27
Jul-2016

EXPLORING / Iceland: The Magic Golden Circle

I booked my flight to Iceland pretty much two weeks before leaving

All I did before leaving for Iceland, is buy a lonely planet, find a hostel for the first night and quickly scroll through some pictures to get an idea of where to go. Not knowing where to start, I sat in the plane and was still just getting used to the idea that I was one my way to Iceland. The week before I was in an amazing place in France, where I didn’t use my phone, internet and I didn’t want to do any planning. Getting used to enjoying every second as it is before thinking about the future.

Meaning, when I got to Reykjavik I had no clue what would be my first thing to do. I got to the hostel, getting used to the chilly but sunny 8 degrees outside (just coming back from 25) and starting a stroll around Reykjavik. Before going to bed I enjoyed the amazing view over the ocean and decided to have a go at the Golden Circle the next morning.

Reykjavik Sunset

As I already mentioned in my previous post about places not to miss on the South Coast of Iceland, one of the first and easiest to do trips from Reykjavik must be the Golden Circle. It has 3 of the most amazing things you can combine in one day: One of Iceland’s biggest waterfalls, erupting geysers and the beautiful Þingvellir National park.

My first trip in Iceland and I was amazingly excited and just looking around every second, every street we took, every raindrop I saw falling from the sky. And it was rainy, my first whole day. But hey, who cares, any place can be as amazing as it is and can be enjoyed in a different way any time you are there. Anyway, first thing we got to was Gullfoss, a 32 meters high waterfall with 2 falls, one higher than the other.

Gullfoss

Gullfoss

I definitely have a thing for water and waterfalls.. for some reason they get me mesmerized just looking at it. It’s like a never ending circle just flowing and so alive. Every second is different and is influenced by so many factors.

Gullfoss

I’ve been playing around with the exposure time to make it more and less smooth. I kinda liked the smoothness of the water all well, as in below picture. I think it’s funny to see how looking at the same spot in the water can have a different output, a different perspective but you still capture the same scene.

Gullfoss

The strength of the water towards the rest of the water, towards gravity, towards the sides, creates the effect of water everywhere. Water evaporating into the sky creating a blurry effect. When you look up people are standing there mysteriously in the mist.

Gullfoss

Like I said, a waterfall can keep me locked to it for hours. However! The Golden Circle is called the golden circle for a reason , instead of it just being one amazing waterfall, it was time to get back on the road and follow the circle towards the next amazing natural place..Þingvellir National park. The big park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the stone wall is well known amongst Game of Thrones watchers, it was one of the big filming locations in season 4. Game of Thrones or not, it’s an amazing place to get lost in the little paths and just wander around.

Þingvellir National park

Þingvellir National park

Þingvellir National park

I took pretty much every little side road in the time that I was there, left, right, lower, higher.. There’s a pretty sweet view from the top as well! Over the curling water roads, over the little house, over the soft ground.

Þingvellir National park

Þingvellir National park

Þingvellir National park

It’s funny to think I was here on a relatively cloudy day, wearing my scarf and gloves and I still loved every second outside. Great to feel the breeze and see everything. And hey, in Game of Thrones I don’t think anybody complained about the cold weather ;). Talking about being cold, I suppose that reminded me of warmer places I went to in the same day. Where the water coming from the earth is about 80 to 100 degrees: Geysir.

Geysir

Geysir

The very active geothermal fields in the area of Haukadalur in the South of Iceland are home to both the most famous ‘Geysir’ and the smaller ‘Strokkur’. Geysir can cause eruptions of up to 70 meters in the air, however it has’t so much in the last years. Strokkur, which is in erupting in the background erupts more frequently, as much as once every few minutes and can cause eruptions up to 30 meters high.

Geysir

Geysir

Geysir

The colors of the water, of the earth around it sometimes made me feel like I’m in different Universe, a different planet. It reminded me a bit of the geothermal areas in New Zealand. Ah, not to forget, at Geysir they have a great visitor centre where you can buy lots of amazing things. My favorite when I was there were the socks. The super warm and soft socks!

As for the Golden Circle, I think it is amazing every time you visit. Every part of the year brings you a different experience, but it definitely shows you the strength of nature in 3 different ways. And that in one day! Which one is the best? I can’t choose..

Love,
Cyn

The Dreamy Discoverer

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  1. Wouter /

    Hoi, we zijn net terug van IJsland, dank voor deze tips en inspiratie, hebben er een fantatische IJsland reis van gemaakt, … blogs online zijn echt de inspiratiebron voor ons, voor mensen die ook naar IJsland willen heb ik alvast een leuke en alternatieve reisgids gevonden die we graag delen http://shop.themediabay.be/nl/reisgidsen/ijsland-rondreis zeker eens proberen, je kan hem gratis inkijken

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