If you’re coming to Iceland, odds are you’ve already heard of the Golden Circle. It’s the island’s most popular day tour and, second only to the Blue Lagoon, is the most famous attraction in Iceland.
And here’s why: it’s a fairly quick ride with beautiful sights in close proximity of each other. It displays some of Nature’s finest works and it is a treasure of mind meddling geographical information. It’s easily accessible and the site around it is designed with the comfort of the people in mind. Toilets, food, souvenirs, warm clothes. Making this tour not only beautiful but also convenient.
You’ll find information about this tour everywhere, so instead of telling you about it, let me show you instead. Behold; the Golden Circle in photos. Do note, however, that it’s even more impressive in real life than any of these pictures could ever portray.
Driving up to Þingvellir coming from Reykjavik is already a treat on its own. It’s about a 30 minutes drive from Reykjavík on a far-stretching road lined with sky-high mountains with snowy peaks. When driving into the parking lot at Þingvellir you can already see the beauty that it beholds. Þingvellir is a national park, it’ll cost you 500isk, an equivalent of roughly €3,60/$4,10, for a day-pass which includes parking and is additionally your contribution to keeping the national park preserved.
Did you know that the English word for a geyser is actually derived from this one, instead of the other way around? So no, it’s not misspelled. The word Geysir comes from the Icelandic verb ‘að gjósa’, which roughly translates into ‘to erupt/gush’. Yes, in Iceland they like to be quite descriptive about their location names.
Geysir doesn’t erupt anymore, but luckily, his next-door neighbour, Strokkur, does! He goes off at least once approximately every ten minutes. Some of the explosions are major, spewing water high up in the air, whereas other eruptions might be relatively small. Either way, this display by nature is absolutely beautiful and interesting at the same time.
Massive amounts of water thunder, every second, down into the gorge below, at the Gullfoss Falls, about a ten-minute drive from Geysir. On a sunny day, you might be able to spot a rainbow above the rushing water, making this scene a treat for photographers. You can walk down and see the waterfall from up close, or stay up high on the deck and admire it from above. Either way, the scenery is stunning.