Top Tourist Attractions In Iceland
Tourists who never venture beyond the capital city may miss out on some on a bulk of the top tourist attractions in Iceland. Located right smack between Europe and North America, this Nordic European country has often been mistaken for something that resembles the North Pole or Alaska due to its name.
But on the contrary, only 10% of Iceland is covered in ice. The rest of the country enjoys a mild climate.
In summary, most of the top tourist attractions in Iceland can never be found in any of Iceland’s major cities.
Located 30-50 KM from Iceland’s capital city, Þingvellir National Park features a dramatic landscape, due to its location which is right along the North American and European Tectonic Plates. This UNESCO World Heritage site was declared the longest running parliament in the world, which was first established in 930 A.D.
Vatnajökull National Park, a much more recent addition to Iceland’s national parks, is the largest national park in Europe, measuring 12000 sq. km. Highlights of the park include Iceland’s highest peak, Hvannadalshnúkur, biggest glacier, Vatnajökull and Europe’s largest waterfalls in terms of water volume discharge, Dettifoss.
And if you’re familiar with Jules Verne’s famous book, Journey to the Center of the Earth, then you know that the ice-covered volcanic crater in the Snæfellsjökull National Park was the setting described in the book.
This geothermal spa in the middle of a lava field is known for its warm, mineral-rich, milky-blue waters which was said to cure various skin diseases such as psoriasis. It is located in the town of Grindavik.
The almost alien landscape of Mývatn is one of the top tourist attractions in Iceland. The lake was formed due to an eruption 2300. Today, the area is now one of the most popular sites for bird watching as well as for its geothermal baths.
About 60 miles east of Reykjavik lies an ethereal landscape of a river plunging into a giant, double-cascade waterfalls. The picturesque Gulfoss or Golden Falls is said to be the most beautiful waterfalls in the whole of Iceland.