ring road iceland with green aurora in the sky
If there is one thing that facilitates travels around Iceland it’s the National Route 1 - the epic Ring Road - that conveniently encircles the entire country. Whether you are simply driving a particular stretch of the Ring Road to get from A to B or living the dream of making a road trip of the Ring itself, you will be exposed to photography opportunities on a regular basis. Like every five minutes or so.If there is one thing that facilitates travels around Iceland it’s the National Route 1 - the epic Ring Road - that conveniently encircles the entire country and connects most of the bigger towns. Whether you are simply driving a particular stretch of the Ring Road to get from A to B or living the dream of making a road trip of the Ring itself, you will be exposed to photography opportunities on a regular basis. Like every five minutes or so.
It’s true; Iceland is a visually captivating country so plan to take your time. The Ring Road isn’t an endless loop per se – it clocks in at 1332 kilometers / 828 miles – so you could probably drive the whole thing in 24 hours. But there are photogenic road trips and then there are photogenic road trips. The Ring Road in Iceland is clearly the latter. Be kind to yourself and allow for 7 days minimum. You could easily do with 10. Or 20, even. Trust us.
The Ring Road exposes you to majestic moss-capped lava fields, rugged mountains, bubbling geothermal hot springs, jaw-dropping waterfalls, beautiful horses and more. These things you will most likely see every single day, maybe even several times a day. But do seize the opportunity to veer off the beaten path from time to time and see the things no one mentions on travel blogs. These moments often make the best memories. Just make sure to book the right rental car for your trip.
There is no or wrong way to drive the Ring Road in terms of directions. One either drives it clockwise or counterclockwise. But there are a few things worth keeping in mind, however. The speed limit in Iceland is 90 kilometers per hour, approx. 55 miles per hour. Wasting your precious budget on speeding tickets is a no-no so remember to stay within the speed limit. After all, why go speeding through Iceland’s striking landscapes? That makes no sense at all.
Also, there are several single-lane bridges along the Ring Road. Don’t panic when approaching one; traffic is usually not that heavy and should you encounter a car coming from the opposite direction, entering the bridge is on a “first come, first serve” basis. Should someone beat you to his end of the bridge, wait 15 seconds and then go right ahead.
Weather will also be a factor, especially when travelling in autumn or winter. Strong winds and heavy rain is a possibility all year round but snow and subsequently slippery roads can make road conditions tricky during the colder months. Some roads can become particularly treacherous or even utterly impassable, so always check the conditions ahead. Always keep a tab on your browser open with www.road.is to consult whenever needed.
Safe travels and enjoy the ride : )