Northern Virginia wedding photographer Kirstie Tuben and her husband, Ben, made a travel list on their honeymoon that featured the top 10 places they both wanted to visit. Since then, their goal has been to visit all the destinations before having kids, and Iceland happened to be one of them. "I really believe that travel is the only thing that makes you richer," said Kirstie. "It can enrich your life and open your eyes to the world around you." Before getting married, she was able to cover a good amount of ground on her own. She backpacked through Europe, lived on a boat in the Bahamas, taught in Vietnam and Tanzania, and saw 31 states.
For five days, the couple traveled to Iceland together over the Thanksgiving holiday. Since the Northern Lights aren't visible in the Summer, going during the Winter was a cold but great decision. Surprisingly, they shared that the weather was the same as New York City's, but the sun rose at 10 a.m. and set around 4:30 p.m. Kirstie and Ben gave us their adventure-packed itinerary for other travelers to follow. And seeing how trendy Iceland has become, you'll definitely want to add this to your list. But before you embark on your own trip, consider their tips and warnings ahead that could make or break your experience. See what to expect along with their gorgeous photography from their mini vacation!
According to the couple, their flight from Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD) was totally manageable and only required a small nap to fight the jet lag. As soon as they landed, they rented a car and drove to the small town of Vík. Their pro tip: buy insurance, because gravel will hit your windshield and strong sandstorms can damage your door. They packed a ton of snacks because they were told that the food in Iceland isn't the best. "Much to our surprise, it didn't suck — it was just expensive and mostly fish, burgers, or [hot] dogs," she said.
Although the drive to Vík took almost three hours, it was stunning. They were able to park and pet horses and sheep at any moment and stop at a waterfall called Seljalandsfoss. After taking a nap at their Airbnb, they explored the town and grabbed dinner at Sudur-Vík.