Iceland: Where Our Photo Editor Will Return Once Her Travels Resume

How would I describe this trip in one word? Magical, quiet, nature–filled, adventurous, creative, inspiring, spontaneous.

With our 2020 travel plans temporarily on hold, we find ourselves returning to memories of past adventures, finding joy in journeys that resonated, inspired, elevated – and that taught us something meaningful about ourselves and the wider world we share. In this new series, we revisit our best–ever trips with you, and hope you’ll do the same for us. This week, photo editor Lori Morgan travels back through Iceland, where she visited four years ago for a week away without the kids.

enRoute Tell us why this trip in particular keeps coming back to you now — what made it so memorable?

Lori Morgan This holiday came at a time where we needed to have a break from the chaos of parenting and reconnect with each other.

May 12, 2020
A girl stands on one of the basalt columns of Black Sand Beach in Reynisfjara
The basalt columns on southern Iceland’s famous black beach are a force of nature — the beach played a starring role in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.
A small turquoise tour bus in Iceland
These rugged and charming vintage buses were used to transport early tourists around Iceland’s magical glacial scenery.
The Gullfoss waterfall in southwest Iceland
Ignore TLC and do go chasing waterfalls in southwest Iceland.
A man standing in the sun beside a tall grey fence in Reykjavik, Iceland
An urban stroll in Reykjavík.

ER What impact did this trip have on you?

LM It opened our minds to the beauty of places that combine nature with good design and a unique culture. The architecture in Reykjavík is a really interesting mix of classical and modernism, so strolling through the city and surrounding suburbs is a must for lovers of design. Although it’s touristy, the Blue Lagoon geothermal baths are an amazing experience thanks to the azure colour of the hot water contrasted with the surrounding black volcanic rock moonscape.

The front facade of a white house in the Seltjaranarnes neighborhood of Reykjavik
The front facade of a grey house in the Seltjaranarnes neighborhood of Reykjavik
A glimpse of the modernist dream homes of the surrounding Seltjaranarnes neighbourhood in Reykjavík.
An abstract mural in the middle of an Icelandic field
Rural mural.
The interior of Mokka Kaffi, a cafe in Iceland
Tea with sugar and milk served on a tray at Mokka Kaffi in Iceland
Mokka Kaffi: A cozy mid–century coffee house in Reykjavík.

ER What is your favourite memory from your time away together?

LM Dave and I loved relaxing in mid–century–modern–style cafés, where only the locals hang out. Another highlight was the long drives on stretches of highway surrounded by lakes, glaciers, waterfalls and steam escaping from underground.

ER Describe your travelling style in 30 words or less.

LM Trips don’t always need a lot of planning; it’s the spontaneity and unexpected surprises that make them interesting and memorable.

The interior of bistro Kaffihús Vesturbæjar in Reykjavik
After a dip in the heated public pool across the street, you can grab a bite or a pint at Kaffi Vest (as the locals call it), a charming bistro on Reykjavík’s west side.
The living room of an Airbnb residence in the Seltjaranarnes neighborhood of Iceland
Guest house with a foxy style in Seltjaranarnes.
A woman in boots on the dark sand of Black Sand Beach in Reynisfjara
Reynisfjara Black Sand Beach.

ER Do you plan on returning one day?

LM Definitely, and next time with kids in tow.

ER What was your favourite souvenir from the trip?

LM We bought a French version of a cherished Icelandic children’s storybook, for our kids. The Story of Dimmalimm was published in 1942, and few Icelandic children’s books have enjoyed such popularity as this beautiful tale. Guðmundur Thorsteinsson was a popular and respected artist and The Story of Dimmalimm is among the chief treasures that he left behind.

The entrance of Kaffibarinn in Reykjavík, Iceland
Baristas give way to DJs at this Reykjavík landmark, which transitions from chilled–out café by day to raucous club at night.
Men seated around the tables at the Kolaportið flea market in Reykjavík
Open on weekends, the Kolaportið flea market offers good hunting ground for vintage flea market deals.

We’d love to hear about your favourite travel memory. Just send us a photo and 50–100 words about why this trip in particular had such an impact on you – and why you can’t wait to go back.