Currency: Icelandic krona
Size: 39,770 square miles (103,001 square kilometers) - roughly the size of Kentucky
Border countries: None
National tourist office: www.icetourist.is
At a glance
The sparsely populated island-nation of Iceland is extremely popular for travelers interested in going to some of the most untouched and rugged terrain on the planet. Its varied natural landscape can be forbidding and austere, but also lush and green. The land includes geysers, waterfalls, and volcanoes, and wild horses, sheep, and dogs roam the countryside. The location and climate of Iceland has led to the creation of spectacular glaciers and icebergs, as well as polar wildlife like puffins.
The national parks in Iceland are the biggest most popular attraction and are exceptionally well maintained. The landscapes, wildlife, and challenging terrain make Iceland an ideal destination for many outdoor activities, including fishing and hunting, biking, hiking, and bird watching. Icelandic traditions are heavily Norse-influenced and decidedly European. The city of Reykjavik is a center of culture for this friendly country full of exciting challenges.
Why cyclists love it
Iceland is popular for adventure seekers because of its rugged terrain. Bike tours in Iceland can be physically demanding but supremely rewarding for those in good condition. A cycling tour through this world unblemished by humans is an unforgettable experience. The expansive national park system offers well-maintained routes for bicycle tours, and the views from the mountain tracks and trails around glaciers are stunning. Because so much of the country is raw and undeveloped, a mountain bike tour in Iceland is a fantastic way to explore beyond civilization.
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This trip circles the conservation area called "Fjallabak" ("Behind the Mountains") in the central highlands of south Iceland. This is one of the largest geothermal areas in the world, but is framed by large glaciers, forming a landscape of spectacular contrasts. This demanding Iceland mountain bicycle tour is mostly on dirt and gravel roads, with many unbridged rivers and the last two days involving considerable single-track sections.
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