I’m sad to say this is the last post about our travels in Iceland. As much as I want to re-live every single moment we were there, I realize I have four more countries to share about! Oh how this vacation was a dream come true! Anyway, if you missed parts 1 and 2 of Iceland, you can check them out here and here.
On our last full day in Iceland we still had the car rented so we decided to see the Golden Circle. This is a popular tourist route that many tour companies offer tours of. We figured it would be more enjoyable to be able to see all of the sites of the Golden Circle at our own pace and I’m very glad we made this decision. Our first stop was Pingvellir National Park, specifically the rift valley. This is the same area where we went snorkeling in the 2 degrees water, however, when we were on that tour we didn’t have time to see anything except the crack we were snorkeling in. As you can see it was very beautiful and completely strange to me. I’ve never seen the earth pulling apart like it is in this area.
If you’re a fan of Game of Thrones this scenery might look familiar; apparently they filmed some of it here.
Next on our self guided Golden Circle tour was Gulfoss. A massively gorgeous and powerful waterfall. Notice the tiny specs of people in the background, THAT’s how big Gulfoss is!!!
Below is what Gulfoss looked like when we followed the path down to see the waterfall up close and personal. See the specs of people in the top right hand corner? That’s where we were standing when we took the picture above.
Kerio, a volcanic crater, was next. My favourite thing about this crater was how peaceful it felt to be there. The quietness and stillness were remarkable.
Apparently Kerio is 3000 years old, which is only half as old as the other craters in the area. It is believed that Kerio was formed when a cone volcano erupted and emptied it’s magma. The cone then collapsed inward after the magma was depleted. Of course we just had to climb down to sit by the majestic water. The hike was way steeper than we thought. I may or may not have slipped when I was almost to the bottom!
Last on our exploration of the Golden Circle was the Geysers (sprouting hot springs). One Geyser in this area, Strokkur, actually sprouts every 4-5 minutes! Here it is in mid-sprout:
And yes, this area had a distinct sulfur smell, but since it was our sixth day in Iceland we were more than used to the sulfur smell. The tap water tasted like expensive bottled water, but it smelled like there was a boiled egg stuck somewhere in the pipes.
Believe it or not we saw all of the aforementioned sites before 2pm. We planned our day this way so we could spend the afternoon and evening of our last day in Iceland at the Blue Lagoon.
It was a perfect decision. We floated in the geothermal spa all afternoon and even got massages while in the water. Heaven, absolute heaven.
There was silica available and it was recommended that you apply it to your skin and leave it for 15 minutes before washing it off. Here I am with my silica mask on:
I didn’t know it at the time but it seems that every minute I was in the water my hair was drying out. I wish I was exaggerating, but my hair felt like straw even after I washed it out with the special shampoo and conditioner offered at the Blue Lagoon. Now, don’t get me wrong, this was completely my doing. Blue Lagoon warned that this would happen and suggested wearing a bathing cap. Silly me didn’t see anyone else wearing a bathing cap and figured my hair would be fine. Luckily after 3 days of soaking my hair in oil for an hour each night, it finally started to feel normal again. Crazy eh? I definitely learned my lesson!
But lets be honest, dried out hair and all, our afternoon at the Blue Lagoon was 100% worth it. Most relaxing afternoon I’ve ever had. It was pure bliss. Here I am leaving the Blue Lagoon 😦
Stayed tuned, next travel post will be about Norway 🙂