Viewing posts for the category Iceland

Dear Heima,

Your beauty lies in everything. In your wild rugged coastlines, your long summer nights and short winter days. In your arctic sky and ever chrashing waves. It lies in the little things like picking fresh blueberries, laughing until it hurts, laying back head on the grass, feeling the sun on your skin, watching the night sky, walking on ice, chasing rainbows. With you we found love, peace of mind and above all … HOME.

This is a magazine dedicated to all free spirits, adventurers and glitter enthusiasts.

Hot Springs (and hot pots) of Iceland - Must Sees and No Gos

A hot bath is the Icelanders best friend. We would definitely dare to claim so. More than 600 bathing spots are marked on the map of Iceland by now and around 200 of those are natural hot springs or hot streams, most of them not made by men (the leftover 400 are public swimming pools). We made it a sports to pay as many as possible of those 200 a visit - give us a couple of years and we at least went for a dip in all the natural baths. There hardly is anything that makes us as happy as sitting in warm water somewhere in the middle of nowhere, all alone and surrounded by nothing but the endless beauty of nature, musing on everything and nothing. Iceland is our home by heart, our favorite place on earth and it has a lot of advantages - the thin Earth's crust and incredible geothermic being one of them. Even though we have 'only' been living here for three years by now (and spent quite a bit of those years in Germany, as well) we still got to test more than just a few springs, streams, ponds and pools. We have found our absolute favorites by now and some we consider overrated. We also have a must see list of at least five places we want to visit this summer. All of this we want to share with you today - Iceland's most famous, beautiful and pristine bathing spots. The list is not complete, yet and of course highly subjective. Maybe you will come to a different conclusion when visiting one of the springs we recommended or consider overrated but at least, after reading this, you will know where to find them. We furthermore would like to equip you with some tips and hacks when it comes to 'hot-springing' in Iceland. So without further ado - here comes our hot pot guide:

read entire story

The ultimate (veggie/vegan) Food Guide to Reykjavik.

There are so many restaurants in downtown Reykjavik by now that you can easily lose track of where to go and what to try during your stay in beautiful Iceland. On top of that lots of myths and wild stories rank around the eating habits of the small population with the ridiculously difficult language in the Far North and around the gruesome dishes that you apparently will get served. It's also a common misbelief that vegetarians and vegans would be in quite some trouble when spending time in the northernmost capital of our amazing planet, which is very, very wrong!. What is a fact, indeed, is that there is no such thing as cheap food up here. (But there is cheapER, at least.) Due to all of those reasons just mentioned, we sat down and wrote an article filled with our favorite places and spaces, with the ones we consider reasonably priced, plus some overall useful informations and handy tips on grocery shopping and saving money. Being a vegetarian or vegan in Reykjavik is easy - no matter if it's eating out, cooking yourself or grabbing a snack on the go. There is plant milk of literally all sorts available, from vegan pasta sauce to cheese to ice cream to super foods - you will find whatever you are looking for. No matter what diet you prefer exactly or how your budget is - we want to make sure you'll find your perfect spot for great food. Reykjavik can be a true paradise to all those wo love slow food and local delicacies (like arctic thyme <3), are vegetarian or vegan and opt for fresh ingredients. It can be IF you know where to go. And we want to make sure of that! So dive in and find out. Verði þér að góðu!

read entire story

Day Trip Series: Reykjanes peninsula (winter edition)

Welcome to Reykjanes peninsula - one of the most underrated parts of Iceland and at the same time one of our personal favorites. We just installed a new series here on Dear Heima where we will introduce you to the perfect day trips from Reykjavik, both summer and winter edition. Winter in Iceland is a time of gold, literally. People will tell you that Iceland in winter is nothing but dark and gloomy, but well, they are wrong. Spring is the time of storms and hail, of grey skies and foggy mornings. But the middle of winter (mid of November to mid of January) and therefore the time with least daylight is the most colorful and dreamy time we know. From sunrise around 11am until sunset around 3:30pm the sky is a magic show. From rainbow to liquid gold then back to rainbow you will witness spectacular views for a little more than for hours. Since the amount of time is that limited we suggest you to stay in Reykjavik during winter and opt for easy day trips where you don't have to drive for hours and will still see a lot of beauty. Reykjanes peninsula being one of said trips. Make sure you get a suitable car (either a 4x4, if that is too expensive than make sure the car you go for is equipped with winter tires) and always check the roads and weather before you make you way out of town. vedur.is will tell you the exact forecast for the day and road.is will inform you which roads are closed and which ones are icy/snowy or otherwise hardly passable. The good thing about Reykjanes is on one hand that the roads are almost always free since it's the way to the airport and on the other that most of the sights are inland or on the western coast so that you never get hit by possible storms THAT hard. But lets map out the perfect road trip for you to go on when chasing gold on a sunny winter day on this amazing peninsula:

read entire story

AURORA BOREALIS - an extensive guide on how to see nature put on it's best show.

So many tourists flood the country during wintertime in the hope of catching a glimpse of this spectacle but in all honesty they are just really, really lucky if they do. The first time we spent a few days in Iceland we met a journalist who already visited the country 8 (!) times to finally see them dance but he never actually did. There are so many tour operators offering expensive night drives to go see Aurora but well, chances are damn high you won't see a thing. No guide can change the weather or intensity of the solar storms and they will still take you on that drive even though they already know there won't be any green phenomenon to be seen. Over the past three years we did figure out how to calculate all given factors to have a realistic chance on seeing them, though and today we're gonna share those tools and apps. So if you ever come to Iceland and you wanna check out what you're chances are - you're perfectly equipped to make the best out of your stay and not spend hundreds of bucks on a tour without any lights. Those tour operators will probably hate us for saying this but as long as they don't offer to cancel the trip when the sky is all cloudy or the forecast is not high enough OR at least offer something awesome, instead - then don't book such a tour and rather opt for a rental car and go chase them yourself! There is three things you need in order to see the Northern Lights: a car to go somewhere without any light pollution (do NOT go to Grótta like everyone so blindly recommends, more about that later), the Icelandic weather forecast (really only trust that one) and a reliable app that tells you the actual Aurora forecast for the past couple of weeks. But let's dive into those three factors a little deeper:

read entire story

Vor den Toren Reykjaviks: Naturschutzgebiet und Picknick-Paradies Heiðmörk

Wir haben es schon so oft im Nebensatz erwähnt, ihm aber noch nie einen ganzen Beitrag gewidmet - dem Naturschutzgebiet am Rande Reykjaviks, einem unserer liebsten und meist besuchten Plätze der Insel: dem Heiðmörk. Das riesige Naherholungsgebiet wird von den meisten Touristen komplett links liegen gelassen und obwohl es direkt an der Stadtgrenze liegt, ist man fast immer komplett allein unterwegs. Wer sich ins Heiðmörk verirrt, wird erstmal erstaunt sein, denn auch wenn es ganz typisch isländisch ist, mit all seinen bemoosten Hügeln, den Bergen in der Ferne, den vielen Flüsschen und Miniatur-Wasserfällen, so ist es doch auch sehr ungewöhnlich. Denn in dem Gebiet findet ihr etwas, was Island nicht an jeder Ecke zu bieten hat... Wald! (Der Name bedeutet übersetzt so viel wie 'der Wald an der Heide', seit 1950 wurden hier über 4Mio Nadelbäume, Birken und auch hunderte Wildblumen gesetzt.) Für uns ist es ein kleines Paradies, wir haben schon so viele Wochenenden an den großen Seen gepicknickt, waren auf den vielen Wanderwegen spazieren und IKEA liegt praktischerweise auch nur einen Katzensprung entfernt, falls der große Hunger kommt oder man plötzlich eine neue Kommode braucht. :D Nein, im Ernst, das Gebiet ist wunderschön, weitläufig und bietet unheimlich abwechslungsreiche Natur. Rote Felsformationen, die Berge in der Ferne, im Sommer ein Meer aus Lupinen - dem Heiðmörk wird bei weitem nicht genug Beachtung geschenkt!

read entire story

Er ist endlich fertig - der erste Teil unserer großen Island Reiseführer-Reihe!

Mehrere Monate schreiben wir bereits an unserem Reiseführer - seit gestern Abend ist unser Shop nun endlich online und der erste Guide (von neun) auf dem Markt. Ihr glaubt nicht, wie viele Stunden Arbeit und Nachtschichten in dieses Stück geflossen sind. Zu Beginn wollten wir einen 'ganz normalen' Reiseführer als E-Book herausbringen, doch je mehr wir schrieben, desto länger wurde das gute Teil und niemand braucht einen 600 Seiten langen Guide, wenn er sich z.B. eigentlich nur in Reykjavik und Umgebung aufhalten möchte. Also haben wir lange überlegt und sind zu dem Entschluss gekommen, das Konstrukt aufzusplitten. In neun Unterkapitel, die sich dann jeder so zusammenstellen kann, wie sie für ihn interessant sind und für die eigene Reise auch wirklich benötigt werden. Unser erster Guide dreht sich um die komplette Vorbereitung eines Island Urlaubs und all die Infos, die ihr im Land benötigt, wenn ihr dann vor Ort seid. Wir haben gesehen, dass es komplette Island Travel Büchlein gibt, die insgesamt gerade mal 50 DinA5 Seiten umfassen und wir fragen uns, wie das möglich ist. :D Unser Einstiegs-Buch hat allein 54 Seiten. Und acht weitere folgen noch - in ähnlicher Länge. Wenn dann (wir denken mal so in einem Jahr - gemessen an der Arbeitszeit, die in dieses E-Book geflossen ist) alle Kapitel auf dem Markt sind, fassen wir das Ganze, wie schon einmal erzählt, auch noch zu einem Buch zusammen, welches man sich auf Anfrage bestellen lassen kann - für all die Fans von umfangreichen Reiseführern, die man wirklich in der Hand halten kann.

read entire story