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The Rough Guide to Iceland Paperback – May 7, 2001
"Neverworld Wake" by Marisha Pessl
Read the absorbing new psychological suspense thriller from acclaimed New York Times bestselling author Marisha Pessl. Learn more
About the Author
David Leffman is a travel writer and photographer. He is the author of Top 10 Iceland and Eyewitness China for DK, and has written guidebooks to Iceland, Australia, Indonesia, China, and Hong Kong for Rough Guides. He has also led specialist guided tours to China.
James Proctor has been with Rough Guides since 1995, and is the company's original Nanook of the North. Coauthor of the Rough Guides to Sweden, Iceland, and Finland, he has also written the only English-language guides to the Faroe Islands and Lapland. One of his more obscure talents is speaking fluent Swedish—something that never fails to impress and bemuse Swedes (and most other people) he meets. Having lived and worked in Stockholm during the mid-1990s as the BBC's Scandinavia correspondent, James now returns to Sweden at frequent intervals to commune with nature at his log cabin deep in the forest.
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-It is assumed that everyone in Iceland (locals and tourists) has a cellphone. There are rarely any phones available in hotel rooms or B&B's, and many times the phone number listed for a B&B is the cellphone of the owner. This was not mentioned in the book.
-Some towns are simply not mentioned. While the towns in Iceland tend to be very small and would not rate a mention in most guidebooks, this is true of 90% of the towns. There are only 320,000 people in Iceland - their towns can all be listed. For example, try finding Suðureyri in the guidebook. Not there. The town is a fairly substantial fishing village near Ísafjörður.
-Puffins: it is no secret that Iceland is home to many nesting grounds for puffins. We traveled to Iceland in the second half of August expecting to find puffins. According to the guidebook, the puffins can be found from April to Mid-September. Good luck with that. Any local can tell you (and will, if you ask them) that the puffins all leave by Mid-August. After August 15, you can only expect a few isolated puffins anywhere around Iceland. You might get lucky and find a group stopped at a southerly stop for a while (we did), but don't count on it. Where we saw a flock of puffins (at Vestmannaeyjar), none had been spotted a week prior. Yet another example of lazy, inaccurate writing that could have been corrected by some cursory research.
-Opening hours: we found more than one attraction with incorrect hours listed. Don't trust any times that say open after 18:00.
-Laugavegur: Everything written about the laugavegur lists it as a four-day hike from Landmannalaugar to Þórsmörk, with no other options. The author clearly pulled all of his information about this trek from other sources and did not try it himself nor talk to someone who had. While it is a full four days from start to end, there are buses that can be hired that reach Álftavatn (and Emstrur), which cut the walk in half - something useful if you wish to go elsewhere. Taking a bus either in or out of Álftavatn also avoids all of the potentially treacherous river fordings. The hike from Landmannalaugar to Álftavatn is also, by far, the most scenic portion of the hike.
-Buses: The only bus routes mentioned in the book start and end in Reykjavik. While those routes certainly exist and are useful, there are many other routes that start and end elsewhere. Bus tickets start at ~$50 a ride/person. Knowing all of the possibilities will help with planning more interesting excursions into the interior of Iceland without losing days on a bus.
-Roads: the road conditions and experience of driving in Iceland is quite different from the U.K. (including Skye) or mainland Europe. Doable, but be ready for very rough terrain (even the "good" roads). Not mentioned in this book.
I leave these bits of advice as examples of why you should find a different guidebook and as helpful tips to those wishing to go to Iceland (which is GREAT!). Good luck!
This map does not contain a close-up of any towns. For Reykjavik details, we used our guidebook. We also ended up buying a regional map of the Snaefellsness peninsula, though this map would have been adequate for our travels there.
The cover fell off after about a week and a half, but the paper itself is very durable, and can tolerate a lot of folding and re-folding. The cover is really not important.
Overall, I would recommend this map if you plan on doing a lot of driving outside of Reykjavik.
The scale is too small to be useful, there are no detail maps of towns or cities including Reykjavik which is crazy. And dozens of roads in my experience were simply not on this map. I drove the southwest, south and west portions of the country. It would be nice if they included some landmarks or attractions or features on the map too. They have a legend with icons for some geological features but what is actually marked is unclear and small.
There must be better maps than this. I found it virtually useless to be honest and wound up using maps I grabbed at visitor centers.
Most recent customer reviews
I bought it as a gift for someone which I don't think I will give it to them...Read more