Þingvellir by tour bus

I haven’t written about the site of Þingvellir previously, probably because it is a main tourist site which I think everyone has already seen millions of photos of.  When we visited in the summer I published some photos of the lake area nearby. I still think this is the prettier area (rather than the main site) if you are visiting in the summer.

We did a Golden Circle bus tour on our recent visit, really only because we wanted to see Gullfoss frozen (I will post on this separately).

Although it was pretty depressing being on a bus full of first-time tourists, it turns out that driving ourselves would have been a little “interesting”.

View out the front of the bus

In fact, we saw another tour bus that had skidded off the road and got stuck! This made me wonder if this was why our tour started so late in the day – maybe some companies choose to start later despite the limited daylight in the hope of having better road conditions.

As it happened this was the one sunny day we had and the best for sightseeing photos, so it was accidentally well planned.

About 1:00 pm

About 1:00 pm

The bus stopped at the “upper” car park, whereas we had parked in the “lower” one last tie, so we did get a different starting perspective, and the snow on the mountains made the site look more dramatic overall.



I will include one photo from last time, as the Icelandic flag is meant to be flying in the place where it is believed the original Parliament met. It wasn’t there this time – maybe they take it down in the winter!

Have you ever found yourself driving somewhere in unexpectedly bad conditions? Do you agree with me that snow makes most things look better?


17 thoughts on “Þingvellir by tour bus

  1. Absolutely stunning group of photos. Would you believe I have yet to visit there. I have had a few visitors during the winter who have had some very interesting and scary driving trips.

  2. Wonderful photos of Thingvellir. Feels much more quiet as it already is. In Iceland we had unexpectedly bad drinving conditions but not with snow. It was at the South Eastern Coast as the wind hits us very hard shortly behind the scary road part at Hvalneskrókur. Have a nice weekend. And I can tell you I’ll get to Iceland soon. 😉

  3. Gorgeous photos! Looks like it turned into a beautiful day. I would’ve been very nervous driving in the snow that morning. Snow is pretty to look at, but I don’t enjoy driving in it!

  4. Enjoyed all the photos, and was delighted at your final comment. Yes, snow does make things look better! I’ve been blogging about that myself, recently (“City Snow-lines”). Snow highlights all the angles and planes, creates new colour/texture contrasts, makes us look again in a new way. Some places and things look good in all seasons, some turn out to be seasonal and in the ‘wrong’ season look out of place — but even that is interesting to see. Are winter-time tourists to Iceland different than the summer ones?

    • Thanks for your usual insightful comment. It’s been fun to see your world through the seasons. Do you use a pedometer at all?

      You would think winter tourists would be more hardcore somehow but there still seemed to be a lot of people there who I don’t think would have ventured out aside from getting on a tour bus!

      • Thanks… I do use a pedometer, religiously when training for Iceland, now more casually and now I don’t always comment on how far I walk. I asked about winter tourists vs summer because I remember people in the Banff resorts (Rocky Mtns, Alberta, Canada) saying that generally winter tourists are younger and fitter than summer ones

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