Iceland Day 2: The Golden Circle

So I think we left off with dinner on Friday night, on Zack and my first day in Iceland. We were beyond jetlagged and exhausted, and much to his dismay I had a jam packed day planned for us to tour the Golden Circle.

The Golden Circle is a 240 km loop in south Iceland that starts in Reykjavik, and goes through some of Iceland’s most beautiful attractions. Including stops it takes about 6 hours to drive, which is the perfect distance to do in a day, and allows you to check off waterfalls, geysers, and volcanoes from your list!

I made you guys a map below with all of the places you should stop along the way, and keep in mind your iPhone GPS will work totally fine in Iceland, as long as you have data. So, have a big breakfast, fill up the car with gas, and set your GPS for Öxarárfoss!


Öxarárfoss is a small waterfall that’s just 30 minutes from Reykjavik. The drive there is almost as picturesque as the actual waterfall; you’ll pass icy lakes, snow topped mountains, and plenty of places to stop and take pictures.

Park in the lot, and then take a short hike down a rocky trail that leads you to the waterfall. I would definitely recommend hiking boots since the snow is slippery!

After you’ve taken your Boomerangs, panoramas, snapchats, and whatever else, hop back in the car and get ready to go to the Geyser!


^^ultra close up of Zack that I couldn’t resist posting

Alright, so after about an hour and a half you should end up at Strokkur. There was originally a very large Geyser appropriately called The Great Geysir that was the largest one in Iceland. Unfortunately it’s been dormant since 1913, so we visited one that’s a little smaller and more active called Strokkur instead.

Strokkur explodes every 5 minutes, which gives you time to take a ton of pictures of the massive eruption!

As you walk the path to get to Strokkur (you’ll know where it is by the crowds of people) you pass a field that looks like it’s steaming. These are little hot springs that give the landscape a very mystical feel.

This license plate perfectly explains my thoughts on being in Iceland!


Next up is Gullfoss, one of the largest waterfalls in Iceland. You’ll pass little farms with very friendly horses, and promise me you’ll stop to say hello!

So, back to the waterfall. This thing is huuuuuge (Trump voice). You can view it from eye level, or get your cardio in and take a tall flight of stairs to see it from a bird’s eye perspective (do both!).

The Secret Lagoon:

You’ll drive over on your way from Gullfoss over a bridge and pass this turquoise river, it’s amazing!

So I have a confession. We didn’t actually swim in the Secret Lagoon, but we did take a nap in the parking lot (lol). It was $70 to swim and rent towels, and decided that we got our fair share of lagoon experience at The Blue Lagoon.

It’s a very common stop though and definitely worth taking a swim if you weren’t able to make it to the Blue Lagoon!


Our final stop was at Kerið, which is a volcanic crater lake that is the most beautiful shade of blue water surrounded by red clay. It was iced over and started to snow while we were there, hence Zack trying to catch snow on his tongue.

Phew, that was our day! We (Zack) drove back to the hotel, grabbed some salads on the way since we hadn’t had a vegetable in a few days, and went to sleep super early. Next up? A drive to Vik, a black sand beach! Can’t wait to tell you all about it, so check back soon or enter your email in the subscription box below to learn more about what to do in Iceland!

There's nothing I like more than reading your comments, so please leave your thoughts below!! xxx


  1. 4.7.17

    Awesome!! Thank you! I thought so! I was looking at the slimpack and I was nervous about the heel on the terrain. so you didn’t have problem?
    We are planning to head to Vik, as well, so that will be perfect!
    We are doing two days in Rey (and sneaking in the Blue Lagoon like you did the first day upon arrival, since they are closing for a week or so. I’m glad to hear we aren’t the only ones cramming so much in a short stay!) then we are going to Vik for two nights. Currently we are scoping out our Air BnBs.
    Thank you for the posts, can’t wait to hear about Vik!

    • 4.7.17
      haileywhiskedaway said:

      No I didn’t have a problem at all! My boyfriend wore his Timberlands, and I had waaay better traction with my Sorrels! Great choice on doing the Blue Lagoon, it’s exactly what you need after a long flight. Also I think it’s really smart to do airbnbs. Less driving during the day since you’re staying closer to the attractions, and it’s way less expensive than a hotel in Reykjavik.

      We didn’t spend much time in Vik, but the town looked very cute and the beach is beautiful! I hope you have the best time and I want to hear about it when you get back!

  2. 4.6.17

    Leaving for Iceland in a couple weeks! This is a great visual guide! Thank you!… Side note.. What boots did you wear?

    • 4.7.17
      haileywhiskedaway said:

      Ah I’m so excited for you, and so glad you found the post helpful! I wore the SOREL Slimpack II Waterproof Boot, which are very similar to the LL Bean “Bean” boots. They kept my feet dry and pretty warm, so no complaints! I’m about to put up another post on Vik and South Iceland, so check it out if you’re interested in going there when you’re in Iceland! Have the best time and if you have any other questions please let me know!