Tag Archives: wildlife

Iceland’s Ring Road

Last August, Alex and I visited a place that was on both of our bucket lists: Iceland.

Most travelers coming to Iceland visit Reykjavík, the capital. It’s not surprising, since nearly 2/3 of Iceland’s population lives there. But the rest of the country offers some of the most jaw-dropping sights in the entire world. We covered as much of the country as we could, driving around Iceland on Route 1, also known as the “Ring Road”. It was easily one of the most beautiful drives we’ve taken.

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We rented a car for the journey at Keflavík Airport. Although we paid for a “mini”-sized car, we were lucky to be upgraded for free to a standard sized vehicle, a Skoda Octavia.

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Some of the best sights along the Ring Road included:

Black Beaches: In Vík 

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Glaciers: Including Vatnajökull National Park and Jökulsárlón lagoon (pictured)

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Wildlife: Including puffins, wild horses, seals, whales, and sheep

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Waterfalls: Including Gulfoss, Seljalandsfoss (pictured), Skogafoss, and Godafoss

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Geothermal Sites (Hot Springs/Geysers, etc.): Including Geysir and Mývatn

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Picturesque Villages: Including Húsavík (pictured) and Akureyri

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Stunning Landscapes: Around every corner

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The entire trip is 1,300 km, and can be driven either clockwise or counter-clockwise from Reykjavík (we went counter-clockwise). We drove the Ring Road in 6 days; although, the absolute minimum number of days it would take to complete the trip is 5, and ideally we’d recommend doing it in 7 or 8 days. Trust us, you won’t regret taking the extra time to enjoy the journey!

Our #1 suggestion for this road trip is to book your accommodations in advance. Iceland is very sparsely populated, and places do get fully booked, especially in the Summer. Accommodations along the route include motels, dormitories, farm stays, camping sites, and apartment/cabin rentals.

We were lucky enough to stay overnight at an ocean-side farm. It was one of our favorite experiences on the trip and we’d highly recommend it!

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Things To Do in Barbados

Alex and I go on most of our trips together as a couple; however, because of our work schedules and random opportunities that arise, we do occasionally travel without the other. This was the case when I went to Barbados with my Dad. He had the opportunity to go and invited me to tag along with him for a few days. I had an amazing time and feel like I got a great introduction to this fascinating island. Here are some of the things that I got to enjoy and would suggest including in any Barbados itinerary:

Go See a Show

This actually happened while eating dinner at our hotel. We went into the restaurant expecting a late night meal, and were pleasantly surprised by the show that followed. From folk dancing to fire limbo, and a stellar performance of “Rolling in the Deep” by an undiscovered singer, this show was honestly spectacular. It was interesting, interactive, and just so much fun. If you have the chance to see a show like this in Barbados, I would highly recommend it!

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See the Concorde

Even if you aren’t an aviation enthusiast, I guarantee this will be an interesting stop! The Concorde is housed in a hangar located right next to the airport. Not only can you see it up close and learn about the Concorde’s history, but you can also step right inside and feel what it was like to be on a flight. We got to walk through the plane, sit in the seats, visit the cockpit, and listen to a takeoff. Kids and adults alike would have a great time here.

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Visit Mount Gay Rum Distillery

What’s a trip to the Caribbean without rum? Mount Gay Rum offers a distillery tour, a rum bar, and a retail store in one convenient location. My Dad and I were a bit short on time and could not make the tour, however we did shop in the store and sat down at the bar to enjoy a drink. Not being of much a drinker myself, I wasn’t sure what to order, but the bartenders were incredibly nice and offered to create a special cocktail just for me. It was made with rum and peach schnapps, so I decided to name my drink the “Princess Peach”.

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Eat at Oistin’s Fish Fry

If you are here on a Friday night, make sure you don’t miss out on Oistin’s Fish Fry…it’s THE place to be for tourists and locals alike. Enjoy fresh seafood, good music, and interesting company! There are dozens of vendors serving food and the seats are all cafeteria style, so expect to make new friends. The food is the main attraction, but people also come here to dance, play games, socialize, and be merry!

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Be on the lookout for my next post: “Things To Do in Barbados, Part Two”, including:

  • Barbados Wildlife Reserve
  • Harrison’s Cave
  • Catamaran Tour
  • Snorkeling