Monday, September 05, 2016

Reflections, Tips and Recommendations

Reflections:
1. Iceland is beautiful. We enjoyed the landscape of the south, east and north best of all
2. Rain is a fact of life. Accept that it will rain at least 60% of the time even in the summer. 
3. Eating in restaurants is Very expensive.  Hotels are also on the high end. Camper vans are the most economical and comfortable way to travel.
4. Roads can be questionable in places
5. To really experience Iceland, get out of Reykjavik and out into the small villages and hinterlands
6. You will have some of the best seafood you have ever tasted
7. In many areas, food and bathrooms are a rare commodity. Be prepared
8. Everyone speaks English well
9. Be flexible and go without a lot of schedules 
10. It is a place to slow down, relax and enjoy nature

Tips:
1. Grey Line takes you from the airport to hotels in the Reykjavik area; tickets can be purchased at the airport. 
2. Go Camper was great. Terrific customer service and their vans were a good size and well maintained. Hotel Vellir was terrific; Go Camper picked us up there
3. Bathrooms are few and far between. Be prepared
4. US chip and signature cards do not work at unmanned service stations. Buy gas cards ahead of time
5. A travel wifi modem is a great help in finding hotels, campgrounds, food, etc a Trawire worked well for us; it was about $10 a day, well worth it. There are no McDonalds to stop and get wifi!
6. Buy a good map. 
7. Roads have no shoulder and few pull outs; pull off into farm driveways often to check out views
8. Bring rain gear, ponchos, rain pants and hiking boots. Have a winter hat, gloves, scarf, buff and other wind proof clothing
9. Eat local seafood
10.  The weather report for the next few hours is pretty accurate, beyond that not so much so
11. Take a guidebook. Nothing is well marked and you need to know where you are going. 
12. Get off the beaten track, go where tourists do not
13. Twilight is great for photography, and it lasts for hours
14. Take the gravel and windshield insurance. We had a pebble hit the middle of our windshield a few hours out of Reykjavik right on the Ring Riad. Thank goodness we had taken the insurance!

Recommendations:
1. Hotel Vellir in Hafnarfjordur
2. Go Camper
3. Pakkhus a Restaurant in Hofn
4. Rub Restaurant in Akureyi
5. Hotel Kea in Akureyi
6. The Fish Store in Siglufjordur
7. Herring Museum in Siglufjordur 
8. Kaffi Klara in Olafsfjordur for cake and coffee
9. Trawire wifi rental
10. GreyLine airport service

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