Saturday, July 25, 2015

Iceland - Channel your inner Explorer

I've been lucky enough to visit many places over the last decade.  I've experienced many an extraordinary landscape in fabulous foreign destinations.
I've looked.
I've seen.
I've noticed.
Then gone.
We all carry different experiences inside us. We see things differently.


Exotic unspoiled paradise or a microcosm of an angry planet from thousands of years ago?  Either way you care to look at it Iceland will stay with you.  An impression that will not soon be forgotten.

Iceland awaits for the suppressed explorer inside all of us.  Channel your inner Lewis & Clark or your Hiram Bingham and get ready for the adventure of a lifetime. Over a hundred volcanos dot the landscape.  Monstrous glaciers.  Lava flows as far as the eye can see.  Bubbling hot springs.  Steam vents shooting forth sulphur based gases that remind you of the worst rotten eggs you have ever smelt in your life.  Geyser's launching high into the air.  Apocalyptic scenes beyond your wildest imagination.  That is Iceland my friends.

For thirteen days I circled the entire island.  I saw spectacular waterfalls like Godafoss, Dynjandi and Detifoss that simply take your breath away.  The original geyser (yes the one that penned the term).  Geothermal fields at Lake Myvatn that looked like something from the end of times with hissing steam vents and bubbling hot pools of mineral water.  Glaciers that looked like tidal waves of ice careening down high valleys. Iceland.

Oh and did I mention wildlife?  The island doesn't have a wide diversity of wildlife, but what it has will wow you.  The most beautiful horses on the planet. That is saying something coming from someone living in the heart of cutting horse country, but the Icelandic horses are something special.  The ever famous and ever so cute puffin.  More beautiful white swans than I could ever thought have existed.  A wildflower very similar to our Texas bluebonnet, but twice as big and twice as beautiful.  Oh and how about the cutest little arctic fox you have ever seen?

As with all things so beautiful Iceland does have its thorns.  Everything is expensive.  Meals, lodging, rental cars, gas. Everything.  The roads can be a bit challenging especially if you get off the Ring Road.  We had two flat tires and probably deserved more in all honesty given the roads we explored.

You always want a simple answer to everything to make it all make sense.  I don't know.  Iceland is just constantly surprising.  How can all this exist in one place? On one single island?  Iceland is magnificent.  I never thought I would find a place more enchanting than Peru, but I must admit Iceland blows Peru away.  Check back for my articles on the Wonderful Waterfalls of Iceland and The Wildlife of Iceland coming soon,  both articles will be stuffed full of beautiful pictures from the two week adventure.

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