Date: 3rd August 2022
Travelled: 60 kms from Reyðarfjörður to Seyðisfjörður
Visited: Egilsstadir and Seyðisfjörður Þ ð
Stayed: Camping Seyðisfjörður , Isk3200, N65.26050, W14.01130
Budget: 70 days @ €107 per day
We spend the night in Reyðarfjörður with the usual gang. As we’ve gotten closer to the ferry and our departure date form Iceland we seem to see many of the same motorhomes every evening, there mostly German.
Our last full day has dawned and we only have a relatively short drive to Seyðisfjörður today. So we make a pool stop at Egilsstadir on our way. We pay our Isk400 pp (seniors) do our laps and relax in the spa afterwards. Have breakfast in a roadside rest stop with a great view, then go on to Seyðisfjörður (the ferry port).
We check into an Icelandic campsite for the last time. So we have time to reflect a little on our 3 weeks touring.
First thing you need to come to grips with is the costs. The ferry to Iceland via the Faroes was more expensive than our airfares from Sydney to London. The fuel is the most expensive in the EU, generally diesel was Isk 335 or A3.52 a litre. Iceland is expensive !
There is no pump-in LPG in Iceland. So I purchased a bottled gas adapter hose in the UK but we didn’t need it. We filled our gas system in Denmark the day before the ferry. For the first 2 weeks (Faroes + Iceland) we paid for power at night, used the Hymer’s electric water heater and a small electric heater (we paid €5 for, in a second hand store in Denmark). We leave Iceland with one of our 25L LPG tanks still full.
The sealed roads are generally very good, the unsealed roads poor so we avoided them as much as possible. The general speed limit is 90 kph, we drove the Hymer comfortably at 80-85 kph without holding anyone up too much. There’s only a couple of tolled tunnels, But lots of single lane bridges.
Everyone seemed to speak English, most signage includes English. Generally speaking we found the Icelandic people friendly and helpful.
Supermarket food is expensive but the quality is good. We found fresh fish of all things hard to find. Eating out was very expensive, but it was good. Alcohol is prohibitively expensive like most Scandinavian countries, so we filled the Hymer in Germany on our way north.
Paying for an overpriced campsite every evening was our biggest annoyance. Realistically your paying Isk 3500-5000 (A$40-50) to park on a patch of gravel, electricity is another Isk 1000 (A$10). Most villages have a campsite but there’s no competition for your business, it’s a pay or go elsewhere arrangement. The seniors discount at campsites saved us a lot of money.
Mind you I can understand why they have banned wildcamping. The cheapest hire vehicles in Iceland are tiny vans with a couple of shelves and a mattress. No toilet, shower or sink, just a diesel heater which you can hear whistling away at night. These tiny vans are very popular and it was not uncommon to have 20+ in every campsite every night. Imagine this majestic countryside with little vans filling every rest stop leaving little piles of white toilet paper as they do.
We enjoy a swim as you probably already now, every village has a heated swim centre, generally with a gym attached. They all offer a seniors discount, so about Isk 400 (about $4.20 each) will get you a swim, spa and sauna, long hot shower, hair dryer (Pam insisted I add the dryer), most even have a little spin dryer for your wet swimmers for fuck sake. All in a first class facility.
We chose to tour Iceland anti-clockwise. Its a flip of the coin.
Iceland’s north is wild, scenic and less populated. The travel distances are longer, but there’s much less traffic. Less big ticket tourist stops, but lots more waterfalls, fiords, wild coastline and mountains. Villages are much smaller and often very quiet, just a small supermarket and perhaps an un-manned fuel stop. Mostly we drove routes 85 and 82.
Iceland’s south is less wild, perhaps more populated and still very scenic. The south has more big name tourist stops, the volcanos, lava fields and fissure and the big icecaps. But there’s a lot more traffic and tourist buses. Bigger supermarkets, cafes and restaurants. Mostly we were driving on route 1, the ring road.
Out last night in Iceland is cold and drizzly but the Hymer’s gas heater keeps us warm. The ferry is loading and we have a couple of days crossing the north sea to look forward to.
PS: Yes, there was a fissure eruption near Keflavik Airport a few days ago. Unfortunately we missed it.. We had spent the night at Sandgerði, just a few kms away only last week. Pam was very keen on doing a ‘Joe and the Volcano’, but such is life.
Michael + Pam