My friend Josh and I didn't say much as we loaded our luggage into the rental car at Keflavik Airport. We'd just landed in Iceland, and already we were silenced by the landscape. "It looks even more amazing in person!," Josh said as we took it all in.
Since we met during at a gathering at an old friends' house, Josh and I had dreamed to traveled extensively through the world together, from the canals of Venice and Amsterdam to the mountains of Austria and Italy, but Iceland was our main place of excitement to visit.
The surrounding lava field resembled something you would only see you in your wildest dreams, with huge moss-covered rocks haphazardly compiled on the ground, and funnels of steam rising to meet low-lying gray clouds in the distance. It was a formidable and alien landscape with no trees, no grass and no shrubs. We'd heard that Iceland was nothing like the other landscapes God has provided for us, and now we could see why.
With the suspiciously simple verbal directions given by the rental car clerk, "Just follow the road to Reykjavik." The clerk wasn't kidding, there was literally one road out of the parking lot with a sign pointing to Reykjavik. Despite the barren landscape of volcanic rock that welcomed us, we were already warming to Iceland.
Iceland has the reputation of being a remote country, but it's actually North America's closest European neighbor, located relatively halfway between the U.K. and the U.S. There are many misconceptions about Iceland, and surely the name of the country doesn't help any. Far from freezing or being covered in ice, Iceland has a relatively medium climate, averaging 60 degrees in the summer and 32 in the winter. We were visiting in April, and the temperature during our stay was around 40 degrees, requiring a winter wear, but far from scarf and gloves-weather.
Jumping on the tourist bandwagon, our first trip was to Iceland's largest tourist attraction, the Blue...