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Iceland is known as the land of fire and ice. With its large and almost almighty lava fields and glaciers, Iceland is a dream destination for every nature lover; I had the feeling I had to see this place for myself to believe it exists.
The guys from MyPostcard wanted me to compare the beautiful photographs and postcards you see on the internet with the real locations and to do that, they sent four postcards of different locations on the island for me to compare. After traveling for 10 days in this beautiful country, this is what I got.
My first stop was of course in Reykjavik. The capital city of Iceland has only a population of 300.000 habitants; however, this is a lot compared to the total population of the country, which is only 400.000 people. Reykjavik is a very small and charming city. With vintage stores, local pubs and an interesting passion for hot dogs, the highlight of this city is the incredible and impressive church of Hallgrímskirkja.
This 73-meter construction is the tallest church in Iceland and an orientation point for travelers in the city. Built in 1986 and located in the heart of the city, the Hallgrímskirkja church is always worth a stop. Its unique and interesting form resembles the beautiful natural basalt formations you will find in many different locations around Iceland.
Our next stop was Seljalandsfoss. This 60-meter drop waterfall and landmark of the country is located only 120 km from the city of Reykjavik and is the kind of destination you need to see to be able to believe it really exists. The waterfall’s most special feature is a pass allowing you to walk behind the waterfall and take photographs that look like taken straight from a fairy tale.
As it is one of the most popular destinations in Iceland, many tour companies offer short trips to Seljalandsfoss. Of course, with such a beautiful landscape surrounding this small piece of paradise: expect masses of tourists walking around the waterfall during summer.
Insider Tip: Daylight in Iceland can last for up to 22 hours in summer. If you want to visit the beautiful waterfall Seljalandsfoss and take incredible photographs without worrying about the selfie stick next to you, visit after 9pm or before 7am and enjoy this piece of paradise just for yourself.
Skógafoss waterfall is only located 30km from Seljalandsfoss and is the perfect destination after spending some time admiring the beautiful waterfall of Seljalandsfoss. Skógafoss might not be the highest waterfall (it has only a 60-meter drop) or the largest, but it is indeed one of the most beautiful waterfalls in the island. Visible from the Ring Road (the main road in Iceland) and with an incredibly beautiful double rainbow in sunny days Skógafoss waterfall might be completely different from Seljalandsfoss, but I´m sure it is just as beautiful and impressive.
With hiking trails to the top and behind the waterfall, a short trip to Skógafoss can easily become an adventure for the day. Its massive force and beautiful location are the perfect set-up for magical stories involving elves, trolls and Nordic gods. No wonder why Marvel´s Thor movie and the Secret Life of Walter Mitty used this beautiful place for some scenes.
A little too far for a 5-day trip to Iceland, but great for travelers driving around the Ring Road, the Svartifoss waterfall is located in Skaftafell at the Vatnajökull National Park, a national park with trekking paths leading you around volcanoes, ice peaks and glaciers. This last postcard was very interesting for me, as the Svartifoss waterfall looks like taken from a Hollywood movie and I couldn´t imagine how nature could possibly create something that beautiful in real life.
The basalt columns located around the waterfall have been an inspiration for many Icelandic authors writing about incredible stories of magic knights and kingdoms around the waterfall. Icelandic architects like Guðjón Samúelsson, who designed the Hallgrímskirkja church in Reykjavik, got their inspiration from here and I wouldn´t be surprised if even J.R.R. Tolkien got some some ideas here.
Anyways, Svartifoss was a highlight during my trip in Iceland and after comparing these postcards with the real locations, I can only say that postcards can only show you a piece of the puzzle and for you to see and experience the complete picture you will need to pack your bag and go to see for yourself! And now with MyPostcard, you can even send your own photos as a postcard back home!
Remember: You can get your first postcard for free with the code “travelersbuddy”
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