Travel stories

Traveling in Iceland (July)

13 July 2017
Traveling in Iceland (July)

I have been dreaming 10 years about traveling through Iceland by car. It seems that nearly everyone I talk to wants to desperately visit this quitte small island in the North Atlantic ocean. I can not blame them, because there is something really special about Iceland: the weather is rough, the landscapes are from out of space and the large waterfalls are one of a kind. For years I have been watching photos of Iceland, and now the time is there. Me and my girlfriend are going to Iceland!

Packing our bags

I have been backpacking through many countries in the world with only a backpack and as little as possible equipment. The weight of my backpack has always been around 15/17 KG (camera equipment included). Pretty light, huh? But this time I will use my travelbag instead of my backpack. Am I getting older? Am I not liking roadside camping anymore? Nah, it’s nothing of this. Sometimes a holiday is there to charge yourself, right? ;-).

What to pack for 10 days in Iceland?

The weather in Iceland can be really unpredictable (from rain to snow and back to sunny) and will change depending on the time of year you’re visiting, so figuring out what to pack for a week in Iceland can be a challenge.
Travel date: July
Season: summer
Weather: unpredictable

What Wikipedia says about Iceland in the summer:

The average July temperature in the southern part of the island is 10–13 °C (50–55 °F). Warm summer days can reach 20–25 °C (68–77 °F).

So, with al this information what do we need to pack? Warm clothes, water resistant clothes and swimming trunks it will be! Because we are not camping we won’t need any camping gear. We will sleep in guesthouses, hotels and campsite lodges.

My packing list for Iceland:

Camera bag

  • Camera Canon 5D Mark II
  • Wide angle lens Canon 17-40mm 4.0L
  • Telelens Canon 70-200 4.0L
  • ND 110 filter (10 stops)
  • B+W 702 filter
  • 10x battery (i’m safe if Iceland has no power:-D)
  • Raincover camera bag (important)
  • Camera rainbag (important)
  • CF Card reader
  • Powerbank 7000
  • iPhone Car holder
  • Macbook Air

Travelbag

  • Clothing
    • 4x Trousers
    • 6x Shirts
    • 1x Jack Wolfskin jacket
    • 8x Boxers
    • 8x Socks
    • 1x Fleece sweater
    • 2x Sweater
    • 1x Cap
    • 1x Swimming trunks
    • 1x Rain trousers
    • 1x Hiking shoes (in a sack)
  • Essentials
    • Passport (important)
    • Driver’s license (important)
    • 1xTooth brush
    • 1x Tooth paste
    • 1x Paracetamol
    • 1x Throat pills
    • 1x Multivitamins
    • 1x Sleep mask
  • Food
    • 1x Pindakaas (dutch food -> splashed nuts ;-))
    • 2x Pasta herbs
    • 4x Noodles
    • 5X Soup
  • Other gear
    • Feisol carbon tripod
    • Gorillapad tripod
    • Garmin 650t

10 days of traveling through Iceland by car

Before our trip started I have traced great potential photo locations in Iceland. I have used an awesome website for this: https://www.locationscout.net/iceland. On this site you can exactly trace (in longitude/latitude) where the photo is taken and at what time. I found around 20 awesome photo locations and saved them as stars in Google maps with some extra details. After this I downloaded the whole Iceland map for offline use, so I can use my iPhone as a GPS navigation without using internet. That’s perfect, right?

Ok! So, when we knew all the locations we wanted to visit, it was time to find all nearby hotels/guesthouses or lodges. I have used Booking.com for this. An awesome app you always need to use when traveling. It safes time and frustrations ;-). Because we don’t want to drive for more than 3-4 hours each day, we divided the whole route distance into nine pieces. Because we are only driving 1-3 hours each day we have loads of spare time for sight seeing. Remember: holidays are there to relax, right?

 

Day 1: Reykjavik

 

We got up early to catch our flight from Amsterdam to Reykjavik. The flight was a bit rough and we had some turbulence when we flew over Scotland, but overall the flight was good. We watched the serie The Last Kingdom (tip from Jip:-D). After arriving at Keflavik Airport we took our luggage and waited to get picked up by Pro Car. At Pro Car you can rent a lot of different cars and we have made a reservation for a small car (which we will not do the next time in Iceland, I will tell you later why). We happily got a new Kia with airconditioning and USB etc, awesome! After doing some administration work at the rental office we remembered the guarantor costs for insurance of 1800 euros, auch! Because my creditcard has a limit of 2000 euros we could not use this card anymore. But after calling with the bank my limit was upgraded to 4000 euros, perfect!

We picked up the car and drove to Reykjavik. It was an hour’s drive to B&B Bluehouse (Valhúsabraut 19, Reykjavik 170, Iceland).

In the evening we ate at a harbor restaurant in Reykjavik called Icelandic Fish and Chips. It was a nice restaurant and the food was ok (for islandic standards ;-)). Oh and parking after 18:00 is free of charge in Reykjavik, that’s new for us.

 

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