ION Luxury Adventure Hotel

by Nikki Desuasido

The ION Luxury Adventure Hotel is hands down, the coolest place you can stay in Iceland. We experienced all sorts of hotelsguesthousescottages, and the ION was by far was our favorite. You get the best of both worlds: rugged scenery, a feeling of solitude, both without sacrificing the comfort and amenities a sophisticated hotel like this can offer. It's nestled in Thingvellir and is a good place to get revitalized if you’re coming from the Westfjords as we were. 

The ION is the perfect escape, with easy access to the plenty adventures of Iceland. While at the hotel, be sure to check out the restaurant Silfra, the award winning Northern Lights Bar, and the amazing Lava Spa and Pool, filled directly from the nearby hot springs. The ION oozes style and you don't have to take my word for it -- check the feature in Porter Magazine

Last day in Reykjavík

by Nikki Desuasido

Jacket: Aether, Jeans: J Brand, Boots: Steven by Steve Madden, Sunglasses: Ray Ban

After touring the entire island, we ended up in Reykjavík, the capital and largest city in Iceland. It was bittersweet making our way back to civilization because the peace and quiet had really grown on us. I've never felt so far removed and isolated; we encountered more sheep than people as we explored the uninhabited spaces, took serene hikes, and experienced a certain type of silence you can only find in the Westfjords.

On the way, I had romanticized about how amazing Reykjavík would be. It was all I could think about every time I felt out of my element in the wilderness; and what was interesting was when we got to the city, I immediately missed the countryside. But I was definitely happy to have more options to eat, more reasons to dress up, and it was really nice to walk around such a quaint and charming area.

When we arrived, we walked around the colorful town and checked out the Hallgrímskirkja Church. We had lunch at the Laundromat Cafe,  took a helicopter tour, then had dinner at Grillmarkaðinn (The Grill Market). We stayed at the perfectly located CenterHotel Thingholt, next to the main shopping street, Laugavegur.  There were a ton of cafes, restaurants and shops. I really wish I could tell you how crazy the nightlife is in Reykjavík but the truth is, we were too exhausted to make it out. We were told the parties don't start till midnight and we didn't want to miss our early call time for the Blue Lagoon the next morning! I had been daydreaming about that on my Pinterest for months so we called it a night, but it was a full day well spent.

Glacier Landing

by Nikki Desuasido

The Essential Iceland helicopter tour was the perfect way to spend the last day of our trip. At that point, we had been traveling for 9 days, driving around the Ring Road, so it was refreshing to experience the views from up top. Seeing the island over the course of an extensive road trip was so much fun, with the best guide ever (Alex)! But there are places a helicopter can reach that a car cannot...

We retraced our steps, flying over Thingvellir (and our hotel Ion Luxury Adventure), the geothermal power plants, both Gulfoss and Háifoss waterfalls, StrokkurGeysirMt. Hekla, and a breathtaking view of the rhyolite mountains of Landmannalaugar. This quick overview of the Golden Circle was an overwhelming conclusion to our week exploring the epic Icelandic landscape. My top highlight from the journey was our stop after Thórsmörk Valley and Eyjafjallajökull glacier where we landed for a picnic lunch by Gígjökull. It was one of the the most extraordinary meals I've had and can taste the Skyr just thinking about it.

Floating in the Blue Lagoon

by Nikki Desuasido

Finally back home from Iceland! It was my first time visiting the country, and after this trip, it's safe to say it's one of the most incredible places I've ever been -- probably one of my favorites in the entire world. There really isn't anywhere else remotely like it. My mind is still blown by the beauty and intrigue of the landscape that constantly changed every minute.

10 days driving around the Ring Road will fill you with more than enough inspiration, not to mention appreciation for nature. We spent every second combing the island for the best photo ops -- whether we were chasing waterfalls, sunsets, arctic foxes, or in this case above, geothermal pools -- aka the Blue Lagoon. It's hard to convey how amazing it was to be there; I'll just let all the pictures do the talking and mark one check off my Bucket List!