Surfing in Iceland

“All that is gold does not glitter, not all those who wander are lost.”

-J.R.R. Tolkien

I’ve wandered several times to Iceland – thanks to my work with tattooing. One of the richest journeys were in 2013 with my surfing buddy Anna. As we’re planning now another fun trip to come, I started to memorize our surfing moments in the past.

Iceland is something I admire: Their politics, tolerance, common sense, football, child/eldery care, arts and so on. Main reason for that is a attitude, which grows into you when living isolated in rough surroundings: You keep it real. Also tattoo culture is small and warm, all hails to the grand old man Svanur working in Tattoo & Skart there.

Me, Anna and my kiddos were looking for surf spots, and had the most mesmerizing experiences there. We took our boards via Iceland Air, which is one of the nicest travel company with good service – including with carrying surfboards. Boards get easily damaged while carried freight in the airplanes, and this company took good care of our boards.

Somewhere in Iceland.

We rented a car, surfing gear as we don’t own so thick wetsuits, boots and gloves, and found two nice spots where to surf. Magic Seaweed is perfect mobile app for checking tides, swell and condition of the sport in general. Forecast is also good one to know, as well as useful info of the locals. As the swell was often so huge for us, we had to wait some days until it was safe enough for us. It didn’t matter, as we had time to visit these amazing waterfalls, geysers and natural geothermal pools carved between stones. Blue Lagoon is touristic experience for sure, but we enjoyed more those natural, hidden spots.


Gullfoss waterfalls.

And the surf! Damn. We were so nervous that ocean was going to be freezing, so we paddled out super fast straight when we hit the water. We burnt all our adrenaline away with that stress burst, but that just made the rest of the surfing mellow. In some point we were laughing that it wasn’t that cold! As we’re finns, were used of ice cold water during winter times, and Gulf stream was warming the temperature. It was like +10 °C if I recall it right.

We went to two different spots: Thorli and our own spot. Thorli was experience with seals and sunset and nice swell. It’s was the most “crowded” spot in iceland, wich means with icelandic population quite and peace! We found this other spot on our trip route exploring the island, and were dazed of these icelandic beaches. We even got tanned on iceland, on September! Swell was pretty mild, but was experience anyway.

If you’re into cool, peacefull places and into surfing with no others near by, iceland is a place for you. Now I’ll get back with planning other cold water surfing trip!


Sandy beaches of Iceland.

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