Iceland has been one of those bucket list places for me for years. The dream has been to see the naturally beautiful landscapes, sparkling glaciers and the mystical Northern Lights. When I decided to leave the UK I didn’t think I would have time to fit the trip in but I made it work.
So here I am, right now, huddled inside my hostel as the howl of the wind somehow seems to comfort and relax me.
My initial thought of Iceland was fur coats, whale meat and seafood. The idea of coming here as a vegan made me a little nervous but oh boy how naive I was. Iceland is a secret vegan paradise!! After only one day here so far I have been treated to so many vegan delights (lasagne, cookies, gelato… the list goes on!).
I was recommended to check out Kaffi Vinyl in the town centre of Reykjavik. This fully vegan, funky cafe have a wide selection of meals on their menu to suit all tastes. I chose the comfort food favourite, lasagne. Hands down, the BEST lasagne I have ever eaten. I have grown up eating home cooked lasagne my whole childhood but (sorry Mum) this one nailed it! A nutmeg bechamel sauce made with cashews and nutritional yeast topped the dish, giving it that hearty flavour. The vegan pesto was an added bonus which I happily spread over the crunchy fresh bread. For $20 (AUD) I left so incredibly satisfied and nourished.
I wandered back to my hostel with a fully belly and as I became mesmerised by the beauty of the city at night, I got lost! However I feel this was fate as I stumbled across a piece of paradise in Reykjavik, Joylato. This gelato shop serves organic gelato using locally sourced and grown ingredients. They make each scoop as you order it using liquid nitrogen to create a creamy and airy consistency. There is a coconut milk option for vegans, with all of the extra toppings available being vegan friendly. I controlled myself (first time ever) and ordered a small serving of the blueberry coconut gelato. The shop owner informed me that these berries had been picked on the island during the summer months and then frozen to be used all year round. I savoured every single bite as I enjoyed seeing the delight in fellow travellers eyes as they too stumbled across this hidden gem.