Top 10 Most Famous Iceland Landmarks Travelers Talk About
Iceland may not be the first place that people think of when they are looking for a vacation destination; however the country is quickly becoming a top tourist retreat for those that are tired of crowded beaches, high activity entrance fees and typical tourist traps. Here, the landscape is unspoiled and some of the most remarkable natural features in the entire world can be found. From volcanoes to geysers and everything in between, there is something certain to impress every guest coming to the area. Unlike those found in many parts of the world, Iceland landmarks are almost entirely natural geographical features or phenomenon, making it an ideal destination for nature lovers. In fact, of the ten Iceland famous landmarks travelers can’t get enough of, well over half of them did not come from human hands.
1. Northern Lights in Iceland: Few people ever have a chance to see the northern lights, a phenomenon that brings vivid streaks of pulsating color across the sky. These lights have been associated with many legends and tales, and they can be viewed in northern parts of the world from time to time. Seeing them in Iceland however can be unique as it’s the only place in the world where a midnight sun can allow for a viewing experience unlike any other.
2. Imagine Peace Tower: On a small island near capital Reykjavik can be found the Imagine Peace Tower, a relatively new addition to Iceland Landmarks that is a powerful representation of the life’s work of John Lennon. Built by wife Yoko Ono, the tower is lit an hour prior to sunset each night with exception of the couple’s birthdays and New Year’s Eve. A strong beam of light projects upward to the stars, brightening the night sky as if to send a message of peace to the world.
3. Perlan Reykjavik: Perhaps one of the most unusual of all Iceland Landmarks is a water storage building. The fact that it stores geothermal water which it supplies to the nearby city is not at all unique, but the building’s design (dubbed “the pearl”) is what draws visitors and guests in droves each year. It looks like something out of a science fiction movie, with interesting domed structures and an interesting footprint. Aside from viewing the modern marvel itself, the structure also houses a Viking museum and there are many concerts that are held inside each year. The Perlan is one of the most popular Reykjavik attractions thanks also in part to a rotating restaurant housed inside that offers unparalleled views of the city.
4. Iceland Hot Springs: For a country with “ice” in the name, it may seem unusual that some of the country’s most notable landmarks are actually hot springs. However, there are many of these natural geothermal pools to enjoy, each unique in their own way. Near the capital can be found an area called “steam valley” and it’s a picturesque retreat a hop, skip and jump away from Reykjavik. Adventurers will no doubt enjoy the hot spring in the northern part of the country, and while it’s a great distance from the capital city center, Grjotagja is one of the most unique of all Iceland landmarks. Inside the waters are so warm that decades ago they reached a point even too hot for bathers. Remnants of candle stubs from civilization’s past can be found in the cave too, making it both a historically relevant and relaxing retreat.
5. Blue Lagoon Iceland: There are few locations in Iceland as unique as the Blue Lagoon. Part man made marvel and part natural phenomenon, the location brings a great many visitors each year due to the purported healing properties of the warm water and silica mud found here. Guests have found relief for everything from psoriasis to arthritis from spending time in the warm water at Blue Lagoon. The actual pool was formed from the construction of a power plant nearby, and it’s one of the most well known of all Iceland Landmarks, drawing hordes of tourists each year.
6. Geysir: Another natural phenomenon Iceland boasts is a pair of geysers that spout regularly to the delight of many guests each year. Theyre both near the Golden Falls, but Geysir is perhaps a better option as it erupts less regularly than the frequently active Strokkur, which blows its top every few minutes. From a safe distance, once in a lifetime photo opportunities can be had at these Iceland landmarks which draw their energy from geothermal sources below.
7. Hverir: Near the hotbed of volcanic activity in Iceland referred to literally as “hell” can be found this geothermal natural masterpiece that boasts fumaroles and boiling mud pools. It’s unlike any other place on Earth and a truly unique sight for guests willing to take a walk on the wild side. The pools are located very near one of the most well known of all Iceland landmarks, the Krafla volcano, which is incredibly active and has erupted 29 times in recorded history.
8. Iceland Volcanos: Iceland is the last place that most people would associate with a flurry of volcanic activity, but aside from volatile Krafla, there are thirty active volcanic systems in the country. Combined they account for over a third of the entire planet’s lava output, a strange association for a country named humorously for frozen water. The dense number of volcanoes here is attributed to the country’s location directly atop the convergence of two tectonic plates. The most active of these stunning, natural Iceland landmarks is Grimsvotn, but other eruptions have occurred even recently in other volcanoes that have been large enough to disrupt commercial travel, even in other countries.
9. Gullfoss Waterfall Iceland: Also known as “Golden Falls” this incredibly impressive natural wonder is comprised of sediment rich glacial water and is one of the most popular of all Iceland landmarks. A fascinating local legend surrounds the falls that were once considered ideal for providing electricity thanks to their natural power. The owner of the property the falls were housed on threatened to throw herself into the rushing water, as the legend goes, in an effort to stop the spoiling of the natural beauty of the site. Today it remains one of the most awe inspiring sights in the country, and draws packs of tourists annually.
10. Kerid: With so many different volcanoes found in such a small area, it’s not a wonder that many Iceland landmarks are associated with the steaming calderas. Kerid is particularly unique because guests find the crater of this lava spewer full of water, not liquid hot magma. Kerid is a lake within a volcano, and it’s truly a magnificent sight.