Wondering what to take camping in Iceland? You’re not alone! I’m from sunny Australia, and I know I’ve said it before, but we just don’t do cold. So when I decided to camp around the fjords in the arctic circle, I had absolutely no idea what kind of stuff to take to keep myself warm and dry, and started researching like crazy to gather an assortment of stuff to keep myself alive and happy on the Ring Road.
in Australia, we just don’t do stuff like dress for the cold, install heating in every room, or wear lined boots, wind-breakers, and coats that actually keep you warm. To me, anything below 12-degrees Celsius is like an arctic-blast to the face.
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I used all my pent-up fear and frustration, and propelled myself down the hall and towards the boarding gate, stopping briefly to make sure I was headed in the right direction. I ran like Justin Timberlake was waiting at the boarding gate, holding a giant hunk of my favourite red velvet cake.
I was really excited at the prospect of entering Tallinn, so I don’t want to be a wet blanket and rain on my own parade or anything, but if I’m being really honest, I’d have to say navigating the Estonian public transport system at 7am after a 16-hour bus ride from Poland was not something I enjoyed doing. And I enjoy most challenges.
Throughout my four-weeks in Iceland, I met a wide range of people who were there alone to ‘find’ themselves, and I’m fairly sure they didn’t mean waking up Mr. Bean-style and finding themselves on the sidewalk.
The ancient town of Melnik is nestled in the Pirin Mountains, surrounded by 100-meter rock formations, and lined with 500-year-old trees and heritage-listed structures. If the history side of things doesn’t do it for you, the 600-year-old wine culture will – there are more wineries on the main street than you could shake a stick at.
I woke up this morning bright-eyed and confident I would make it to Melnik – the tiniest town in Bulgaria. Upon boarding the first bus to Sandanski, I promptly noticed that no one spoke English.
The arts industry is booming, tourism is peaking, the coastlines are sparkling, and the valleys are blooming – Bulgaria is quite possibly one of Europe’s best-kept secrets.
Grab your scarves and boots and get ready delve in to the breathtaking world of fire and ice – this is the best planet Earth has to offer. Iceland is home to more than 30 active volcanoes, and is still being shaped by the odd eruption – it’s one of the only places where you can drive along a highway and watch jets of steam and boiling mud shoot from the Earth’s core.
It’s both comforting and surprising to know that tourists generally don’t die in Iceland. Beautiful as it is, most of it looks like the opening of an 80s horror film. You get out of the car, look around at the magnitude, splendour and isolation of the place, and think ‘well, this is how I’m going to die’. It’s like the opening of The Shining.