Iceland Adventure: Day 3 {Photo Rich}

And on day #3……what we have been waiting for all along.

To pick up our vehicle that will take us around the island and be our home for the next 6 nights.

Our KuKu Camper!!!  

Me and our ride for the week.
Me and our ride for the week.

After picking up our camper van, we bought some groceries at the nearest grocery store.  This one is the least expensive.  BONUS.

To get around Iceland, you basically follow one road.  The Ring Road. Use this road as your foundation and take your little trips onto the side roads as you are led.   Here is where we went on our first day.

Our day goal  was to get around the Golden Circle before heading Southeast to Vik.

And that leads us to our first stop…..to pet some Icelandic horses. IMG_6067.  IMG_6061

Aren’t they beautiful?  As soon as we got out of the van, they all came right up to the fence.

IMG_6063

The fence was electric, hence my stretching over.

IMG_6064

After a couple days of travel, we realized that these horses are everywhere.  When I finally saw a small field of cows, I was like, “LOOK!  Cows.”  Beef is not their number one meat choice.

********************************************

Next stop on our Golden Circle Tour was Kerid Crater.  There is an entrance fee to walk this crater but it was nominal, maybe $3 a person?

IMG_6074
Mike reading the guide

IMG_6088
Although volcanologists originally believed Kerið was formed by a huge volcanic explosion, as is the accepted norm with volcanic craters, more thorough studies of the Grímsnes region failed to find any evidence of such an explosion in Kerið. It is now believed that Kerið was a cone volcano which erupted and emptied its magma reserve. Once the magma was depleted, the weight of the cone collapsed into the empty magma chamber. The current pool of water at the bottom of the crater is at the same level as the water table and is not caused by rainfall.[1] ~ From Wikipedia
IMG_6089

It was at this point, I think I realized we missed a crucial turn and getting to visit Pingvellir National Park – but it was as it was…..and there is just so much to see.

********************************

Mike’s clients from Iceland Seafood had told us about our next stop.  They couldn’t tell us exactly where it was, just that it was hidden amongst some trees, and that if we saw it, we needed to stop.

How Mike saw it on the drive, I don’t know.  But he did.  Fridheima is a green house that specializes in growing tomatoes with geothermal heat.

IMG_6091

To get into the greenhouse and have lunch, one must have reservations.  BUT, they were nice and accommodated us.

For about $25.00 a person, you can have all you can eat, tomato basil soup and their home baked breads.  (the olive loaf was the bomb!!)

IMG_6093

Mike also had a very  ‘fresh”  bloody mary. IMG_6095

The greenhouse also employs thousands of imported bumble bees for the pollination process.  They fly around freely as you are eating and do not bother because they are busy working.

IMG_6099

With full bellies and happy hearts…..our next stop was to:

The great geyser Strokker. 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

IMG_6101

IMG_6116
This is the great geyser that has been dormant since 1916.

Strokker erupting or as much as I could catch with one hand and freezing temps.

I will say that the Golden Circle is full of tourist and tour buses.  Not my favorite but ya gotta say you did it, right?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Next stop:

GULLFOSS

IMG_6118

This waterfall…..literally takes your breath away.  Just the sheer amount of water and the force by which it is flowing is beyond amazing.   It is stronger than Niagara falls.

IMG_6124
Gullfoss is more than just a pretty waterfall, it has a story to tell. In the early 20th century foreign investors wanted to harness the power of Gullfoss to produce electricity. In 1907 Howells, an Englishman wanted to buy Gullfoss from Tómas Tómasson, a farmer who owned Gullfoss at this time. Tómas declined Howells´ offer to buy the waterfall but later he leased it to him. The farmer´s daughter, Sigriður Tómasdóttir who grew up on his father´s sheep farm sought to have the rental contract voided. Sigriður using her own saving hired a lawyer in Reykjavik to defend her case. The trial lasted years and Sigriður went several times barefoot on traitorous terrain to Reykjavik to follow up on her case. She even threatened to throw herself into the waterfall if the construction would begin. Her attempts failed in court but before any damage was done to the waterfall the contract was disposed due to the lack of payments of the rent fee. The struggles of Sigriður to preserve the waterfall brought to people´s attention the importance of preserving nature and therefore she is often called Iceland´s first environmentalist. In 1940 the adopted son of Sigriður acquired the waterfall from Sigriður´s father and later sold it to the Icelandic government. Gullfoss and its environs was designated as nature reserve in 1979 to permanently protect the waterfall and allow the public to enjoy this unique area.  (taken from the Gullfoss website)

IMG_6121

IMG_6126

IMG_6128

IMG_6129

And a Gullfoss video:

 

We were still at this point trying NOT to take naps in the middle of the day, but we were both exhausted by mid afternoon.  So we stopped at the side of the road in a secluded area and took a nap.

IMG_6138

In Iceland it doesn’t matter where you camp.  Just be respectful.

After about a two hour siesta, we hit the road again.

Thankful that it really doesn’t get dark there this time of year until about 10:30pm.  Sunrises at 4am, so we get lots of daylight.

IMG_6137

Everywhere you go in Iceland there is water.  I was so taken by the sheer amount of water on the island.

IMG_6140

The last thing we did, was head to a hot spring called Gamia Lagin or the Secret Lagoon in the small village of Fludir.

While most people opt for the touristy Blue Lagoon near Reykjavik, we tend not to like the crowds so we found this one.   We shared the entire pool with only 6 others.

IMG_6143
Mike with his noodle. They provide the floating devices.

In order to use any of the public hot springs in Iceland, you have to shower before you get in to your swim suit.  BUTT NAKED.  So if you have a problem being naked in front of others….better not visit the hot springs.

IMG_6145

These pics were taken at 10pm.  It was freezing cold but the water was HOT and after a day of being all bundled up, it was just what we needed.  It was a magical place.  You could swim right to the vents where the boiling  water was being dispersed out of the rock.

We floated and swam around for a good two hours until we were nice and wrinkly.

Showered, dried off and hit the road to find a place to camp.

It was probably about 11:30pm when we found a remote place to spend the night.  I wanted to be near water, so that I could filter our drinking water for the next day.

We got near water….we couldn’t see much, so we didn’t exactly know  where we were……but when we woke up the next morning.

WOW!  Hella, Iceland.

Until day 4,

signature

 

 

Advertisements

4 thoughts on “Iceland Adventure: Day 3 {Photo Rich}

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s