Postcards from Iceland – 9 (a canyon, a hot bath and a smelly place)

This morning was mainly about driving from the East of Iceland to the North. Unfortunately the weather was against us – again – and not much of the beautiful country was visible. Low clouds and persistent rain made it moody and atmospheric for sure, but I’m also sure we missed some spectacular stuff.

During the journey we detoured off the one and only paved road to visit a canyon with amazing basalt column. Studlagil canyon would have been better seen from water level, but that would have necessitated a) a 10km walk, b) time we didn’t have and c) better weather. We made do with a stupid amount of steps and a semi-decent view. I am not sure it was worth the 30km (there and back) of unpaved road, but it was still interesting.

The drive took su through the highlands of Iceland, which is basically the interior part where people don’t live… only sheep and elusive arctic foxes… although in places such as this…

… there isn’t much at all.

We did find a roadster cafe which is was very quirky but super lovely

Those fried donuts incidentally are utterly delicious. They’re called kleinur… and make the perfect accompaniment for coffee.

The only appointment we had today was with the natural baths at Myvatn. Same thing as the famous Blue Lagoon, just in a different location.

Total bliss.

It rained a little while we were in there, but frankly it didn’t make a difference.

There is a slight smell of sulphur in the air, but it’s not too strong, and for some reason it doesn’t stick to your skin. It’s just fabulously warm and relaxing.

Just a few kilometres from the bath there is the completely bonkers geothermal area of Hverír. Hot bubbly pools, seriously smelly steam… it’s all going on here and it feels a little surreal. Like you’re on a different planet. Very Jurassic, but before the dinosaurs even existed.

The foggy weather made it all the more mysterious.

It’s days like these and places like these that make this country feel alive and so so young around you. Visiting Iceland is like taking a step back in geological time. It’s exciting and interesting and it does remind you that there is so much beauty in this earth that has nothing to with us humans.

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