Out and About in Iceland

9

Iceland – the land of Vikings, hot springs, volcanoes and Hákarl (putrefied shark)…. where the beer flows plentifully and the coffee has kick…. what more could you ask for? The landscape is stunning with active steam vents lining the countryside, basalt as far as the eye can see and volcanoes popping up amidst the dramatic and rolling landscape. A “Disneyland” for a volcanologist like me!

Iceland – the land of Vikings, hot springs, volcanoes and Hákarl (putrefied shark)…. where the beer flows plentifully and the coffee has kick…. what more could you ask for? The landscape is stunning with active steam vents lining the countryside, basalt as far as the eye can see and volcanoes popping up amidst the dramatic and rolling landscape. A “Disneyland” for a volcanologist like me!

Day trips outside of Reykjavik will take you to amazing sites like Hengill Central Volcano, the main source of geothermal energy for Reykjavik, channeled through extensive pipelines. Here you find bubbling mud pots, hot springs with vibrant colors of algae, and sheep lazing around.

The Golden Circle is a must-see for any visitor. On this trek you stop at Thingvellir (a continental rift zone where the N. American plate and the Eurasian plate are spreading apart and was home to the world’s first parliament established in 930AD), Gulfoss (second largest waterfall in Iceland), and the geysers of Haukadalur -home of the oldest known geyser (Geysir), where all others get their name.

A 4×4 adventure can take you into the interior of south Iceland. We visited Mt. Hekla volcano (believed to be the literal entrance to hell in medieval Europe) and drove out to Landmannalauger. While driving out you half expect to see dinosaurs roaming around because the features are so massive and the country is so untouched.. There is something ‘prehistoric’ and magical about it. Landmannalauger is home to a natural hot springs (I’m sure many more but we only stopped at one) located at the toe of a historic lava flow and is adjacent to a glacial valley. Just a mere 30 minutes in this water makes you feel completely relaxed.

A 3 hour bus ride south from Reykjavik, along the ring road, will take you to the small (pop. 300) coastal town of Vik. Puffins are famous here, though I didn’t see a $#@! one!, and the beach is the largest black sands beach I have ever seen (Hawaii’s pales in comparison). And from the beach you can see Mýrdalsjökull, the fourth largest glacier in Iceland.

written by the_fstops_here on 2008-10-09 in #world #locations

9 Comments

  1. maxpinckers
    maxpinckers ·

    beaaauuuuuuuuutiful shots!

  2. agrimony
    agrimony ·

    i agree with maxpinckers! wonderful! hope to go to iceland soon!

  3. stiff
    stiff ·

    very nice picture! iceland is magic and has a very powerful aura. i went there last summer and i have some pics in my home.
    love
    stiff

  4. weechonghooi
    weechonghooi ·

    this is a very highlander feeling kind of place... beautiful~!!!

  5. coca
    coca ·

    amazing place!!!, and beautiful shots!!

  6. strangelilgirl
    strangelilgirl ·

    wow.

  7. drgonzo900
    drgonzo900 ·

    beautiful!

  8. azurblue
    azurblue ·

    Nice pics and beautiful destination !

  9. -a-l-b-e-r-t-o-
    -a-l-b-e-r-t-o- ·

    i want this place

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