© 2015 mikeandbrynne

Finishing the Ring Road

We awoke high in the mountains in the midst of a giant cloud so thick we couldn’t even see across the valley. I was thankful we had seen the beauty in the clear late night sun the evening before. Slowly we enjoyed a lazy breakfast of oatmeal and herbal tea as we packed up the old farmhouse and prepared to finish the Ring Road. There were so many fjords and niches that we had to leave to be discovered on future adventures. Up, down and around, we circled through green mountains and valleys populated with cows, sheep, horses and waterfalls. Everyone but Luke seemed subdued knowing that our incredible road trip was coming to an end. As a five year old Luke just wanted to stop and throw rocks in each river and climb every mountain. Luke loves Iceland. He has asked multiple times each day if we can get a cabin in Iceland.

 

Late afternoon we arrived in the northern most capital in the world, Reykjavik. The kids were all clamoring to try the ” world ” famous hot dog stand while I was anxious to see the Harpa opera house that looks like an Escher drawing come to life and the Hallgrimskirja  Church that was built to look like basalt lava flowing. From the top of the church one can see a beautiful view of the city with its colorful corrugated metal roofs. Drew was excited to see the statue of Leif Ericsson that the US had given as a gift to Iceland on the 1000th anniversary of his discoveries because a picture of that statue was on his timeline cards. We ate 12 hotdogs, watched the locals skate all through the city center which my kids thought was very cool (it was conducive to skateboarding instead of having signs posted against skating), wandered around the dock, saw the house where Reagan and Gorbachev met to end the Cold War, and ate delicious Thai Food (I know not authentic but we were craving something healthy after our hot dog lunch).

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IMG_5011Iceland favored us with a gorgeous “sunset” glow as we arrived on a late clear evening at our bed and breakfast. 
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Following a perfect Icelandic breakfast and a lot of luggage shuffling we prepared for our final Iceland adventure- The Blue Lagoon. I had hesitated booking a visit to the Blue Lagoon because it seemed over priced and touristy.  Additionally, they required Daisie and Luke, who have been swimming for years, to wear floaties which I thought would cause mutiny. They also require you to shower before you go into the pool and I wasn’t looking forward to taking the kids through a locker full of naked bodies. However, everyone I talked to assured me it was a “must do” and it ranks at the top of every tourist and top 10 list of Iceland. I caved. We went. I’m glad.

The kids had a great time putting the therapeutic mud masks on and swimming in the warm silica. It not only offered a great easy diversion next to the airport, but it was a unique only-in-Iceland type of experience. That being said I think the natural hot springs like Landmannalaughar, far from the airport and the crowds are more appealing. The kids insisted that they were both worthwhile and too different to compare. 😉

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