Iceland has been a faraway land that I have been dreaming of going to for years. So when my boyfriend surprised me with tickets to Iceland for my birthday I cried from joy. I am serious. Tears came down!
So I began my research and my excitement grew… and then I caught my son’s flu 2 days prior to leaving. Since everything was booked, I was going despite my high fever and nausea. It didn’t help matters that we were booked on a red-eye flight that arrived in Iceland at 5am. We hung out at Joe the Juice in the airport until 7am when the Blue Lagoon opened. I got to the counter of the Blue Lagoon and realized all the tickets to the Lagoon has been sold out for a week. Nobody told me to buy the tickets ahead of time! I thought – so far this trip is turning out to be a nightmare!
My boyfriend saw the disappointment in my face and decided to handle it. He said we are going to do this Spanish way (he’s from Spain). We drove around the Blue Lagoon and found an area with beautiful lagoons that are open to the public. The water was super hot and so, so blue. He told me to change into a bikini and take a dip. So I did, and so that was my blue lagoon experience. Lesson learned? When you travel, you have to make the best of everything despite all the twists and turns.
After the Blue Lagoon, we drove down to Grindavik to see the waves. I was so sick I literally vomited every time we stopped. At one point I thought about driving to the hospital. Slowly we made our way to Reykjavik and joined the Bubble Tour. We got picked up at noon and he said the tour will continue until 11pm. An 11 hour tour? I literally wanted to die.
Slowly I was recovering but I couldn’t handle any food other than soda. I was seeing the most beautiful sites yet I was so miserable. It made me feel grateful that all my other travels were in good health. We really need to take care of our health to enjoy life.
The tour led us throught Thingvellir National Park, which was just the beginning of Iceland’s beauty. Then the Geysirs exploded all around me, smelling of sulfer. I was fighting through my flu and recovering slowly the whole time. The whole of Iceland is sustained with water power. This definitely was one place where I didn’t feel bad about taking a long, hot shower.
Gullfoss Waterfall was amazing, spewing freezing water everywhere. Finally, we arrived at a secret lagoon for a 30 minute hot spring massage. I don’t recommend the massage in the hot spring. It shoots your blood pressure so high that you feel super dizzy.
After the massage, was my favorite experience of the tour. We boiled eggs in the fishing pool inside the hot spring and ate it with fermented shark meat. Shark meat was horrible. It’s never cooked but fermented for like a zillion years. I can’t exactly remember how long since I couldn’t wait to just pass out in our room at the Bubble Hotel. I was really hoping to see the Northern Lights but had to settle with the night sky with a few stars. But what an amazing experience to sleep outside in a heated bubble in the middle of winter.
Day 1 was a success despite of all the setbacks. As you can imagine, I couldn’t wait for Day 2!