My husband and I just returned from an early October five days and nights in Iceland. A few thoughts from our trip to share:
HOME BASE REYKJAVIK: We had concerns about road conditions, driving in a foreign country and navigation, so we decided to stay in Reykjavik without renting a car. Through Air BNB, we found a wonderful apartment in the Harbor area. This was a great location for us, there were about six restaurants directly across the street from us and City Center was about a five minute walk. I would highly recommend staying in the Harbor Area. We took a day and rented bikes and rode around part of the coast and through the city. There was not a point where we regretted not renting our own car.
TOURS: Without a car, we depended on tours to show us the sights. We took the South Coast and Gold Circle tours through GeoIceland and a Northern Lights tour through Time Tours (we saw the lights!!). All three lived up to their TA reviews and I would recommend each one. It is said the Gold Circle is the most popular tour, but we enjoyed the South Coast more. It provided a more diverse lineup of sites (waterfalls, black sand beach and a glacier). The tours made a long days, but enabled us to see so much in a short span.
THE BLUE LAGOON: I booked tickets (via Reykjavik Excursions) a month before we left and they only had 8:00 am tickets available (book early!!). Although not thrilled with the early morning, this turned out to be a positive. We literally were the first people in the Lagoon. It was pretty crowded and chaotic (especially the locker room) when we left at 10:30, but at 8:00 am, was virtually empty. It was worth getting up early.
FINAL IMPRESSIONS: Iceland was beautiful. We lucked out with mostly good weather (45 degrees, little rain). We wore layers, including waterproof pants and Northface coats, during our tours. Although not completely necessary, there were stops and places other people on our tours did not go because they did not want to get wet. We paid for everything via credit card, which made everything easier. The food was better than I expected, with a lot of lamb and seafood. Yes, everything is expensive, but know that going in and it’s not shocking.
Thanks to everyone for their input on these forums. Let me know if anyone has questions that I might be able to help with.