This is part two of our tour around Iceland. Go to part 1.
Driving to Akureyri
The road to Akureyri passes more interesting landscapes.
We stopped to visit this church built out of local stone. We spoke at length with the custodian. The conversation turned to Icelandic culture, sagas, and heritage. She told us she could trace back her genealogy to the first settlers who arrived in the 9th century. We were amazed. She shrugged and told us “In Iceland, there is an app for that.”
River cutting a canyon.
Happy hour at our campsite near Akureyri. Diana is making rum and coke, and crackers with caviar paste. Yum!
Houses along a fjord.
Hverir geothermal area
About 85 km east of Akureyri is a geothermal area. Here, steam rises from the ground, the air is filled with the smell of sulphur, and the earth is stained red and yellow with minerals precipitated from the hot brines. We stopped at a geothermal plant by a cyan-colored lake.
We hiked up the hill above Hverir, called Namafjall
Diana hiking Namafjall.
We hiked up to the rim of a nearby cinder cone.
Not far from Hverir is Krafla, the site of a recent eruption. A short hike across a snowfield brought us to a lavaflow where the ash was still blowing around in the wind.
Sulphur pool, Krafla.
We visited nearby Dettifoss, another gigantic waterfall.
Beyond Hverir, Iceland’s ringroad heads straight east, bypassing the northeast coast. In the interior, the scenery becomes even more stark. The grasslands along the coast give way to mosses, which in turn give way to lichen, which give way to bare rocks.
Lunar landscapes in Iceland’s interior.
Iceland’s highway 1 – the ring road.
We spent the night camped at Egilstathir. It was a cold night, and in the morning we visited the local sundlaug – the geothermal swimming pool. The hot water perked us up. We had some treats from the local bakery, and thus fortified we were on our way. We decided to check out Seydisfjordur, a town on the east coast.
The snow on the alpine plateaus was melting, and the creeks and waterfalls were roaring.
Fishing boat, Seydisfjordur.
The East Fjords area is exceptionally beautiful. If I were to do this trip again, I’d spend more time here.
I love taking pictures of these farmhouses. They look so small compared to the immensity of the landscape around them.
These horses wander unfenced pastures and they appear to be feral.
Continue to the final part of our tour of Iceland.