The Iceland Guy                            


"I've been interested in visiting Iceland since college and finally took the plunge and went! Iceland did not disappoint and was everything I hoped it would be and more. John's site was so helpful in getting a feel for what was in store in this magical place. I saw a lot in the 12 days I was there, but will definitely be back to see more."
          -- Meg P., Odenton, Maryland, October 2022

"John was incredibly helpful as I planned my itinerary for a solo trip around the southern coast of Iceland. As a result, I was well-prepared and had an amazing adventure. I cannot wait to go back to Iceland with my family -- but before I do, I will definitely consult John again. Thank you, Iceland Guy!!"
          -- Corinne S., Amherst, New Hampshire, September 2022

"The Iceland Guy doesn't just cometh, he delivers! Great advice for a newbie to Iceland, from what to bring, what to expect, given highlights, and extra special nods to places you won't find in a book or just googling. John's 10s of trips to Iceland clearly place him in a special place in terms of advice, how to pace what awaits you. My daughter and I had a fabulous time and our ability to get up to speed on short notice for a trip planned only two weeks before we went was due in large part to John's keen insights! We'll going back for more, and for sure!"
          -- Ted S., Potomac, Maryland, August 2022

"I have known John since high school and that he has a passion for Iceland. I knew when planning my trip, he was the person to go to. This was especially true since my family and I have never been to Iceland before, and we weren't sure whether we could do it on our own or go with a tour group. John was able to allay our fears and provided tips on Icelandic customs, places to go and things to expect. So, we successfully navigated Iceland on our own and had a wonderful time!"
          -- Ben L., Short Hills, New Jersey, July 2022

"John's enthusiasm for Iceland is infectious! We joined him and his family for a trip in May 2022. During the planning phase, he listened to our goals for our vacation and met with us to suggest an itinerary with options to account for weather and an apartment with kitchen in a neat neighborhood. Thanks to his experience, we hiked in off the beaten path destinations that the big tour buses don't go to, shopped at markets with the locals, and ate at restaurants where he knew the owner.

Things we would never have thought of without John's advice are too numerous to list, but here's a start: 1) check out the Sundhollin swim center in downtown Reykjavik for inexpensive and sublime hot tubs; 2) spend some time getting your head around the method of assigning surnames in Iceland; 3) visit a hot spring stream that is off the beaten path; 4) check out the black sand beaches; 5) embrace the insanity of seeing 23 waterfalls in one hour on foot. There's more to see in Iceland and we'll definitely use when we plan our next trip!"
          -- J & K, Anne Arundel County, Maryland, May 2022

"I contacted John prior to our 1st ever trip to Iceland. He gave us some wonderful tips to see the country ... both tourist hot spots and some off the beaten path gems. So glad that I got to email him and I will definitely pick his brain again on our next visit to that beautiful country. Thanks, John."
          -- G. MacDiarmid, Virginia, January 2020

"For a number of years John Spencer has been singing the high praises of Iceland, so my wife and I finally decided to check it out, and really enjoyed the country. Much to see, wonderful people, a great place to vacation. Blue Lagoon was other worldly, really thought we were on Mars for a few hours with that volcanic landscape. Thanks again, John, for encouraging us to be Icelandic explorers!"
          -- Rich, Fairfax, Virginia, October 2018

"John, thank you again very much for all your help and amazing website which sparked the dream and gave me the courage to travel to Iceland!!! We had an incredible time and the adult kids had smiles all the time. Iceland was the trip of a lifetime. I can see now why you love it so much. We have an appreciation for the people and the culture that we didn't have before ... and the country is breathtaking."
          -- Mike and Melody F., Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, October 2018

"John is extremely knowledgeable on all things Iceland and was spot on with recommendations in advance of my trip! It is truly a special place, which you realize from a conversation with John before you even get on the plane. The tips on his website hit all the high points of things to do in Iceland - I need to go back to try some more of his suggestions! My friends and I had a blast, and John and his website will be my first stop when planning my next trip to Iceland."
          -- Michael S., New York, April 2018

"I visited Iceland for the first time in February, and it was a great trip. I had the opportunity to talk with John before I left and he provided me with great insight and suggestions. He also showed me the areas that I should check out in Reykjavik and it was extremely helpful to have an understanding of the area before I stayed there. I will definitely reach out to John again if my future travels take me back to Iceland!"
          -- Teresa, Chevy Chase, Maryland, February 2018

"My husband and I turned to John Spencer for advice after trying to plan a trip to Iceland for 2017 on a very hot summer day in 2016. In our search we found a cruise line that circumnavigates Iceland and offers shore excursions. We aren't cruise people but feared finding our own way. John recommended that we talk to Oli Schram, a.k.a. The Highlander who offers private tours with his charming Border Collie Huni. It turned out to be the perfect fit for us. We just returned from 12 days in Iceland, 9 of which were spent with Oli and Huni. He is without a doubt the best guide in Iceland. It was a trip of a lifetime. Thank you John!"
          -- Jeanne H., Annapolis, Maryland, July 2017

"Just got back from Iceland and it was amazing. We only had 2 days there but thanks to John, we were able to do so much in those 2 days. This guy knows Iceland! We visited a couple of restaurants that he recommended and they were great! We are all still talking about the burgers, fries and shakes at The Burger Joint. We went to the Blue Lagoon, drove the Golden Circle, and wondered around Reykjavik. Such a fun family trip. Thanks John!"
          -- Lauren C., Rockville, Maryland, July 2017

"My wife and I had planned a week stopover in Iceland as part of a larger European trip, and John was very helpful in recommending a few lesser known places to check out. The Hveragerði hot springs and cold stream ended up being a highlight of the week, and both the Dettifoss and Godafoss waterfalls were a great addition to our trip around the island on the ring road. If you're heading to Iceland, The Iceland Guy website as well as John himself are great resources to plan your trip. Highly recommended!"
          -- Chris F., Denver, Colorado, June 2017

"John, is, in fact, the Iceland Guy...his knowledge of that marvelous country and willingness to share that knowledge made our trip more than memorable. His insights were particularly helpful in preparing a story I eventual wrote about our trip...Thanks so much." (link to story can be found here)
          -- Bob Carden, Bethesda, Maryland, February, 2017

"Iceland Guy -- We really enjoyed our trip to Iceland! We stayed at the Icelandair Hotel Marina in Reykjavik and toured the South Coast. We then headed north to do some skiing. Everything was spectacular and I can certainly see why you love the country so much. I'm confident we will be back. Thanks for your help."
          -- Mike S., Bethesda, Maryland, May, 2016

"I had a blast in Iceland, and can't wait to go back!!! Loved the culture, the food... and New Years was absolutely fantastic! I have been to a lot of countries and Iceland has to be one of my favorites. Thank you for all your tips!!! Much appreciated!!!!"
          -- Ariana B., Baltimore, Maryland, January 2016
Northern Lights.

"We were so glad to have the benefit of travel advice from John before our trip to Iceland this past December, and we learned a lot from perusing the list of travel tips and links on The Iceland Guy website. We were lucky enough to see the Northern Lights twice on our four day trip! John and his site are a wonderful resource for anyone interested in travelling to Iceland. I'm definitely interested in returning someday to see more of the country in the summer months, and I'll definitely be back to The Iceland Guy to get planning tips!"
          -- Tracy C., Washington, District of Columbia, December, 2015

"I had a last minute opportunity to travel to Iceland in December 2015 and John reached out to me when he heard that I was going with my wife. So, instead of having to spend hours scouring the Internet or guide books John gave me several great suggestions of places to go and things to do that were off the beaten path and provided a unique perspective on Iceland. My wife and I had a great time and really appreciate the thoughtful advice, thanks John!"
          -- Myles P., Kensington, Maryland, December, 2015

"Iceland is amazing, and the website is an amazing resource in planning your trip. I biked the Ring Road from Akureyri to Reykjavik and found the advice offered on the website and in emails from John Spencer to be invaluable. Your trip will be richer and more satisfying if you use this great website. Thanks John."
          -- Ken Mericle, Madison, Wisconsin, August 2015

"What a great site!!!!!

Having lived in Iceland as a youngster and enjoying the people places and attractions, it was an honor to take my wife back with me 40 years after the last time I was there. This trip renewed my love for the country and I plan on visiting more often with kids and family..... Your site will be a great addition to the investigation process of what to do and what is happening in Iceland.

          -- Scott T., July, 2015

"The Iceland Guy website was a super informative resource for planning our father and sons circumnavigation road trip around Iceland. It was very helpful to have the recommendations of an experienced traveler in planning our itinerary. The links on the site provide excellent background information on a range of areas that are well worth checking out."
          -- Jim, JD and Michael -- Chevy Chase, Maryland June 2015

"This site gave us additional confidence and for our first trip to Iceland. We had already made major decisions about the trip before a co-worker told me about the site. The itinerary pages and photos were especially useful. Thanks for putting this up, John. Good stuff!"
          -- FB, Germantown, Maryland, April 2014

"The Iceland Guy website was a great resource in all aspects of planning our trip to Iceland this summer. Not only did you give us great recommendations for hotels, but also great recommendations for places to visit in the country. The website was organized and accessible. I learned a lot about the country and culture and can't wait to explore this island."
          -- Jack N., Reston, Virginia, February 2014

"I'm not sure how my husband found John's site, but I'm very glad he did. He was very helpful in sorting out the logistics of the trip. We knew what we wanted to see, but because we were unfamiliar with the area, we weren't sure what kind of vehicle we would need to get to the places we wanted to see. I emailed John and gave him a rough itinerary of where we planned to drive. He got back to me promptly and offered a great review for one of the hotels we were staying. He also assured us that a regular car would be fine, but that we would need a 4x4 if we planned to go to Thorsmork."
          -- Stephanie M., Alexandria, Virginia, September 2013

"John was eager to help when I had questions about my upcoming first trip to Iceland. He even followed up after I returned to get my impressions. Iceland has jaw-dropping scenery, lovely people and delicious food. John helped me sort through a few questions about my itinerary - he is very knowledgeable about this wonderful place to visit!"
          -- Nancy Borah, Baltimore, Maryland, March 2013

"I was a bit anxious about my spur-of-the-moment decision to spend 1-2 weeks in Iceland alone in the middle of the winter, but after connecting with John online, my nerves abated and I was able to receive some excellent advice about a variety of Icelandic activities. You will most benefit from his site if you thoroughly snoop his links and take his favorites list into consideration. I would never have known that Iceland was so accessible if not for John's experience and I already can't wait for my next visit."
          -- Marian R., Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, January/February 2013

"My friends and I just recently came back from a trip to Iceland. What an incredible country, so much natural beauty and engaging people. Our experience was very memorable and we would like to thank the Iceland Guy for providing great information. We especially found his specific itineraries to be very central in our day trips. And we highly suggest you heed his favorites list as we saw most things listed and they were incredible. The website is a great resource when planning a trip to Iceland."
          -- FR, Bethesda, Maryland, June 2012

"The Iceland Guy had some really great recommendations for my first Iceland vacation. Having little time to invest in reading traditional travel books, I found his website and advice to be extremely helpful. If you are traveling to Iceland and are looking for a good starting point, is the site to explore!"
          -- Stephanie B., New York, January, 2012

"When I first met John, his enthusiasm about Iceland struck me right away. And when I was looking for an interesting, fun, adventurous and off the beaten path trip to take with my seventeen year old sons, I immediately thought of his love for the island. I called him for advice and he gave me great suggestions about places to see and things to do. This vacation was one of the best I have ever taken. We loved everything about Iceland, from the friendly people to the incredible natural wonders to the history to the apartment we rented. Thanks, John!"
          -- Barbara R., Bethesda, Maryland, August 2010

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