2018 is coming to a swift close, which can mean only one thing; the new year is upon. If 2018 in Iceland has been anything to go by, we can expect big things of 2019, with a range of new and exciting tours available, as well as insightful articles exploring Iceland’s fascinating folklore and its wild, untempered nature. Here is our list of 5 things you can expect in Iceland in 2019.
See Also: Top 9 Adventures in Iceland
Cruises in Iceland
Whilst most people arrive in Iceland by aeroplane, a minority of travellers will arrive to our shores by cruise ship, those enormous floating cities that bring luxury and adventure to the high seas. Come 2019, Guide to Iceland will be promoting cruise ship tours on the main website. We hope you can deal with the seasickness.
Last year, the number of passengers to Iceland travelling by cruise was approximately 128,000, with that number expected to rise in 2019 to 191,000 people. In total, that means 178 cruise ships, a truly staggering number which, no doubt, opens up a new window of opportunity for those wanting to discover all that Iceland has to offer.
See Also: Travelling to Iceland by Cruise
One summer tour is already live on the site, a 10-day voyage around the island that allows guests to experience every corner of Iceland’s coastal landscapes, be it the rocky black shores of the South Coast to the towering cliffsides of the Westfjords.
Adventuring by sea comes with a litany of possibilities, including the chance to see whales, dolphin and birdlife, as well as sail under the Midnight Sun. You can find out more information about the tour by following the link; 10-Day Cruise Around Iceland by Sea.
Elf School in Reykjavik
Our international guests are fascinated by Icelandic folklore. Whether its trolls or fairies, Norse Gods or sea monsters, our readers’ thirst to learn more has been prevalent since we first began sharing stories from Iceland’s mythical underbelly. In 2019, we plan to take this a step further…
Thankfully, Iceland’s capital city, Reykjavík, boasts its own Elf School, a place where students can strengthen their knowledge base on the country’s hidden folk, or Huldufólk. Whilst this Elf School has appeared in numerous media programmes over the last few years, namely Richard Ayoade’s Travel Man, we have yet to get to grips with this fantastical academy.
See Also: Folklore in Iceland
We plan to pay a visit to this fascinating centre of learning in the hope of delving into Icelanders’ mysterious, yet naturally-aligned belief in the supernatural, and perhaps even figure out how to find an elf ourselves (—now wouldn’t that be an interesting article?)
8 Day Summer Trip Around Iceland
Of course, one way of upping your chances of seeing Huldufólk is to travel to each of Iceland’s staggering regions in turn. Though this can be achieved through a self-drive package—ie; renting a car and taking to the road yourself—a more secure and educational option lies in guided tours.
Even if you don’t manage to lay your eyes on a mythical being, you will still be privy to fantastical landscapes and out-of-this-world tour activities, including the likes of hot spring bathing, ice caving and horseback riding. Guides are also ready and willing to take you to their favourite, personal spots en route, and will even tell you a little about the history and folklore of each attraction. What more could a visitor to Iceland ask for?
Fortuitously, this 8-day summer trip around the country (Small Groups) is the perfect option, covering all aspects of Iceland’s beloved nature.
You will, for instance, see waterfalls and glacial lagoons, mountain ranges and glaciers, still lagoons and black sand shorelines, all without missing out on the most well-known tourist attractions. These include Þingvellir National Park, Geysir geothermal valley and Gullfoss waterfall, the three of which make up the famed Golden Circle sightseeing route.
Trekking the Icelandic Countryside
2018 saw the worst summer in Iceland in 100 years. Aside from disappointing the locals, the bad weather made it a somewhat less exciting affair to partake in summer activities, the most passive of which is trekking through the countryside.
2019 promises a much better summer—it has to be, right?—meaning that we will take it upon ourselves to discover and report on some of the most well-known hiking trails in the country. Be they found in the volcanic fields of the Capital Region, or nestled in the luscious valleys of the Icelandic Highlands, we will be there, traipsing into the wilderness.
See Also: Hiking in Iceland
We will then be following it up with informative advice articles on their length, the estimated hiking times and what to pack in your bag, as well as words of warning for any areas that present dangers for hikers.
It’s also a sure-fire means of getting us fit, which understandably means nothing to you, dear reader, but understand that Christmas has plumped up the Guide to Iceland Now team no end, and we need to get in fighting shape if we’re planning to accurately report on Iceland’s range of adventure activities. It’s only sensible, after all.
Visiting the Eastfjords of Iceland
The Eastfjords is the region in Iceland that is visited least by our international guests, making it something of an enigma on the island. This has nothing to do with its scenery, which is undoubtedly staggering, but simply its distance from the Capital Region, which contains both Keflavík International Airport and the country’s biggest city, Reykjavík.
Those who do venture eastward are rewarded with a side of Iceland that is rarely seen. For one, the Eastfjords is a rural, yet undeniably wild area of the country, one characterised by its sharp-peaked mountains, rough gravel roads and haunting shorelines.
See Also: Top 10 Places to Visit in East Iceland
Travelling through, either on a self drive or guided tour, visitors will be amazed by the wealth of attractions that can be found here, including Vestrahorn mountain, Lake Lagarfljót and Iceland’s largest national forest, Hallormsstaðaskógur.
There can be no better place in Iceland to find real solitude, as well as discover a host of attractions that are not as commonly experienced by foreign guests. If you’re planning to visit Iceland in 2019, make the Eastfjords a ‘must-see’ on your itinerary.
What are you most looking forward to for 2019 in Iceland? Make sure to share this post with your friends and families, and if you have any thoughts or queries, feel free to leave a message in the Facebook comments box below.