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The Best of Iceland with Kids

If you haven’t visited Iceland before you might incorrectly assume it’s purely a winter wilderness. However, visitors, especially from Canada, will likely find the winters fairly mild and the summers quite glorious. A country of immense natural beauty and dramatic landscapes, fit for movies, Iceland is also the perfect destination for a family-friendly vacation, especially for adventure-loving kids.

Danny Mcgee Hidden Iceland Black Sand Beach

Danny Mcgee Hidden Iceland Black Sand Beach

Reykjavik

You’ll start in Reykjavik, the capital and where international flights land. This lively and colourful small city has lots for families to explore especially the trendy Grandi Harbour district and FlyOver Iceland, an immersive attraction that lets you virtually fly right over Iceland’s amazing landscape.

FlyOver Iceland

FlyOver Iceland

Suitable for kids who are a minimum of 102cm or 40″ tall, the experience starts before you even strap in for the ride. Visitors are led through two different areas where a story is presented first in a rustic cabin and then by an enormous lifelike troll.

Flyover Iceland Photo Fiona Tapp

Flyover Iceland Photo Fiona Tapp

Once seated a 20ft spherical screen transports you across Iceland over glaciers, fjords, and waterfalls. You can even smell the wildflowers and feel the spray from the falls in your face!

 

Hallgrímskirkja Church

Hallgrímskirkja Church  Colourful homes - Photo Fiona Tapp

Colourful homes – Photo Fiona Tapp

Visible from anywhere in the city this church and landmark will appeal to children because it looks a bit like a giant rocket. Climb up inside to the top of the tower (for a small fee) and you can see out over all the colourful buildings and homes of Reykjavik.

 

Saga Museum

Learn more about Iceland’s Viking past at the Saga Museum where legends come alive. Make sure to visit the restaurant before you leave and sample the fish of the day.


 

Guides Around The Golden Circle and The South Coast

As you head away from the capital to explore more of Iceland, it’s a good idea to book a guided tour, particularly if you are travelling with kids.

Gullfoss Summer - Golden Circle Platinum Tour - Photo Norris Niman

Gullfoss Summer – Golden Circle Platinum Tour – Photo Norris Niman

Driving in Iceland, especially in winter, can be very challenging. Instead, relax and enjoy your vacation by taking a backseat and listening to expert knowledge while you visit amazing sights like the Black Sand Beach, Gullfoss waterfall, Þingvellir National Park, and the Sólheimajökull glacier.

Book a spot on a small group or private tour with Hidden Iceland to explore the glacier, ice caves, and the thundering waterfalls all along the route.

Ice Cave Photo Helen Maria Björnsdóttir Hidden Iceland

Ice Cave Photo Helen Maria Björnsdóttir Hidden Iceland

The best thing about travelling in a small group is that it’s a bespoke experience that can be tailored to your needs or to best suit the group. For example, we were desperate to see some beautiful Icelandic horses, and thanks to our guide we had a chance to observe a group grazing.

Icelandic Horses Photo Fiona Tapp

Icelandic Horses Photo Fiona Tapp

Hidden Iceland offers optional clothing and boot rentals to help keep your packing light.

Lava Museum

On route during a trip around the south coast, stop off at the Lava Museum. You’ll all learn about the various volcanic activity around the country in an interactive exhibition.

There is a cafe and gift shop on-site too for a delicious snack and a souvenir to take back home.

Snaefellsnes Photo Norris Niman Hidden Iceland

Snaefellsnes Photo Norris Niman Hidden Iceland

Iceland offers two trips in one vacation, a fun European style city break in the capital, and then active adventures for families who love to get outdoors and be wowed by nature.

 

 

The author was a guest of FlyOver Iceland. They did not review or approve this article prior to publication.

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Due to COVID-19, travelling is not what it used to be. It is advisable to adhere to physical distancing requirements, ensure frequent hand washing, and wear a mask indoors when maintaining distances is not possible. See www.travel.gc.ca/travelling/advisories for more details.