Following on from my trips to London and New York, and the Year in Photos review I have just been to Iceland. More specifically Reykjavik. This trip came about after a late night discussion (and several bottles of wine) about where we should all go to next. Last year was Saariselkä in the north of Finland. Thankfully one of our friends took up the challenge and did the arrangements and what an excellent job she did too, organising our trip through a company called Iceland on Track. What an excellent company that was too, Omar did a superb job as out tour guide and driver for the entire trip. If you ever decide to visit Iceland I thoroughly recommend these guys. Anyway as with all journeys, it starts with a flight. Just as we reached Iceland the Sun was just coming up and it was almost midday.
Our transfer to our Hotel was included and Omar was waiting for us, our first night was simply to settle into our Hotel and have dinner, which I have to say was stunning. If you like Thai food and are in Reykjavik then you must go to Ban Thai. It was probably the best Thai food I have had outside of Thailand, and I have been to quite a few Thai restaurants in my time.
The following morning was a reasonably early start at 9am. Omar arrived with his custom 4×4, what a vehicle!
Just out of interest, the tyres on this truck cost around $5000 and are replaced every year. On with the journey, first stop is Þingvellir where the first Parliament was established in 930 AD.
We then drove to the other side of where the Parliament area was situated, down in the valley (rift) where a stream was that never freezes and people throw coins in for good luck.
Then we continued on to the famous Geysir (Geyser is derived from this). Where the original only occassionally vents now, but a newer one vents every 10 minutes or so. On the way to Geysir we stopped to fill up our water bottles in a spring. Have to say the spring water in Iceland is the best I have ever tasted.
As I said Geysir no longer or rather erupts very infrequently now but there is another Geyser that does erupt, it is called Strokkur.
We then made our bid to reach the Glacier and I have to say Omar made a tremendous effort to get us there. Unfortunately the weather was seriously against us as the next picture will show you.
Conditions were so bad my Canon DSLR could not even focus, there was nothing to focus on. So at the next minor break in the weather we turned round.
As you can see conditions were not much better
We returned the way we came, conditions having deteriorated, but Omar and his amazing 4×4 did a stellar job in getting us back where we continued on to Gullfoss (Golden Falls). The light by now was beginning to fade a little but still managed to get a few pictures.
With light rapidly going we headed to our final stop, a 6500 year old Volcano called Kerið where I managed to get a panorama of the Caldera.
This trip takes 8 to 9 hours in total, it is probably best done in summer where you stand a better chance of getting to the Glacier but I have to say it was great fun in winter too as long as you don’t mind the drive over the snow.
Day two was spent at a much more leisurely pace with a visit to the Blue Lagoon. A geothermal spa about 40 minutes from Reykjavik.
A really relaxing day, recommend this to anyway seeking a little relaxation. I would also suggest spending several hours here to take full advantage of all the spa has to offer.
Here are a few more photos from the trip, hope you enjoyed the post.
Thanks for reading!!