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  • Iceland named world's friendliest country for travelers

    2013-04-09

    The difference between a good trip and a great one can often be as simple as the atmosphere of where you're visiting. Whether you're looking for a relaxing vibe or a more fast-paced environment, the environment can play a substantial role. The same can be said for how you're treated by the local population, as welcoming residents will certainly improve your time spent in their country. A recent report from the World Economic Forum revealed which countries are friendliest to tourists, and Iceland came in at the top spot.

    Researchers measured countries on a scale of one to seven, with seven being the most welcoming to foreign visitors. Iceland scored an impressive 6.8, which placed it just ahead of New Zealand. While Iceland's friendly atmosphere is certainly a big reason why you may want to travel to the small island nation, there are many appealing aspects of Iceland. For starters, it is home to some of the most picturesque views in the world.

    There are many natural highlights on Iceland, but you should make a point to visit Glymur, the country's tallest waterfall. Glymur stands more than 643 feet tall and requires a sometimes challenging hike to reach it, but the payoff is certainly worthwhile once you see the crystal clear water cascading down the stunning rock facade. It's also unique that it's one of the most remote areas in the country, so it's perfect if you want a day away from the bustle of city living.

    If you want to experience the friendly population of Iceland while still enjoying the landscape, heading to one of the many small towns that dot the map is likely your best bet, and Akureyri is a good place to start. Home to about 17,000 people, this northern town has plenty to offer, whether you want to visit one of its many museums or attend its renowned arts festival, which takes place every summer. Akureyri also has a thriving downtown and nightlife scene.

    Before leaving Iceland, you should add some adventure travel to your trip, and there are plenty of places to do so. You may want to head to Hverfjall, a stunning volcanic crater, which is a testament to the country's legendary seismic activity.

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