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One day in Iceland

Just one day. Arrive early at 6:05am on October 6th. Leave 24 hours later. For those that have been, what would you recommend for a first time visitor that really wants to get a taste of Iceland in a brief window of time?

Posted by Agnes
Washington DC Region, USA
4655 posts

I would visit any one of the city's geothermal pools (the Blue Lagoon is the most touristy and expensive, although not the only one) and spend time touring Reykjavik. There are lots of day trips to see the natural beauty of Iceland outside the city, but I don't think you'll have time to do it all (plus you may arrive totally tired and jet lagged). If you can handle a geothermal pool, that would be my top choice, followed by sightseeing in Reykjavik.

Posted by Northwest adventurer
WA, USA
287 posts

I do like the geothermal pools, but I would say do the golden circle route. Rent a car for the day. You’ll see the countryside, waterfalls, and geysers. Might even be able to go to the Blue Lagoon in the evening.
You are arriving so early in the morning that you can get to many of the sites before the crowds get there.

We had stayed in Reykjavik and left about 9 am in the morning to start the Golden Circle tour. Did a couple of hikes, photo stops, saw geysers, nice lunch at a farmhouse stop, and got back to Reykjavik around 6 pm.

Have a great stopover!

Posted by stephen
Greeley, co, usa
959 posts

Golden Circle tour. If it is just you, I would do an organized tour. If more than 1, then you could look at rentng a car

Posted by jebarney77 OP
8 posts

Thanks for the great suggestions! I will be solo, so renting a car while jet lagged and paying crazy rates for international insurance and $8/gallon gas doesn't seem advisable. I considered several options for a one day Iceland adventure. I'm thinking something like this tour:

https://guidetoiceland.is/book-holiday-trips/hot-golden-circle-small-group-tour-with-a-hot-spring-bath

Wondered if anyone else has done this tour or been to Secret Lagoon? Any Golden Circle tours any of you have been on that you really enjoyed?

I've heard all about Blue Lagoon. Maybe it's fantastic, but it seems like an expensive tourist trap that's an inauthentic Icelandic experience. And as much as I would love to sightsee in Reykjavik, I'll be doing a lot of museums and seeing cities during the rest of my trip. So the Golden Circle tour seems very ideal.