Ring Road Day 2/A Beach & Glaciers

Trip Start May 13, 2012
1
5
9
Trip End May 20, 2012


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, East,
Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Random thoughts:
I really like how the showers turn on and off with one switch and adjust the temperature with the other. That way I can just set it and leave it at the temperature I prefer for the next time I shower... Wish I had that in my house.

Highlights of grocery shopping in Vik:
-Dried fish
-Doritos 'Cool American' flavor
-An entire aisle (in a 6 aisle) grocery store dedicated to yarn/wool.
-The cash register people switch mid-check out right on time (11am)

Bags of ice are free at gas stations.

The baby lambs are really cute. I realize I sound like a little girl saying this... But c'mon have you seen them?!

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I must say, staying in guest houses in the middle of nowhere really allows for me to blog a decent amount at the end of the day/evening. Especially when your sister takes 45 minute showers. I'm always surprised we have wifi, I hope that doesnt come off as snobbish... It's just surprising since we are the only building for miles in a very desolate area.

Ok, let's begin.

Well, we started the morning with a standard beakfast in Iceland (from my experience) at the guesthouse that consisted of ham, cheese, cucumbers, tomatoes, some fruit, a very runny yogurt with cereal, toast and fish spread.

After a late start we hit the road around 1030am and headed to the grocery store (summarized above).

The beach near Vik was our first stop of the day. Must say, I was quite impressed. I had high expectations since it's been ranked in the top 10 beaches in the world. The weather was great today too, not tropical beach weather obviously but it was 45 degrees, sunny and wind was only 5mph.

Aftrer Vik I took over the task of driving for the first time on this trip. Iceland is now the third country I have driven (drove?, ugh I hate English) in... The other 2 being Canada and obviously the USA.

After leaving Vik it was on to a day of seeing glaciers. It was the first time in my life I had ever seen a glacier. Apparently 90% of the people go to the first park (can't remember the name) for a waterfall and 10% go for the glacier. We went for the glacier.

The first glacier we saw was Svinafellsjokull. Batman Begins and Game of Thrones were both filmed on this glacier. We ate a lunch we packed (ham/pepperoni/cheese sandwiches) from our warm car before venturing out to the glacier. I actually climbed down the cliff/valley to get on the glacier. This was probably a bad idea... I was ignoring signs on the way down that said glacier acces for experienced glacier guides. Eventually I made it to where the glacier was grinding against the land. No one else followed me. I definitely didn't go out far on it at all, seeing huge cracks straight to freezing water was a bit sobering... Not to mention a sign dedicated to people who died on the glacier in 2007. After returning to the car we headed to the next place of interest, Jokulsarlon (aka glacier bay). There we took a amphibious boat out to into the bay. The tour guide informed us the icebergs in the bay were made of 1,000 year old ice and once they break off from the glacier and into the bay they take 2 years to melt. Also, we got to eat some of the ice straight out of the water. The guide recommended it with whiskey since the ice is more dense than your normal freezer ice. After finishing up there, we drove across the road to a huge beach. We were the only people on the beach, seems pretty typical here. Once playing around with blocks of ice that washed up on the beach got old it was time to eat. It was off to Hofn for dinner.

Hofn--population around 1600 (maybe the biggest city we have been in since Reykjavik). We went to dinner at some nice restaurant that was only open from 1800 to 2200. I chose the langoustine since they boasted to have the best. My sister also got langoustine, but just the tails, my dad had duck and my mom had lamb. Icelandic people freaking love lamb. Before the food came out we all took a shot Brennivin (black death). I didn't think it was as rough as everyone else in my family did, but it wasn't smooth either. We drove around the city errr town after dinner. My dad ran into the first rude person on this trip... some woman that cut him in line at a gas station. Appalling behavior from an Icelander.

We are staying in some guest house a few km outside of Hofn. Seems like we are in cabins with a nice view, although I guess it kinda always is here. Now it's time to get ready for bed even though I'm not tired and the sun is out. One of the best parts of this trip is the landscape/scenery is constantly changing, I love that. I can't wait to see what tomorrow brings.
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