Often referred to as ‘The Land of Fire and Ice’ Iceland offers vast contrasts. Active volcanoes provide geothermal energy and incredible landscapes whilst some of Europe’s biggest glaciers co-exist on the same island. Geysers give a spectacular display to visitors and huge waterfalls splash up at admirers. During the winter months the skies remain dark all day and night with the only relief the spectacular light show of the Aurora Borealis. Conversely during summer the sun does not set.
Iceland boasts interesting and delicious cuisine. Some menus you may find, whale, sheep’s head, fermented shark, horse steak and smoked puffin. They also offer exquisite dishes with more commonly used ingredients such as lamb and seafood.
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There are certainly no shortages of waterfalls in Iceland, each of them unique and well worth your attention. Due to its northern latitude, the country receives a lot of rain and snow, along with an abundance of glaciers and the combination of these creates the perfect location for waterfalls. With over 10,000 waterfalls across the country it can be next to impossible to visit them all, but combined with a Golden Circle tour you will be able to take in some of the most well known, each with their individual reasons for their popularity. Iceland certainly provides itself as an ideal location for chasing waterfalls.
Before or after your Icelandic luxury or expedition cruise, a great way to take in some of the top attractions is with a Golden Circle tour. A round trip from Reykjavik, you can enjoy a private tour or choose to self-drive. The tour will take you to the Strokkur Geysir, the parting tectonic plates at Thingvellir National Park, the famed Gullfoss waterfall and Kerið, a crater lake. Caused by the separation of the Eurasion and North American tectonic plates, the rift valley of the Thingvellir National Park is a fascinating site rightly named as a UNESCO World Heritage Site due to the stone shelters and church remains from the 10-18th centuries along with captivating geological formations. Next, head to the Strokkur Geysir, where the pressure from the geothermal heated water builds up underground until a large plume of water erupts every few minutes reaching heights of up to 30 metres. In the Geysir field, there are many different geysirs along with mud pits. The Gulfoss Waterfall is your following stop, which translates to the Golden Falls. Fed by the Hvita glacier river, the falls feature a 32 metre drop into a narrow gorge. Your last stop will be Kerið, a fascinating crater lake surrounded by vibrant red volcanic rock filled with bright blue water.