From the very start of our Iceland adventure planning process, we decided it would be best to add a touch of relaxation to our vacation – something essential for us as we work hard all year with few breaks. Our trip to Iceland was actually are first time off from work since our trip to Mexico in 2016.
By design, we determined traveling around the Ring Road (with a few stops off in the Snaefellsnes Peninsula and Westfjord regions) clockwise would grant us the opportunity to face the more challenging areas of Iceland first (in particular the Westfjords), and once we reach the South and back West, find our trip a bit easier to handle as things become naturally “easier” to do by comparison.
By the middle of our trip, despite loving all of the sites we were encountering, we began to miss some basic commodities that we tend to have at home – like our own bathroom, cooking areas, a sink that doesn’t require a hike to get too, a feeling of being generally hygienic thanks to warm showers, and so on.
To give ourselves some incentive, we had booked a room for our final nights stay at the Northern Lights Inn (right next to the Blue Lagoon), which had us looking forward to this 9th day of our trip more and more.
BUT FIRST – THE DC3 PLANE WRECK
No photographers trip to Iceland would be complete without paying a visit to the DC3 airplane crash site.
There are many astonishing photographs online using this location to it’s fullest extent, particularly those who were fortunate enough to capture the aurora borealis overhead. This site has seen a boom in foot traffic because it was featured in a Justin Bieber music video – not something we particularly care about, but you should probably be aware that you are walking in his footsteps when you go there 🙂
We were fortunate enough to visit on a day without rain, and even had some quiet time without anyone else around for a few minutes to snap some nice photos ourselves.
One thing you should know if you are planning to travel to Iceland and visit this plane wreck site is that there is a substantial hike required to get to it (30 – 40 minutes one way). Hiking is something we love to do in our free time, and was part of the appeal in going to Iceland; but we would like to point out that this is one of the longest feeling hikes we have ever had. The landscape is almost entirely black sand in view until your eyes reach the horizon. It is somewhat disorienting, and while black sand is totally cool, it can be bland to walk straight on for this period of time.
The actual crash site is quite cool to explore.
Being able to see some of the gutted internal wiring really helps to cement it as an actual airplane crash site. As with most abandoned things, a good deal of graffiti (and what appears to be bullet holes?) are prominent throughout the airplane now, but don’t detract too heavily.
THE NORTHERN LIGHTS INN – SO BEGINS THE RELAXING ICELANDIC EXPERIENCE
After walking back to our car from the plane crash site, we made our way to check into our hotel – the Northern Lights Inn.
Before we dive into talking a bit more about this place, keep in mind that if you are looking to book a place to stay in Iceland, do so as far in advance as you possibly can. We only booked our room a week before our trip (because we were having some difficulties putting together our itinerary), and as a result had no standard rooms to choose from – leading to higher costs to pay for their “deluxe” room.
The Northern Lights Inn really lived up to our expectations as being an excellent reprieve from a busy 9 days of adventure in Iceland. Part of this view may be the result of some bias from being so tired and wanting to relax by this point in our trip, but truthfully – it is a great spot even if you are only spending a night or two “easy-traveling” through Iceland.
For a more detailed review of our stay at the Northern Lights Inn, click HERE.
LAVA RESTAURANT AND THE BLUE LAGOON
After washing up from our travels at the Northern Lights Inn, we drove down the road to The Blue Lagoon to eat dinner at their fine dining restaurant Lava. The food was great, and portions larger than you would typically expect from a place like this.
After dinner, spending several hours relaxing in The Blue Lagoon was the perfect end of our evening. It began to drizzle, and we actually found this to be quite nice when mixed with the very warm water we were in. The Blue Lagoon is, by design, a legitimate spa experience that came along with face masks (silica and algae) and drinks for us. They offer 4 packages at different price points – we chose the Premium – mostly for the free drinks and reservation at Lava.
We didn’t take any photos at The Blue Lagoon with are normal, professional cameras, but are happy to share a few from Jes’ iPhone (coming soon!) so you can see our happy (and healthier) smiling faces 🙂
Hopefully you are enjoying our Traveling Iceland article series.