Cheap flights to Iceland depart from Manchester Airport, and Heathrow, Luton and Gatwick airports in London. Most international flights to Iceland arrive at Keflavik Airport, southwest of the capital Reykjavik. UK citizens do not require a visa to enter Iceland. Taxis are available for hire outside the airport terminal. Airport Express and Flybus both offer services to Reykjavik. Tickets for both buses can be purchased from the booking office at Keflavik Airport.
Bus.is operates an efficient network of buses around Reykjavik and some of its suburbs. Route maps and timetables are available through the website. Single tickets can be purchased from the bus driver – have the right amount of money on hand as the drivers do not give change. One-day and three-day tickets are also available, and are valid only within the greater Reykjavik area. A number of coach companies offer long-distance services to towns and villages around Iceland. These include TREX, Icelandic Bus Company and Reykjavik Excursions. They are organised by BSI and leave from the BSI terminal in Reykjavik. Tickets can be purchased from the booking desk inside the terminal.
The Blue Lagoon is one of Iceland’s most famous geothermal spas. Its milky blue waters are a balmy 40 degrees Celsius, making it a pleasant visit even in winter. Myvatn Nature Baths in the country’s north also offers some geothermal pools to swim in. The imposing volcanic structures of Dimmuborgir are nearby. Also known as The Gates of Hell, this area is known for its almost Gothic-looking series of arches, caves and pillars. The northern town of Husavik is a popular launching point for whale-watching excursions. The little town is also home to the rather quirky Icelandic Phallological Museum and its extensive collection of phalluses.
Laugavegur is Reykjavik’s high street, lined with shops, cafes and bars on both sides. 12 Tonar is a hip little record shop that stocks a collection of Icelandic indie bands. Take in a live performance by one of the bands on its label while enjoying a drink in the café here. Stock up on handknitted Icelandic jumpers and locally-spun yarn from the Handknitting Association of Iceland shop. Kolaportidh is a huge indoor flea market near Reykjavik’s harbour. Open every weekend, the stalls here sell everything from vintage clothes and vinyl records to that infamous Icelandic delicacy hakarl (fermented shark). Follow in the footsteps of Bill Clinton and Metallica and pick up a hotdog from the renowned Baejarins Beztu Pylsur stand on your way out. Kaffibarin is easily recognisable with its London Underground sign over the entrance. The two-story building is one of Iceland’s hippest bars and is a great place to spot Iceland’s indie musicians.