Last day of our stay in Iceland .
A journey that we are not about to forget.
Small pinch in the heart this morning when we realize that this is our last day in Iceland. Once again the sun is not at the rendezvous this morning, and it will unfortunately not show up later that day.
Plan A, was to go on a hike in the Reykjadalur Valley. The trail of the steaming valley goes for 3km (1 way), and it takes about 2 hours for the whole hike. It was raining without interruption and we had to found a plan B, to still enjoy the day (Blue Lagoon).
While driving West, we were able to do the things we had skipped on the way, a few days before.
On the flank of the Eyjafjallajökull volcano, recently erupted, you will find a group of waterfalls, starting with Seljalandsfoss. A large parking lot, a very short distance from the main road, and a well traced path. It needed no more, to make it one of the emblematic places of Iceland, found in every book and brochure.
2 things to remember :
- as mentionned previously, Jeans are not on the list of clothes advocated in winter, it is a matter of preferences, but you may end up like that.
- Do not underestimate the danger when you drive. We saw, at the intersection with the M1, at this exact spot, 2 cars in pieces. We remind you, the roads are really narrow.
If you continue a little further, you will arrive at Gljúfrabúi Waterfall, also called “the secret” waterfall. Gljúfrabúi which is 40 m tall, fall into a deep chasm, the front being blocked by a huge rock, so that only the very top of it is visible. You can climb and see it from above. Or you can take of your shoes and wade the river down in the canyon.
People used to believed that the cliffs were the residences of “hidden people” .
When we finished visiting the area, we headed West. Reykjanes peninsula lies on a junction between two tectonic plates, the European and American ones. The Best way to realize it, is to reach Sandvik, where you can find “the Bridge between two continents”. It is a small footbridge over the fissure, the plates are continuously drifting apart and fissures form due to stresses created by the plates moving away from each other. This is one of the best spot to realise how the continental drift theory works.
Mid Atlantic Ridge :
The moon like landscape, is an open door to immagination. Iceland is actually the only place in the world where you can observe an oceanic ridge. Usually at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean, it rises above sea level at the Reykjaves Peninsula.
Drifting 2 cm apart from each other each year.
Along the road you might see a lot of them. Icelandic people were forced to solve a housing construction/materials problem , and what they did was copy a solution used by some burrowing animals.
Last but not least, we all saw so many photos of it.
It is according to National Geographic among the 25 wonders of the world. The setting is unique with all the black lava, the milky blue water, and the clouds of steam.
Located just one hour from Reykjavik, this is the most visited attraction in Iceland, a perfect detour, especially with the new stopover possibilities offered by Airlines companies. Arriving near the place, one notices by far the thick white smoke of the geothermal power station, and the smell of sulfur that emits there.
Before you even get to the Blue lagoon, you can see on the left side of the road a large area of milky blue water, arising from it, black matt lava. It is very tempting to make a stop, to be able to take a few pictures, but the road is very narrow and the large number of buses, makes it a perilous task. You should rather stop at the car park provided for this purpose a little further, then come back on your steps if necessary.
We spent a total of three hours in this unreal place. The lagoon is really bigger than what we imagined, the night falls and the surroundings are then imperceptible.you find yourself immerse in a sea of smoke and lava.
The confort pack we took, will cost you 55 €.
- Algae and Silica mud mask.
- First complementary drink at the bar.
You should know that availability is limited and a pre-booking is preferable, also in winter.
It is on everyone’s bucket list and on all Top 10 things to do. Blue Lagoon is a man-made lagoon, fed by their unique source of geothermal seawater and water is renewed every 40 hours.
It is written on the Blue Lagoon website, but you can never be too informed. They try to warn you about the hair thing but it seems you have to experience it for yourself to believe it. If you take enough precautions not to wet your hair, there is no issues at all. And, worse to worse, just use a lot of conditioner, they will be back to normal after 3 shampoos.
The water is rich in minerals especially silica and sulphur (wellknown for treatment of psoriasis). The water might affect items of jewellery but does not harm your hair, but it will make it dry. So use plenty of conditioner, before and after you enter the water.
You should program your visit at Blue Lagoon on the way to the airport if you have a early arrival or an afternoon or evening departure,. As it is way closer to Keflavik than any other activities, you will save time and money.
In case you do want to have some fun with your 4X4, this is definitely a good “road” to drive, we would love to go back and take it with a quad. But be careful, by the end of the road, the soil is quite soft in case of rain.
I do not think we could have found, a more convenient hotel before leaving Iceland, it was just 1 Km away from the rental car office, and about 10 minute from the airport.
There is a souvenir shop, and a 24H supermarket near by. From the loud music heard in the street when leaving to the airport, there must be a discotheque quite close also.
In a nutshell:
Blue Lagoon : 47 km from Reykjavik, it is the perfect day trip to relax, after so many emotions accumulated in Iceland. There are regular shuttles to and from Blue Lagoon, Reykjavík, and Keflavík International Airport.
- Latitude: N +63.881363 (63°52’52.9068″N)
- Longitude: W -22.453115 (-22°27’11.214″W)
Open most of the year between 08 AM and 08 PM, but untill 00 AM in the summer. You can find all details on the website below.
Telephone : +354 420 8800
Website : www.bluelagoon.com
- Hotel Keilir :
Address : Hafnargata 37, 230 Keflavík, Islande
Telephone : +354 420 9800
Website : http://eng.hotelkeilir.is
Rental Car : Lagoon Car Rental
Adress : Keflavík : Smiðjuvellir 3230 Reykjanesbaer Iceland Reykjavik : Sundagarðar 8104 ReykjavikIceland
Telephone : +354 515 2220
Website : www.lagooncarrental.is