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-15c upper air values over Iceland in early April! I need to learn Icelandic and migrate asap!
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You are doing the right thing by hiring a car. We drove up and down like mad trying to fit as much in as possible. It was June then so it never got dark and sometimes we were out and about till midnight.
From Reykjavic I suggest you do a day trip to Snaefelness peninsula which is just north of the city and extends westwards into the ocean. The scenery is mesmerising and changes so often. At the end of the peninsula you will find the volcano with a tiny glacier on top. It is really beautiful and you can hike up there but you need proper gear. Another nice daytrip is to follow the ring road in the south coast. You will pass several volcanoes to the left side including Hekla, Eya and Katla. The last two have glaciers on top with huge waterfalls. Continue further east and you reach the town of Vik with its beautiful black beach and the columns of rocks emerging from the sea. If you drive further east you will reach the Vatnajokull glacier which is the largest in Europe. Seeing it is something else and there is a lagoon on its edge (jokuslaron) with icebergs on it. This is a bit far for a day trip so you may need to spend the night away from Reykjavic but it is worth it.
Another nice day trip is the Pingvallavatn lake. It is only an hour northeast of Reykjavic with deep blue water and surrounded by snow covered mountains. We were there in June and the mountains still had plenty of snow on them. The lake is in the faultline where the European and American plates separate and you can see evidence of volcanic activity all around you including hot springs. In the middle of the lake there is a volcano, the top of it creates an island.
As you are going early in the season it is best if you mainly stay around the coast as inland areas will still have deep snow and may need a 4x4 to access them.
I am sure you will love it and want to go again. :-)
Thank you so much for that, fantastic, I'm copying and pasting it into my Evernote app right now, and will look it all up. I must say, it is tempting to do an overnighter elsewhere, hmmm, not sure rest of family will agree, but worth a try. Great suggestions there, thank you so much for putting all that together, I'll let you know which ones we manage (who knows, might be the whole lot!). At least there will be snow:)