I loved how open and pristine the land and water were. It was also the first time I experienced the northern lights. After that experience, I knew this was a place I had to return to. I’ve been back at least once per year since.
Probably my most cherished memory from my time in Iceland was this past July. I witnessed the most beautiful sunset I’ve ever seen in my life while at Fjallsárlón. My wife and I were the only people there.
We laughed, we photographed, and we enjoyed the most quiet and peaceful evening under the midnight sun. We even skipped rocks across the water. It really was amazing. To be in such a beautiful place in Iceland all alone was really special.
Like Fjallsárlón, there are many beautiful places in Iceland. The Highlands, Vestrahorn and the various glacier lagoons of the south are definitely up there. But I don’t really have a favorite place in Iceland. Each is just so grand that I can’t really pick one.
I would actually pick the Icelandic sky as the most magical thing about Iceland, regardless of location. The clouds, rainbows, golden sun light, pink sun light, and most inspirational, the green lights of the auroras are what make Iceland so special to me.
The Best Destinations and Experiences in Iceland
Vestrahorn in the south eastern part of Iceland is my favorite mountain. It’s probably one of the most grand views on the island in my opinion.
There are some amazing landscapes and waterfalls all around the western and eastern fjords that are pretty much secret spots you won’t see in many photos. I say: explore, respect the land, and you will be rewarded.
I always recommend staying a few nights on an Icelandic farm too. Getting to know the locals, their stories, and seeing how people live is really great.
If you stay in Reykjavik, I highly recommend a visit to the Landnámssýningin. It’s a great place to start learning about Iceland’s past.
The music scene and bar scene in the city is absolutely fantastic also. It’s no wonder so much Icelandic music is making a splash on the world stage these days.
Although, the ultimate experience in all of Iceland has to be seeing the northern lights. I’ve spent hours upon hours studying the phenomenon and the conditions that optimize your probability to see the lights.
Honestly, words can’t describe the northern lights. To me, they are a life changing experience. I always feel truly blessed to stand under them.
The first time I saw them, I was in complete awe. But soon, I found out that there are different levels. Green is not the only color. The intensity varies by the many variables that cause the lights. I’ve seen pink, red, blue, green, and purple auroras dancing across the sky.
There’s nothing like it in the world. But persistence and dedication are needed to maximize your chances of seeing the lights.
Tips for Iceland: The Most Beautiful Place on Earth
My biggest tip to anyone traveling to Iceland is to plan your trip thoroughly before you go. And if possible, do it via self drive. I normally have locations scouted, roadways mapped and alternative routes planned beforehand.
I had a tour company plan my self drive trip the first time I went and it was only during my second trip that I realized how much I missed. There are some very popular spots known by all tourist companies, but it’s what’s in between that is truly Iceland.
Another tip, if you go during northern lights season, the biggest hurdle to overcome is the local weather. Monitor cloud prediction maps, stay informed on where the clear skies will be and you will more than likely see auroras. Find clear skies!
And my biggest tip, respect the land. Iceland is pristine. It’s clean. Keep it that way!
Enjoy the Food and Meet the Locals of Iceland
The food in Iceland is also great. To start with the hotdogs are amazing! But if you are like me, and enjoy a good sit down dinner, you can’t go wrong ordering arctic char or lamb anywhere in the country.
Of all my visits to Iceland, I’ve never met an unpleasant local. Everyone seems very happy and I don’t blame them with all that clean water and nature around them! I’ve made many friends while traveling there. Many of whom I still maintain contact with through the years.
Thanks for reading my article on why Iceland is the most beautiful place on earth. I hope you enjoyed it!
About Me: Carlos Gauna
I was born in El Salvador and came to the USA to seek shelter from a horrible civil war that was occurring there in the 1980s. My mother and I settled down in the State of New Mexico where I graduated high school.
After high school, I got a Bachelor’s degree and a Master’s degree in Oklahoma. While in college I became the photo editor for the university newspaper. Digital cameras were just coming into the market and not many students knew how to use them.
I volunteered to shoot a few basketball games and assignments to test out the new cameras. I was hooked. Eventually, I bought my own camera, and eventually people started to pay me photograph weddings.
In 2014, I married my wife Andi and she has joined me for every photo session since. I have a need to travel, to see the world. So my inspiration is capturing its beauty and sharing it through my lens. My wife is my ultimate travel partner.