No one relishes the idea of having to quarantine when they travel. People don’t go to new countries to get stuck in doors for days on end, staring at the walls. But for many, quarantine has become part of the new travel norm.
Swiss photographer Olivier Staiger recently travelled to Iceland, and showed MBL how he was spending his time in quarantine. And it turns out, it can be a lot more fun than one may think.
Speaking to MBL about his experience of getting tested and going into isolation, Olivier says “People think that it is not possible to come to this country because of this double screening, but there is a lot that can be done while you are in quarantine. This is a free country with fair and spacious rules for tourists. This is not North Korea, this is Iceland, the best country in the world”.
Olivier quarantined in Grundarfjörður and took full advantage of his remote location, playing his violin, photographing the Northern Lights and documenting his experience on his Facebook page ‘Iceland Quarantine’.
Use the time to explore the wild
Despite popular belief, visitors in quarantine are allowed to drive long distances, provided they avoid other people and maintain good hygiene practises. “It is possible to go for walks as long as you keep your distance from other people and it is possible to drive long distances without disturbing anyone. So if you land in Keflavík and want to stay in Egilsstaðir, it’s okay as long as people follow the rules when they take fuel. I sent an e-mail to the local authorities and asked, they just said I had to wear gloves while I filled up the car.”
Olivier also has a YouTube channel, where he offers viewers a peek into his day to day life, and gives tips on how to do quarantine the right way. He hopes that his social media updates can help to encourage others to come to Iceland by showing them that, not only is it easy to get tested and quarantine, but also that it’s easy to make it as exciting a part of your travels as any other.
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