Looking for the most romantic places in Iceland? Iceland is an incredible country filled with beauty, whether you’re looking for the perfect place to propose, a magical spot to elope, a wonderful wedding location or the honeymoon of your dreams. From majestic icebergs to soaring basalt, tumbling waterfalls to rocky reflections, safe harbours to culture central and spots to soak under the stars…. Here are my top 7 romantic Icelandic destinations:
Majestic Icebergs – Jökulsárlón
This may be the most magical place I’ve ever visited. As you drive along the south coast of Iceland from Reykjavik you suddenly round a corner to this amazing view. On your right is a beautiful black sand beach and on your left is a lake filled with icebergs – glacier lagoon. When the wind is low the water is still and calm giving perfect reflections of the incredible shapes and colours of the icebergs which calf from the Breiðamerkurjökull glacier. There’s a small cafe, a nice spot to sit and watch the seals in the lake, you can stroll along the beach where icebergs sometimes wash up shining white against the black volcanic sand or wander around the lagoon until you find the perfect place.
Soaring Basalt – Reynisfjara, near Vik
This stretch of coast between Reykjavík and Jökulsárlón is a black pebble beach with a dramatic view and a beautiful backdrop. Looking out over the ocean you see Reynisdrangar – 66m high columns of volcanic rock that stand out of the Atlantic. According to legend these three pillars of rock are three trolls who stayed out too late and were frozen by the light as the sun rose. As a backdrop there’s an amazing pyramid shaped cliff of basalt columns. There’s a shallow cave in the basalt rocks that allows you to tuck away out of the rain, look out at the sea stacks and admire the neatly stacked hexagonal columns up close.
Tumbling Waterfalls – Skógafoss & Seljalandsfoss
Iceland has many beautiful waterfalls so there’s plenty of choice if you’re looking for romance by tumbling water. Whilst Gullfoss is the big name waterfall – if you’re looking for a slightly quieter spot I recommend Skógafoss & Seljalandsfoss. These two waterfalls are between Vik & Reykjavík, near Skógar just off Route 1. Skógafoss is over 60m high and you can climb the rocky steps for a view from the top or walk by the foot of the falls and according to legend a chest of gold was hidden behind the waterfall. Seljalandsfoss falls into a deep pool and there’s a hidden path behind the water so (in summer) you can peer through a curtain of water out at the meadows surrounding it.
Rocky Reflections – Snaefellsnes Peninsular
The Snaefellsnes Peninsular includes spectacular scenery and some beautiful windswept churches. Búðakirkja, an unusual black wooden church in the village of Búðir and white-washed Hellnar church are two of my favourites. Further round you’ll find Djupalonssandur beach with its huge waves – and four lifting stones to show off your strength. Along the northern coast of the peninsular you’ll find fields full of jagged lava rocks – a crazy landscape like something from another planet, a mix of hardened spikes and moss-covered boulders. In the midst of the 4000 year old Berserkjahraun lava field is a sea inlet called Hraunsfjordur – its a quiet spot, sheltered by the hills providing stunning reflections.
Safe Harbour – Stykkishólmur
A picture perfect town set around a natural harbour on the North coast of the Snaefellsnes Peninsular. With painted houses and reflections of coloured boats in the harbour it’s a lovely setting. You can walk out across the stone causeway to the basalt island of Súgandisey with a lighthouse and an incredible view across Breioafjorour – a broad fjord filled with small islands. Local legend says there are only two things in the world that can’t be counted – the stars in the sky and the craggy islets in the bay. Sitting up there enjoying the quiet and tranquillity you can at least try…
Culture Central – Reykjavík
If you’re looking for a pretty city spot you have plenty to choose from in Reykjavík. From Hallgrímskirkja, the immense concrete church designed to reflect the volcanic basalt columns, you can take the lift to the top of the 75m high tower for incredible views across the city. There’s also a quiet tree-lined avenue at the back of the church. Then there’s Harpa a beautiful concert hall also inspired by the natural basalt and featuring walls of coloured glass panels right by the ocean, particularly striking at night. Or for quirky al fresco dining don’t miss the world’s best hot dogs at Bæjarins Beztu Pylsur, the little shack by the harbour – buy them two at a time… otherwise you’ll simply rejoin the queue as soon as you’ve eaten the first one!
Soak under the Stars – Blue Lagoon
Finally, not far from Reykjavík, you can find the incredible Blue Lagoon. An outdoor pool filled with geothermal water from 2,000 metres below the earth’s surface and rich in silica, algae and minerals. It’s generally a toasty 37-40°C year round and although the water is actually white, the silica reflects the sunlight to give the blue colour of the lagoon’s name – although it’s often hidden by all the steam. With additional spa options available it’s a wonderful way to relax and enjoy the fresh air in comfort no matter the weather. You need to book in advance but they are open from 7 or 8am to 10pm or midnight depending on the time of year, so for extra romance you can even enjoy the lagoon at night under the stars.
To combine all of these, I’d recommend flying into Reykjavík, driving East to Vik to visit Reynisfjara, then travelling further East to Jökulsárlón. Head back West via Skógafoss & Seljalandsfoss. Explore Reykjavík further before heading West out to Snaefellsnes peninsular including a stop at Stykkishólmur then make your way back to the capital, ending your trip by soaking aching muscles in the Blue Lagoon.
I’ve made several trips to Iceland and I’m keen to go back! If you’re planning an Icelandic proposal, elopement or wedding I’d love to talk to you about capturing your special memories in this incredible country.