Smash Hits Iceland

Coast near Hellnar, Snæfellsjökull

We have been travelling around Iceland for the past 2 week. We loved it. Many of our friends want to go there as well. For them we have listed our top recommendations:

Top 3 Places to Stay

No 1: Hafaldan Hostel in Seyðisfjörður
I still can’t believe it! When travelling in India earlier this year, I picked up a postcard from a hostel in Iceland. At the time I thought it was funny that there would be advertising for Iceland in India. But it was even funnier, when I realised AFTER booking into Hafaldan Hostel, that this was the very hostel the postcard was from.

No 2: ION Adventure Hotel
Expensive, but beautiful.

No 3: Víðir’s House on Airbnb in the center of Vestmannaeyjabær
Great place to relax and enjoy walks around the beautiful island and indulge in the near by restaurants and cafes.

Top 3 Places to Eat

No 1: Skaftfell Bistrot in Seyðisfjörður
We could have spent weeks in this cafe/bistrot which is a legacy of German-Swiss artist Dieter Roth. Our favourite: the long table with the games and painting materials hanging from the ceiling.

No 2: Slippurinn Eatery in Vestmannaeyjabær
Amazing Icelandic food and desert.

No 3: Kaffihus Vesturbaejar
Relaxed neighbourhood hangout in Reykjavik, which has tons of great restaurants and cafes.

as well as Gott in Vestmannaeyjabær

Top 3 Places to Hike

No 1: Snæfellsjökull
This is a 700,000 year old glacier, featuring prominently in Jules Vernes Journey to the Center of the Earth (1864). We had great fun hiking up the snowy slopes and tobogganing downhill on our raincoats.

No 2: Coastal walk from Hellnar to Arnarstapi
Check out all the birds!

No 3: Circumnavigating Hverfjall near Myvatn

Top 3 Places to Visit

No 1.: Waterfall Gullfoss and Geysir

No 2: Ice Lagoon

No 3: Halldór Laxness Museum, Gljufrasteinn

Best 3 Bodies of Water

Lilian, Vico, Siena and Jake had fun jumping into one very cold body of water every day. I only joined them once, in Fáskrúðsfjörður. But we all spent hours in the hot springs!

Coldest: Seyðisfjörður harbour

Warmest: Hot Spring at Highland Hostel Laugerfell

Most beautiful: Lake Thingvallavatn

Curated: Myvatn Nature Baths

Other Musts

Save money beforehand, as everything is at least twice as expensive as in the rest of Europe. While in Iceland, just forget to convert prices into your local currency. This will make your trip much more enjoyable.

Rent a 4x4

Read Halldór Laxness Independent People

Watch Werner Herzogs Into the Inferno

Bring raincoats and lot’s of warm clothing as Icelanders have been waiting for summer since 1926.

And check out some of the exciting contemporary Icelandic composers!




anthropologist, co-founder of and betterplace lab, most recently co-founder of Das Dach

Love podcasts or audiobooks? Learn on the go with our new app.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
joana breidenbach

joana breidenbach

anthropologist, co-founder of and betterplace lab, most recently co-founder of Das Dach

More from Medium

Statistics for Poets, part 2


Meandering Down the Stream of Consciousness.