Iceland worth adding to bucket list

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Looking for a unique vacation destination? One that offers geysers, glaciers and a good soak in a geothermal pool? Perhaps somewhere with culture, gourmet restaurants and nightlife? Try Iceland on for size.

Iceland may not be on your vacation radar, but perhaps it should be. This not-as-cold-as-you-think nation is growing in popularity among travelers. And for good reason: Iceland is a four-season destination offering nature, culture and sights you just can’t find elsewhere. These are some fun facts about this wondrous vacation destination:

Iceland is the approximate size of Kentucky. It has a population of 317,000 people, with the majority living in the capitol city of Reykjavik. Reykjavik has an abundance of restaurants, museums, theaters and lodging options. Yet just outside the city, you can see wildlife, volcanoes and the Blue Lagoon (a beautiful thermal pool). Visitors can also enjoy fishing, kayaking, horseback riding, snowmobiling, snorkeling and whale watching.

The food is more varied than you’d imagine. While traditional Icelandic dinners include lamb, dairy or fish, you’ll also find Asian, Italian and Indian cuisine. The produce is grown locally and the water, derived from the glacier springs, is pollution-free.

Many believe Iceland to be extremely cold and far away. In fact, temperatures in the winter rarely go less than 25 degrees, while summer temperatures reach the 60-degree mark. And far is relative; Iceland is in Northern Europe, a three-hour flight from London or a five-hour flight from New York.

The high-travel season is mid-June through August, with July being the most prime time to visit. Winters are dark, but in the summer, you’ll find up to 20 hours of sunlight daily. Those traveling from fall to early spring have the chance to see the Aurora Borealis (Northern Lights). Iceland has a lot to offer for those seeking a unique adventure.

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