Sunday, June 26, 2016

Blue Lagoon- Last Day in Iceland

We saved the Blue Lagoon for last since it is near the airport.  We booked in advanced, which I highly recommend because it's cheaper and appointments fill up.  I also recommend saving 15 euros per person and bringing your own towels, getting an early reservation and not over masking with the silica mud- it really stings if you get it in your eyes.  The Blue Lagoon, while pricey and mainly tourists was totally worth it and I can't wait to go back.  It's very relaxing, there's nice locker rooms, saunas, steam rooms and there's no time limit.  You can pay extra for the algae mask or a massage.

Inside the Cave at the Blue Lagoon

Lagoon Foss

Reykjanes Geothermal Plant- Our flight ended up being delayed 3 hours, so we went to a nearby geothermal plant museum, which was very interesting and the guy there was super friendly!

What a wonderful family trip! We're already planning next year's trip!


Goats, More Waterfalls, and Hot Springs- Day 5 West Iceland

Iceland is truly an amazing place.  On Day 5 we went to West Iceland around Borganes and Upper Borgarfjordur.  We encountered a super long 5.7km tunnel from Hvalfjordur to Borganes, empty roads, more sheep, wild horses, friendly goats, more watef falls, no cars, and super friendly locals.  West Iceland is an easy day drive from Reykjavik but way less tourists than the Golden Circle and the South.


After taking a long gravel road, thinking we were lost and knocking on 2 wrong doors, we finally found the goat farm Háafell in West Iceland.  So glad we did because the goats were soooo cute!  And some were even in Game of Thrones!

Goats from Game of Thrones.  Apparently several of the goats were picked up by the filming crew and taking to the filming location.

Brother of the famous Cassanova goat

Newborn baby goat (1 week old) who is just learning to walk and use his knees

Super friendly goat that jumped up on Emily

My favorite baby goat.

This symbol means "Point of Interest". So if you see it on the road, just follow the sign to find something interesting.

"Foss" means waterfall in Icelandic.  And boy are there a lot of fosses in Iceland. This is Barnafoss or "Children's Waterfall".  The story goes that on Christmas Day 2 children stayed at home while their families went to mass. When the families returned, the children were gone.  It was discovered that they fell off an arch and drowned in the waterfall, so their mom destroyed the arch so this could never happen again.  A foot bridge now exists over the waterfall where the arch supposedly was.

On the way back we stopped in quiet Reykholt and saw a hot spring, "hot pots", a church, and home dating to the 10th century.

Then we got dinner nearby and stopped at the Deildartunguhver hot spring, which is really really hot!

And once back in Reykjavik, we got a photo of the famous Viking boat sculpture

Another great day in Iceland!!


Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Waterfalls and Puffins- Iceland Day 3

After a leisurely breakfast, we decided to head to Vik to see the black sand beach and try to spot Puffins.  Along the way we stopped at numerous waterfalls, saw adorable and majestic Icelandic horses, lots of sheep, glaciers and lots of moss.  Iceland is truly a beautiful place.  Driving is easy- flat and few cars on the road- and there's 24 hours of daylight.  Icelanders are very nice and trusting people, although there seems to be more foreign tourists than native Icelanders.

Pictures from Day 3:

Skyr- delicious yogurt-like food.  Pear and vanilla are winners so far!  Have yet to see Siggi's yogurt.

Some of the scenery along the road.  Some googling taught us the purple flowers are called Alaskan Lupine or Nutka.

Seljalandfoss, which we were able to walk behind.

Gljúfurábui- Just a short walk past Seljalandfoss and out of sight is the amazing Gljufurabui.  Most tourists don't bother walking down to see this waterfall and it's hidden in the canyon, but well worth the walk.

Icelandic horses running right next to our car.  The only traffic we encountered!

Skógafoss- Further down the Ring Road, is this beauty.

We had a delicious meal of fresh fish at a simple looking bistro bar at Skógafoss.

Arctic Char with Mashed Potoatoes

 Cod with Salad and Turnips

Sheep near Skógafoss

And finally PUFFINS at Dyrhólaey!!!

Dyrhólaey and Vik Beaches with its basalt columns.

The sky at 1 am on the drive back to Reykjavik.

Another fantastic and full day in Iceland!