Monday, June 1, 2009

April 6 - The Golden Circle

Today was our big "tourist day"; we rented a car and started out on a tour of the major geographic sites of the Reykjavik area. Before we hit those we made a very important stop at the Alafoss Outlet Store and bought unspun wool, something you can't buy in Canada. Then we were off. The countryside is a lot like northern Canada.. low tundra and snow capped mountains; except these mountains are volcanic.

We stopped at Thingvalier for lunch and a walk around. It's the sight of the first Icelandic Parliament (the oldest in the world) and also marks the boundary of the North American and European plates. The split between the plates has created a rather dramatic looking rift beside a swiftly moving river. The plates are slowly moving apart and cause Iceland to grow by about 2 cm per year!

Oh, I mentioned lunch. It was here we decided to try some Icelandic "delicacies"

Haroifiskur: dried fish with butter
Our verdict: a bit chewy, but good

Hakari: fermented (rotten) shark..
our verdict: I thought it was chewy and a very strong cheese. I could grow to like it.
Mary couldn't even swallow it.

We continued up the road to Geyser... yes the one that named all other geysers.. well actually we were more interested in Strokkur which is active - Geyser stopped being active many years ago. Further up the road the sleet started .. but being good Canadian girls, we still managed to run out and look at Gullfoss the waterfall nearby. The sleet and snow was pretty miserable so we didn't stay long. We drove home via Sulfoss in the south which is near where we went horse riding before. It seems Sulfoss has the worst weather (but does have pizza with bananas!).

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