Sunday, August 18, 2013

Iceland Day 4: Akureyri and Myvatn

Day 1: Reykjavik
Day 2: Reykjavik
Day 2 Continued: Reykjadalur
Day 3: Snaefellsness

I woke up to this, the view right outside our bedroom window at the Skjaldarvik Guesthouse. So enticing! There were lots of other things to do besides tubbing - horseback tours, plenty of books and chessboards, strolling alongside the water - and I wanted to do all of them, but we didn't have much time so we settled for the wonderful complimentary breakfast.

Although it is said that Icelanders mostly just drink coffee for breakfast, they are much more generous with visitors' tummies. This ain't your typical Best Western continental spread.

And I didn't take nearly enough advantage of it! I was too sleepy. But look at that - fresh bread and butter! Brie! Veggies!

I got to try skyr for the first time, with plenty of cream and sugar.

If you've never had it - it's unlikely that you have, since it's sold almost nowhere outside of Scandinavia, much to my dismay - it's like a very dense and flavorful Greek yogurt. Apparently it's more like cheese than yogurt, based on its ingredients.

After a hasty breakfast, we both took the last showers we would have for a couple of days and booked it out of there, headed toward Akureyri.

I was surprised and disappointed to find that Akureyri didn't have much in the way of attractions for us - or at least, none that we could find on foot, even though we tried to explore beyond the tourists' favorite road. But there were a lot of really pretty views, colors, and textures, so I contented myself with photos.

And ice cream! The best ice cream in all of Iceland, or so they say.

It was totally delicious, but I had to drive and it was too hard to eat it one-handed, so unfortunately Tyler got to enjoy most of it! That Tyler.

Our next stop was Godafoss, "waterfall of the gods," so named for the Norse idols that were thrown into it when Iceland was declared a Christian nation.

I was silly and declined to put my hiking boots on, so I wasn't able to get as close as I would have liked. By the time I thought to go back to the car to put on more sensible shoes, two tour buses had shown up and the place was crawling with people, so I decided to let Tyler take most of the pictures.

We debated swinging up to Husavik for a "quick" stop, but decided that the Myvatn area had more to explore and besides, we were hungry! I'd heard of a place called Vogafjos Cowshed Cafe, and I couldn't resist a place that boasted handmade cheese and baby cows.

I was glad that we went out of our way to find Vogafjos, because we had the best meal of our entire trip there.

Big, crispy veggie crepe; fresh milk; perfectly cooked lamb.

And I got to see a brand new calf being welcomed into the fold from my seat by the window. So amazing!

Her fur was still all ruffled and wet. All the cows, including her mama, crowded around her as she practiced walking, smelling her and licking her little face and mooing up a storm.

After lunch, Tyler and I went to hang out with the cows in the shed. I was particularly drawn to the older babies; they were particularly drawn to my sweater and kept trying to taste it with their big licky tongues.

Teenage calves are not very good at holding still for pictures, just like teenage people.

Next, we went off in search of Grjotagja, a cave with a beautiful underground thermal pool.

Evidently a "Game of Thrones" scene was shot here, but I didn't find that out until later.

I was hoping for a fancy skinny dipping adventure in that gorgeous cerulean water, but it was just a few degrees too hot to bear. I was able to dip my feet in for only a few seconds at a time.

Obligatory sexy pose; obligatory silly pose.

On the plus side, it was almost entirely silent inside the cave, perhaps because the other tourists didn't want to bother with crawling inside if they couldn't even take a dip. I loved it, though - because of the peaceful quiet and the steamy temperature, it felt like a spa. If there's one place I feel at home, it's in a spa.

Eventually Tyler did persuade me to clamber back out, even though I was all for sticking around until the temperature decreased enough for me to get in. Maybe a year or two.

The land around the cave is tearing itself slowly apart, which is ostensibly how the cave was formed in the first place.

Go to Day 4 Continued: Myvatn & Dettifoss

No comments:

Post a Comment

Pin It button on image hover