Iceland has gone the way of Santorini and Barcelona: it’s been overrun by tourists. According to the Icelandic Tourist Board, “the total number of foreign visitors was around 1.8 million in 2016, a 39% increase from 2015, when foreign visitors numbered around 1.3 million.” In a country of less than 335,000 inhabitants, 1.8 million visitors do not go unnoticed. So, to appease the Icelanders who are trying to get used to the invasion, please act like a decent human being and avoid doing the following 10 things or you may not be invited back.
I kid you not. Though Iceland is known for its vast, untouched land, it is also known as a country whose seemingly endless stretches of service-barren roadways prompt, eh, a different kind of natural wonder. But pooping on a deserted, mossy green space is one thing, squatting in the parking lot of a preschool in Reykjavík is another. Somehow, the tales of tourists who feel entitled to relieve their bowels wherever they please keep coming, and so do the “no pooping” signs that have been placed in various locations all around Iceland.
Most restaurants in Iceland do not carry fermented shark for the simple reason that it tastes a lot like rotten pickles (I’ve even heard people say it tastes like a urine-soaked mattress). Check out the supermarket’s selection of Þorramatur instead — it’s a lot fresher than shark and still includes weird things like ram’s testicles and sheep penis, if that’s what you’re after. Still, if you’re dead-set on trying shark, head to a bar. Many places keep a helping of it in the back for tourists to try. They’ll also try to sell you a generous helping of Brennivín to wash it down with (you’ll need it).