A FEW PRACTICAL INFORMATIONS
(Trips to Iceland - June 2000 and June 2002)
Some of the places where we went (with links to the pages)
A few books :
- Lonely Planet: "Iceland, Greenland & the Faroe Islands" : indispensable. In English.
- Guide du Routard "Finlande - Islande" : not as complete as the Lonely Planet, in the case of Iceland. In French
- "Islande - Guide de l'île aux volcans" Guide du Voyageur : many detailed informations concerning geology, flora and fauna. In French.
- "Le guide de l'Islande", by André Sarra-Bournet (La Manufacture). Good pictures and well written. In French.
The Nature Guides :
- "Oiseaux d'Islande", by Hjalmar R. Bardarson. Very thorough. Many pictures. Exists in English
- "Bird Watching", by Helgi Gudmundsson : where birds may be observed. In English
The picture books :
- "Islande", by Jean-Michel Bertrand (Editions A. Barthélemy 1991) : the one I like best.
- "L'Islande et mes sentiers imaginaires", by Joël Cuénot (Private printing 1980 and1988).
- "L'Islande de glace et de feu", by Olivier Grünewald & Bernadette Gilbertas (Denoël 1990)
- "Islande, l'île rebelle", by Olivier Grünewald & Bernadette Gilbertas (Nathan 2001)
- "L'Islande - Désert de Lumière", by Erich Spiegelhalter & Gérard Lemarquis (Fjölvi 1990)
The Internet sites :
There are many... I particularly liked
those two :
Daniel Bergmann (a Nature photographer)
Photographic Tours of Iceland
The expenses :
From France, we found the best prices with Nouvelles Frontières. Watch out : the prices increase by close to 50% during July and August : for that reason, we went in June. But, at that time, not all the roads leading inland are open, even to 4WD.
Iceland is a country where (almost) everything is very expensive, compared to France, particularly hotels and restaurants. On both trips, we chose a rather expensive solution, but which provided us the greatest freedom : a 5 seat Land Rover Defender 4WD with a camper on the back. The biggest advantage of this solution is the complete freedom : one can camp exactly anywhere (except in the nature reserves and national parks). The camper allows comfortable sleeping room for two adults, and possibly two children. It includes a refrigerator, a 40 liter water tank, a gas stove, a gas heater and a sink. No shower.
A river crossing (road to Landmannalaugar)
We camped there, on the side of the dirt road to Landmannalaugar (it was quite all right !).
The Camper is unfolded.
We also purchased from Nouvelles Frontières the bus passes to go from the airport to the city and back, as well as the first and last nights in a Reykjavik hotel. We went to the restaurant only twice.
When we left France, we also packed some food (cans, dehydrated soup and food) : one can find almost anything in Iceland, but 50% more expensive than in France, except maybe salmon and lamb (which are of course absolutely fantastic !).
As long as we stay close to Route Nb 1, the main circular road, food and gas are easily found : in each "village", there is a gas station and at least some basic foodstuff. Don't forget to fill up the camper's water tank at the gas filling stations, where you will always find a hose for that purpose.
Take along :
- A sleeping bag (none provided).
- A Gore-Tex wind jacket, with head protection : necessary
- Good hicking shoes
- One (or several !) cameras + lots of films !