Hello again readers who are vicariously traveling to Iceland!
This will most likely be the end of my narative on my trip except a quick note about our time at the blue lagoon and some more objective facts and tips for fellow travelers. My last post left you near Skaftafell natural park, where in the morning we hiked up to one of the tongues of the glacier we snowmobiled on. Unfortunately there was a small body of water blocking access to most of it but we would not be stopped so easily, trekking along the side of a stream and hopping from one rock to the next to eventually reach ice. Alas the ice was black from mud and ash, but still very neatly shaped and very slippery. After I used my stove on the patio of the welcome center to cook some soup for lunch we hiked a short was up to see Svartifoss, a very pretty waterfall framed by black basalt columns. From there we hitched to Vik, through an amazing landscape, half green cliffs and farms, half rocky lava flows. In Vik we saw the famous basalt columns rising from the sea and went to Selfoss to recharge and plan our last few days on the road. Chelsea also was quite brave and decided to get her hair colored and dyed in the European style, describing how she wanted it to the stylist who spoke almost no English. Fortunately, through miming and gestures she was able to get it to turn out very much to her approval. The following morning, after a run and a swim, we headed north to Geysir, the sight of the hot pools that gave the world to English. The actual Geysir has not gone off in quite some years but its little brother gives off a large plume of water and steam roughly every five minutes accompanied by the clicks of SLR cameras and oows from the bystanders. Not more than 10 kilometers from there is Gullfoss, Iceland's most famous and picturesque waterfall. After a number of pictures and getting rather wet from the spray, we camped at Laugervatn, a nearby town.
The following morning we hitched a ride with one of Reykjavik's city councilers who is the head of education. After an illuminating coversation and sharing details of eachother's education and healthcare system, he dropped us at Thingvellir, the historic site of the viking parliament. It is also a beautiful area to hike and the fault line separating the Europe plate and the North American plate is clearly visible. After walking around and walking from Europe to America a few times we headed back to the capital.
The capital is full of shops and good food, but is also fun to walk around and people watch. After a day of exploring on foot, we upgraded to motor scooters this time one for each, so Chelsea could remain firmly in control of the throttle. After some practice, we were zipping along to places that were too far out before, taking in some of the coast and the Pearl, a building overlooking the city. We also finally had luck Couchsurfing, spending two nights with our generous guest talking and sharing stories.
Today is our last day in the country before we leave to the blue lagoon and then home, wo we will do our best to fit some more fun in, and relax for the last time in the pool, fully equipped with thermal pools ranging from 37C to 43C.
It has been a remarkable trips, and it was made more special by our last minute traveling method and not worrying about reaching a town to make our reservation. The people and nature of Iceland are outstanding and made this trip as interesting on a personal level as it was on a photographic and hiking level.
See you state-side soon,