We arrived in the capital city of Reykjavik early Saturday morning and we were really jetlagged, but after a dip in the geothermal spa at the hotel, we decided to try to explore the city a bit. We started with the flea market - Kolaportið. I found some amazing vintage Iceland postcards to bring home & learned a bit about the city's fashion. We also walked up the main shopping street of Laugavegur before just about passing out from exhaustion.
The next day, we took a short domestic flight up to the nothern city of Akeryri for a few days...more on that later!
|Hallgrímskirkja - the tallest church in Iceland|
|A view of the city from the top of Hallgrímskirkja|
|Stjórnarráðið - once the city's first prison, now the home of the prime minister of Iceland|
The next day, the same blizzard that plagued us in the north followed us down to Reykjavik. It was another full-blown white-out blizzard and all the roads out of town were closed as well as all the tours being canceled. We had planned on taking a rental car down to the south shore this day, but instead we spent some time indoors and visited the Pearlan. The Pearlan is a beautiful dome building at the top of hill that overlooks the city. We hear it has beautiful views of the city, but we only got to see wind gusts of white snow. We still had a great meal and then visited the Saga Museum The museum takes you through the great sagas of Iceland with amazingly realistic silicone sculptures and audio guides. It wasn't how we planned on spending the day, but it ended up being pretty wonderful.
|Viking swords at the National Museum of Iceland (Þjóðminjasafn Íslands)|
|Amazingly detailed silicon statues at the Saga Museum depicting early life of Icelanders.|
On Thursday, the snow cleared and we were able to take a beautiful tour of the Golden Circle (stay tuned for more on that in part 3!). After the Golden Circle, we had a very cute night at the hotel complete with a presentation of Icelandic bedtime stories & hot chocolate. It was pretty darling and we learned about the importance of written word in the Icelandic culture.
Friday was a late afternoon flight back to Portland, so we decided to take the first part of our day to see the Blue Lagoon for a relaxing soak before we headed back to the states. The Blue Lagoon was lovely. It comes with a pretty pricey admission fee, but it was really beautiful and unique - a perfect way to end our trip.
|A beautiful (and very cold!) day at the Blue Lagoon|