- Iceland Hotels and Places to Stay
- The Ring Road (66 Degrees North Book 1)
- Epic Iceland Land Rover Defender Road Trip - Journey of a lifetime
Iceland is home to a unique building technique using turf for roofing and insulation from the bitter elements. The church pictured is from and was the last church built in this style in Iceland. It lies on the Ring Road between the towns of Hof and Hofn. Note the lumpy ground surrounding the church. These were the graves… So much for 6 feet under. Down the road from the turf church we came upon another truly remarkable, pair of jaw dropping Iceland experiences.
Jokulsarlon is a glacial lagoon bordering Vatnajokull National Park. It developed into the lake after the glacier started receding from the edge of the Atlantic Ocean and has grown at varying rates because of melting glaciers. There is now a. Seeing crystal clear chunks and blocks of glacial ice set against a coal black beach definitely makes you suspect fantastical things might really be possible in such a magical land like Iceland. Hollywood must think so too. The next morning we headed out again, continuing east counterclockwise on the Ring Road with the forecasted promise of sunshine which we had heard from two sources optimistic locals, as well as our weather app.
But, alas, the clouds did lift! And we rejoiced! This is no embellishment… when the sun came out, Iceland suddenly went from beautiful to absolutely stunning. We could see up the mountain sides more than feet, and see miles away! Every bend in the road was now a fresh surprise—waterfalls leapt off the cliffs and tumbled from high up, mountaintops were visible to gawk at and appeared everywhere, and the air became crisp and refreshing.
Iceland Hotels and Places to Stay
Only a 25 km detour from the Ring Road, Seyoisfjordur is absolutely worth the detour. Once turning off the Ring Road from Egilsstadir, you ascend a mountain almost immediately, encountering serene lakes, waterfalls and pullouts along the very steep ascent. Once you crest the mountain and you begin your descent, and you get your first glimpse of Seyoisfjordur… a picturesque village lying in the throat of a massive fjord of the same name.
This village oozes the appeal of small-town Iceland with a population of just It is a treat to stroll around in, especially if the sun is shining. Settlement traces back to 8th Century, but the town itself was settled in Like much of Scandinavia, the Icelandic people are incredibly kind and welcoming to all people and have a progressive view. This can be seen in the symbolically painted road leading up to its main church. After a lovely visit to the eastern fjords and Seyoisfjordur, we were again on the Ring Road rounding the corner to turn northward, on our way to our next big stop, the Dettifoss waterfall.
This waterfall is said to be the most powerful in Europe with a volume of cubic meters per second plunging over the edge. It is 45 meters high and meters wide and frequently casts a double rainbow over its raging waters. There are two sides to enter. Also nearby, we were surprised with the opportunity to do some washing up at this literal hot springs shower below, right in the middle of nowhere on the way to Krafla Crater not pictured from Dettifoss. It has a fully operational, ever-lasting hot shower and sink.
Sorry, ladies, no mirror for extra primping, but it did the job and was quite entertaining. Only in Iceland…. After our shower, we needed a good steam so we headed to the mystical world of Hverir, a lunar-like landscape where geology cannot get more raw. Hverir is filled with belching mud cauldrons, steaming vents, and spouting fumaroles.
After the natural offerings on display at Hverir, we were due for total immersion into an actual bath and steam. There are also two steam rooms with geothermal steam rising through floor vents. Tomorrow …to the Arctic….
The Ring Road (66 Degrees North Book 1)
The next morning, before heading north we backtracked slightly to Reykhalio, which is simply saturated with incredible offerings. On the way, we finally got a terrific sheep shot.
There are estimated to be K sheep on the island. There are K people. These sheep are predominately raised for meat, so vegetarians, if you tuck one in your backpack on the way out, they might not notice.
Next stop, one of the most breathtaking waterfalls yet—Godafoss, waterfall of the gods. In , Thorgeir Thorkelsson, the Speaker of the Icelandic parliament and a pagan priest and chieftain, decided in favor of Christianity after a day and night of silent meditation under a fur blanket. After deciding this for an entire country, he himself became Christian and symbolically through his former gods off the waterfall as a symbolic act of conversion. The liquid sunshine continued to gloriously fall upon us so set out for the Storagja Caves—an ancient subterranean cavern complex known for its geometric rock formations and hot spring caves.
We thought we were just going for a gentle stroll among rock features and caves, until Greg spotted a rope going down into a small cravass… upon closer inspection we had unknowingly discovered a hot springs pool inside the cave. Unfortunately our first hot pool discovery was just shy of luke warm, and not quite dippable. We did finally find one that was, and this one came with a ladder to climb down into the pool.
To find the hot pools from the trail simply do have to look around for the rope and ladders which descend into the caves. The detour off the Ring Road up and around the Peninsula took about three hours with short stopovers. We are so glad we made this detour however, because it was a treasure for the senses with breathtaking wild and remote landscapes, rolling mountains and lush green valley landscapes, tiny still secluded and untouristed villages with miles tunnels often single car width two-way with pull-outs used to prevent head-on collisions to connect them.
This most intense tunnel is the one that spits you out at the village of Olafsfjordur, population , a tiny fishing village set in deep mountains with a history of isolation from the rest of the world, at least until these tunnels came to be. Of course, the midnight sun did not permit us to see those! The next village, Siglufjordur, also known as the northernmost town in Iceland, was equally as charming.
This former herring fishing village once had a population of 3, but has dwindled to 1, and now relies on other types of fishing for its main industry. Both towns were well worth a stroll through, despite the consistent rainfall.
For the record, you can visit the Arctic Circle in Iceland on nearby Grimsey Island, but this requires a ferry ride with a hefty ferry fee. For us, the fiery orange lighthouse, which created a brilliant pop against the gloomy greyscape, would have to do. But, after a night spent camping nearby in the village of Hofsos, in 40 degree Fahrenheit temperatures, we were gifted something amazing in the morning when we awoke…. And it lasted the entire day! Products of this store will be shipped directly from China to your country. Products of this store will be shipped directly from Japan to your country.
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Epic Iceland Land Rover Defender Road Trip - Journey of a lifetime
Important Links. Follow Us. App Download. Famous for the Hopewell Rocks, we drove along the Bay of Fundy and witnessed giant sea cliffs plunging into the sea. There are secluded and isolated beaches, it crosses through the Fundy National Park where you can hike to waterfalls and lookouts and it drives along one of the longest undeveloped coastlines in North America. If you love getting away from it all and having a rip-roaring adventure, the Cowboy Trail is for you. This is one of our favourite road trips we've ever done. Following the route through Southern Alberta is easy, well marked and filled with activities and beauty.
From the lunar landscape of the badlands to where the great plains meet the Rocky Mountains, you'll be driving through the varied landscapes that will take your breath away.