WOW Air – they bring us to Iceland. And wow, that is nice! The start is great. First we are traveling to Reykjavik and the UNESCO WHS Þingvellir on the edge of the Eurasian and North American Continental plates. A very nice, Troll-like place with an intersting history. On we proceed over unpaved roads to the Snæfellsnes peninsula. Beautifull, empty country with some farms, spectacular waterfalls and volcanoes. We visit small towns, huge granite cliffs, a white sand beach ‘Skarðsvik’ and climb our first volcanoe of this trip ‘Saxhóll’.
The trip proceeds with a spectacular drive in the north of Iceland, climbing some more volcanoes at ‘Grábrók’ in the direction of Akureyri, a large city with many shops and a huge cruise ship in the harbour. We visit Húsavík, take a bath in the nature baths in Mývatn and indulge ourselves in the geological and geothermal wonders of Iceland Hverir and Krafla. We climb the impressive crater of Hverfjall and think we are ‘Leppaludi’ in Dimmuborgir.
One of the most impressive areas in Iceland is by all means Ásbyrgi (shelter of the gods) and the beautiful basalt formations at Hljóðaklettar. Walking along these imense walls make me feel small.
A few gloomy days followed. Driving through misty, rainy and cold weather along the north-eastern coast, passing many, many sheep, little hauses and hardly any towns. Highlight were the large numbers of Puffins in Borgarfjörður Eystri. They are sweet!
The beautfull fjord of Seyðisfjörður and the little town of Breiðdalsvík will remain mysteries, as they were covered in mist. A reason to come back some day!
But then we finally got to one of the places high on my bucket list: Jökulsárlón. A lagoon at the end of the glacier, filled with large chuncks of glacier. The stunning blue blocks are slowly floating to the sea. Incredibly beautiful.
The road proceeds to waterfall country. Svartifoss, Seljalandsfoss, Skógafoss, all impressive in their own way.
More craters, more volcanoes are visited. Lakagígar is a volcanic fissure errupting in 1783 leaving a 14 sqkm lavafield. Only accesible per 4×4, as few rivers needs to be crossed and the road… well… is not a road at all. Along the way on the south coast we pass some areas of geothermal activity at Geysir, Krýsuvík and Gunnuhver and we crossed the bridge between continents (North American and Eurasian tectonic plates).
On our to do list were 2 more items: the Vestmannaeyjar island of Heimaey and the Thrihnukagigur volcano. The first because of the impressive volcano and eruption history of 1973, where humans were able to stop the lava flow to protect their lives. The latter for the unique experience to descent 120m into a crater of an extinct volcano.
Conclusion: a very nice trip and a great song to remember Sálin Hans Jóns Míns.
See some more pictures on http://www.scubajo.nl/pictures.htm.