We usually tend to think fun is only related to good weather and long summer days. When we think of winter, most of us feel like staying on the sofa, grabbing a cup of hot cocoa, and watching TV shows all day long. Doing outdoor activities? Uff that’s not possible. Well, in Iceland there is a whole range of activities to choose from. Most cities offer plenty of outdoor activities you can enjoy. Among them is skiing in Dalvik during Christmastime or the winter.
Iceland may not be as cold as it should be for its latitude, but it is still a chilly place with extreme weather from time to time and rough winters. This Nordic island is known for its not-so-stable climate. Expecting perfect weather here is just delusional. If we as Icelanders waited for the good weather to come to do any activity, we would be locked up at home permanently. The first thing we need to do is break the habit of associating winter with the impossibility of enjoying a lovely day out. It is cold, but all you need is to layer up properly and have the right state of mind.
From all the activities available at this time of the year, probably my favorite one is skiing. Skiing is so good because it promotes good health while you enjoy the stunning landscape. The feeling of fresh air on your face while you glide elegantly on the mountain slopes is quite pleasing. You also get to experience and enjoy the surroundings. You keep your body moving, you stay warm, burn some extra calories and rejoice in the scenery.
If you think that skiing is just “gliding” you are not quite aware of how demanding yet fun this sport is. If you have never experienced muscle soreness the next day, then you do not know what this outdoor sport truly is. Skiing is considered a classic endurance sport. Experts estimate that the body burns around 400 calories in one hour. Just so you know, it is not only your legs and buttocks involved in the movement but it also involves the muscles of the torso, shoulders and arms. When it comes to steep slopes, skiing is related to strength. On less inclined slopes, you will need a good portion of endurance. Sounds like a good option to enjoy during the winter time right? But where in Iceland can we have a good time skiing? Well, let’s head directly to Dalvik.
Located in North Iceland, Dalvík is a tiny village of just 1,454 inhabitants. It is just 43 km away from Akureyri, Iceland’s capital of the North. Expensive perfumes come in small bottles, as the old saying goes. And I think that is the way to perfectly describe Dalvík.
As you approach the city, you will notice the beauty that surrounds it. It lies right by the ocean, and from its harbor, ferries depart to and from Grimsey Island. The snow-covered mountains on the horizon are permanent guardians of this city. When the conditions are favorable, you can easily reach the whales’ feeding grounds with any whale-watching tour. Whales tend to swim around this area of Iceland when they return in the summer. But besides whale watching, one of the main activities and attractions are Dalvik’s mountains. There, one can enjoy one of Iceland’s best ski areas.
Winter sports on this North Atlantic island have been popular among the locals for a long, long time. It seems like more visitors and tourists are discovering what Iceland has to offer during the coldest season. There's ice climbing, dog sledding, snowmobiling, downhill skiing, snowboarding, heli-skiing, cross country tours, ski touringâ€¦etc. As you can see, the Icelandic winter has something for everyone and is lots of fun for kids, both small and grown.
Dalvik ski area offers all of that and more. The ski area is within walking distance from the village. Due to the city’s location, right by the ocean, the area gets a perfect combination of humidity from the sea and cold air that come from the Arctic Circle. As a result, Dalvík gets high-quality, powder-like fresh snow constantly. The ski area is 1,200 meters long (3,937 feet), and there isn’t one tree along the way! The tracks are completely free of obstacles. What I love the most about them is you can glide through some slopes while overlooking to the sea! The views of the fjord and the open water are breathtaking! With the right conditions, you can also practice some off-piste skiing as there is a cross-country skiing area.
The ski area has an elevation from 45m to 320m; (148 ft to 1,050 ft) and there is a difference of 257m (843 ft). There are two types of slopes: easy and intermediate. You can reach them by using any of the two ski lifts available.
The ski tracks are open from 11:00 am to 4:30 pm. Do check their operating times constantly as this may vary depending on local holidays and climate conditions. A day ticket costs 3000 ISK (22€) for adults and 1200 ISK for children (9€ approximately). If you are spending some time in the North of Iceland enjoying its several ski areas, I recommend you to check the 5x5 ski pass. This pass serves all five resorts located in this area for five days. The price for adults is 140€, and the Dalvík ski area is included. You can compare this pass with a single-day ticket at each station and see if it is worth it for you!
There is an equipment rental area for kids and grown-ups. There is also accommodation available in the village. From farmhouses and cottages to hostels and hotels. All of them very close to the ski area.
When coming to Iceland, you will discover that the winter has as many activities to offer as the summertime does. Skiing in one of those sports you can practice in great conditions. Thanks to ski areas like Dalvik, Iceland has had some well-known international competitors such as Daníel Hilmarsson, Sveinn Brynjólfsson, and Björgvin Björgvinsson. So now you can get an idea of how great this resort is. Don’t miss the chance of skiing like a pro and visit Dalvík on your Iceland rental car!
Reykjavik Auto April 2019