Lava and Lagoons in Iceland.
Today we were up early to catch a bus into Reykjavik, well to the bus station just on the ourskirts. We left with plenty of time so we decided to wander round the nearby park as we were early. We were getting the coach out to the Blue Lagoon, 1 of the main tourist points to tick off in Iceland.
It takes around 45 minutes, back out towards the airport through the space-like lava fields. The coach passengers started murmuring as we spotted steam rising behind some rocks, but it turned out to be the geothermal power plant that feeds the nearby lagoon.
We arrived and it seemed busy as we were given our e-bracelets and towels and shown to the changing rooms. It’s an open changing room so be prepared for nudity! Separate rooms for male and female though. Excited we had our swimwear on and walked out into the freezing air and plunged ourselves in the hot pale blue sulphuric waters.
The water was the perfect temperature and it didn’t seem so busy once we were in the pool. We half walked half swam to the far end and lay down in the shallows with only a few other people nearby. You can relax at a bar, find your own little pool to steam up in, or you can get a silica face mask. It’s fun wiping the stuff all over your face and seeing how funny people look. We wandered a bit more eventually washing our faces in a waterfall (man made) and going back for the algae mask we had paid for.
Our package also included a free drink so we headed to the bar, I was all up for getting a beer until I saw they did super healthy smoothies and decided that would be more fitting.
They were so good and after a day and a half of clouds and rain the sun began to peak through which was ace.
We stayed for another hour or so before we went back, showered and changed and explored a bit of the surrounding area. There are regular buses back with whichever tour operator you go with so there’s no rush.
We got off in Reykjavik near the seafront, looking out over the mountains in the distance again. We walked over to the main street and I got a hotdog from a little shop while Peter got a sandwich. This was our budget lunch and I remember my Dad saying he lived off the hotdogs while they were here as they’re the cheapest thing to eat at £3 a pop.
As we had seen most of central Reykjavik at this point we wandered down a couple of streets we hadn’t seen yet hoping to find some hidden beauty. We found ourselves at the far end of the main street behind the docks and there was a really pretty street with lots of coloured houses, a nice church and some statues/streetart.
It was nice but for such a massive tourist destination there isn’t a lot to see in the centre. It’s definitely a get out into the countryside place to visit, as we would find out the next day.
We were renting a car for our last day to really get out and see what was happening. Peter had planned an Orca spotting boat trip which was canceled due to bad weather so we had to plan out the whole day, having a car made this a lot easier. We walked the entire length of the bay to the car rental, seeing a couple of landmarks on the way.
The house is where the cold war ended, with Gorbachev and Reagan negotiating enough to eventually sign a nuclear treaty. It’s called Hofdi and has quite a varied history.
The views from further along the bay were amazing, the scenery in Iceland is definitely up there with the best I’ve seen.
After picking our car up and going to the supermarket to get stuff for our adventure tomorrow we did some more planning and weather checking. I’d read there was a cool hill we could drive up and see all of Reykjavik from so up we went.
The clouds had come in again and it was freezing up there. The main building with a viewpoint was also closed for renovation so we didn’t linger for long.
I had found a cool sounding pizza place on the main street for tea so we parked up and found it easily. The pizzas were pretty good but again, £60 for two pizzas, garlic bread and 2 soft drinks is ridiculous.
It was then an early night as we had a lot to do tomorrow and I didn’t see the point in spending crazy amounts on a beer or two. I feel like a bit of a cheap skate but sometimes you just can’t justify spending the kind of money Iceland expects.