A travel journal by Linda Sheader
February 8 – 15, 2013
Why visit Iceland in winter? In February, my other friends in Colorado dream about traveling to Hawaii or Mexico or the Bahamas. They wonder why my husband, Joseph, and I would choose Iceland instead. We love to travel to wintry landscapes and have always wanted to see the aurora borealis, the elusive northern lights. We tried to glimpse them in winter 2012 when we visited the Alaska Interior, but the lights eluded us. When we learned that the visible band of aurora is frequently over the entire island of Iceland, we decided to give it a try.
Although the aurora favored us twice during our visit (and one more time from the plane), we discovered that there are many more reasons to visit this magnificent country in the winter. First, it is much more economical than in the summer, as many businesses offer off-season discounts. Unless a winter gale decides to scream across the North Atlantic, one can expect sunny days and clear frosty nights, mixed with misty rain. In the winter, one can visit with locals, drive without crowds, eat super-fresh seafood, and see pods of wild orcas feast on herring. We left Iceland after only nine winter days, but it will never leave us.
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