Reykjavik, Iceland / by ASHLEY GROTH

Iceland?! Why Iceland?! I've gotten pretty used to answering that question over the last couple of months. For me, a vacation to Iceland in December was an easy answer. Maybe its the appeal of adventure and wanderlust, or doing something a little out of the ordinary; but whatever the reason was I'm sure glad we made it there.

Iceland held so many surprises that we weren't anticipating. Downtown Reykjavik was right out of a Christmas snow globe: complete with heavy snow covered branches, holiday lanterns and candles in windows, and snow piled up on cobblestone streets that felt like thick powdered sugar. It was cheery and festive and quaint and felt like it was from a dream.

We did what we felt like was adequate preparing before we left comfy Minneapolis..but quickly realized that the only thing you can be prepared for in Iceland is being unprepared ;) It is a land of unpredictable weather that will laugh at your extensive and well thought out itinerary, and will force you to be flexible. It was a good thing to be traveling with someone that was as laid back with changing plans as I was.

We experienced treacherous icy mountain roads, near white out blowing snow, hurricane strength winds, cold biting wind, crazy frozen waterfalls, bubbling geysers--but also delicious pizza with peppercorns, plenty of local watering holes, relaxing in a geothermic pool, sweet shops, quaint coffee spots, delicious gas station sandwiches, quality time together in a car navigating through small mountain valley towns, and friendly conversation with locals. I cant wait to go back.