The country of Iceland - a secluded Scandinavian island situated on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge - is known to be the least densely populated country in all of Europe. It has a wild and very special geography featuring geologically-active areas, out of this world lava fields, cloudy mountains and the cleanest glacial rivers steaming with wild fish.
In many ways Iceland is a filmmaker's and photographer's paradise. People only need to visit once, and they fall in love with the country. In recent year several major Hollywood productions have shot in Iceland using the beautiful landscapes and scenic backdrops for their movies.
Some of the more infamous films are: HBO's popular Medieval fantasy TV series Game Of Thrones, the adventure film by Ben Stiller titled The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty, Tom Cruise's Oblivion, and latest the high-profile Hollywood feature Noah directed by Darren Aronofsky. The story of Noah (played by Russell Crowe), is a story about a man who is suffering from visions of a forthcoming apocalyptic flood. He starts acting on the belief that he is doing what God wants him to do and he begins to construct an enormous ark so that he can save as much life as possible in the wake of the world's new beginning.
The film about Noah ended up being a perfect match for the Icelandic scenery and because of this, most of the film was shot there even in spite of very hard weather. However, Iceland features a lot more than the endless landscapes shown in the big budget Hollywood productions. This country also has some of the most fantastic options for fishing in the pure glacial rivers, perhaps the best drinking water in the world, and a unmatched wildlife boosting puffins, whales, seals, rare seabirds and even eagles, but also the unique and clear northern lights in the winter and midnight sun almost all 24 hours a day during the pristine summers. It is truly a photographer's paradise.
Nevertheless, this small and peculiar country has something for all kinds of visitors and especially those who also appreciated a nice meal to go with their visit. Iceland does infact feature some of the most tasty lamb or salmon in the world and tourist will have a lot of different dishes to try when visiting. Trying the healthy dinner recipes that the country has to offer is truly a unique experience. But not only does Iceland feature great meets, it also has a variety of healthy vegetarian recipes to sample mainly in the capital Reykjavik.
The top three main attractions of Iceland include:
The Blue Lagoon - an outdoor spa of geothermal water that originates from 2,000 meters below the surface. Here freshwater and seawater combine at high temperatures. It is then harnessed through drilling holes at a local geothermal power plant, in order to make electricity and hot water for nearby communities. It is really a special place to see and any visit to Iceland would not be complete if you haven't had a swim in the The Blue Lagoon.
Thingvellir - a spectacular national park, which is not more than a short drive from the capital city. Thingvellir is a site of major historical, cultural, and geological importance to Iceland. Because of this, it is also one of the most popular tourist destinations. But mainly it is the place of a dramatic valley, which clearly marks the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. It is in fact one of the few places on earth at which such a sight is clearly visible. Nevertheless, this place is also the home of rare wild life and the Thinvallavatn, that is the largest and most pristine natural lake in all of the country.
The Glacial lake of Jökulsárlón - is a huge glacial lake in the southeast of Iceland. It is on the edge of one of the main national parks of the country and a very dramatic sight to most visitors. Originally the glacier in the area developed into a lake after the glacier started receding from the edge of the Atlantic ocean. This very unique lake has hence grown to it's present size due to the melting ice. At this point in time it is deepest lake in Iceland and is at the same time considered to be one of the natural wonders of Iceland.
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Julie Karla is an international food journalist and food blogger who is also known as the founder of Karla's Nordic Kitchen, and creator of the healthy carrot cake recipe based on Nordic ingredients.
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