Tag Archives: Icelands

Backcountry Ski Touring on Iceland’s Troll Peninsula with Bergmenn Mountain Guides

Bergmenn Mountain Guides in Iceland shot this little video teaser this April 2009 during a couple of days of backcountry Alpine Ski Touring on the Troll Peninsula in Northern Iceland. For more awesome footage from skiing in Iceland visit WWW.BERGMENN.COM where you will find heli ski and ski touring films from the Troll Peninsula, one of the world’s greatest unexplored ski destination. Bergmenn mountain Guides offer a variety of trips to suit every skiers ability be it cross country, alpine ski touring, heli skiing or climbing.

Iceland’s Outdoor Adventures: Challenging and Extreme

Looking for an outdoor adventure challenge? Icleand’s extreme sports vacations are second to none. Choose from Minomycin online White Water Rafting, Horseback Riding, Mountain Biking, Off Roading in a 44, glacier hiking or Snowmobiling. Iceland is sure to give you the extreme vacation adrenaline rush you are looking for! Find out more at: www.icelandair.com

Iceland’s Geothermal Success

Iceland’s Geothermal Success

Article by David Brooks

Iceland seems to be hitting the world-stage for their experience in the development of geothermal power and heating. I for one think they are on to something good.

If you asked some random people what they know about Iceland, most would say the same thing – I heard somewhere that Iceland was name that to keep people away and that Greenland was named to draw people their instead. Or, a derivation on that theme, is it true that Iceland is green and Greenland is really mostly ice? I have heard this countless times when I tell people I lived there. I am not criticizing; Iceland is not a familiar country to most people. Occasionally, though, people will know a little bit about the country and that is usually something related to geothermal.

I lived in Iceland for two years and it was a time that left quite an impression on me. Iceland is not an easy nation to characterize or label. You hear the phrase, fire & ice quite a bit which symbolizes much more than just Iceland’s geology. This phrase is a bit of an oxymoron but seems to sum up much of Iceland including its culture, economy and hardy population.

Iceland has only 300,000 people and an economy that is so small it makes you wonder how it manages on its own, but it does and quite well. One of the reason it does so well is because of it specific geographic location. The country straddles the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, right on the spreading center, or divergent boundary, between two tectonic plates, the North American and Eurasian Plates. All this makes Iceland a hot bed – no pun intended – of volcanic activity and also rich in geothermal reservoirs.

Iceland has been utilizing this geothermal power for decades and they use it to heat about 90% of all homes and produce roughly one quarter of all their electrical needs. Most of their remaining electricity needs come from hydroelectric. So, you might guess that Iceland has a clean environment and you would be right.

Iceland has also helped to transform their economy with this abundant and cheap power by attracting power intensive industries such as primary aluminum smelters. This change is controversial though as many Icelanders believe that their government is selling out one of the last pristine countries in the world. I am not taking sides, though I can understand both arguments. One the one hand, Iceland has few other natural resources and with dwindling fish stocks needs to fine away to attract foreign investment. They are doing this by commoditizing cheap, renewable electricity. On the other hand, there is certainly a value and strong argument to preserving pristine wilderness.

Why I think Iceland is going to be much better known in the coming years is by exporting their nearly unparalleled experience in geothermal development to countries all over the world. I see a future where Icelandic engineers are helping to develop geothermal reservoirs utilizing their innovations and expertise to help solve our growing energy crisis. I am a strong believer in green energy and it seems obvious that that is where we are headed whether we like it or not. So, maybe it is time to get to know this tiny island nation and make friends with all that fire and ice.

Iceland is dedicated to renewable energy development and is one of the few countries with plans to be 100% non-fossil fuel in the near future. They’ll do this with geothermal power plants and hydroelectric power plants.

About the Author

David Brooks is a customer service specialist at Blindsgalore.com, a internet retailer of window treatments, blinds, shutters and shades.

The Beauty And Diversity Of Iceland’s Many Hotels And Guesthouses

The Beauty And Diversity Of Iceland’s Many Hotels And Guesthouses

Article by Roger Hernandez

In the north Atlantic, roughly between Greenland and the United Kingdom, lays the small island-nation of Iceland. And no, it doesn’t get its name from being icy. Iceland has been named something different by each of the foreigners who landed on its coast, but in Norse languages, Iceland is spelled “Island.”

While Iceland has been blessed with all the hot water and geothermal energy a country could ever use, resources have never been their strong point. However, for several reasons, tourism has become a big economic cash cow for Iceland, right next to fish and sheep. There are mountains to climb, snow to ski, horses to ride, food to gorge on, glaciers to dog-sled, you get the picture. And of course, tourists have to have a place to stay.

Hotels abound in almost every city and town in Iceland. In fact, if there’s a gas station, there’s a hotel with half a mile. Fresynes makes it on the map even though the entire town consists of a gas station, a guesthouse and a hotel. Okay, it’s not a town. It’s a stop.

Guesthouses Dutas online are all the rage now. In the United States, people start internet businesses as a full-time job or to make a little money on the side. In Iceland, people open guesthouses. Farmers, gas station managers, graphic designers, everybody’s got a place for rent. These are usually the ones that are the nicest too.

Hospital rooms may seem small when they’re full of equipment, but when the building is renovated into a hostel, the bedrooms are suddenly roomy. A defunct nursing home turns into a fantastically homey guesthouse.

Building new buildings, especially after the severe economic traumas of 2008, is prohibitively expensive, and so Icelanders make full use of the phrase “Use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without.” Actually, they fulfill the first three so well that “doing without” never comes into play. As you can see real estate investments in Iceland are very creative business.

Take Hotel Natur, for example. A new guesthouse across the Eyjafjörður fjord from the northern city of Akureyri. Originally a cowshed, it’s now boasts twenty four splendidly furnished rooms with en suite bathrooms, a dining hall that would give most small restaurants a run for their money, conference facilities, and a hot tub. Not bad for a long, low building used for storing hay until 2005.

With all this accommodation at the ready, Iceland just needs more visitors. Southern Europeans like the Spaniards and Italians come in the winter. The summer is for Germans and Brits and Americans and a few Dutch tourists. Each group pretty much sticks to its season. However, Iceland is fantastic all year round. The attractions change, as does the daylight — in the winter it’s dark by 4:00 pm and in the summer it never gets dark — but the beauty of the country and the people are ever constant. Iceland is the world’s best kept secret for a saga-worthy vacation.

About the Author

Roger Hernandez is a keen world traveler and freelance writer. His wanderlust is fueled by his interest in real estate investing and he is a member of Lifestyles Unlimited real estate investing group.

FAQ’s on Iceland’s Northern Lights

FAQ’s on Iceland’s Northern Lights

Article by Vikki Beale

nordurljos-kaldarsel-snaevarr-gudmundsson

If you’re thinking of taking a northern lights tour then there really is nowhere better than Iceland to see the mythical Aurora Borealis. Iceland is placed in the most active part of the Aurora Ovals, which means that the Northern Lights can almost always be seen during the winter months just as long as the skies are clear. Here are a few of the most frequently asked questions on Iceland’s Northern Lights.

What are the Northern Lights?

Iceland’s Northern Lights are naturally occurring phenomena which happen as a result of gas produced by solar activity on the surface of the sun. When this gas hits earth it reacts with the earth’s magnetic field causing the frissons of colour which we call the Aurora Borealis.

When is the best time to see Iceland’s Northern Lights?

If you thinking of taking a Northern Lights tour in Iceland, then the best time to see these natural phenomena is during the colder periods of September through to March. Iceland’s long daylight hours make it almost impossible to view the Aurora during the summer months.

Time-wise, the best time to see Iceland’s Aurora Borealis is around midnight when Iceland’s Aurora Oval is said to pass over the observer.

Where is the best place to take a Northern Lights holiday?

To be in with the best chance of viewing Iceland’s Northern Lights you need to ensure that you are staying in an area free from any light pollution. Therefore, you need to venture out of large cities and towns into Iceland’s natural wilderness. A popular location with both locals and tourists alike is the 4* Hotel Ranga, which is located just over an hour’s drive from the centre of Reykjavik. The hotel manager, Bjorn Erikkson, conducts daily tours of Iceland’s Northern lights and with his year’s of experience, is considered to be something of an expert on the subject. The 360 degree aerial views and mountain backdrops also help to provide the perfect setting for Iceland’s stunning Aurora Borealis.

How long do Iceland’s Aurora Borealis displays last?

Typically Iceland’s Northern Light displays last for just a couple of minutes and occur a few times a night. However, large displays that last up to three hours have also been observed, although they are far less frequent. The amount of energy that is produced during these larger displays is said to be the equivalent of a small nuclear explosion.

Are there any myths or folklore surrounding Iceland’s Northern Lights?

There are plenty and your guide will almost certainly regale you with many of them during your Northern lights tour. The Aurora feature prominently in Inuit and Norse mythology and are even mentioned in the Old Testament. In Iceland it was also once believed that if pregnant women gazed at the Aurora then their children would be born cross-eyed.

What colours are Iceland’s Northern Lights?

Iceland’s Aurora Borealis respond to the different gases in the ionosphere. Whilst oxygen atoms will produce red and green light, nitrogen molecules produce a violet light. The differing colours relate to how far up in the ionosphere the gases are produced. The most common colour seen in Iceland’s Northern lights is green.

About the Author

Vikki Beale is a holiday expert for iceland2go, a specialist operator providing a selection of itineraries for the best Northern Lights tour . We arrange luxury holidays and tailor-made holidays to Iceland and Greenland, with sights including glaciers, geysers, fjords, and the Northern Lights.

Iceland’s Golden Circle Tour

Iceland’s Golden Circle Tour

Article by David Brooks

If you are planning a trip to Iceland, one of the tours you should look into is the golden circle tour. This will give you an experience of several of the country’s top tourist attractions.

Just what will you see on this tour? Generally, the “golden circle tour” consists of three prime locations, or attractions: Gullfoss, Geysir and Thingvellir National Park all located in southwest Iceland.

Gullfoss (which translates as “gold waterfall”, whereas, ‘gull’ is gold and ‘foss’ is waterfall) is probably the most famous waterfall in Iceland and the one you will often see pictures of. It is located on the Hvita (white) River. It is a powerful site and certainly worth seeing. The falls drop in two steps and then the river turns sharply to the left, forming a fairly narrow and steep canyon.

“Geysir” is a hot springs geyser located in an area called Haukadalur. We actually get our word, “geyser” in English from Icelandic. Specifically, this geyser is called strokkur, which means “boy.” If you have ever been to Yellowstone Park, then you kind of know what to expect. Strokkur is smaller than the one in Yellowstone but it is no less beautiful. What is also different about viewing the geyser in Iceland is the visitors can get quite a bit closer to it than American safety standards would dictate. I am not saying it isn’t safe, in fact this is something I like about Iceland as opposed to America: fewer rules, i.e. you are a grown up and can look after yourself.

Next up on the golden circle tour, though not necessarily in this order, is Thingvellir. Thingvellir is the site of the original Althing, Iceland’s first parliament. It dates back to 938 A.D. That’s right; Iceland had a parliamentary democracy over 1000 years ago. This site is also located about 40 minutes outside of the capital city, Reykjavik. Thingvellir is also a national park and a UNESCO World Heritage site. Icelanders traditionally came from all over Iceland to this spot annually. People bartered goods, resolved civil matters and decided on laws. It was also quite a social gathering I imagine. The site is right on a volcanic rift and you can walk between the rifts. There’s a beautiful waterfall and deep pools of crystal clear water, all off which flows out into a rather large lake called Thingvellirvatn, or “the water of Thingvellir.”

There are a few ways you can see this tour. First, you can take a tour bus which is the most cost-effective way but certainly the least personal and intimate. You can also choose to book a tour with one of the many jeep tour companies. This option is much more adventurous, personal and unrestricted, especially in terms of time. The jeep tour option can be more fun because most likely they will take you off road to see what the tour bus patrons will not. The third option, and also the most expensive, is to rent a car, secure a map and do it all yourself. Don’t worry too much about getting lost. Iceland is pretty easy to get around in and there aren’t that many roads that you would get massively confused as you might in a metropolitan area.

If you are only going to be in Iceland for a short time, the golden circle tour is a good option. It will give you a decent overview of some of the country’s highlights. But don’t think that these attractions are necessarily the best Iceland has to offer, they aren’t. In fact, Iceland has hundreds, if not thousands of natural wonders. If you ever have the time and wherewithal, I would recommend spending a couple weeks camping, hiking and exploring this natural wonderland, it is one of the most pristine wildernesses left on earth.

If you are looking for things to do in Iceland and are short on time, try the Iceland golden circle tour, it is pretty good as far as Iceland tours go. If you want a different idea try the Langjokull super jeep tour Iceland. Have fun! – David Brooks

About the Author

David Brooks is a freelance SEO consultant based in San Diego, CA.

What Iceland’s Volcano Eruption Brings to the World?

What Iceland’s Volcano Eruption Brings to the World?

Article by Avivi

When asked what film is the best seller since the year of 2009, most film fans will give you this answer, “it must be the film 2012.” This is the truth, even though those who show no interest or too busy to go to the cinema must have ever heard of this disastrous film to date. The film is shot with high-definition video cameras and the cliff-hanging scenes of the end of the earth worldwide can shock and move each audience to the core. It’s so stirring and vivid, thus making audience believe in the Mayanism, on which the film is said to be inspired from.

The continual earthquakes since the beginning of this year are also believed to the forceful evidence of the end of the world. Some pessimistic believers even begin to drone through their lives. Admittedly, these are extreme cases and most of us are still living our daily lives as usual. However, it never rains but pours. The recent volcano eruption in Iceland is little less than pouring oil onto the fire, lending support to those doomsday-believers.

What Iceland’s volcano eruption suggest to the world? Are we virtually at the merge of our extinction? The answer is “Definitely Not.” In spite of this, we have to admit to the fact that severe losses are seen every day with the continuing of the volcano eruption The first threat goes to the local citizens of Iceland. Clouds of ash shadowed the sky over the country, thus giving rise to severe environmental problems. In addition, the heat even made a glacier melt and hundreds of people are facing the danger of being submerged by the imminent flood.

Apart from these explicit harms the volcano eruption causes, some potential negative effects are also in existence. For example, as the clouds of volcano ash spread over the sky, almost all the fights in Europe have been cancelled or delayed, thousands of passengers all stalled in the airport, unable to travel to their destinations, accordingly, the economic loss is rather tremendous. A lady with a shoulder bag gave us her complaints as follows

“My company is dealing with wholesale wedding dress business, and we also sell the little black dresses to the Japanese and Korean markets. I planned to fly to Seoul, but the continuous postponement of the flight spoilt my entire schedule. I phoned to the counterpart in Korea, they showed their full understanding, though unwillingly.” In fact, the economic loss is a lot more intensive than one can expect. With the large-scale cancellation of passenger and freight flights, the economic loss is said to be one to two percent to the GDP of Europe.

“The influence is unexpected and long-term”, a market manager noted, “we plan to deliver our goods to East Asia to take up the summer dress market quota, while we have to wait here and lose to our competitors”. He concluded. Still wedding dress. is their hot line.

About the Author

Chian wholesale, global free shipping–milanoo.com

Iceland´s Golden Circle Tour

Iceland´s Golden Circle Tour

Just what will you see on this tour?  Generally, the “golden circle tour” consists of three prime locations, or attractions: Gullfoss, Geysir and Thingvellir National Park all located in southwest Iceland.

Gullfoss (which translates as “gold waterfall”, whereas, ‘gull’ is gold and ‘foss’ is waterfall) is probably the most famous waterfall in Iceland and the one you will often see pictures of.  It is located on the Hvita (white) River.  It is a powerful site and certainly worth seeing.  The falls drop in two steps and then the river turns sharply to the left, forming a fairly narrow and steep canyon.

“Geysir” is a hot springs geyser located in an area called Haukadalur.  We actually get our word, “geyser” in English from Icelandic.  Specifically, this geyser is called strokkur, which means “boy.”  If you have ever been to Yellowstone Park, then you kind of know what to expect.  Strokkur is smaller than the one in Yellowstone but it is no less beautiful.  What is also different about viewing the geyser in Iceland is the visitors can get quite a bit closer to it than American safety standards would dictate.  I am not saying it isn’t safe, in fact this is something I like about Iceland as opposed to America: fewer rules, i.e. you are a grown up and can look after yourself.

Next up on the golden circle tour, though not necessarily in this order, is Thingvellir.  Thingvellir is the site of the original Althing, Iceland’s first parliament.  It dates back to 938 A.D.  That’s right; Iceland had a parliamentary democracy over 1000 years ago.  This site is also located about 40 minutes outside of the capital city, Reykjavik.  Thingvellir is also a national park and a UNESCO World Heritage site.  Icelanders traditionally came from all over Iceland to this spot annually.  People bartered goods, resolved civil matters and decided on laws.  It was also quite a social gathering I imagine.  The site is right on a volcanic rift and you can walk between the rifts.  There’s a beautiful waterfall and deep pools of crystal clear water, all off which flows out into a rather large lake called Thingvellirvatn, or “the water of Thingvellir.”

There are a few ways you can see this tour.  First, you can take a tour bus which is the most cost-effective way but certainly the least personal and intimate.  You can also choose to book a tour with one of the many jeep tour companies.  This option is much more adventurous, personal and unrestricted, especially in terms of time.  The jeep tour option can be more fun because most likely they will take you off road to see what the tour bus patrons will not.  The third option, and also the most expensive, is to rent a car, secure a map and do it all yourself.   Don’t worry too much about getting lost.  Iceland is pretty easy to get around in and there aren’t that many roads that you would get massively confused as you might in a metropolitan area.

If you are only going to be in Iceland for a short time, the golden circle tour is a good option.  It will give you a decent overview of some of the country’s highlights.  But don’t think that these attractions are necessarily the best Iceland has to offer, they aren’t.  In fact, Iceland has hundreds, if not thousands of natural wonders.  If you ever have the time and wherewithal, I would recommend spending a couple weeks camping, hiking and exploring this natural wonderland, it is one of the most pristine wildernesses left on earth.

If you are looking for things to do in Iceland and are short on time, try the Iceland golden circle tour, it is pretty good as far as Iceland tours go.  If you want a different idea try the Langjokull super jeep tour Iceland.  Have fun! – David Brooks

David Brooks is a freelance SEO consultant and geothermal energy advocate.