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leisure Blog posts

20Jan
NY Times Article: In Iceland’s Wild West, High Style and High Comfort

NY Times Article: In Iceland’s Wild West, High Style and High Comfort

Just an hour and 40 minutes’ drive from Reykjavik, the recreational area known as Husafell has long been beloved by Icelanders as a base camp for outdoorsy exploits: You’ll find lava caves and waterfalls nearby, as well as Langjokull glacier, one of Iceland’s largest. The same local family has run Husafell’s campgrounds and cottages for seven generations. In 2015, they opened a hydro-powered luxury lodge, and last August added a new wing with guest rooms that have connecting doors, ideal for family travel. The property now offers 48 sleek, minimalist rooms that overlook the surrounding mountains. Its locavore restaurant alone is worth the drive. The lobby and guest rooms are dotted with artworks inspired by Icelandic sagas; they are by Pall Gudmundsson, a local artist known for carving faces (of everyone from famous Vikings to Björk) into the valley’s boulders. There is free, fast Wi-Fi, and a traditional Icelandic breakfast spread is included in the rate.

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9Jun
The Eleven Experience & Heli-Skiing in Iceland

The Eleven Experience & Heli-Skiing in Iceland

“Don’t worry guys, it will be even sunnier tomorrow and the conditions will be epic” was the statement casually but clearly called out over a gusty breeze by Steve Banks, our guide for the day. That gave me pause. My hair still damp and skin still salty from a morning sea kayak outing, I was standing on the crest of a ridge high in the snow caped coastal peaks above the small fishing village of Siglufjordur, Iceland. The helicopter that had expressed me to this point was doing a classic maximum performance takeoff and was rolling out over the ridge back to sea level. Before me sprawled an untracked bowl that would rival – and perhaps exceed – any spot accessed by a chair lift in North America. On one knee in a neat line were three like-minded skiers whom I had just met but whom had all traveled the same road in life and were as eager as I was for first tracks. Seriously . . . this was going to get better? I found it hard to believe, but I stand corrected.

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11May
Private Travel Iceland Makes a Visit to Frontiers US Office

Private Travel Iceland Makes a Visit to Frontiers US Office

Frontiers was proud to welcome Sarah Quigley and Jon Sigurbjornsson from Private Travel Iceland, our preferred on-site supplier for customized itineraries in Iceland. They have hosted dozens of Frontiers clients, always with rave reviews, with tailor made itineraries including Super Jeep safaris into the Highlands, hiking in Thorsmork, and even Game of Thrones themed bachelor parties (remember, the night life in Reykjavik is world class). We’re seeing unprecedented demand for travel to Iceland and Frontiers has 40 plus years’ experience in Iceland. It’s closer than you think and we have lots of creative ways for you to explore the country of “Fire and Ice.”

24Nov
Iceland: The Land of Fire and Ice

Iceland: The Land of Fire and Ice

Our second go-around at the Sandholt Bakery was just as good as the first and we were collected at 9 AM for a 2-day “Super Jeep” safari with Jon from PTI exploring the hinterlands and some of the nature for which  Iceland is so famous.  We donned down coats and extra layers and climbed up into our snazzy vehicle – an SUV that has been specially modified for Icelandic “off-road conditions” with a higher suspension, wide tundra tires and a myriad of special equipment…talk about feeling like the “King of the Road!”  We drove about 2 hours out of the city through every kind of weather imaginable and our destination was Landmannalaugar, in the uninhabited uplands.  Our first stop was a beautiful waterfall,  Hjálparfoss and funnily enough, Leigh, who was wearing a Frontiers hat, was stopped by a fishing guide on his way up from the river who‘d guided colleagues of ours earlier in the summer.  Trust me, this is the last place you‘d imagine running into someone!  Small world!

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12Nov
Reykjavik

Reykjavik

The trip began with one of those random acts of kindness that makes a profound impression upon a jaded traveler like me. I arrived at the airport feeling very proud of myself that for once, I’d packed my belongings for the 4-day trip to Iceland into just one piece of checked luggage (standard operating procedure for me is two checked pieces and sometimes three, regardless of the duration of the trip).

Imagine my chagrin when I was told that the bag weighed 57 pounds. The JetBlue ticket agent, Ted Baker, and I hemmed and hawed. He was desperate not to charge me the $125 overweight fee and yet we had to get 7 pounds out of there. I began stuffing shoes and jeans into my carryon, but to no avail. We could not get to the magical 50 pounds. The Station Manager, Steve Baldwin, overheard our plaintive exchange and he volunteered one of the “stock bags” into which I could pack the extra 7 pounds and check the second piece on a complimentary basis. He personally ran downstairs to the Baggage Claim level and brought me up a small black suitcase into which I stashed my extra stuff, all of this free of charge.

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