Hotel Borealis offers a wide range of accommodation and facilities for everyone. In the main building are standard double/twin rooms with private bathroom and one junior suite decorated in a lovely old country style while the "new house" provides rooms of a more modern feel. You can also stay in a bungalow with a private entrance, private bathroom and a small kitchenette with all cooking facilities you need, one of them being a family unit that can host up to 6 pers. A good option for families or group travelling together is the private three-bedroom house with a fully-equipped kitchen, a living/dining room, two bathrooms and a lovely porch with access to a private hot tub.
The Hotel's restaurant offers an à la carte menu with an emphasis on fresh ingredients of local produce, in a warm and welcoming environment. The menu has something for all tastes, from meat and fish, to vegan-friendly dishes and kids meals. The breakfast buffet is served at the restaurant, and provides a wide range of options to fuel before a new travelling day.
Service and recreation
You can hike in beautiful nature, for example along the riverbanks of river Sog, or along the shores of Lake Úlfljótsvatn. You can also hike up nearby mountain Búrfell (534 m / 1,752 ft.) that’s close to the hotel. The South prides itself on good tourism services and you can try riding tours, white river rafting, glacier tours and highland jeep tours on specially modified vehicles. There’s a nine-hole golf course near Ljósafossvirkjun power plant (2 km / 1.2 mi) that hotel guests can enjoy free of charge. There’s also an 18-hole course at Kiðjaberg in Grímsnes (23 km / 14 mi). The nearest pools are in town Selfoss (19 km / 12 mi) and in Borg í Grímsnesi (23 km / 14 mi). There’s a good restaurant at Hotel Grímsborgir (6.5 km / 4 mi), and a diner and a small shop at Þrastarlundur (12 km / 7.5 mi). Selfoss is the nearest town, where you’ll find supermarkets and various other services (19 km / 12 mi).
Northern Lights at your doorstep!
The Icelandic countryside is the perfect location to watch the northern lights dance in the sky. The hotel is exposed to a low amount of light pollution so as soon as the sky is clear and the northern lights appear, you will get an enhanced experience of the phenomenon. Hotel Borealis is Northern Lights Friendly and offers a wake-up call during the night in case of sightings. You can also ask the staff about the chances of the lights appearing and savour a nice cup of hot chocolate while waiting for the magical display. You are also welcome to enjoy the show from the warm waters of the open-air hot tub, until midnight.
Rural tranquillity and natural beauty in summer and winter
Hotel Borealis is in an idyllic location, close to river Sog that runs off lake Þingvallavatn. The land is green and welcoming in summer, and magical in winter dress when the auroras dance along the inky-black sky. Two out of the three hydroelectric power plants along river Sog are close to the hotel, where the oldest one dates back to 1937. By power plant Írafossvirkjun (3 km / 1.8 mi), a road crosses the river. If you continue along that road you’ll travel along the west side of lake Þingvallavatn, which is an exquisite route in summer, ending up in the national park (37 km / 23 mi). For a shorter route to Þingvellir, take the main road north of the hotel and along the lake’s east side (16 km / 10 mi).
Þingvellir National Park
Þingvellir, or Parliament Fields, are one of the most magical and beautiful natural formations in Iceland. Both a reservation and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Þingvellir are sacred to Icelanders, because of both the natural beauty and important history. Iceland’s chieftains formed Alþingi, Iceland’s parliament, in Þingvellir in 930 AD and the parliament members continued to meet there up until 1798. Not least, Iceland was formally declared a republic in Þingvellir on June 17th, 1944. The Visitor’s Centre hosts a multimedia exhibition on the park’s history and geology and is open every day, all year, from 9 – 17. There’s furthermore a souvenir shop and a tourism information point at the centre. Marked hiking trails criss-cross the park, and route maps are available at the centre.
Spas, natural gems and seaside villages
The Laugarvatn Fontana, Spa and Wellness Centre (38 km / 23.5 mi) is ideal if you want to relax in hot tubs and saunas. To reach geothermal area Geysir, where hot spring Strokkur erupts every 10 – 12 minutes, travel 60 km / 37 mi, and a further 10 km / 6 mi will take you to waterfall Gullfoss, one of Europe’s most magnificent waterfalls. Crater Kerið, a rather deep crater with a lake at the bottom, is only a 15-minute-drive from the hotel. For longer day tours from Hotel Borealis, you could drive east along the southern lowlands and stop by gems like waterfalls Seljalandsfoss (90 km / 56 mi) and Skógafoss (117 km / 73 mi). There are also many interesting seaside villages along the southern shore, like Stokkseyri and Eyrarbakki (30 km / 18.5 mi), just waiting to be explored.