So, you want to go to Iceland? I highly recommend it, but there are certain things that you may need to be aware of. This list is not to do with sight seeing, but the practicalities of staying in Iceland. Enjoy my blog on Iceland – 10 things to know before you go!
Iceland – 10 Things to Know Before you Go
- It’s COLD! Stating the obvious – I know…the clue is in the name! 😉 But seriously, wrap up warm with thermal base layers, loophole socks, walking boots, fleece, hat, scarf, gloves and waterproofs. See What to Pack for Iceland. Weather is extremely changeable – the weather office update their information every 3 hours. Be sure to check this especially if you are hiking or driving.
- The water smells like Sulphur! Basically – tap water is like fart water! But do you know what? It’s probably the most drinkable water in the world.
- Cars will stop to allow you to cross – just make sure that you still look and cross carefully, drivers often stop and wave you across! It is sparsely populated so there is not much traffic on the roads. If you are driving, be aware of pedestrians, and hire a four wheel drive if you are driving a distance or venturing off the main road.
- Iceland is extremely eco-conscious. Electricity is cheap, because most of it comes from renewable sources such as HEP or Geothermal power.
- Food and drink is expensive. For a burger and chips or a basic meal expect to pay around 2000 Krona and another 500 at least for a drink. 2500 Krona works out at about £13. Make sure you have a healthy food budget for Iceland and you can stock up on alcohol at duty free!
- The Islandic people are amazingly friendly and chilled out. If things start to go wrong or stress you out, they will tell you not to worry and help you to sort it out.
- There is a very Low Crime Level in Iceland – to such an extent that even mothers leave their babies in prams outside cafes!
- Nudity is normal. Many Islandic people bathe in hot springs naked, and this is not peculiar to them. On my very first day in Iceland, I saw a man naked through a window – he was washing his dishes!
- You can use your credit card pretty much everywhere, so you don’t need to worry too much about exchanging or carrying Kronas.
- Register your whereabouts during your Travels with http://www.safetravel.is and then you can check in along the way using the 112 Iceland App (http://blondebrunettetravel.com/). Always travel with a fully charged phone and a back up, as severe weather conditions can come on at any time and many tourists drive without properly prepare for this, and get stranded in freezing temperatures. Rescues in Iceland are free as they are run by volunteers and they don’t want to deter tourists from calling for help if they need it.
Is there anything else that you would like to ask about Iceland? Please comment below.
You might also like to read about What to Pack for Iceland and Arriving in Reykjavik – Getting from Keflavik Airport to Reykjavik Hotels.