Iceland Mag

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Iceland Mag


A road trip on the Ring Road of Iceland is one of 10 best "once-in-a-lifetime journeys for 2018"

By Staff

  • The Ring Road Don't let the scenery distract you! Photo/GVA

Anyone who has driven in Iceland will tell you that one of the most important things to keep in mind when planning a road trip is that there are basically no "scenic drives" in Iceland - because all roads are scenic drives. The longest of these scenic drives is the Ring Road, so named because it circumnavigates the island.

The travel website Flight Network recently complied a list of the 50 The World's Best Once-In-A-Lifetime Journeys for 2018, "a truly inspiring collection of the top 50 transformative trips every traveller must experience in their lifetime". According to the site the list was compiled in collaboration with 500+ travel journalists, bloggers and editors who picked their favorite international destinations. 

The top 4 destionations are Antarctica, The Galapagos, the Trans Siberian Railway, Macho Picchu in Peru, destinations that are by all standards rather remote and for most people somewhat challenging to reach. In spots 5 and 6 we get two road-trips: The Pacific Coast Highway on the West Coast of the US, and the Icelandic Ring Road.

Road tripping across Iceland’s Ring Road is the ideal way to fully absorb the many wonders of this astonishing Nordic island. This not only means that you get the opportunity to see almost all of the unique regions of the island nation, but you will also get to do it at your own pace.

We at Iceland Magazine agree. "Doing the circle" has been a top choice for an Icelandic family vacation in summer ever since the Ring Road was completed in 1974.

Prior to 1974 you could not drive around Iceland, as the rivers of the glacial outwash plains in the South East had not been bridged. The total length of the road is 1,337 km (830 mi). Keep in mind that while the Ring Road is the main highway of Iceland large stretches of the road in East Iceland are still a gravel road. There are also  a number of single lane bridges on the road, although their numbers are declining as the Road and Coastal Authority is building new bridges in the South East.

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