Best of Iceland June 20-27
Best of Iceland This Week is a guide for those who are curious about what's going on across Iceland and want local recommendations about events, activities and places of interest. This is the only Icelandic guide of its kind. New every week.
The Mt. Esja Ultra
If you think you’ve tried it all, completed a marathon or two even, the Mt. Esja Ultra should be the next thing on your Bucket List. There are three distances available; the shortest is a 2-lap run up and down the mountain (14km, 1200m +elevation gain); a 5-lap run (35km, 3000m +elevation gain); and finally an 11-lap run (77km, 6600m + elevation gain). Registration closed yesterday (June 19th) but you can cheer on the runners and figure out if you’re ready to come back for the 4th Annual Mt Esja Ultra next year. It’s worth mentioning that those running 11-laps will be rewarded with two ITRA qualifying points for the North Face Ultra Trail du Mont-Blanc in 2015.
Enjoy concerts in one of the world’s most beautiful lighthouses
Concert in Akranes lighthouse tomorrow, Saturday 21st of June, in celebration of Jónsmessunótt, Midsummer’s Eve. The band Famina Futura will kick off the concert at 8pm. The band plays popp inspired folk music. At 11.59pm Patrycja Szałkowicz-Żak will begin her concert. Akranesviti is located on Breiðin in Akranes town. The lighthouse was recently ranked among the six most beautiful lighthouses in the world by travel website Travelfreak.com. Entrance is free of charge.
Sports and tasty food
“Visit Húsið in the town of Ísafjörður, it’s not only a great café and restaurant but also a very happening bar after hours. There is live music every weekend and they also broadcast all major sporting events live on TV.”
Recommended by Thelma Hjaltadóttir, who works as a receptionist at the district commissioner´s office in Ísafjörður town.
Golfers, brace yourselves
The Annual Arctic Open takes place on June 26th-28th this year. This is no regular golf tournament, but one that’s played at midnight in the midnight sun. The Akureyri Golf Club hosts this tournament, known as the Arctic Open Golf Championship. It’s an international event that has attracted 120 international participants at most so far. This year marks the 28th Arctic Golf Tournament and your chance to play at the northernmost golf course in the world. The entry fee is US$385 and participants are encouraged to register as soon as possible.
The great forest festival
A forest festival is taking place in Hallormsstaðaskógur forest (the only forest of Iceland) this upcoming weekend. It should be a great event to bring the family to as there will be entertaining games and events for all ages. Additionally, there will be delicious food and fun competitions to see who is the ultimate forest man. Lastly, there will be music so everyone who plans on attending can just sit back and enjoy the weekend after a long week of work.
What should people not miss when visiting the town of Höfn?
“I’d begin with a visit to the Vatnajökull National Park’s visitor center and the local crafts market, which are both located on the harbor. I also recommend a walk around the Ósland conservation area, which was once an island but is now connected to the mainland. From Ósland you’ll have a fantastic panoramic view of the surrounding area. A drive to Stokksnes, with a pit stop at the hidden Viking village at Horn is a great experience too.”
Recommended by Árdís Erna Halldórsdóttir, the managing director of the Vatnajökull Information Center.
Secret Lagoon natural hot springs are located in the small village of Flúðir. The area has been kept natural and unique for an authentic feel. The pool's natural surroundings gives the place a magical feeling that is worth experiencing on a warm summer's day. Additionally, there is a geysir which erupts every five minutes providing an amazing show for anyone who ventures to this magical area.
DJ Margeir Blue Lagoon Party
Icelandic DJ Margeir has released 2 albums inspired by the Blue Lagoon, one of which reached gold album status. This coming Tuesday he is releasing his third album, this time with a worldwide release kicking off with a part at the Blue Lagoon. Blue Lagoon Soundtrack 3 is, similar to the first two albums in the sense that the music that DJ Margeir comes from many different directions but is all representative of the energy and atmosphere of the Blue Lagoon. Tickets to the event can be bought at midi.is, with or without a bus to and from the concert.
The 2014-15 Holuhraun eruption produced more sulfuric dioxide than any eruption since 1978
Today is Bóndadagur, the first day of Þorri, when Icelanders celebrate mid-winters feasts
Price gouging at a tourist mini market: Charged 750 ISK for bottled Icelandic water
Former mayor of Reykjavík jumps into tourism boom: offers visitors private guided tours
See the breathtaking hidden waterfalls of the remote Strandir region in beautiful video
Do Icelanders really believe in a giant evil child-eating Christmas Cat?
Travellers advised to use cleats at Golden Circle destinations, icy paths at Gullfoss and Geysir
Ask the Expert
The story of the wild reindeer herds in the Eastfjords
More than a fifth of Iceland is now included in protected areas and nature monuments
Snæfellsnes peninsula picked as the best winter destination in Europe
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