2022-07-13 Adding pictures to the reports of our trip to Iceland
I created a flickr album Iceland 2022 - Our trip to Iceland in April/May 2022 and linking to the pictures from the right report was still kind of hard because it's a complicated bit of html with repetitions and chances of errors. The solution: make the computer help me. The flickr API allows me to fetch data about an album and about the pictures in that album, so I spent an evening writing some perl to get links to all the pictures in the album with thumbnails. Now most days of Complete reports of our trip to Iceland have been enhanced with pictures.
2022-06-19 Complete reports of our trip to Iceland
Recently I realized I am quite enjoy stories and videos of travel. As we had our own travel adventure a month ago I decided to write about it extensively as the memory was still fresh and I wanted to mentally relive that trip and get some experience in writing about my travels. With some help of the pictures, the list of hotel reservations and checking the maps there is now a complete set of stories of this holiday. I backdated the stories to the days they happened which was for me the logical choice. The reports per day:
In general this was a really good vacation. Iceland has the kind of raw nature and geology I enjoy visiting. The people are really friendly and helpful. Compared to our earlier visits it is clear Iceland is more prepared for visiting tourists without turning into a tourist trap. Iceland has turned even more cashless than in earlier visits. With a credit card and a debit card you can pay almost everything, even contactless international payments work. We saw a problem with paying with Android pay after a few days so we stopped doing that. Mobile phone and mobile data coverage is near-perfect along the roads. It's probably a good idea to not rely on mobile phone when you go on inland hiking trails but as long as you are sticking to paved and gravel roads there is lots of coverage. The first pictures have been integrated, for some days I need to copy more pictures from the camera to flickr to add these to the collection.
- Trip to Iceland day 1
- Trip to Iceland day 2
- Trip to Iceland day 3
- Trip to Iceland day 4
- Trip to Iceland day 5
- Trip to Iceland day 6
- Trip to Iceland day 7
- Trip to Iceland day 8
- Trip to Iceland day 9
- Trip to Iceland day 10
- Trip to Iceland day 11
- Trip to Iceland day 12
- Trip to Iceland day 13
- Trip to Iceland day 14
- Trip to Iceland day 15
2022-05-08 Trip to Iceland day 15
Our flight was leaving Keflavik International airport at 07:40 so we wanted to walk through the door of the airport at 05:40 and return our car before that time. So the alarm went of at 05:00 and we put everything in the car and drove to the airport rental return area. Hertz has a huge parking area for returning rental cars so we parked in that area and walked to the return office. The office was still closed so we dropped the key in the key return box and walked to the main airport building. There we used a luggage cart and went to the check-in for our flight back home. The check-in was a bit of waiting but nothing really bad. After check-in it was time to go through the security check and even with a bit of extra checking of our luggage we were past that point fast. We found ourselves in the main waiting area for departing flights with lots of time to spare, so we finally had time to eat some breakfast and get an extra fresh juice. The flight back was fine, I decided to watch the film 'Rush Hour' from the entertainment system. Back in the Netherlands temperatures were higher again! We took the train from Schiphol airport back to our house.
2022-05-07 Trip to Iceland day 14
After breakfast we left the apartments and walked towards the center of the city and the main shopping street. Most of the shops were still closed in the morning. We changed plans a bit and visited the Reykjavík Park and Zoo which was more of a botanic garden. We tried to hop on a bus to get there but that was the first time we actually needed cash money. Trying to get the app for the Reykjavik bus working with a Dutch credit card also did not work. So we had to get actual money from an ATM to pay for bus trips. My wife and son went swimming for a while and we went back to the city center, now open. We walked along Laugavegur, which is the main street of Reykjavik. We also visited the Hallgrimskirkja which is a magnificent church building. Several signs were there to remind the tourists that it was also a house of worship.
2022-05-06 Trip to Iceland day 13
We woke up in Eldhestar hotel and had breakfast. My wife and son had booked a horse ride for the afternoon, so we had some hours before that started and visited Hveragerði. The area around Hveragerði has had several serious earthquakes. The library and shops building had an exhibition on the 2008 earthquake with pictures and stories from eyewitnesses. The building that this is all in has a scary detail of its own: during construction a huge crack in the earth was found right between the foundations. The decision was made to not build the 4 floor tower nearby and adapt the building to deal with earthquakes. Still the 2008 earthquake caused damage. To the north-east of Hveragerði is an area with lots of geothermal activity which can be hiked easily.
2022-05-05 Trip to Iceland day 12
We left from Lækjaborgir Guesthouse and started driving along the ring road again. We stopped in Vik for a visit to the local souvenir shop. When we visited Vik in 2006 it was very rainy and cold so we were looking for warm gloves. The gloves were found in a small shop. Between 2006 and 2022 this small shop was replaced by a huge store with all kinds of Iceland souvenirs. And they still had gloves, but we had brought our own. Along the coast were some great views. The erosion of lava rocks is very interesting. We stopped at Skógafoss Waterfall which is so high the last 50 meters before the fall you're already walking in a big spray. There is a path to climb to the top but we decided against it as it's quite high up. We stopped at the Lava centre in the afternoon. The Lava centre has exhibitions around the very active volcanoes on Iceland including reports on the 'famous' Eyjafjallajökull eruption in 2010. Outside of Iceland it mainly made the news for causing massive disruption to air travel because of the ash that was in the air which made flying impossible. The Lava centre had the Iceland side of the experience which was with disruptions everywhere due to ash falling down all over, and people who looked out the window to see if the rumbling volcano had changed and seeing the first explosive eruptions. The Lava centre has a lot of explanations on how volcanic eruptions work and how certain influences can change them completely. And it turned out the person behind the cash register in the entrance also had extensive knowledge of volcanoes so we chatted with them about our views. The Lava centre also has an observation deck where you can see a few of the big volcanoes of Iceland in the distance. But due to rain and thick clouds there was nothing interesting visible.
2022-05-04 Trip to Iceland day 11
We had breakfast in the Framtíð Apartments cabin and got going again. The Framtíð hotel wasn't staffed very well as there wasn't someone available to return the cabin key. Eventually a cleaning person showed up and took our key. This day was again going to be a long drive. The Iceland ring road is quite close to the Atlantic Ocean here in parts. The ring road is also close to the mountains and glaciers, there just is not a lot of space for the road here. The weather was warmer and with a lot more sun than the day before. We were glad to have sunglasses while driving and on stops we could do with less layers.
2022-05-03 Trip to Iceland day 10
2022-05-02 Trip to Iceland day 9
First we had breakfast at the guesthouse, which was included. It was reasonably busy at the breakfast and we chatted with some tourists from the United States of America who turned out to be from the city of Las Vegas in Nevada. When they asked if I had ever been in Las Vegas I told of my red-eye flight in the US in 1997 between Michigan and San Fransisco where I had a stopover in Las Vegas in the middle of the night and the daylight saving time in the US started during walking around the airport in Las Vegas which was very weird. And even in the Las Vegas airport you can gamble! It's fun to recall old travel stories. We left for a daytrip from Eldá Guesthouse, Reykjahlið for a drive around Myvatn, the mosquito lake, and surrounding areas. Beforehand we thought we would maybe rent bicycles to get around Myvatn but with temperatures around 0 degrees Celcius it was too cold for that option so we stuck to the rental car. Our first visit was to Krafla Power Plant which is a huge geothermal energy based power plant. The use of geothermal energy means they do vent some sulfuric acid gasses all the time. So we drove on the road through the powerplant with the windows closed and the ventilation set close to the outside world and we only stopped on a viewpoint high above the powerplant where you don't smell it that much.
2022-05-01 Trip to Iceland day 8Items with tag holiday before 2022-05-01
We left from Sunnuhlid houses apartments. There is a toll tunnel in the ringroad from the Akureyri bay to the east but Sunnuhlid houses is so far to the North it is easier to take the old route around the mountain. We could see why the tunnel was built: the old route was a high and winding route through the mountains, which could be difficult to keep open in winter conditions. Milady Landy. Daddi's Pizza which had a nice selection of pizza. I drank a beer from Einstök Beer Co. because I remembered that name from the Reykjavik grapevine youtube channel we followed to see the latest on the eruption of the Fagradalsfjall volcano in 2021. Weather conditions changed a lot during the day: we started with sunny weather near Akureyri but we ended with freezing temperatures.