From Iceland — Autumn Activity Guide: Or At Least The Closest Thing Iceland Has To Autumn

Autumn Activity Guide: Or At Least The Closest Thing Iceland Has To Autumn

Published September 11, 2020

Autumn Activity Guide: Or At Least The Closest Thing Iceland Has To Autumn
Valur Grettisson
Photo by
Jón Trausti Sigurðarson

Before we enter the pitless dark and windy nightmare of winter, we have…well, the pitless dark and windy nightmare of pre-winter? Anyways, here is your early autumn activity guide.

Go Pick Berries

The weather might be getting colder…well, shittier if you don’t want to sugarcoat it, but it’s still
time to go out and pick something to turn into jam. Icelandic nature is brimming with black crow- and blueberries. If you are timely enough, you can go to Heiðmörk and pick a ton of them. But the secret places are in Hvalfjörður. Just turn right basically anywhere in the fjord. Then just Google some jam recipes or just call your mother for once. And don’t go cheap on the sugar.

Chase Sheep

We mean that literally. You can take your kid, or just go on your first date, chasing some sheep in the yearly sheep round-ups all over the country. You can find ads about the round-ups in the Icelandic papers, or just Google it like the modern person you are. But, keep in mind, there is something called COVID-19 spreading around the world, so there could always be some unexpected complications. The good news is that the sheep haven’t contracted the virus. Yet.

Visit Þingvellir

Here is a pro tip for travellers: Þingvellir, Iceland’s oldest parliament and national park, is never more beautiful than in the autumn. The reason is simple. The area is covered in shrubbery that transforms into a goddamn otherworldly colourfulness that can best be described as a natural acid trip. Take a fishing rod with you and try to catch one of those colossal sea trout. But don’t eat it if you’re pregnant, it used to have a notoriously high amount of mercury in it some few years ago. Nobody really knows why, but it should be okay for the rest.

Hunt For Aurora Borealis

They are always there; you just have to wait for a clear night. Fill a thermos with coffee — take tea with you if you want to be fancy about it — and go back to Hvalfjörður… you know, where you found those delicious berries. There you’ll find complete darkness. Find a nice spot to park, drink your coffee and enjoy the show. If you want to be on the safe side, visit for surprisingly accurate aurora forecasts. If you don’t see any, well, I hope you enjoyed your tea, you pompous bastard.

Art House Cinema

Remember, when society had something called culture? Vaguely? Same here. But there is no better way to shake off that idiotic happy summer mood but to visit the cinema and watch something so bleak that it will leave you rattled for the rest of the winter. And no, we’re not talking about some overblown Hollywood crap disguised as something remotely intelligent, but real arthouse cinema with a depth that mercilessly tests your patience for the next four hours of the screening time. Of course, we recommend Bíó Paradís, that will reopen this month hopefully but also keep in mind that the Reykjavík International Film Festival (RIFF) kicks off at the end of September and you will be able to watch all those arthouse movies from the comfort of your home. It’s forbidden to fall asleep, though.

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