An awesome Helicopter ride with Norðurflug from Reykjavík to a Geothermal Area in South-Iceland

Now, this was one of the most exciting experiences of my life - I got a phone-call from Norðurflug Helicopter Tours where they asked me if I would like to join one of their tours - in half an hour!!  I kind of panicked as I was supposed to be elsewhere, but very quickly said "YES" as I had been dreaming of going on a helicopter ride for ages.  

It was sunny and just a few clouds in sight on an almost clear sky - the perfect weather for a helicopter ride.

An awesome Helicopter ride with Norðurflug from Reykjavík to a Geothermal Area in South-Iceland

I hurried down to the Reykjavík domestic airport and got there just in the nick of time - and didn't even know where we were headed.  I was very happy to find out that we were headed for the geothermal area of Hengill, as I had never been there before.  

We flew over Reykjavík and this was only the second time in my life that I had seen my home-city from above.  Back in 2007 I got the chance to fly over Reykjavík in a Jumbo jet on my way to China.  It was much more scenic in a helicopter :)

An awesome Helicopter ride with Norðurflug from Reykjavík to a Geothermal Area in South-Iceland

I couldn't stop taking photos as I wanted to cherish every minute of this ride.  Taking photos when you are inside a helicopter is a bit tricky, but I think they came out quite nicely.  

Doesn't Reykjavík look pretty from above with all the colourful houses and rooftops?​

An awesome Helicopter ride with Norðurflug from Reykjavík to a Geothermal Area in South-Iceland

We flew east and I must say that I lost my bearings for a while as I had never seen Iceland from above like this - what were all these lakes and volcanoes doing there... ;)  The pilot pointed out to us various places of interest, the lava fields and volcanoes - and showed us the biggest geothermal power plant in Iceland, Hellisheiðavirkjun, with massive geothermal steam rising from it.  

After a short while we landed very smoothly in the Hengill area in a hidden away geothermal area, which I had never seen before.  I was so thrilled and the adrenaline was rushing through my veins.

An awesome Helicopter ride with Norðurflug from Reykjavík to a Geothermal Area in South-Iceland

The geothermal area at Hengill is ever so beautiful and I cannot believe that I had never been there before as it is very close to Reykjavík - I love such hidden gems of nature :)  The pilot told me that the best way to get to this geothermal area was by helicopter and that a hike up to the geothermal area would take hours.

Close by is the ever so popular Reykjadalur valley, where it is possible to bathe in a warm river - I adore that place and so do our foreign visitors.

An awesome Helicopter ride with Norðurflug from Reykjavík to a Geothermal Area in South-Iceland

There is no bathing in this geothermal area though where we landed, and you will see steam coming from various locations - the water is bubbling and boiling, so caution has to be made here.  I was amazed by the vivid geothermal colours which were made even more vivid by the sun.

All of a sudden another helicopter appeared - also from Norðurflug - we had been flown in by a bright red helicopter - this one was pitch black.  It was surreal seeing it hovering above and when it landed it looked like it was landing on top of a volcano with the backdrop of the steam from the geothermal area.  It looked really cool :)

An awesome Helicopter ride with Norðurflug from Reykjavík to a Geothermal Area in South-Iceland

Notice the mud pools in my photo above - you can see how the earth is boiling beneath our feet.  One false move and an accident can occur, which will make the skin boil and peel off - don't take any risks in such areas - the safest bet is to always have a guide with you.

Our pilot, Gísli Matthías Gíslason, was so lovely, he had visited this place so many times before - yet, he joined us in our excitement of being in this beautiful geothermal area.  I guess joy and excitement is infectious :)  

Gísli has a blog on Facebook called My life as a helicopter pilot, do check it out for more footage and videos on his helicopter rides.

An awesome Helicopter ride with Norðurflug from Reykjavík to a Geothermal Area in South-Iceland

I also couldn't believe how smooth the helicopter ride was, I had always thought that it would be a bit bumpy and that I would get motion sickness, as I always get car-sick.  Nothing of the sort - it was smooth "sailing" all the way.

On the way back we flew a slightly different route than before and again I saw volcanoes from above which amazed me, they look totally different from above.  Some of them look nothing like a volcano from below, but seeing the crater from above makes one realise just how many volcanoes there are in Iceland. 

I saw some new possibilities for a good hike in the track of the lava and up to the volcanic crater.  It is always very good to have a bird's eye view of things :)

An awesome Helicopter ride with Norðurflug from Reykjavík to a Geothermal Area in South-Iceland

I am ever so grateful for having been invited on this helicopter ride - it was totally invaluable for me to see my country from this perspective and I hope that I am representing it to you justly. I can only say that this 1 hour helicopter ride was an absolute thrill and should not be missed!  

It was like entering another world for an hour, highly recommended.  And of course now I want to go again ;)

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