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    • Day 5

      Day 5 - Glaciers & Icebergs

      May 15, 2022 in Iceland ⋅ ☁️ 8 °C

      Our room at Eyjar Fishing Lodge was so hot that we had to have the window open all night. I was awoken at 5am by the pleasant sound of waders (not fishermen’s boots) singing.

      By 7.30am we were making breakfast of coffee & toast in the hunting lounge. An hour later we were packing up the Duster when the owner appeared from his cottage attached to the lodge.

      He was in his 40’s, had dark lank greasy hair & an ill-fitting tracksuit that emphasised his moobs & belly. He was a real life Jack Torrance from The Shining. We thanked our lucky stars that we had survived the night. Jack informed us that the roads to the east & north were snowed in. Luckily we we were heading west & as we drove off all we could hear was “Here’s Johnny” ringing in our ears.

      Before we had rejoined Route 1, we chanced upon a flock of reindeer, the 1st we had seen in Iceland. We continued west around the Ring Road & took a very minor detour to Djúpivogur to see their ‘famous’ public art installation Eggin í Gleðivík. It was 34 underwhelming oversized eggs sitting along the harbour wall, each representing the 34 local bird species. The highlight in the town was another herd of reindeer relaxing on the town’s football field.

      We continued along the Ring Road towards Hofn on what was undoubtedly the most spectacular scenery we had seen so far on the trip. Green & black majestic mountains with cascading waterfalls on the right side of the road & black sand beaches on the left.

      We arrived in the nondescript town of Hofn & bought some provisions in Netto & fuel, because there would be no petrol stations for the next 200 kilometres. Fully refreshed & stocked up we returned to Route 1 & continued west.

      Not too far down the road, we spotted the tongue of a glacier, Hoffellsjökull. The signpost told us that it was a 4.5 kilometres drive to the glacier lake. Unfortunately 4 kilometres were over a rocky lichen field with just a partial track to follow. We eventually arrived at the glacier & unsurprisingly we were the only ones there. We took a few photos, then picked our way back to Route 1.

      Relieved to have rejoined the Ring Road without a puncture or damage, we put our foot down to the Glacier Lagoon at Jökulsárlón. The moment you pull into the car park your eyes are immediately drawn to the staggering beauty of the icebergs drifting in the lagoon. We wandered along the shoreline mesmerised by the sight & the seals swimming around them.

      Glacier Lagoon facts : The lagoon is 248 metres deep making it the deepest lake in Iceland & the surface area is 18 square kilometres. The icebergs are composed of ice over 1,000 years old.

      After marvelling at the icebergs, we shared a hotdog then returned to the car & drove across the road to Diamond Beach. The name needs no explanation as chunks of glistening icebergs were washed up on the shore’s black sand.

      Having felt like we had witnessed something quite special, we continued west to Skaftafell, a part of the larger Vatnajökull National Park. We parked in the car park & attempted to pay for a park parking ticket, but after 20 minutes we had still been unsuccessful, so we gave up & will risk the consequences.

      After getting our bearings at the Information Centre, we chose to walk up to Svartifoss (Black Falls) described as a stunning moody-looking waterfall flanked by geometric basalt columns. It was a 3.8 kilometre round trip up & down a mountain, but the bleak beauty of Svartifoss made it well worth the trip.

      Returning to Duster, we had a final hours drive to our accommodation for the night, Adventure Hotel Geirland. Upon arrival we took advantage of the Happy Hour with a beer. On the downside, we unwittingly engaged in conversation with an American ‘Adventurer’ who had a bald head covered in tattoos. He looked like a white supremacist who wouldn’t think twice about conducting a mass killing spree. He told us that he couldn’t imagine what the UK was like & he had some very disparaging opinions about Icelandic women that he shared with his fellow Adventurer diners. To top it all we overheard him order a Caprice salad starter, followed by mains of the beef burger & the lamb shank. Greedy bastard!!!

      We returned to our basic room for crackers & cheese & a couple of G&Ts.

      Song of the Day: Glacier by John Grant.
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    • Day 6

      Day 6 - Walking our socks off.

      May 16, 2022 in Iceland ⋅ ⛅ 13 °C

      We got up at 8am & got ready in our very basic, but so far most expensive room. We went to breakfast 45 minutes later timing it just right to avoid the Adventures including our American chum who was just leaving. We did our best to get our money’s worth of the buffet breakfast which was adequate, but not exceptional.

      Our 1st stop of the day was just up the road, Fjaðrárgljúfur Canyon, described as a darkly picturesque canyon, carved out by the Fjaðrá river. It is particularly popular, thanks to it being the location for Justin Bieber’s video for his song, ‘I’ll Show You’. It was a kilometre walk along a trail on the southern side of the 100 metre deep canyon & then a kilometre back with plenty of excellent viewpoints. It was definitely one of the highlights of the trip so far.

      Our next stop was a viewpoint in a Moss Heath. Basically Route 1 had taken us through the middle of a massive rock field that was covered in green moss that gave it a strange furry look & feel.

      We continued to Vik, the most southerly & rainiest town in Iceland. It lived up to it’s reputation & the wind was quite frankly violent. It took all our might to hang on to Duster’s doors when we got out. We found an Ice Wear Superstore & went for a browse. Jackie took fancy to a black puffa jacket, that looked too similar to her blue Rab & walking boots, costing over £200. I fancied an Icelandic wool jumper, but the cost of £154 eventually persuaded me not to get it. We left with nothing other than a couple of postcards.

      Before leaving Vik, we had a coffee, then located the Voyagers Friendship Statue, a monument wishing safe return of the people who work at sea. It is situated on the black sand beach & looks out at the jagged dramatic rock formations of Reynisdrangar.

      The Voyagers Friendship Statue apparently had a sister monument in Hull, UK, but it was stolen for scrap metal. You couldn’t make it up!

      We drove a further 6 miles down the road & to Reynisfjara Beach, notorious for it’s ‘Sneaker Waves’ making it the most deadliest beach in Iceland. Waves regularly drag people into the water often with fatal consequences, the last being the drowning of a Chinese woman in November 2021. Despite being battered by the wind, we braved it on to the dangerous black beach to examine close up the basalt column rock formations.

      Thinking we had done our exercise for the day, we continued west along Route 1 until we came to Sólheimasandur, where we saw 30 plus cars parked up. It was the car park for the walk to US Navy Douglas DC-3 that crash landed on the beach. We had dismissed visiting it, because guidebooks estimated it to be a 3-4 hour round trip to the plane wreck.

      Due to large number of cars we stopped to investigate & read that it was only just over 4 miles to walk there and back. We uhmmed & aahed, before I made the decision we would walk it. We set off on our wind swept glacial outwash plain to the fuselage carcass. It did look like something out of a sci-fi movie. After the obligatory photos, we route marched back, into the battering side & now slight head wind, with Jackie drafting behind me. We returned to the car having completed the 4.52 mile round trip in just 85 minutes!

      Further along the Ring Road, we found Skógafoss waterfall, which is 62 metres high & 32 metres wide. The beauty of Skógafoss was that you could walk up the valley to the base of the falls or as close as you wanted before you were saturated. Jackie chose to admire the falls from afar, while I took the walk for a few obligatory photos. There was an opportunity to climb up a path to look down on the falls, but I just couldn’t face it.

      Next stop was Seljalandsfoss waterfall, which was probably the most impressive to date, helped by the fact that the sun had come out for the day & temperatures had risen to a positively balmy 17 degrees. Seljalandsfoss is also 62 metres high, but has the added advantage of you being able to walk behind it. I courageously did, whilst Jackie watched in awe!

      After another memorable day, we headed for our night’s accommodation, but with a detour to pick up some provisions. We stopped at Hella, where we found a Vínbúðin, the state controlled liquor store, which are the only places to buy takeout booze in Iceland. We picked up a bottle of Captain Morgan’s Rum & discovered it was £54 a bottle. Instead we settled on 6 cans of Icelandic beer at just £2-3 per can. We also bought a microwaveable lasagna & Spag Bol together with garlic bread for our evening dinner.

      We arrived at South Central Guesthouse just after 6pm & discovered that we were the sole guests in the 8 bedroomed chalet. We are very pleased because for the 1st time on this trip, we had a shared bathroom. This was quite a surprise, because the closer we have got to the southwest corner of Iceland it has got noticeably busier with damn tourists.

      Song of the Day: I’ll Show You by Justin Bieber.
      (Contrary to my better judgment).
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    • Day 4

      von Wasserfall zu Wasserfall..

      May 17, 2022 in Iceland ⋅ 🌧 6 °C

      Heute meinte Island es gut mit uns. Mit Sonnenstrahlen wurden wir in unserem Cottage geweckt, machten uns frisch, frühstückten und weiter ging es.
      Als erstes ging es zum Seljalandsfloss, einem Wasserfall wo man hinter dem Wasserschleier herlaufen kann. Wir dachten, dass wir heute auf das überteuerte Parkticket verzichten würden, da eine nette Dame uns ihres gab.. mehr dazu gleich.
      Der Wasserfall war einfach wahnsinnig und genauso auch die Wassermengen die man beim dahinter her laufen abbekam. Zum trocknen setzten wir uns auf eine Bank und genossen die Sonne ☀️. Darauf, den Weg neben dem Seljalandsfloss weiterzulaufen, verzichteten wir. Stattdessen setzten wir uns ins Auto und fuhren weiter. Nach ein paar hundert Metern stellten wir fest, dass sich dort noch ein weiterer Wasserfall verbirgt. Also drehten wir um, und durften, da wir das Parkticket ebenso weitergegeben hatten, doch noch bezahlen 🫢.
      Es hatte sich aber gelohnt, denn der Gljúfrabúi ist ein in eine enge Schlucht hinabstürzender Wasserfall, der nur durch das Flussbett zu erreichen ist.
      Wasserfall Nr. 3 war dann der Skogafoss, welchen wir uns von unten sowie von der Aussichtsplattform ansahen.
      Als letztes wollten wir uns das DC-3 Flugzeugwrack am Strand von Sólheimasandur ansehen. 3-4 Stunden hieß es laut dem Schild würde das hin-und zurücklaufen dauern. Der Shuttlebus für 40€ kam aber auch nicht in Frage und so liefen wir nichtsahnend los. Der Weg erinnerte an eine Steinwüste und der extreme Wind machte vorallem Vicky etwas zu schaffen. Das Wrack an sich war für unseren neuen Hobbyfotografen Florian ein tolles Fotomotiv und sehr interessant mal gesehen zu haben. Zum Glück war es damals eine Notlandung und niemanden ist etwas passiert.
      Nach insgesamt 2,5 Stunden waren wir wieder am Auto und vom Tag erschöpft.
      Schnell in die nächste Unterkunft nach Vík í Mýrdal gefahren, wo wir herzlich von der Lieben Gudrun empfangen worden sind. Zum Abendessen gab es in der Soup Company eine Lammsuppe und die berühmte „Red Hot Lava Soup“.Leider war das schwarze Brot indem sie sonst serviert wird aus, aber vielleicht kommen wir morgen nochmal wieder 😊. Lecker war’s trotzdem!
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    • Day 3

      Schwarz, sehr schwarz

      May 17, 2022 in Iceland ⋅ 🌧 8 °C

      Schwarz, schwärzer, Reynisfjara.
      Am gefährlichsten Strand von Island wehte uns der Wind samt Regen fast die Ohren vom Stamm. Schwarzer Strand, unglaubliche Wellen und Basaltsäulen lassen uns Menschen winzig wirken. Immer wieder unterschätzen Touristen hier die sehr gefährlichen Wellen. Und die Felsen im Meer sind natürlich zu Stein gewordene Trolle.Read more

    • Day 5

      Jagd auf die Puffins

      May 18, 2022 in Iceland ⋅ 🌧 8 °C

      Den heutigen Tag nutzen wir erstmal um unsere Akkus ein wenig aufzuladen und um vollends in den Urlaubsmodus zu kommen. So frühstückten wir in unserem Guesthouse die selbstgemachten Waffeln mit isländischen Spezialitäten wie Marmelade oder Schmierkäse, welche ebenfalls von der lieben Gastgeberin selbst zubereitet wurden.

      Gegen Mittag ging es dann zum Dyrhólaeyjarviti, eine Steilküste mit Leuchtturm an dem sich die beliebten Papageientaucher, auch Puffins in Island genannt, aufhalten sollen. Hier konnten wir viele andere Vögel an den Steilwänden sowie an den aus dem Wasser ragenden Brocken bestaunen. Doch mehr als eine grobe Vermutung, ob darunter auch die Puffins waren, blieb uns nicht. So zogen wir weiter zum Reynisfjara Beach. Einst, zu den schönsten Stränden der Welt gewählt worden. Vor Ort erwarteten uns Windböen der gefühlten Stärke 100, sodass wir teilweise einen guten Meter nach vorn oder zurück gedrückt worden sind.

      Wir machten von diesem wundervollen Strand einige Fotos und auch eine Robbe schaute sich aus dem Wasser heraus an, was die Menschen am Strand und vor allen an dieser einzigartigen Steinformation so treiben.
      Im Anschluss schauten wir uns die Stadt Vík in der wir zwei Nächte blieben genau an. Hier ließen wir uns zu einem Kaffee in einem Schulbus nieder.

      Am Nachmittag spielten wir in unserem Guesthouse Karten und statt erneut die Lava-Suppe zu genießen ging es für uns zur Pizzeria. Hier erwartete uns eine schwarze Pizza die einen Anlehnung an den schwarzen Strand sein sollte.
      Den Abend ließen wir mit isländischen Süßigkeiten, isländischem Bier und eine Runde Karten ausklingen.
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    • Day 7

      Day 7 - The Golden Circle

      May 17, 2022 in Iceland ⋅ ☁️ 12 °C

      During the night we heard a male voice trying to get into our accommodation. So we didn’t have the place to ourselves after all.

      We got up at 8am after a decent nights sleep & had toast & hot chocolate for breakfast. During breakfast the other mysterious guest appeared. He was a 20 something male who was from Switzerland, but originally from Moscow. He was cycling around Iceland on his mountain bike & he weirdly asked me for advice on road conditions in the nearby mountains. Funnily enough I couldn’t help.

      Our first stop of the day was Geysir Hot Spring Area. Accounts from the 19th century mention that the Great Geyser could reach up to 170 meters (558 ft)! After being dormant for years, the Great Geysir was revived by an earthquake in 2000 and erupted for a couple of times a day for several years, but sadly the Great Geysir currently lies dormant.

      Luckily for us, the most active geyser, Strokkur (the Churn) still sprouts hot water as high as 30 meters (100 ft) into the air every few minutes. It gave us the opportunity to see it & in Jackie’s case, film it close up.

      We marched around the area for half an hour or so taking photos & both came to the conclusion that without the Great Geysir, it was a somewhat inferior version of Yellowstone National Park. I’m not complaining because it was free to visit.

      Next stop on the Golden Circle was Gullfoss (Golden Falls) a mesmerising and voluminous two-tiered waterfall. Every second, around 80 cubic metres of water plummet 32 metres into a narrow chasm. It was spectacular & we viewed it from every vantage point available to us.

      It was now lunchtime, so on the way to Þingvellir (Thingvellir) National Park we stopped at the N1 service station in Laugarvatn. We bought 2 coffees, with an undeclared espresso & a chicken tikka wrap to share.

      We then continued to Þingvellir (Thingvellir) National Park, a historic site and the 3rd of the big three on the Golden Circle.

      We parked up & walked firstly to Öxarárfoss, a waterfall we could get close up & personal with, then almost a kilometre along a dark narrow canyon to Langistígur. This was the Walk of Death or Execution Trail, where men were beheaded or hanged to death for offences as minor as theft & women were drowned or burnt at the stake for suspected crimes including witchcraft. Seventy two people are known with certainty to have executed here between 1602 & 1750 at place names such as the Drowning Pool, Execution Block Spit, Fire Gorge & Gallows Rock.

      We then walked back south along the park canyon to Alþing (Althing), the site of Iceland's parliament from the 10th to 18th centuries & Lögberg (Law Rock), a rocky outcrop where the laws were made & enforced.

      The park sits in a rift valley caused by the separation of 2 tectonic plates, with rocky cliffs and fissures like the huge Almannagjá fault, which we walked over on a wooden walkway.

      Finally we walked down to Þingvellir church, originally built a 1,000 years ago to celebrate Iceland’s conversion to Christianity. Beside it is Iceland’s National Cemetery with the graves of some famous Icelandic poets and a house that we discovered was the summer residence of the Icelandic prime minister.

      We returned to Duster & drove back to Laugarvatn, where we had booked accommodation in the Héraðsskólinn Historic Guesthouse at a very reasonable price. It once was a girls boarding school & in one of the rooms, Halldór Laxness, Iceland’s Nobel prize winning writer wrote his most famous book Independent People in Room 12 on the 3rd floor of the building. Now despite retaining all it’s furniture & artefacts, it is now nothing short of a hostel. We had to take our boots off before entering the building & we definitely have a shared bathroom. The men have just one shower in a room with a lock, whilst apparently the ladies have 2 showers divided by a privacy curtain & no lock on the door.

      We enquired about dinner and was informed the chef would be in to serve up a lamb dish at 8pm. We decided to check out Lindin Bistro Cafe, that was highly recommended in the Lonely Planet guidebook & by our receptionist. We both ordered the reindeer burger with chips & an accompanying beer & glass of house wine. It was very pleasant, but as Jackie pointed out it was still just a burger & the bill was around £60.

      We returned to the hostel, through a cloud of midges that had appeared due to the sunny still evening & retired to our room for the night.

      Song of the Day: Vanity by New Model Army.
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    • Day 2


      May 22, 2022 in Iceland ⋅ ⛅ 12 °C

      Unser erster Stopp nach Reykjavik war im Nationalpark Thingvellir. Bei unserem Mittagessens-Halt nahmen wie zuvor noch eine französische Tramperin mit. Zusammen wanderten wir durch den Park und lasen die Tafel über die Geschichte des Ortes.Read more

    • Day 2


      May 22, 2022 in Iceland ⋅ ⛅ 12 °C

      Der erste Wasserfall Öxarárfoss den wir in Island sahen, wurde bei einer Flussumleitung durch Menschenhand geschaffen. Ein kleiner Ausrutscher gabe es auch noch und ein Handy landete im kühlen Nass. Konnte aber schnell wieder gerettet und getrocknet werdenRead more

    • Day 2


      May 22, 2022 in Iceland ⋅ ☀️ 11 °C

      Von Thingvellir Park ging es weiter Richtung der Geysire. Auf dem Weg setzten wir unsere Tramper in ab, da sie eine andere Abzweigung nahm. Bei den Geysiren genossen wir die Eruptionen und den Geruch nach Schwefel. Der grösste Geysir war leider am schlafen. Von diesem kommt auch der Name Geysir.Read more

    • Day 2


      May 22, 2022 in Iceland ⋅ ☀️ 9 °C

      Als letzes vor unserem Guesthouse für die Nacht ging es nach Gullfoss. Riesige Wassermassen welche sich in Form eines Wasserfalles in die Tiefen stürtzten. Es war extrem windig und wir wurden durch die die Gischt geduschtRead more

    You might also know this place by the following names:

    Suðurland, Sudurland, South, Meridional, Sud, Sul, Syd

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