Thingvellir, Geysir, Gullfoss
Before I start with sightseeing, some words to our trip. I have been in Iceland 4 times before and had a good idea where to go and what I wanted to see. For years I wanted to show this marvellous country to my family and finally I considered Shoam for old enough (she is 7 years old now) to go to Iceland by bicycle. My preferred mode of travel - to go by foot - unfortunately is not possible (yet) because I am not able to carry all necessary food and equipment. I checked 4 items of luggage in the airport: the bicycle bag weighed 44kg, the trailer 33kg and 2 panniers at 7kg. You see, why I prefer a bicycle....
Have I heard the word 'CAR' there ? What a ridiculous suggestion. Humans have 5 senses. Out of a car you can only see. You have disabled your senses of smell, touch, hearing, taste and with the high speed of a car you won't even see the small flower at the side of the road....
Now, Sam was only able to get 3.5 weeks holiday. A bit short for a propper bike trip. So we decided, that Shoam and me, would leave 2 weeks earlier, cycle all the way to the Myvatn and meet her there (she would take the bus from Reykjavik), to continue our holiday together. My parents were planning to join us at the same time.
Well, here we were, the first days were quite hard. We arrived after midnight in Iceland, needed till 3am to fix the bike and get to the closest campsite. At the next day only 35km to Hafnarfjordur, we were tired and the headwind wasn't helping either. One day later we wanted to go all the way to Thingvellir. The road looked easy on the map, but when we finally reached the point, where it was supposed to go downhill to the Lake,
we should learn a lesson about Icelandic road building. If there is a hill, the road will go straight over it. And this road had a small mountain range! 15% up and down for about 5 - 10 times (I gave up counting). When we finally managed to reach the lake, we were so exhausted, that we pitched the tent at the first little river and fell to bed.
Thingvellir (you have already seen 2 pictures of this place (bicycle & plate tectonics) was 1000 years ago the seat of the Icelandic parliament. Here the Chieftains of Iceland met once a year, held court and decided about new laws. Early democracy! (Sorry George, America isn't the first democracy and by the way: "Democracy" is a Greek word... Guess why????)
Geysir on the next day. An other big touri - attraction in Iceland. I had seen it over 20 years ago and although the masses of tourists were a bit disturbing, the Geysir still has the old magic in it. Deep down the water is heated to a temperature of over 250°C, the water unable to boil because of the pressure from above. Finally the pressure is so big, that it pushes the water column above up to 50m in the air.
While for most of us, it seems to be enough to take a photo, or like me try to capture the moment in insufficient words, Shoam showed me the 'Geysir dance'. What better way is there, to describe motion, than with motion? And where is our childhood gone?
Just 10km to the north, the next big tourist attraction. Most travel here, to complete the 'Golden Circle' (Reykyavik, Thingvellir, Geysir, Gulfoss). All in one day, every stop for just an hour or so.
We were a bit in a rush as well, Shoam tired from a day of cycling (and dancing) and me disappointed by the overcast weather, we left after the obligatory walks to start the Kjöllur route.