Ask anyone who’s ever been to Iceland by way of Reykjavik, and one of the first things they’ll tell you they did while they were here was hit the road to embark on the Golden Circle loop. And, unlike some tourist traps that are obligatory yet in reality not worth the hype, the Golden Circle is, by all accounts, a can’t miss attraction.
Quaint city center streets filled with bars, restaurants, and shops housed inside quintessential Scandinavian architecture play host to millions of tourists every year, and the city, though packed, doesn’t feel crowded. At least, not yet. Just being in downtown Reykjavik on a cloudy, rainy morning, sitting in a warm coffee (kaffi in Iceland) shop eating bread with cheese and jam makes you feel, all at once, like you belonged here all your life.
For many, a drive around the Golden Circle is an all-day affair, visiting can’t-miss sights like waterfalls, geysers, and craters all before ending up back in Reykjavik, where many of the most traditional and easy-to-book hotels and Airbnbs can be found. But, for adventurous travelers looking for a more unusual, off-the-beaten-path, unforgettable experience while coasting along this Loop, that’s where this place comes in.
From figuring out where to strategically place your shampoo so it doesn’t burst open during the flight, to seeing just how many pairs of shoes you can realistically get away with bringing without exceeding the baggage weight restriction, packing your bag–or bags–for a trip is, in my opinion, the worst. What’s even worse, though? Jetting off to somewhere cold, and making sure you’re bringing everything you need to stay warm.