For their 3rd stay in Iceland, Elodie and Mathilde wanted to share the story of their stay in Iceland in October via the iceland-dream.com website.
For our 3rd trip to Iceland, we wanted to go during the winter period. So far, our first 2 trips were in summer, under the midnight sun, and from all the feedback I had read, winter in Iceland was something truly special.
Seeing the Northern Lights, of course, was one of the main goals (even if you're never sure to see them!) but also the very particular colors of winter, the less touristic and exotic side. Also we planned to see the sites that we'd missed the last times, and rediscover favourites in a different light.
So of course, I was a little apprehensive about the state of the roads, you never really know what you're going to get. We weren't taking any chances: we rented an off-road 4x4 vehicle, and our itinerary on road number 1 in the south was generally less affected by snow than other roads. And most importantly we had chosen to travel in October, after hesitating for a long time, because it is still a relatively mild month (we quickly learned that it was still impressively cold).
We went 1 week leaving Saturday 19 to 26 October. The itinerary targeted the South and the West, this time trying to book accommodation ahead of time to try to sleep in the same place in the evening to better get around during the day.
In theory, it makes you drive a more kilometers during the day, but how pleasant it is in the morning not to have to check out and to go out and bring your bags in twice a day...
After a night in Reykjavík, the idea is to go south to sleep 3 nights near Vik. Then, head south before going back up to spend 2 nights on the Snaefellsnes peninsula before returning to Reykjavik.
For our guesthouse rentals we relied exclusively on booking.com and, for the vehicle, we went through the Guide To Iceland comparison tool. After careful consideration, we chose Blue Car Rental after seeing all the positive feedback.
Our Easyjet plane from Basel-Mulhouse to Reykjavik arrived at 04:30PM as planned. The hostesses explained to us that this flight, like all Easyjet flights from Switzerland, would no longer exist from the following week (for our return, therefore). So we would fly home with Icelandair, as during our first two trips.
On arrival, it was quite a pleasant surprise to be warmer than expected, 8 °C. It actually wasn't much colder in Iceland in October than at home in Switzerland when we left at 15 °C. But in all honesty, this was the warmest day, the rest of our stay was as icy as could be.
Once we picked up our rented Gran Vitara, we headed to Reykjavík and our guesthouse to put our bags down. It was located near Hallgrimskirkja Cathedral on the hill in the center of the capital. There was a lot of work going on at this time in the city center, much more than in summer. Major works began already in 2018 near Harpa towards the old port, and many streets of 101 were also under construction.
After a good walk in the Laugavegur district and on the old port, we decided to eat a good fish skewer at the Sea Baron, a real pleasure. On the way back, we passed Harpa. At night, the lights were absolutely magnificent on this building.
In the distance, in the background, we could see the luminous laser of the Imagine Peace Tower designed by Yoko Ono as a tribute to John Lennon, which projected light high into the sky between October 9 and December 8 (in commemoration of the artist's birth and death).
It was starting to get late, a long day awaited us tomorrow, and since it was overcast and the forecast for auroras was unlikely, we went home to sleep.