As a photographer and self-proclaimed “globetrotter,” Nuria Val’s passions have taken her all over the world. However, after visiting Iceland for the first time a decade ago the magical scenery captivated her. “I fell completely in love with this place,” Val says. “I think it’s like traveling to another planet, but still on our planet. It was so shocking for me at the beginning.” Luckily, Val’s most recent trip to Iceland in October was dedicated to photographing the beautiful scenery so she can share it with others, too. Starting in Reykjavík, the already breathtaking landscape is amplified through Val’s lens as she captures the essence of the country from the Blue Lagoon to a local wine bar.
“I like to take pictures when the light is beautiful—first thing in the morning, and the last light of the day,” she explains. “On this trip, as the weather was not that good, you had to take advantage of what you have. Pictures, even in the rain or when it’s foggy first thing in the morning and you can see all the clouds super close to the land—it’s still so beautiful.”
Another reason for the trip, in particular, was to host a pop-up for her plant-based beauty brand Rowse, held at the Reykjavík store of the Danish furniture brand NORR11. “Since I first started Rowse, I’ve always been inspired by these landscapes,” Val says. “A lot of the visuals and the identity of the brand comes from nature—so I wanted to go to Iceland and make Rowse part of the landscape, too.”
Read on to discover more of Val’s epic journey through the land of ice and fire earlier this fall.
“The Ásmundur Sveinsson Sculpture Museum showcases exhibitions that span from history to our present day, featuring leading Icelandic and international artists across modern and contemporary art. It’s amazing to explore the works of Icelandic artists such as Erró, Kjarval, and the sculptor Ásmundur Sveinsson himself. The museum has a beautiful sculpture garden surrounding the building, beloved by visitors and locals alike.”
“A surreal and relaxing atmosphere at the iconic Blue Lagoon—a sensory delight. I recommend visiting right before heading to the airport or at sundown when dusk befalls and the stars come out—and if you are lucky enough, maybe even the Northern Lights.”
“In the middle of Gunnuhver Hot Springs, you feel the forces of Earth come to life in a spectacular display of steam and bubbling hot water.”
“I witnessed the beautiful dance of ice at Jökulsárlón, where icebergs float gracefully against a backdrop of mountains. The crystal-clear waters of Jökulsárlón reflect the icy sculptures, creating a surreal and breathtaking panorama.”
“A seafood feast at The Sea Baron, a charming restaurant in Reykjavik’s old harbor known for its fresh and flavorful catches. I had the best lobster soup ever here.”
“Tiu Sopar, a haven for tapas enthusiasts and natural wine lovers alike.”
“Hallgrímskirkja is a Lutheran parish church in Reykjavík, standing as the largest church in Iceland and among the tallest structures in the country. Its silhouette against the skyline is so striking and entering quietly to listen to the choir is an incredibly moving experience.”
“Shooting at Seltun, a geothermal wonderland where the earth breathes and steams. You can feel how active and alive our planet is. The colors, the smell, the heat, everything together makes this scenery so special.”
“Skógafoss is a testament to Iceland’s raw beauty, a magnificent waterfall known for its powerful presence. You can feel the force of nature; this breathtaking waterfall is always worth visiting while driving to Jokulsarlon.”
The Black Church of Budir
“Sunlight at The Black Church of Búðir, surrounded by golden fields and rugged landscapes.”