Iceland Family Vacation: An Eye-Opening Ice Hiking Adventure

Team Camp Van Pelt Heads to Wintery Iceland


There is so much to write about our recent Iceland family vacation. So many stories to write, things to review and ideas to share. Amidst the overwhelming bevy of thoughts and ideas, let me start with the day we hired a private guide through Ice Pic Journeys to go hiking on a glacier.

Iceland Family Vacation: Glaciers & Waterfalls

Wow what a day. We originally planned to hike the Sólheimajökull glacier but in Iceland one has to be willing to pivot. The road was closed and our guide, Mike, instead took us to a troll cave and 2 waterfalls,
Skógafoss and Seljalandsfoss. Honestly it turned out to be a perfect itinerary for our Iceland family vacation. Iceland’s landscape is quite stunning. It’s almost an alien world because it’s quite the opposite from our tropical Florida home. It was significantly colder than is typical for this time of year and thankfully Jon had planned out our many layers appropriately. I’m thankful he had the experience to outfit us – left to my own devices we would have been woefully underprepared.

 

Jon said this might have been the best day of his life.

I can say, I’m stout and out of shape and I absolutely got stuck in the ice….we had to hoist my stout self above the crevice level and Jon ….hero that he is ….hiked above the ice and quite literally drug me by the arm through it, he slid me through the crevice like a Ziploc zipper. I was a little bit embarrassed that I got stuck, but laughed it off and pushed on. I’m glad I did, but it’s motivation to get my eating habits in order and work on physical fitness before our next adventure.

Later he pushed me up by my behind and then pulled me down, on my butt… sliding like a kid. I was so far outside my comfort zone but my scrappy self powered on through. Naturally the rest of my family sort of sauntered on, dancing atop the snowy, icy landscape. I’m super thankful that Mike was there, to help me along and keep me steady on my feet. We definitely could not have made that hike without the boots and mountain crampons that he supplied.

Our amazing guide, Mike, took a ton of photos….which I will share later.

Iceland Family Vacation: Auroras

We then came back to the Airbnb, despite the fact that we had planned to stay the night in Vik. Impending weather gave us pause and we had concerns that the roads would close for our drive back the following day. I’m glad we came back….we noticed auroras from the hot tub!!!!!!

 

On a side note, the roads did close the next day and we would have been stuck in Vik, about 2 hours away. Instead, we got snowed in at our home away from home. Not too shabby. The older kids and I spent the day binging watching Netflix, while Jon and H went on an extended hike. Jon also decided to shovel out the road to our house, just to make sure we could get out the next day. Quite naturally, they plowed early the next morning and Jon’s efforts were in vain. I think he just was a little bored and wanted to stay active. This Iceland family vacation was H’s first experience with snow. While the boys and I were quite content to stay indoors, H enjoyed building her first snowman and adventuring with Daddy.

If you’re planning your own Iceland family vacation, I highly recommend checking and using the state run website which shows road conditions and closures.

This is my second attempt to see them (see our earlier trip to Alaska) and I’m so glad we got to just relax in a hot tub and watch them dance. I will say, viewing by eyes they’re white, but the longer lens of the camera is green. We still saw them shift and move and it was truly a joyful moment for us. What a perfect ending to our Iceland family vacation day!


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Dear Stephanie... I got a Kitten! - 27

Dear Stephanie… I got a Kitten!