THE GOLDEN CIRCLE TOUR!
Up early for the bus pickup from the hotel, As a part of the holiday package we went on the Reykjavik Excurssions tour. Our guide was incredible, we learnt so much throughout the day, he was very interesting to talk & listen to.
While on the bus you could see the steam coming out through the landscape, truly is the land of fire & ice. We noticed this day how erratic the weather was, one minute snow the next sunshine and then rain and wind!. It didn’t dampen our spirits though!
First we stopped off at Fridheimar which is a huge greenhouse and culltivation centre for tomatoes and cucumbers. They use the geothermal heat of Iceland to their advantage in gtting the best crops. It is all pesticide free. When we arrived we were greeted by the owner with a short talk on what they are trying to accomplish and what they do. He also introduced us to some of the bee’s which live in the greenhouse which pollinate the plants. You can then look around the greenhouse and grounds or enjoy some of the fresh produce they cook up in the cafe.
Next it was to the Geysir geothermal area. Geysir literally means Gusher. Stokkur can reach a height of 30m or 98ft tall and errupts every 4-8 minutes. It has been active for around 800 + years and earthquakes in the region can simulate and change activity. We were here the longest as we all stopped for lunch here too.
Next it was on to Gullfoss or Golden Falls. The river Hvita runs through the falls and into a 32m or 105 ft deep crevice. It has been vistited since 1875 and was nearly destroyed in the 1920s when investors wanted to dam the Hvita. They were unsuccessful and it has been a nature reserve since 1975. You could hear the roar of the water before you could see the magnificent fall.
Lastly we stopped of in Thingvellir National Park, where we saw the America and Europe tectonic plates. These plates pull apart at a rate of a few cm a year. A path runs along the fault between the cliff tops. The park is 23km East of Reykjavik. The Vikings established the worlds first ever democtratic parliament here which was called the ‘Althingi/Althing’ in AD 930, meetings were conducted outside and all that remains are some stone foundations. It was also the first National Park.
I would highly recommend going around the Golden Circle, it was alot to see and take in in one day but really worth it. The landscape of Iceland is truly incredible and beautiful.