The beautiful country of Iceland has been in the news lately because of its football team and the fact that they beat England in the European Championships 2016. With a population of just 332,529, and the fact that most players are part time footballers, it’s hardly surprising. However, if you take a look at the overwhelming support of their fans and the teams celebratory “Viking cry” at the end of each match to show their appreciation, it’s no wonder this dedicated team is on a roll. You can be talented up to a point, but it takes your state of mind and drive to succeed to take you all the way! We all like an underdog so now England have spectacularly gone out of the competition, it’s only natural that we wish Iceland the best, well I do anyway.
Iceland has also been on the telly lately because of its food. English celebrity chef and television presenter Rick Stein filmed a new television series based on food around the world, in which Iceland was included. This gave us a real insight into Iceland, especially the culinary delights of Reykjavik, and the search for the perfect Icelandic cod.
This may be all well and good, but the real attraction to Iceland is the overwhelming beauty of the place. It is quite literally a world of natural phenomena, from the hot-springs at Geysir to the mighty waterfalls at Gullfoss , stunning landscapes of every shape and form can be found at every turn. A guided coach tour could take you to some of the most wonderful places on earth.
This utterly mesmerizing land is also home to Vatnajökull, the largest glacier in Europe, breathtaking fjords and Eyjafjallajökull, which is a volcano completely covered by an ice cap, which erupted as recently as 2010! Because Iceland is volcanically active, lava fields are prevalent in the landscape in the form of ragged block lava and more smoother ropy lava. Many of them have their origin in another volcano called Snæfellsjökull, the apparent ‘passage leading to the center of the earth’ as depicted in the Jules Verne (1864) novel, Journey to the Center of the Earth.
Iceland is also known for its natural Icelandic hot springs, the most famous being the Blue Lagoon. This popular geothermal spa is situated in southwestern Iceland and is one of the most visited attractions in Iceland. The warm waters are rich in minerals and are reputed to help people suffering from skin problems. In fact, the Blue Lagoon also has a research program designed to help find cures for skin ailments using the mineral-rich water, which has average temperatures of 37–39 °C in the bathing and swimming area of the lagoon. You can visit and bathe in this wonderful place on the Trafalgar ‘Ultimate Iceland’ tour, which will also take you to the wall of giant books and the glacial mountain backdrop at a museum dedicated to Thorbergur Thordarson, Iceland’s most beloved 20th century author.