stuff in Myvatin.

Offline Traveler718

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Re: Iceland Master Thread
« Reply #774 on: September 09, 2019, 05:55:13 PM »
If anybody is going to Iceland and wants to change USD to Icelandic Krona before you leave at a fair rate, feel free to PM me.

Although we intended to pay for everything with cc and not change money, one of the places where we reserved lodging insisted on refunding us in cash when our outdoor hot tub didn't work. We spent some of it, but returned home with more krona than we would otherwise keep as a souvenir, and would be happy to switch it back to dollars and help somebody out who's headed to Iceland and doesn't want to get gouged on the rate at the airport.

Offline Something Fishy

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Re: Iceland Master Thread
« Reply #775 on: September 09, 2019, 05:56:06 PM »
When we realized that we weren't going to do several of the activities in the south, either because my daughter is too young (5) for the age limits or because we've already done similar activities elsewhere (e.g. glacier walk in Alaska), we decided to drive the full Ring Road, a decision which turned out to be great for us, as several of our favorite waterfalls were in the north (Detifoss and adjacent Selfoss, and Godafoss), as were the really cool geothermal stuff in Myvatin.

TROIDH
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Offline Dan

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Re: Iceland Master Thread
« Reply #776 on: September 09, 2019, 06:12:39 PM »
Save your time, I don't answer PM. Post it in the forum and a dedicated DDF'er will get back to you as soon as possible.