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Iceland - Last minute and Luxury Holidays


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Iceland, (Icelandic: ═sland) a country nominally in Northern Europe, is a large mountainous island in the north Atlantic Ocean, on the fault between Europe and North America. In a sense, it is a well-named territory, with over 11 per cent of the country covered by glaciers, but in another sense it is not, with a surprisingly mild climate and countless geothermal hot-spots. And of course the native spelling ("═sland") is appropriate in English as well.

By plane
If possible avoid a stop-over in the US as the extra security hassle is not worth it. Travellers with children should be aware that strollers and sandals may be x-rayed several times during a stop over. If you can fly to Europe and then to Iceland (on Iceland Express, for example) do that. It is perhaps best to use the UK as an entry point to Iceland, as it faces less rigourous checks than some other European countries.

Iceland is easily reached via air, the international airport is Keflavik, in the South West of the country about 40 km from Reykjavik.

The airport itself is quite barren; if you have a lengthy layover you should make sure to bring books or other entertainment.

An airport transfer bus service (called the FlyBus) runs between the airport and Reykjavik bus terminal via various hotels (1100 Kr, 45 minutes). A return is 300 Kr cheaper than 2 singles. Another great option is to take the bus which stops at the Blue Lagoon either to or from the airport, then continues every half hour or so to Reykjavik.

Be warned, a metered taxi costs about 9500 krona (roughly US$140).

Direct flights from New York City, Boston, Minneapolis, Orlando, Baltimore, San Francisco and most major European (i.e. Amsterdam, Berlin, Copenhagen, Frankfurt, Glasgow, Helsinki, London, Oslo, Madrid, Manchester, Milan, Munich, Paris, Stockholm and Zurich) airports are available, especially since Icelandair uses Keflavik as a hub (note that some are only during the summer months).

Another option is the low cost airline Iceland Express which flies from Copenhagen and Stansted (close to London) to Keflavik (with additional service during the summer month to Frankfurt Hahn, Berlin Sch÷nefeld, Friedrichshafen, Alicante, Gothenburg and Stockholm Arlanda).

In addition to this British Airways will offer flights from London and SAS from Oslo starting in 2006.

The Icelandic travel search engine finds low cost flights to Reykjavik from 200 cities in Europe. Make sure you check out all prices as the so called "low cost" option may not be the lowest cost option at all.

By boat
Getting to Iceland by boat takes longer than by plane but has the advantage of allowing you to take your own vehicle.

In the summer, Smyril Line's MV Norunna sails to picturesque Sey­isfj÷r­ur in a week round trip from Hanstholm in Northern Jutland (Denmark) via Tˇrshavn (Faroe Islands), Lerwick (Shetland Islands) and Bergen (Norway).

The website is slightly vague on the costs and doesn't show many special offers, so it's worth calling their friendly sales office in Shetland. In July & August 2005 a return ticket from Lerwick could be had for ~ú50.

Information provided by Wikipedia

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