Iceland – Experience the Land of Fire and Ice

Written By: Clair Robinson

With intense volcanic activity and 11% of its area covered in ice, Iceland is often referred to as the “Land of Fire and Ice“.

This photo essay will take you from icebergs to steaming lava fields and from glacier to volcanic craters. Get transported to another world.

Land of Fire and Ice

Jokulsarlon Lagoon

icebergs at lagoon

The most famous glacier lagoon in Iceland is Jokusarlon. Right next to the Ring road you can admire icebergs of many shapes and sizes detach from the glacier and float towards the ocean. I prefer it with fog, as icebergs seem to appear from nowhere. What do you think?

Jokulsarlon Beach

Jokulsarlon beach in South Iceland brings you both ice and fire: icebergs from the glacier float to the ocean and wash off on the volcanic black sand of the beach. This site is intriguing by all weather with white, black and blue icebergs to admire up-close.

Want to see more of Iceland? Learn about the Magnificent Icelandic Horse

Leirhnjukur steaming lava

land of fire and ice leirhnjuku

Leirhnjukur is a little off the beaten path in North Iceland and well worth the detour.

A track takes you through a lava field that is still steaming, 30 years after the last volcanic event. Just don’t venture off the marked path if you don’t want your soles to melt!

Want to learn more about Iceland? Check out our Iceland Travel Guide

Fjallsarlon

fjallsarlon Iceland

Fjallsarlon is a glacier lagoon in South Iceland. Icebergs detach from the glacier Vatnajökull and float around. This lagoon has no escape to the sea so the icebergs melt right there next to you.

Strokkur Geyser

Iceland Geyser

Part of the Golden Circle Iceland, the geyser of Strokkur erupts every 5 to 8 minutes and reaches 20 meters (and sometimes 40 meters). It is one of the most visited places in Iceland, and a clear evidence of the fire under the earth.

Glaciers at every turn

glaciers of iceland ice road

While driving around Iceland, you won’t get bored. Especially in South Iceland where you can turn and find yourself facing a wall of ice…

Hverfjall Volcanic Crater

hverfjall Iceland

In North Iceland, you can climb the Hverfjall volcanic crater. It is a bare symmetrical crater thought to have been created by an explosion 2800 year ago. It is one of the largest of its kind. The walk on the rim is quite impressive. To give you an idea of the size, there are people on the rim in this picture. Can you spot them?

Hot Bath at the Blue Lagoon

blue lagoon iceland

Iceland factories pump water from deep under the earth surface to generate electricity from its heat.

After the process the water, which is still hot and full of minerals, is used in the famous Blue Lagoon.

Here you can soak up in a hot bath while enjoying a drink or maybe a massage.

The Glacial water at Aldeyjarfoss

aldeyjarfoss

Iceland is also the land of waterfalls. With all the ice melting, the water flows into rivers and drops into waterfalls.

The water of the Aldeyjarfoss waterfall comes from the Vatnajökull glacier. It drops 20 meters in an intriguing setting with bare landscape and layers of basalt columns.

Geothermal activity at Krafla Viti Crater

land of fire and ice viti crater

In North Iceland, hiking the rim of the Krafla Viti crater is an amazing adventure: geothermal activity, colorful landscape and fumes from the plants…

To plan a road trip in Iceland, check out ZigZag On Earth Iceland Travel Guide for more information.

And tell us in the comments, do you prefer Fire or Ice landscapes?

Iceland the land of fire and ice

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Travel Planning Resources

Looking to book your next trip? Why not use these resources that are tried and tested by yours truly.

Flights: Start planning your trip by finding the best flight deals on Skyscanner

Book your Hotel: Find the best prices on hotels with these two providers. If you are located in Europe use Booking.com and if you are anywhere else use TripAdvisor

Find Apartment Rentals: You will find the cheapest prices on apartment rentals with VRBO

Travel Insurance: Don't leave home without it. Here is what we recommend:

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Need more help planning your trip? Make sure to check out our Resources Page where we highlight all the great companies that we trust when we are traveling.

About Clair Robinson

Claire is the French Traveler and Travel Planning Addict behind ZigZag On Earth where she shares her growing collection of destination guides, with detailed location articles and plenty of beautiful photos. Follow Claire at: ZigZagOnEarth / Facebook / Pinterest

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11 thoughts on “Iceland – Experience the Land of Fire and Ice”

  1. That glacier photo is one of the top reasons I love Iceland. I had no idea how many colors ice could be until I started researching Iceland! I do wonder if I might be captivated just as much by fire images someday, too.

    Reply
  2. Hey Dave,
    Thanks for your opinion. Now Iceland will be mine targeted destination. I wouldn’t have any remorse to choose Iceland over Canada and New Zealand, as I have finalized my destination with travelling expert. Again thanks a lot for sharing valuable information
    i

    Reply
  3. I am a landscape lover and every time I read the different posts the adventurous and landscape travel, Got confused. As I have planned to visit one country among three ..i.e. New Zealand, Canada and Iceland. After reading this post, this is final that I will go to Iceland to spend best time of my life.

    Reply
    • It’s a tough choice. Canada is huge and it’s difficult to make a choice on where to go there. Alberta, Nova Scotia, British Columbia, they’re all beautiful, but very far apart. New Zealand is amazing but it’s very far away from anything. Iceland is the best to see a lot in a short time. Going around the entire Ring Road can be done in 10 days. You can see a lot in that time. We saw a lot in New Zealand in 6 weeks and we are from Canada and still haven’t seen it all after traveling much of it extensively 🙂

      Reply
  4. Thanks Andrew. I visited Iceland in a September month. But it does not mean anything, Weather is very unpredictable there.
    I went to Jokulsarlon 3 times to capture it with different weather (fog not seeing glacier, mid fog and blue skye…)

    Reply
  5. Thanks for sharing these great photos! Iceland is one of those rare places where images rarely can do the scenery justice (although I think you’ve done just that here). It seems like you had quite good weather; when were you there? On my last trip I couldn’t even see the glaciers in Jokulsarlon (and I was on a boat in the lagoon)!

    Reply
  6. I prefer the ice landscapes while sitting near a fire, lol. I miss Iceland! My day at the Blue Lagoon 5 years ago is still one of the best days of my life.

    Reply