Alternative Reykjavik, Iceland – Part 3 - Orlando / Florida Guide
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Here’s what you can do as an alternative.
Start with a morning pastry at Braud & Co on Frakkastigur then head north, toward Borgarfordur. Stop at Deildartunguhver Hot Spring which is the most powerful in Iceland. Watch the water bubble, sputter and steam as its channelled off in pipes to nearby towns. Next is the village of Reykholt , once the home to the poet and saga writer Snorri Sturluson. Here you can see old and new buildings side by side and pay a visit to its 19th century church. The head towards the Hraunfossar and Barnafoss waterfalls. The former translates as ‘Lava Falls’ and is made up of a series of creeks and waterways that spill out over the lava bed for around 900m. The latter means ‘Children’s Fall’, so called because of a folktale about two children who fell in while crossing one of the stone arches that span it, so their mother destroyed the bridge. After this head for a bistro lunch at the nearby Hotel Husafell in preparation for a subterranean adventure in the Vidgelmir lava tunnel. This has only recently opened, ‘The Cave’ is an experience that sees you descend into the longest and largest cave in Iceland. On the way back to Reykjavik, detour to Krosslaug natural pool. It has seating for two people comfortably, its relaxing waters are around 42ºC and free to use. End your stopover with a meal back in the capital at ‘Fishmarket’ and its rather modern take on fish and chips
There are plenty of places to stay depending on your budget. The brand new Canopy hotel in Reykjavik’s centre is just behind the Laugavegur shopping street and offers modern rooms inside six traditional connected houses. Each room is decorated with local artwork, while free bike rental is included, so you can head out exploring on two wheels. Doubles are from ISK36, 000 and it includes a locally sourced artisanal breakfast. In the Mid-range the Reykjavik Residence Hotel is an apartment hotel in the heart of the old town, in a building that dates from 1918. Each apartment has a private kitchenette for self-catering and it’s around £150 for a two person studio. If you are on a tight budget then The Oddsson Hotel/Hostel has a yoga room, hot tubs on the roof, a karaoke room and a mix of low cost options, ranging from simple hotel rooms and bunks in shared dorms to private ‘pods’. Bunks are from £40; pods from £70; doubles in a private hostel room from £130.
There are plenty more uncrowded places to discover around Reykjavik if you choose to linger longer than a day. Enroute to Hraunfossar at Borgarnes, be sure to detour to Hvalfordur for a 3 hour hike to Iceland’s highest waterfall, Glymur (198m). From there, head even further north for a true sense of isolation, towards the Westfords. Here you will find not black but red sand beaches at Raudisandur.
There are many places to see that are off the normal tourist routes so Iceland is worth planning as more than a stopover point.
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