An insider’s guide to The Golden Circle, Iceland

Iceland’s Golden Circle is one of the most captivating destinations on the planet. Consisting of three stunning locations, the Golden Circle is world famous for its diverse and ethereal geothermal landscape. Home to the Thingvellir National Park, the Geysir Geothermal Area and Gullfoss waterfall, the Golden Circle’s unique aesthetic is captivating from all directions. Conveniently the destinations along the Golden Circle are no further than two hours away from Reykjavik, so the full circle is the ideal day trip.

Thingvellir National Park

Thingvellir National Park is one of the three spectacular sites on the Golden Circle. Steeped with great history, folklore and surrounded by incredible geothermal activity, Thingvellir National Park has the honour of being the first of the three parts of the Golden Circle to become a National Park and the only one to be awarded to a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Thingvellir National Park is considered to be the first stop along the Golden Circle route as it is only 45 minutes outside of Reykjavik. Well known as a location where dramatic geology meets a millennium of history, visitors to Thingvellir could very happily spend the whole day in this wondrous National Park learning about the earth’s tectonic activities and processes.

Most thrilling of all, Thingvellir National Park is the only place in the world where the Mid-Atlantic Ridge can be seen above sea level. The ancient times of Thingvellir, its splendour and its geology, make clear why the park is such a prevalent destination for visitors of this marvellous region. However, it is only a third of the overall charm of the Golden Circle.

The Geysir Geothermal Area

Located by the Hvita River on the Southwest of Iceland,  Strokkur Geysir and The Great Geysir are the second location along the Golden Circle route. On arrival the overpowering smell of sulphur is the first thing that hits you, then, out of nowhere huge jets of water spray into the sky above, exposing the sheer power of nature and the complete magnificence of this geothermal area.

Approximately 50km away from Geysir  Strokkur lies the magnificent Great Geyser. Active for more than 10,000 years, the stunning Geyser still erupts every three to four days, so you could be lucky enough to capture one of these exclusive magical moments.

The majestic Gullfoss Waterfall

Gullfoss waterfall is the final site on the Golden Circle Tour. The mighty Hvita River abruptly disappears into a ravine at a remarkable waterfall known as Gullfoss or ‘Golden Falls’ in English; known for its breath-taking power and rainbows that are thrown from its spray on a sunny day, Gullfoss is a mesmerizing natural wonder.