Blogs from Iceland, Europe - page 7

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Europe » Iceland October 2nd 2016

The flight was absolutely fine if you ignored the invitations to buy stuff. Keflavik airport is a fair way from Reykjavik, a fifty-minute bus ride, but the intrigue of the landscape and the occasional burst of recorded commentary – the language seems more musical than its Nordic cousins – made the journey a pleasure. Reykjavik surprises with its compactness. The bus terminus seemed to be in a semi-rural outer suburb – it was as if we had arrived in Thomastown to see Melbourne. Our lodging was supposed to be both close to the terminus and to the centre of the old town, which seemed impossible, yet it was so. Two minutes’ walk found our room, and we were only a kilometre or so from the harbour. We explored that route for a while, then found ourselves ... read more
Church, Reykjavik
Street view, old town
Dusk, Reykjavik Pond

Europe » Iceland » North » Mývatn September 24th 2016

Geologically speaking, Iceland is a new country, only 10 million years old. By contrast, Uluru is more than 400 million years old. Iceland has more than 30 frequently erupting volcanoes who, spectacularly, contribute to the growing land mass of the island. They famously curtail international air flights at will and create wastelands that are thoughtfully being revegetated. Iceland also has five lumbering giant glaciers who are retreating 500 metres each year, thanks to climate change. Several volcanoes lie below glaciers and make for powerful and unique natural disasters. Unsurprisingly, ICE-SAR is a world leading search and rescue organization with 30 thousand volunteers (10 percent of total population) who specialize in volcano, glacier and ocean operations. Running through Iceland is the only place on the planet where the Mid Atlantic Ridge exists above sea level. The zone ... read more
Solheimajokul
ICE-SAR equipment
Glacial ice

Europe » Iceland » East » Egilsstadir September 24th 2016

Icelandic horses feature prominently in the Saga's from the viking settlement, played an important role in transportation and work until recently and are everywhere. More pictures because I have them.... read more
Side saddle
Pack saddle and panniers
Icelandic Jumper design

Europe » Iceland » Southwest » Reykjavík September 20th 2016

Introduction This trip was conceived multiple years ago in one of my aviation classes. My instructor made a joke about Iceland's push for tourism and how you can get a free stop in Iceland when you fly through Iceland on Icelandair. Despite his sarcasm, I held onto that new knowledge until just this past May when I had the financial means to go on a European vacation. Being out of college for a year and working in Chicago, I had saved up just enough to fly to Europe with two friends. Our main objective was to visit Iceland, so our free stopover in Iceland was actually the portion of our trip that had the longest duration. Overall, it was an 8-day trip with a total of four flights and three visited cities: Boston (MA), Oslo (Norway), ... read more
Aurora Borealis Livery
Icelandair Interior

Europe » Iceland » Southwest » Reykjavík September 15th 2016

My wife and I were in Iceland for 2 weeks last summer when we were travelling through some of the Scandinavian countries (including Norway, Iceland and Faroe Islands). The first step of our journey was Iceland, and we arrived in Reykjavik on August the 2nd. The airport (“Keflavik”) is located about 50 km away from Reykjavík and there are several ways to get to and from the airport. We decided to rent a car for our full journey (Reykjavik Auto ). We arrive quite late, so we went directly to our hotel in Reykjavik. We visited the city the day after, and discovered some fantastic monuments as Hallgrímskirkja which is a Lutheran parish church or the sculpture “Sun Voyager” by Jón Gunnar Árnason. We also visited the K... read more
Sun Voyager
Blue Lagoon
little house

Europe » Iceland » Southwest September 11th 2016

Day 7, our last full day exploring the Ring Road...hard to believe we have almost come full circle, but the mileage signs to Reykjavik are the first indications we are nearing the end of the road trip... Enough of that though, still a full day ahead; after grudgingly leaving our warm and comfy cabin we were on the road for a day of waterfalls and the famous Golden Circle attractions of Gullfoss, Geysir and Thingvellir National Park... First leg of today's journey would be all waterfalls: Skogafoss, Seljalandsfoss and Gljufurarbui...Skogafoss was up first; an impressive 62 meter high waterfall that was really cool, and on the cover of the latest Lonely Planet I think...there is a long staircase leading up to a spot near the top of the falls, but we opted to just make our ... read more
Blue Lagoon
A wee nip on trail...
Path between the tectonic plates...

Europe » Iceland » South » Vík September 10th 2016

This was a day I had been looking forward to, some key sites that I couldn't wait to get exploring...starting with the famous ice lagoon of Jokulsarlon, Skaftafell national park and finally finishing in Vik with its black sandy beaches and basalt columns... On advice from some locals we pre-booked a zodiac tour of Jokulsarlon a couple of days previous and after only an hour or so from leaving Hofn we spotted the icebergs and tourist buses just off the Ring Road...cool! You read about this place, see pics but they really don't do the spot justice; it is absolutely gorgeous...we were a bit early for the tour so were able to take a stroll along the edge of the lagoon and get our first glimpses at the utterly beautiful luminous-blue icebergs slowly making their way ... read more
The lonely highway...
Svartivoss
Bundled up...

Europe » Iceland » East September 8th 2016

The following two days were more about the drive than anything else; no big attractions or sights to see on our agenda...we hadn't really made up our minds as to where our next stop would be after Myvatn; the options were either the small town of Borgarfjordur Eystri where there was some hiking and a Puffin colony, or skip that and stop at Seydisfjordur which has a small artistic community and the possibility of doing some kayaking in the fjord there...after speaking with some locals and discovering that the Puffins had moved out for the year, that pretty much settled it for us: Seydisfjordur it would be... So off we went, it was unfortunately the worst day weather-wise as it rained the whole day...but again with nothing really planned we just took our time and eventually ... read more
Seydisfjordur
Lovely K on the Red Chair...
Lagoon of swans...

Europe » Iceland » North » Mývatn September 7th 2016

This day was to be one of the shorter drives, with a number of sites and activities to check out so after our morning coffee we were on our way...after a wrong turn we got back on track and were headed to our first stop of the day: Dettifoss waterfall... We were told that the road from Asbyrgi to Dettifoss wasn't paved, and after finding the correct turnoff we were surprised to see a paved road...wicked! Cruising along merrily when unfortunately that wonderful stretch of asphalt suddenly ended and sure enough the dirt road began...It was then we were to discover that not only was this a dirt road, but it was full of potholes...couldn't drive more than 20 or 30 meters before having to slow down and negotiate through oftentimes deep water-filled holes, it was ... read more
Dettifoss III
Myvatn Nature Bath
Geothermal exhaust...

Europe » Iceland » North September 5th 2016

After a great introduction to Iceland in Reykjavik it was now time to go mobile and see some more of the island...the Ring Road circumnavigates the entire country, and our objective was to make the loop and check out as much as we could along the way... We had originally planned on just renting a car and doing the trip, staying at hotels/cottages or whatever other accommodations we could find, but after seeing the costs of hotels the Lovely K came up with a brilliant idea: what about a camper van? Hmm, okay! Did some digging and found some companies that rented them, and after comparing costs the small vans weren't all that much more expensive than a car...plus the campsites were $30 instead of $200+ a night for us Canucks...settled on Go Campers after reading ... read more
The Lovely K...
First stop...
Whalin' selfie...




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