Iceland, Days 5 & 6: From Glaumbaer to Gunnuhver

Day 5: Ringroad back to Reykjavik and Glaumbaer

After the late night the day before, we got off to a slow start on our last full day in Iceland. Our first stop was the turf houses at Glaumbaer, an open air museum consisting of some traditional Icelandic buildings which were once a farm. Wood was scarce in Iceland, and in historical times, the most common construction method was to make the walls out of turf. Only the fronts, the windows, and interior details were of wood.

Glaumbaer, Iceland

Also in Glaumbaer is a monument to Snorri, the first European born in America. Those Icelandic adventurers might have made it to North America, but they didn’t stay, and Snorri was supposedly buried in the Glaumbaer churchyard. You can see more pictures of Glaumbaer here.

We only had time for one more stop that day, another falls by the name of Kolugljufur. The falls are off the beaten track, in a picturesque gorge a few kilometers away from the ring road on a single lane road which is mostly gravel. But it was worth the trip, a very pretty site, few people. Of the guidebooks we had along, only Lonely Planet mentioned it, and that only in passing. We found out about it googling what to see while driving along the ring road.

Kolugljufur, Iceland

More pictures of Kolugljufur are here.

When we got to Reykjavik, we managed to get lost again, and arrived at our vacation rental late. Unfortunately, I couldn’t call again while trying to navigate — signs in Iceland are kept to a minimum and don’t give you a lot of advance warning. We basically had to slow down coming up to every intersection so that we could read the road signs and see if it was the street we needed. More than once, we passed a street we wanted and had to backtrack.

That was about the only complaint we had about Iceland, though. The people are friendly, the food is great, the sights are stunning, and I’m pretty sure we’ll be back.

The last night in Reykjavik, we went to a somewhat fancier fish restaurant downtown, and I had a whole plate full of lobster tails.

Lobster in Iceland

They are somewhat smaller than the lobster we are used to in North America, more like oversized scampi, but it appears lobster in Iceland is a kind called Norway Lobster, and while it didn’t look quite like I expected, it certainly tasted right.

Day 6: Gunnuhver Hot Springs

On our last day in Iceland, we had originally intended to go to the Blue Lagoon and hang out there until we had to get to the airport. But since we had done the sulfur pool in the north already, we opted for more sight-seeing instead, and head for another geothermal area near Grindavik. It was a great choice. I was surprised how few people were there, given how close it was to Reykjavik and the airport.

Gunnuhver Hot Springs

More pictures of Gunnuhver are here.

And now I am about ready to fly back to Germany, and I have just barely finished my report on Iceland. Oh, well, there wasn’t a lot of spare time on this trip. As fun as it was, I’m looking forward to getting back into a normal routine — and writing again!

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