Monday, October 8, 2018

Iceland, Land of Wonder, Redux

This was our second trip to the fascinating country of Iceland (see post of 9/20/12). We made repeat visits to some favorites, such as the touristy but fun Blue Lagoon. We dined at Luna restaurant at the Lagoon on this occasion, and it was very good. Recommended for those who want to linger over a nice lunch and then enjoy the warm waters.

Cocktails available!

As we had taken the famous Golden Circle tour already, we focused this trip on enjoying the countryside. It did not disappoint! 

                                                       Lighthouse south of Reykjavik
The hardy Icelandic horse. It is illegal to import other horses into the country. 

Beautiful coastline 

Rural church 

Hakarl, or fermented shark meat, is viewed as a delicacy in Iceland. The shark is cured and then hung to dry and ferment for at least 4-5 months. I tried some with the traditional accompanying shot of brennivin, a local liquor known as Black Death, brewed from potato and flavored with caraway. As potent as the Black Death tasted, it was not quite strong enough to wash the ammonia flavor of fermented shark away. Like climbing Mt. Fuji, a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Only a disturbed individual would do it again. 

A fascinating geographical feature may be visited in Iceland--the mid-Atlantic Ridge, which marks the boundary between the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates. Iceland is the only country in the world where such a phenomena may be viewed. 

The export of codfish heads to Africa, where they are used in making soups, is big business in Iceland. Racks of dried heads are visible on drives through the countryside. 

Shipwrecks line the rugged coast south of the capitol. 

Below is an old wooden corral used by farmers to separate grazing sheep into pens denoting each owner's herd

Steam powers the country (see earlier post for details) and geysers are common

And....last but not least, our favorite hot dog stand in the world!!

                                                       Home of the tasty lamb hot dog!

A glimpse of the Northern Lights 

Iceland makes for a great visit on its own, or a convenient gateway to Europe. Friendly people, a unique landscape, and interesting food--always a fun combination! For a reliable taxi driver and a great guy, contact Ulfar Thor at 354-8973707. 

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