I wasn’t sure what compelled me to visit, so I told everyone that I decided to scream naked on a fjord — It seemed just as good as any other reason. I eventually bared all on a deserted hill just outside of Patreksfjordur and yelled at the top of my lungs at the emptiness of the West Fjords. I set my camera on delayed shutter. The picture is very unflattering and to this day I am not sure what drew my to Iceland. I was not alone. I ran into numerous people compelled by some odd draw with their own series of unusual reasons — beyond drooling over throngs of attractive Nordic princesses. A woman I met wanted to connect to Loki, the Norse god of mischief, because she wanted more fun in her life. Another man expected something magical to happen. Still another visited to try to catch an elf. For all those reasons, I loved Iceland.
One of my favorite trips was a six-week rucksackers delight in IcelandI highly recommend it. Here are a few considerations before you go. It will be a little pricey. It is not as cold as one might think, but expect to get rained on year-round. Driving by bus or car takes forever and features numerous hairpin curves on fjord hugging roads so it was worth it for me to fly as often as possible on teeny planes. The people are very polite, but may take a while to warm up to boisterous American travelers. Also expect to see the Earth in a way you never have before, bubbling, boiling, and bursting. Bring a camera. Get outside of Reykjavik to Landmannalaugar for scenery, Vestmannaeyjar for puffin and Pjodhatid — a great party in August, Myvatn for more innocuous misquitos than you ever thought possible, and Akureyri for charm and camping. I knew the second that my foot touched land that this would be one of the safest and most beautiful places I had ever been.
Written by Devin Galaudet