Posts tagged "Iceland"

Adventures in Iceland: Glaciers, Fermented Sharks, and Silica Mud Masks3 min read

Ice cave Iceland healthy travel

It’s likely you’ve heard about Iceland as a travel destination more and more in recent years. If you’re like me and on social media, you’ve probably seen breathtaking photos or many a drone video panning over its hot springs more times than you can count.

For those reasons, or if you’re looking for your next international adventure, Iceland can be the trip of a lifetime. The island offers many healthy amenities for the health-focused travelers. Getting to experience Iceland could be your chance to see why the country has been ranked one of the happiest in the world.

Here are some tips for healthy travel on the happy little island:

Get Active

One problem you won’t have while visiting Iceland is finding ways to get active. We rented a car for our visit, and still found plenty of paths, mountains and even glaciers to hike on. Iceland is a great destination for adventure travelers of any level.

Whether you’re just interested in seeing Iceland at a casual pace or a more active one, the island offers many ways to get moving while seeing the sights. There are different programs you can sign up for led by experienced guides. Some of these programs can let you let you walk on a glacier, through ice caves and tunnels, go deep sea fishing, see the Icelandic wildlife or go kayaking! There is no shortage of active adventures you can go on to see the island.

While there are guided programs you can go on, it’s also possible to do something safe exploring on your own too. My friend and I chose to rent a car and travel the Golden Circle, a major roadway on the island that takes you to many of the popular stops on the island. Most of the major tourist spots from waterfalls to glacier parks have marked paths that we followed to explore—and certainly got our heart rates up!

Soak in the Geothermal Pools

After a long day of sightseeing, you might crave a good bath or spa experience. Luckily, it’s easy to find a number of hot pools and springs to kick back in. Some of these pools are still heated by volcanic energy as they have been since Viking times. Others have been installed with geothermal pools and hot tubs.

One of my favorites and also among the most popular destinations is the Blue Lagoon. Surrounded by lava rubble, the light blue water is sourced from a geothermal power station nearby. The facility includes different grottoes, steam rooms, a sauna and a restaurant. The restaurant (LAVA) has a delicious dinner menu that can be satisfying after a day of swimming around the lagoon—be sure to check out their local fish of the day and the grilled beef tenderloin!

Once you’re swimming in the lagoon, you can float over to the silica station. The water is packed with the natural minerals made from dissolved rock from the Earth’s mantle. The white mud is good for renewing and cleansing the skin. Putting some silica on your face or body can add to your spa experience while floating around the Blue Lagoon.

Other popular hot pools and springs you can visit on the island include Laugarvatn Fontana Geothermal Baths, Mývatn Nature Baths, Reykjadalur hot springs, and the Seljavallalaug hot pools, among others.

Lavish in Local Flavors

Along with the incredible views in Iceland, you have the chance to round out your visit with interesting local dishes. We took the chance to step outside of our diet comfort zone, and weren’t disappointed. You’re likely to encounter fresh fish on local menus as well as fermented shark, whale, and puffin!

Dining out in Iceland can get pricey so if you’re on a budget it might be helpful to eat in for some meals. You can still find plenty of healthy and unique options in local grocery stores. A good go-to for me were Skyr yogurts—a popular item in Iceland that has a unique flavor and is low-fat. They’re perfect for a quick breakfast or snack on the go!

image courtesy of Pandotrip.com

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Healthy Travel Blog

Posted by Lustige Bilder - November 27, 2017 at 21:25

Categories: Travel   Tags: , , , , , , ,

Naturally Healthy Travel in Iceland

iceland-hike

Besides being a blast, traveling in Iceland is actually pretty healthy – whether you try to or not! When my friends and I jetted off to Reykjavik for a quick five-day vacation, we never expected to come home feeling so refreshed and rejuvenated. Below are some ways that traveling in Iceland is a healthy endeavor, naturally.

Outside of the city, you’re surrounded by nature

With only one major city, the rest of the country calls for hiking, swimming, mountaineering, and much more. No sooner did we hop off the plane than we were on our way to Blue Lagoon. There we relaxed and swam in the milky blue, silica-laden waters. It was the perfect way to revitalize after our journey.

On our second day, my friends and I embarked on a two and a half hour guided hike through Sólheimajökull Glacier. Not only was the scenery absolutely breathtaking, but we got quite a workout as well. It’s not an easy task getting used to your ice crampons and pickaxe, but once you do, you’re in for a thrilling and heart-pumping adventure. Later in the evening, we did a nighttime trek behind a gorgeous waterfall. Needless to say, by day three we were exhausted but feeling great.

Water is fresh, free, and available everywhere

Unlike our aversion to tap water here in the United States, Icelanders prefer their water from the faucet. In fact, it was only when tourism started booming in the country that they began producing bottled water. Tap water in Iceland is safe, delicious and perfectly fine to drink from any sink you find. Many restaurants and stores have a self-serve station for you to fill up as you please, so remember to bring your reusable bottles.

blue-lagoon
The Blue Lagoon, Iceland

Efficient and stress-free

Iceland is by far one of the easiest countries I’ve ever traveled to when it comes to getting around. From the airport to the roads, everything is quick, straightforward and hassle-free. For example, when going through security at the Reykjavik airport the bins are on motion sensors, meaning, no more trying to throw your stuff on the belt while simultaneously taking off your shoes and running alongside it.  There are also estimated wait times posted all around, so you never have to worry about having enough time to hit the restroom or duty-free shop without missing your flight.

It is also extremely easy to find your way around in Iceland. In addition to a convenient bus that is available for transportation straight from the airport to the city, it is also intuitive to get around on foot or by rental car. Signs are clearly marked, and the country is so small that it is impossible to get lost on their very few roads. Not to mention, there is always a friendly Icelander nearby to point you in the right direction. If you’re an anxious traveler like me, this will take a huge weight off your mind when figuring out how to get from point A to point B.

Food is fresh and filling

Despite the hefty price tag due to a strong currency, most foods available in Iceland are both natural and organic. However, if you are eating on a budget, skip the continental breakfast and grab yourself a container of skyr. Skyr is a dairy product similar to yogurt that has been eaten in Iceland since the time of the Vikings. It’s naturally fat-free and packed with protein. Just a small package in the morning kept us easily full and energized through lunch. It’s also delicious! We’re predicting skyr to be the next big health food trend here in the U.S., just you wait.

There are dozens more ways that Iceland is the perfect healthy destination. Between the environment, food and hassle-free travel, you’re sure to arrive home feeling clean and serene instead of bloated and ready to hit the gym. The only disappointing feeling you’ll have is the strong urge to go back as soon as possible!

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Healthy Travel Blog

Posted by Lustige Bilder - December 7, 2016 at 20:17

Categories: Travel   Tags: , , ,