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Northern Light Inn guests watching the Aurora Borealis from the Galaxy Tower. Iceland.

Guests watching the Aurora Borealis from the Galaxy Tower balcony.

Watching the Aurora Borealis from the Northern Light Inn parking lot, Iceland.

And the next night...

Northern Light Inn Galaxy Tower with Aurora Borealis illuminating the clouds. Iceland.

Even on cloudy nights the Aurora can be epic.

Aurora Borealis above Northern Light Inn, Iceland.

Aurora Borealis above Northern Light Inn.

Outside Northern Light Inn, Iceland.

We're surrounded by lava and pillow soft moss. The red pipeline behind us takes geothermal hot water to the Blue Lagoon.

Moonset at sunrise, Northern Light Inn, Iceland.

Moonset at sunrise in Iceland. The Northern Light Inn is to the right of the geothermal steam and the Blue Lagoon.

Northern Light Inn & Max's Restaurant front door ~ reception.

Entrance to Northern Light Inn & Max's Restaurant.

Northern Light Inn & Max's Restaurant lobby

Northern Light Inn & Max's Restaurant Lobby, and the Honesty Bar in the background.

Double room at Northern Light Inn, Iceland

A double room with panoramic views of moss covered lava. The Northern Light Inn is near the Blue Lagoon, just 2 minutes away.

Northern Light Inn deluxe room, Iceland.

A Deluxe Room.

Northern Light Inn deluxe bathroom, Iceland.

Deluxe bathroom, with complimentary toiletries by L'Occitane.

Fireplace and sitting room at Northern light Inn, Iceland.

The sitting room around the fireplace, and the legendary Max.

Max's Restaurant @ Northern Light Inn, in February 2017

Max's Restaurant @ Northern Light Inn. Max loved a hearty meal and dashing across the lava, so the restaurant is named in his honor.

A guest enjoying the Aurora Borealis above the Northern Light Inn, Iceland.

A guest celebrates her engagement, as the Aurora Borealis glows above the hotel and Blue Lagoon.

Northern Light Inn, scene from a room of the Aurora Borealis, lava, snow, and the lights of the Blue Lagoon, Iceland.

Room with a view the Aurora Borealis, lava, snow, and the sparkling lights of the Blue Lagoon, Iceland.

Blue Lagoon geothermal power station next to the Northern Light Inn, Iceland.

Have you ever wanted to go walk on the dark side of the moon? Welcome to the Blue Lagoon geothermal power station next door!

A guest watching the aurora borealis from the Galaxy Tower, Northern lLight Inn, Iceland.

Would you like to see the Aurora Borealis?

Northern Light Inn guests watching the Aurora Borealis from the parking lot. Iceland.

Just step outside when the night is right...

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Our guests have enjoyed these adventures, destinations and activities:

Aurora Tours from the Northern Light Inn, Iceland.

Aurora Safari nearby.

A young couple spread mud on each other in the Blue Lagoon, Reykjanes Peninsula, Grindavik, southwest Iceland.

Gettin' muddy in the Blue Lagoon.

Riding Icelandic horses along the coast

Riding the Grindavik-Krysuvik coastline.

Mountain biking through lava flows and volcanoes in Iceland

Mountain biking through volcanos and lava flows.

Golfing in the lava fields near Northern Light Inn, Grindavik, Iceland

Golfing in the tectonic rift.

What's there to do around NLI?

Many wonderful, exciting and adventurous things, as well as just chillin' in Iceland. 

Ride gentle Viking horses, race 4x4 quads, or hike, swim, and walkabout in our spectacular lunar lava landscape. 

See geysers, volcanos, whales and migratory birds of many kinds, or tolt over the heather.

Then snowmobile on glacial icecaps, mountain bike on lava flows, ski at night.

Fly fish for Arctic char and record breaking salmon, and just be awed by the Aurora Borealis!

Explore and discover our "private" UNESCO GeoPark!

Can You book Tours for Us? 


Without pick-up or drop-off at the hotel

Hiking the cliffs of Reykjanes Peninsula, near Northern Light Inn, Iceland.

Climb the cliffs near the Reykjanes Lighthouse.

Kids ride horses in Grindavik, southwest Iceland.

Icelandic horses are cute, cuddly, friendly, easy going, fun, trustworthy, and wonderfully smooth to ride. 

Riding ATV quads in Iceland near the Northern Blue Lagoon

Race ATV quads - photo©


Swimming is very important in Icelandic communities.

 Every town has at least one geothermal pool, all with hot pots, most with saunas and steam baths too. 

The public pools are very clean, well run, affordable, and almost all are outdoors. 

There is nothing a refreshing as a hot soak outside during stormy arctic winter day. 

The nearest geothermal outdoor pool is in the fishing village Grindavík, 5 minutes away.

Wherever you go in Iceland there are hot springs to soak in so be sure take a swimsuit along. 

Please bathe according to Icelandic pool's rules: get naked in your birthday suit then shower and clean with the soap provided before swimming.

Swimming in the Blue Lagoon, near Northern Light Inn, Iceland.

Soaking in the Blue Lagoon – NLI is just to the left.

Herdis swimming in the Blue Lagoon, next to Northern Light Inn, Iceland.

It was a very stormy February afternoon.


How far is the Blue Lagoon from NLI?
A 1 minute drive in our free shuttle, or a nice 10 minute walk through the moss covered lava fields.

Book Now
Swimming at the Blue Lagoon requires RESERVATIONS — BOOK YOUR TIME WITH US.

What are the Blue Lagoon's opening hours?
Please check their seasonal times.

You are allowed to stay in the lagoon 45 minutes after the closing hour.

What should I bring to the Blue Lagoon?
A swim suit.
You can rent bathing suits at the Blue Lagoon. 
Towels and use of an electronically locked locker is included in the entrance fee. 

Leave your valuables in the hotel safe if you prefer. 

The brine of the lagoon guarantees a bad hair day.
Free shampoo and conditioner is provided in the showers. 

Blue Lagoon Prices
Like global warming, it keeps going up, but now includes a towel.

Is the Blue Lagoon hot?
It is always warm, between 35-39°C / 98-102°F.

What is the Blue Lagoon?
Condensed geothermal brine flowing from the Svartsengi Power Plant. 
The brine is tapped from 2~3,000 meters below the surface of the lava fields, steaming up at circa 240ºC. 
The energy is transferred to de-oxygenated spring water used for regional heating and hot water. 
The "cooled" brine then flows into the lava field and directly to the Blue Lagoon. 

And why is it blue?
An unusual cocktail of minerals, silica and a microscopic blue green algae.

Are there hots springs like the Blue Lagoon anywhere else?
No, there are great natural hot springs throughout the world, but nothing like the Blue Lagoon.

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URBAN DISCOVERIESReykjavík and coastal fishing towns offer cozy cafes, interesting restaurants, cosmo shopping and enlightening art museums.

If you like organized tours that can pick you up and drop you off directly from/to Northern Light Inn, just let us know.

Reykjavik Grapevine weekly – free in the hotel – is a great source of information. Witty, up-to-date, and the only Icelandic newspaper in English.

And please ask the receptionists for the latest information.


The draining Lake Kleifarvatn.

Roundup riders at Djupavatn, Vigdisarvellir

Tectonic plate mountain Thorbjorn, behind the Blue lagoon and Northern Light Inn.

Solfataras and fumaroles at Seltun, Krysuvik.

Solfatara "whale" Seltun.

Tidal pools and seaweed, Selatangar.

Katlar lava kettle from Katlahraun, near Selatangar.

Solfatara and fumaroles at Seltun.

The road to Krysuvik.

Sunrise fog lifts from Svartsengi lava fields, source of the Blue Lagoon geothermal water and energy facilities, and the Northern Light Inn.

Winter sky over Graenvatn – Green Lake – from Seltun, Krysuvik.

Reykjanes Peninsula lighthouse.

A magma simulation glows in the snow at the HS Orka Reykjanesvirkjun geo thermal power station, near Reykjanesviti.

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Many guests start with a Golden Circle Tour visiting Thingvellir National Park, Geyser and Gullfoss waterfall.

The tectonic rift, Thingvellir National Park, Iceland.

Thingvellir is a UNESCO Cultural Heritage Site, a national park on a magnificent lake, the site of the first Icelandic parliament, Althingi, the oldest parliament in Europe.

 And it is also one of the best places in the world to see a rift valley where continental tectonic plates separate.

Admission to the park is free, and at 10:00 everyday there are free guided tours in English with park rangers. Departure is from Thingvellir Church.

Less than one hour away is Geysir:

Geysir erupting, Iceland.

Geysir is home to the Great Geyser that has given the Old Norse word to the world. 

Although Geysir itself does not erupt anymore, Strokkur awesomely does every five or ten minutes 24/7.  Admission to the Geysir is free! 

10 minutes up the road from geysir is Gullfoss:

Gullfoss, Iceland.

Gullfoss — admission is also free (and hopefully will always remain that way).

South Coast Tours

Seljalandsfoss, Iceland

An eastbound south coast day trip to Vik first goes past Seljalandsfoss, a beautiful waterfall that you can walk behind. Best seen in afternoon light.

South Coast, Iceland.

The south coast is cow country, with dramatic scenery changing all the time.

Dyrholaey, Iceland.

Sunset view from Dyrholaey Light House promontory of Skipholar Beach.  The region is in the Katla UNESCO Global Geopark, 1 of 2 in Iceland.

Dyrholaey, Iceland

Dyrholaey  (Door Hole) arches into the sea, with the trolls of Reynisdrangar in the distance. 

Reynisfjara Beach, Iceland.

Columnar basalt at Reynisfjara Beach. 

Reynisfjara Beach, Iceland.

Reynisfjara beach, east of Dyrholaey. Please beware of deadly sneaker waves —YES — killer waves that come out of nowhere and drag people into the sea.

Skogarfoss, Iceland.

There is a rainbow somewhere in Iceland almost everyday. Skogarfoss is one of the many easy to see waterfalls along the South Coast.

Skogar Museum, Iceland.

Askur, an Icelandic sheepdog, at Skogar Museum, the best in Iceland.

Skogar Museum, Iceland.

Petursey rowboat (1855)., Skogar Museum houses 15,000+ unusual, rare and extraordinary objects documenting the cultural heritage of the Icelanders.

Garðakot Guest House, Sout Coast, Iceland.

If its dark on your way home, be sure to look up in case the Aurora Borealis is dancing overhead. Garðakot, west of Dyrholaey.

Overnight Trips

A great overnight trip is to Snaefellsnes Peninsula, where Jules Verne began the Journey to the Center of the Earth. 

Snaefellsnes, Iceland

It's a mythical and spiritual place for many, as well as a spectacular glacier capped volcano and surrounding National Park.

South Coast East of Vík

The majestic Vatnajokull National Park and its glacier lagoon, Jokulsarlon is a few ours after Vik. Be sure to stop at Skaftafell Nationa Park.

Aurora Borealis over Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon. Bardabunga volcano erupts on the horizon. Iceland

Aurorae Borealis illuminate Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon after a September storm, as experienced by guests with our guide.

Dear Max, watching the Aurora Borealis one night, from Northern Light Inn, Iceland.

Just for the record, this picture of Max is for real ~  not set up or photoshopped ~ 01:50 AM.


A tripod helps — we have extras in reception if you need.

1. Use manual focus. 

2. Prefocus your auto focus lens.

3. Turn autofocus off.

4. Select your widest aperture.

5. Start with your ISO at 1600. Lower when possible.

6. Start with a 10 second exposure. Faster if possible.

7. Adjust all according to the intensity of the aurora, lens, etc.

8. Use the self timer, or a cable release, wireless shutter release.

9. Have spare batteries and keep them warm in your pocket.

10. To prevent star streaks:

Divide 500 by your focal length for the longest exposure time without streaks. 

Divide 250 if a high MPX camera.

11. Trust your histogram, not your preview. 
Previews are designed to deceptively please.

12. Shoot RAW, if possible.

13. Stabilize your tripod in the wind. 
Iceland is very windy.

Step on a loop of shock cord attached to your tripod as an anchor. 

14. Be Ready. 
Brain freeze and cold fatigue seem to converge around magnetic midnight

Things happen fast, in all directions. 

Be rested and really ready. 

Sorry to repeat myself, but Be Ready.

The best aurora's I didn't shoot, or photographed badly, happened because I was not ready, tired, cold, or perhaps trying too hard on top of all that?

15. Stay warm and enjoy the night with or without taking any pictures...

The best aurorae I didn't shoot, but just watched with awe and joy. Brooks