Dominating the top destination travel lists for the last year, Iceland is becoming a dominant player in the travel scene. Long gone are the days of the Icelandic exodus in the 60’s, and instead the country is reemerging as a leader in the global tourism industry. With focus on ecotourism and natural attractions, Iceland has it all and more. In the spirit of the keeping green while traveling, FlightHub reviews the best way to plan your cycling itinerary in Iceland.
First things first, how long do you want to bike for? This is probably the most difficult question to answer, but also the most vital one when planning your itinerary as it’ll dictate your accommodations, packing necessities, food prep and water supply.
Following circle road and cycling at approximately 20km an hour over the 1,333km of Route 1 (plus taking into account sightseeing and other tourist attractions, as well as sleep and rest!) averaging around 30 days for the trip is a reasonable amount of time to bike and tour all of Iceland.
FlightHub recommends following Route 1 as this road encircles the entirety of the island-country, and is well equipped for cyclists who are dedicated in taking on the challenge.
When planning the beginning stages of your trip, FlightHub encourages you to begin and end your journey in Keflavik. Not only is it the most populated city in the country, you’ll also be able to enjoy the city prior to the month-long bike ride, avoiding the mad-dash of sightseeing upon your return. Once you’re ready to head out, make sure to check what kind of winds are coming in from the ocean, as this can affect your speed while cycling. There are certain months where winds are more dominant on certain sides of the country than of others, so keep this in mind when circling the route.
Depending on which way you begin (seeing as it’s a circle), here’s a complete list of places to see and visit while on your tour:
South Eyjafjallajökull and Mýrdalsjökull: Visit volcanos that are completely covered in ice caps. In this area, roads are mostly flat with little hills coming up the farther east you travel. Make sure to spend some time viewing the mountain ranges, as they are quite a spectacular view.
Vatnajökull: Did you ever want to touch a glacier? Well, you can now! Visiting the national park is a must-do while cycling your way through Iceland. Spend some time a camp out and discover the Vatna Glacier, the oldest and most voluminous ice cap in Iceland.
Lake Mývatn: This must-see tourist destination is a favorite among locals and tourists alike, and the reason isn’t very hard to see. This shallow eutrophic lake is situated in an active volcanic area in the north of Iceland. Make sure to take pictures as you go, as the landscape is breathtaking in this area.
Hvalfjörður: Located in the west of the country, the iconic scenery is best remembered by open roads and emerald green mountain ranges. Whale watching is popular here, and the fjords are absolutely stunning. This is an absolute must-see while biking, so remember to take a rest and set up camp and enjoy the sites!