Friday, 31 January 2014

Reykjavik, Iceland.

It's my birthday and so I decided to go on a long weekend break with my boyfriend to Iceland! Our main destination was to visit the Blue Lagoon- simply because I have wanted a swimming pool in our hotels whenever we've gone on holiday, but I've never been able to get one at a decent price/location ... so I made this holiday into a swimming one!! 
However, we were asking a couple for directions when we got into Reykjavik, and when we responded that we were mainly here for the Blue Lagoon, they scoffed! ... the type of scoff I would do if someone said they traveled all the way to London to see Big Ben.

We stayed at Apartment K, which is a boutique hotel just off the main street in Reykjavik. To our amusement, there wasn't a door to the lovely stone-walled bathroom ... well, there was a little sliding glass door (that did not sit flush against the wall), so there may as well have been NO door! The hotel room was super clean and self catering as there was even a stove! I loved the little SMEG fridge, the only one I will probably ever get to use in my lifetime (because they cost a bomb) ... and I actually loved that there wasn't a mini-bar because I don't even drink, so we were able to just go out and buy exactly what we wanted and had space to keep it in without the fear of being charged loads of money for a tiny bottle of orange juice.
Below is the staircase of Apartment K ... it was so nice to stay in a hotel with character! ... and I liked that it felt like there was nobody else there most of the time as your room isn't cleaned/bed isn't made daily, only when you leave. I never once saw anyone who looked like a cleaner and actually, we're all adults so we should be able to tidy up after ourselves.
The main street is filled with many coffee shops/bars and small Icelandic boutiques. I didn't see a commercial brand in site, which was so nice!!
When I walked past the Lebowski Bar, I had to go in! Not that I am a huge fan of the film, but more for the fact that it was a bar with a film as it's main theme! 
The inside was like a retro bowling alley, with two big screens playing films from the 80's and also a stream of 80's music ... it was great!!!
As previously mentioned, the Blue Lagoon was the main purpose of my holiday, and it did not disappoint!
I can't describe how strange it is to be swimming around in heated water while there is snow and rain falling from above and not being able to see more than 2 metres in front of you because of the fog/steam in some areas. We ended up staying here for around 3 hours and I was a little trigger-happy when it came to using the silica mud on my face - note: don't go rubbing it into your face thinking it is smooth mud, it has many granules and I ended up giving myself a rash for being too rough!
I absolutely loved coming to the Blue Lagoon and will definitely be returning just for it! 
The other thing my boyfriend and I did, that we didn't plan, was to attempt to see the Northern Lights. Apparently there were super clear skies with a high chance of seeing them... but did we? No.
Of course nobody is to blame and it really is to do with luck, but seeing them would have been a perfect topping to the holiday.
We spent a couple of days walking around Reykjavik, which isn't very big, and I just totally adored the coloured buildings. Like our hotel, these had so much character, and they were everywhere!
Overall, I loved visiting Iceland and I was genuinely surprised at the fact that everyone spoke English and very happy that I did not need to tap into my phone bundle once as there was free WIFI absolutely everywhere!!! Highly recommended.
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