The Golden Circle
Words by Angela Caraway-Carlton
There’s a reason this sightseeing route in southwest Iceland is so popular. It’s lined with one of Iceland’s most famous waterfalls, the mighty Gullfoss, unique in that you can take in all its glory from above instead of below; the Geysir geothermal area, where paths take you past bubbling mud pots and boiling hot springs; and Thingvellir National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that offers a stunning viewpoint of where the Eurasian and North American tectonic plates meet and drift apart. If you skipped the Blue Lagoon, stop at the area’s Secret Lagoon to leisurely dip in the less-crowded, man-made pool fed by hot springs.
Something that can’t be missed is lunch at Friðheimar, a beautiful greenhouse where you’ll dine on delicious tomato-inspired dishes and drinks among the colorful tomatoes, which are grown year-round thanks to artificial lighting.
Even in the winter, make a stop at family-run Efstidalur Farm for the freshest ice cream of your life. They turn their cow’s daily milk into organic ice cream, adding a range of flavors, and you can gaze at the cows munching on hay through the café’s windows as you enjoy dessert.