Now, I’ve written about Iceland before, albeit briefly when I first started this blog. However, I didn’t really write too much detail about our stay.
At the end of 2013, I booked a trip to Reykjavik via Icelandair. The Northern Lights package to be exact, a 4 day whirlwind adventure with a cosy hotel in the centre of the city.
We booked a 4 night Northern Lights package, which included flights, hotel, breakfast and excursions.
As well as the lights, we also selected a Blue Lagoon and a 9 hour waterfalls and geysers sightseeing day.
Flying with IcelandAir was a dream, you’re allowed hold AND hand luggage (important for all those thermals and extra moisturisers). There’s also options to fly from more than one airport – we chose Heathrow, as it’s our favourite. It’s only a two hour flight from the UK with no time zone change.
It feels a lot like taking a luxury long haul flight; on board entertainment and refreshments are also provided. I sort of wish we were on it longer!
When booking we chose Leifur Eiriksson Hotel. It’s situated directly opposite Hallgrimskirkja (that’s the cathedral to me and you). Check out dat Sunrise view we had from our window:
This hotel puts you right in the middle of the city, perfect for newcomers, as you’re able to hop from hotel to cafe to restaurant with ease.
The hotel itself was great, we were staying in the eaves, so it felt like our own little private apartment as it was so quiet. Wifi and TVs are in every room, but again, you probably won’t be online much, bar the mornings/evenings before and after your day trips.
The breakfast was great – waffle station, fresh fruit, meat and cereal is all provided. Get down to breakfast early. There were queues each day, as guests were trying to pack in their hearty breakfasts before heading out on a morning excursion. It got pretty busy about 30 mins before pick up, so time it accordingly.
- Each excursion you book is meticulously organised, the joy of IcelandAir pre-booking is that your hotel already knows.
- It all works like clockwork. The three activities we booked gave an all round ideal experience for newcomers.
- The 9 hour day trip, takes you around the waterfalls, geysers and natural landmarks. It’s worth it for the geysers alone, or at least seeing the faces of the crowd when it erupts.
- The Northern Lights are wonderful. They send you out into the darkness from 10pm-2am. It’s an incredibly humbling experience for all those lucky enough to see the lights.
The ACTUAL Northern Lights I saw with my eyes back in 2012. Picture taken by my lovely friend.
- The Blue Lagoon is also one of those ‘must visit’ places. The expensive coffees and sandwiches here are worth every penny. Beautiful views, a hot spring and total relaxation. What could be better? You come out feeling extremely tired but oh-so refreshed and rejuvenated.
All in all, IcelandAir made the whole trip seamless and easy. Excursions were all booked on time, and we were left enough time for mooching around and sightseeing. (very important in this gorgeous place). The hotel was great and the staff were all amazing. I can’t wait to get back.
Have you ever been to Iceland? Have you ever seen the Northern Lights?
Things to bear in mind!
- WRAP UP WARM. Even if you’re sweating in your layers in the comfort of your room, you will need that extra layer.
- The 9 hour trip includes a small hike, so pack sensible footwear.
- If you can book the flybus (the airport to hotel bus) in advance – my advice is DO IT. Avoid queues at the airports and swan straight over to the bus, tickets already in hand. They will drop you off at the door of your hotel.
For more info, check out IcelandAir here www.icelandair.co.uk