Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Europe 2016: Iceland

Iceland has always been on my list of places that I really really want to go to. So when this trip was becoming a reality, I saw that IcelandAir does this "extend a layover" thing and that was about all I needed. So we added 48 hours to our trip before going to Germany.

Obviously it was amazing. So natural and beautiful and not packed full of people. But holy moly was it expensive. I'm not sure how long we could have lasted! But it was incredible and I'm so glad we went.

We took a red-eye and landed at about 7 a.m. Although we were tired, we knew we needed to power through the tired and make it to nap time. So we did! Our first stop was at this bridge between continents. This is where the North American and Eurasian plates meet. And as a geography major, I find this extremely AWESOME. Thankfully (and surprisingly) so did the entire family! Win!

Then we took a puffin boat tour. Lots of puffins!

And check out how cool the stuff the airline gave us is. I just love the scandinavian style.

Then we just walked around the city. A lady at the boats gave us a whole loaf of bread (which is worth about 7 US dollars) and the boys loved feeding all the ducks. They loved throwing the bread at my feet, making me freak out.

We took an elevator up this church for a sweet view of town.

The adults took a nap during the day, but the boys did not. This is them sleeping...at 8 o'clock. It never got dark there. Yes, the sun went down, but not enough down. But as we were all super tired, it didn't really matter.

The next day we took a long driving tour. Our first stop was this place where the mid-Atlantic ridge comes above the surface of the earth. People scuba there! We just like the sign. Notice our clothes. In July. I must live there.

Then we took a hike through the split. It's pretty amazing, no?

And of course we had to stop by Geysir. Such a difference experience than seeing Old Faithful. We could get much closer, it wasn't mobbed with people, and it went off every three minutes! Cool!

True to geysers form, they stank!

Then Gulfoss waterfall. So loud!

Finally we hiked down into a volcanic crater.

Once we were done driving, we went to a local public pool. Iceland has tons of public pools (more per capita than any other country, maybe?) heated with their geothermal energy. So even though the air temperature was in the 50s, the water was in the 80s! It wasn't fancy or spa-like, but fun. And of course, the boys loved it. But I couldn't take pictures because taking pictures of people in swimsuits can be weird. The next morning we got up and flew to Germany!