Golden Circle

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June 23rd 2018
Published: July 15th 2018
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First impression - there are sheep everywhere in this country. Everywhere. Also horses - beautiful short, fat little horses.

Second, from the minute I got off the plane it's been raining. It's really pretty...but really gray.

Third, I'm a morning person in Iceland (who knew?). This is because there's not really any darkness... the first day my flight landed at 6am, and I hadn't really slept, so I fell asleep really early that night...and discovered mornings are less crowded so decided to stick with my 4-5am wake up hour.

Fourth, in fantastic news, there are geothermically heated pools and hot tubs everywhere here that are very common to swim in - yippee.

The Golden Circle itself is mainly three sites -the Gulfoss Waterfall (which is beautiful), the fields around Geysir (the original geyser which all other geysers are named after...which no longer erupts, but it's neighbor does), and Thingviller (the "Parliamentary Plains", historically the center of law/order going back to Viking times...and still where important events in the country occur).

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Horsies. There are tons of horsies.Horsies. There are tons of horsies.
Horsies. There are tons of horsies.

They don't count them (?), but apparently there are about 100,000 horses in a country with around 300,000 people. The country hasn't allowed any other breeds in for over 1,000 years, so all of the horses are pure-bred Icelandic (although this really means VIking-age Norwegian, where they originally came from). I think they're mostly used to herd the sheep in the fall/spring, although back in the Viking days they were also good food and their bones were used to make tools.

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