The northern lights are a religious experience.

Behold the land of fire and ice.

Chilling just below the Arctic Circle, Iceland is a Nordic nirvana from sea to crystal-clear sea. Nicknamed “The Land of Fire and Ice” for its abundance of volcanos and glaciers, Iceland features breathtaking landscapes and unique geographical phenomena that only look like they’re from another planet. In fact, a trip to this island nation is remarkably within reach. Here’s why Iceland just jumped to #1 on our travel bucket list.

1. Dope geysers

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Strokker Geysir shoots water 100 feet into the air every 5 to 10 minutes.

2. Breathtaking glaciers

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Glaciers cover 11% of Iceland’s landmass.

3. Caves made of ice

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You’ll feel like you’re inside a frozen ocean.

4. Otherworldly waterfalls

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Whoooaa. Just, whoa.

5. It’s actually very green

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Like the old saying goes: Greenland is ice and Iceland is green.

6. Puffins!

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Need we say more?

7. Humane whale watching

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Iceland’s whale watching industry is committed to giving whales their space.

8. Go inside a volcano


Explore Tour Thrihnukagigur, a once-active volcano that has been dormant for 4,000 years.

9. Kerid crater lake exists

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10. Swim between the continental divide


Visitors can scuba or snorkel in the Silfra fissure, where the North American and Eurasian continents meet.

11. Take a dip in the Blue Lagoon geothermal spa

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This mineral-rich hot spa is warmed by the heat of a nearby volcano.

12. Enjoy endless sunshine (during the summer)

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Because of its high latitude, Iceland enjoys summer days with up to 21 hours of daylight.

13. Black sand beaches

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Much of Iceland’s coastline is covered in black sand composed of volcanic minerals and lava fragments.

14. The northern lights

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Make a trip between December and April for your best shot at seeing the aurora borealis in all their glory.

15. It’s much cheaper than flying to continental Europe

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You can get a round-trip ticket from the east coast of the US to Iceland for $550 in the off season, or $850 during the peak of summer.

16. It’s the most peaceful country on Earth

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Don’t fret for your safety in the country ranked #1 by the Global Peace Index.

17. Iceland has basically already planned your ideal trip

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Bike or drive around the Golden Circle, a 300 km route encircling the island and connecting most of its natural wonders. What are you waiting for?!