Iceland, being the small yet amazing island that it is, has so many interesting and adventurous activities, but one experience everyone visiting Iceland should have is snorkeling the Silfra fissure. The Silfra is located in Thingvellir National Park, which is a common stop on the Golden Circle loop. Silfra was formed by the separation and movement of the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates and is filled with water from a nearby glacier. The really amazing thing besides that you are able to snorkel between two tectonic plates, is that the water that fills the fissures is filtered through lava rocks so it is crystal clear!
So if all of that isn't enough to make you want to snorkel the Silfra, I'm sure these pictures below will definitely do the trick!
This experience is definitely a unique one, so my goal here is to help you prepare for it and convince you, if i haven't already, how this is a must have experience while in Iceland. To be able to have this wonderful experience, you have to book it through a tour company. I used Arctic Adventures, which I would definitely recommend, everyone was so amazing! But feel free to look around because every company offers slightly different things with their excursion. If you plan rent a car while in Iceland and want to drive around the Golden Circle yourself, I would suggest just purchasing the individual adventure. If you don't have a car or don't want to drive the Golden Circle, many companies have inclusive tour trips that include the transportation and the activities all around the circle, just make sure it includes snorkeling or you are able to add it.
WHAT TO EXPECT!
Due to the cold climate, this could deter some people, but don't let it! Regardless of the time of year, the Silfra water stays about 35 degrees fahrenheit year round. To help keep warm, you will be wearing a dry suit, which is common in colder waters. This means that your whole body will be in a suit to keep you dry and warm, including flippers and gloves. Don't worry they wrap you up well to make sure no water gets in! The one thing that I didn't know going into this was that my face was going to be mostly open. It was a shock when you put your face in the water and your lips go numb. Once you fight through the coldness for a few minutes, you stop noticing it and get to enjoy the beauty of the Silfra.
Prepare yourself for an unbelievable experience! The water is crystal clear, but don't expect to see any fish, none (that I know of) live within the fissure. It feels like you are swimming between the Earth, and it's really amazing, as you can hopefully see from my pictures! You will be in the water for about 40 minutes, but that also depends on how quickly you kick through. There is a slight current that help will push you through the fissure. When I say slight, I really mean slight. You will still need to kick and push your way to through and depending on what kind of shape you are in, you may be pretty tired by the end.
ADVICE AND TIPS!
BRING A CAMERA!
A waterproof one of course. I used a Go Pro and didn't waste time taking pictures of everything that looked cool. Instead I just took a long video so I was able to capture everything we passed and saw, we even took some selfies. After I returned from the trip, I extracted photos from the videos. Now I have photos from it and an amazing video of it too! Best of both worlds!
SNORKELING IS NOT SCUBA DIVING!
If you have ever been snorkeling before (probably in a tropical location) you were probably able to swim down and be around all of the fish and coral. This is not like that. Since you are in a dry suit, you have a lot of extra air within it so it is impossible to swim down. You can see a picture above of my friend trying to. If that is your goal, then book a scuba diving trip. They have excursion for those also, it just depends on what you prefer to do!
Snorkeling the Silfra fissure is truly a once in a lifetime experience and the only place in the world that you can have the experience!
So would you go snorkeling in Silfra? Have you already went? Tell me about your experience below!
Ask me any of your questions below!
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