Saturday, November 5, 2011

Trip to Iceland 2010: Day 4 - Seljalandsfoss

Back from a yearly break, time to wrap up the trip report from Iceland and get on with the next one.

Day 4 did not start well. I woke up with a terrible head ache and it was cold like hell at night. I guess camping out was not that great idea after all and by this time it was clear to me that I had not prepared myself well for this trip. The nearby SPA was closed in the morning, as were the showers at the camp-site.

Fortunately, there's abundance of SPAs everywhere in Iceland. So took a short break and went for a shower and a hot bath in one along the road. That brightened me up a bit, but as I drove towards my next destination - Seljalandsfoss - the weather got bad. By the time I arrived, it was raining, but not hard enough to deter me from taking a stroll.

Seljalandsfoss - yes, another waterfall in Iceland

Seljalandsfoss - closer view at the waterfall

After seeing Gulfoss, Seljalandsfoss does not seem all that impressive. However, there's this little thing about it.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Trip to Iceland 2010: Day 3 - Gulfoss

Gulfoss was the next stop after Geysir. I arrived there at around 16.00, and it was windy as hell. I parked the car at the upper parking, so I couldn't see the waterfall immediately and had to take a short walk. And the closer I got to it, the louder it got. And once I saw it... boy what a sight. It's really impressive.

Gulfoss in its full glory

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Trip to Iceland 2010: Day 3 - Geysir and Strokkur

After seeing Kerið (Kerid) crater, I leave for my next stop, to see the mother of all geysers, the Geysir. I take a road no. 37 and stop at Laugarvatn for a quick lunch. And finally, I arrive at my destination. It immediately becomes clear that this is THE tourist attraction. There's everything here, the gas station, hotel, restaurant and a gift shop. Of course, all insanely expensive :) But who cares, it's not what I came here for, and the geysers are right across the road. You can clearly smell them (you really need to get used to the sulfuric smell) and see the steam all over the place.

Right as I enter the area, I see this weird thing:
If you know what's the purpose of this, let me know
And a few meters away, the Little Geysir, that kinda reminds me of a pot of boiling water.
Litli Geysir - a tiny cousin of the Geysir
Unfortunately, the real thing is inactive as of late. It only wakes up after some major seismic activity, which happened in 2000 last time. So I was not meant to see the grand eruption of Geysir, which as I heard could spew water for a whooping 60 meters in the air.

But not all is lost, as there is Strokkur, which is very active and erupts regularly every 5 minutes or so. It's smaller than Geysir, but still very impressive.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Trip to Iceland 2010: Day 3 - Kerið (Kerid)

Once again, I woke up to a freezing cold. I was staying at a campsite near Minniborg (by the road no. 35) and I was the only one there. The showers were out of order, but fortunately there was hot water available. And there was one of those swimming pool / bathing places that are so popular in Iceland, so I took a shower there (150 ISK) and took off.

So, the day before I was passing by a sign marking a tourist attraction called Kerið (Kerith or Kerid, also improperly simplified to Kerio). The water that fell from the sky in huge amounts stopped me from checking it out, so this was the first on my list.

So here's what I saw.

Kerith crater in all it's glory

Friday, October 1, 2010

Trip to Iceland 2010: Day 2

Day two was a complete failure. This day, I picked up a car from car rental at domestic airport in Reykiavik at around 12 o'clock and managed to leave the city around 16.

I'll spare you the boring details. Let's skip to some random photos taken that day.

Random rocky landscape between Reykiavik and Selfoss

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Trip to Iceland 2010: Day 1

I arrived at the Keflavik Airport at 10:30. The view from the plane was already quite stunning and luckily, the weather was nice and sunny. The first impression when I went outside the terminal and during bus ride to Reykiavik was both stunning and a little disappointing. I’m not sure what I expected, but what I saw was a barren land of rocks with the sea and some mountains on the horizon. Still, it was quite an interesting view, especially when I noticed a golf course among the rocks. That was a really unusual sight.

Golf course on the rocks between Keflavik and Reykiavik

Why Iceland is so cool that it's worth seeing

Do you need a reason to travel to some far away land for vacation? Are you researching the place before you decide if you like it enough to spend your money on a journey?

Here's a list of cool reasons why you should choose Iceland:
  • the climate is cool, which is a blessing for anyone who thinks that going to Tunisia during a summer is a masochist's wet dream.
  • it's banking system collapsed in 2008 and Iceland is in a severe recession since then, which did not stop them from applying for EU membership. And the country is apparently so cool, that European Union granted candidate status to Iceland by formally approving the opening of membership talks. How cool is that? I bet no other bankrupted country could achieve such a feat. Maybe they even get accepted, and in 2012, we'll have a nice "European Union on Bankrupted Countries", with Greece presidency of course.
  • it's got a lot of volcanoes, and the last time one of them erupted, the result was closed airspace over whole Europe.
  • it grows. From time to time, new islands pop up.
  • 100% of consumed electricity is green and comes from hydro or geothermal power. In addition, nearly 90% of buildings in Iceland use geothermal power for heating and hot water.
  • it's got plenty of waterfalls. If you happen to be obsessed with water falling from high places, than Iceland is probably your Eden.
  • there are only around 300 000 people there, and 2/3 of them live in Reykiavik.
  • most Icelanders know English, so you won't have any problems communicating with them.
  • the geology of Iceland created some seriously amazing landscapes.