Iceland, with its otherworldly landscapes, geothermal wonders, and vibrant culture, is an exceptional destination for a family adventure. Travelling to Iceland with children offers a unique opportunity to explore the great outdoors, encounter fascinating wildlife, and immerse yourselves in the magic of this North Atlantic island. In this blog article, I will guide you through the must-dos when visiting Iceland with kids, ensuring that your family’s journey is filled with wonder and memories to last a lifetime.
1. Explore the Golden Circle:
The Golden Circle is a popular tourist route that includes three iconic stops:
- Þingvellir National Park: Discover the historic site where Iceland’s first parliament was established. The park also boasts unique geological features, including the Silfra Fissure, where you can snorkel or dive between tectonic plates.
- Geysir Geothermal Area: Witness the eruption of the Strokkur geyser, which shoots water and steam into the air every few minutes. Kids will be captivated by the natural spectacle.
- Gullfoss Waterfall: Marvel at the magnificent Gullfoss, a double-tiered waterfall that roars through a rugged canyon. Boardwalks provide safe viewing points for families.
2. Relax in the Blue Lagoon:
Take a dip in the famous Blue Lagoon, a geothermal spa known for its milky-blue waters. The lagoon’s warm, mineral-rich waters are soothing and safe for children, and they’ll love the unique experience of swimming amidst the lava fields.
3. Discover the Waterfalls:
Iceland is home to numerous stunning waterfalls, many of which are easily accessible by car. Some family-friendly options include Seljalandsfoss, Skógafoss, and the hidden gem, Gljúfrabúi, where you can walk behind the cascading water.
4. Go Whale Watching:
Iceland offers fantastic whale-watching opportunities. Head to places like Húsavík, Reykjavik, or Akureyri for family-friendly whale-watching tours. Keep your eyes peeled for humpback whales, minke whales, and dolphins.
5. Visit the Puffins:
Iceland is a haven for puffin colonies during the summer months. Take a boat tour to spots like the Westman Islands or the Látrabjarg cliffs in the Westfjords to see these charming seabirds up close.
6. Horseback Riding:
Icelandic horses are known for their small size, gentle nature, and unique gaits. Go horseback riding as a family and experience the Icelandic countryside from a different perspective.
7. Explore Ice Caves:
In the winter, explore the crystal-clear ice caves beneath Vatnajökull, Europe’s largest glacier. Kids will be enthralled by the icy wonderland.
8. Experience the Northern Lights:
If you’re visiting during the winter, keep an eye out for the Northern Lights. Book a Northern Lights tour and be prepared for the awe-inspiring display of colours dancing across the Arctic sky.
9. Taste Icelandic Delicacies:
Introduce your children to traditional Icelandic foods like lamb stew, hot dogs, and skyr (Icelandic yogurt). Trying local cuisine is a tasty way to experience Icelandic culture.
10. Visit Museums:
Iceland’s museums are educational and engaging for kids. The Icelandic Phallological Museum (yes, it’s about penises) and the Viking World Museum are both intriguing options.
11. Relax in Hot Springs:
Take a family-friendly soak in the geothermal hot springs found all over Iceland. Places like the Secret Lagoon or the Mývatn Nature Baths offer warm waters in stunning settings.
12. Enjoy Family-Friendly Accommodations:
Iceland offers a range of family-friendly accommodations, including guesthouses, cottages, and hotels with family rooms. Consider staying in a cosy cabin to add to the adventure.
Travelling to Iceland with kids is an extraordinary experience that will ignite their sense of wonder and appreciation for the natural world. The country’s breathtaking landscapes, geological wonders, and opportunities for outdoor adventures make it an ideal destination for families seeking a unique and enriching holiday. By exploring the must-dos mentioned above, you’ll create unforgettable memories with your children and instil a love for exploration that will last a lifetime. So, pack your bags, bundle up, and get ready for an Icelandic family adventure like no other!