On our way we pass interminable plains, glittering glacial lakes, solidified lava fields, roaring waterfalls, black beaches and secluded fishing huts. Waterfalls, geysers and glaciers drift past us with the eternal ice under which it simmers unruly. There it is, this pure and rugged scenery of Iceland. An unreal place where past and future become blurred. A place where madness, legends and fairy tales being so close, almost as if the Northern Lights open gates to distant worlds.
Along the ring road we weave around the island. The Snæfellsnes peninsula leads us past wild beaches and bizarre lava formations. Concerning Jules Verne it is possible to reach the Center of the Earth by climbing through the caldera of the glacier Snæfellsjökull. We leave cozy Stykkishólmur by ferry, pass the small island Flatey and reach the vast and lonely beaches of Rauðisandur on the south coast of the Westfjords. We observe the reflecting cloud formations and basking seals in the distance. On dusty reddish roads alongside the deep fjords we cross surreal lunar landscapes. At the cliffs of Látrabjarg we discover numerous colonies of puffins and slowness. On the horizon extends the Hornstrandir peninsula, a place of untouched wilderness at the edge of the Arctic Circle.
In mysterious Mývatn, a natural wonder of the world, we are looking for trolls in the Dimmuborgir area, explore the turquoise caldera of Kafla, get lost in the endless lava fields and trudge through bubbling mud pots and ocher mountains. We are awestruck in face of the breathtaking spectacle of thundering Detifoss while sun rays falling through the clouds. As the weather turns we pursue Icelanders’ favorite national sport and jump into the blue lagoon of the North.
After long rides across the roughest roads and passes, with fog, rain, and many rainbows in-between, the shiny blue icebergs of Jökulsárlón appear in front of us. The glacial river of Vatnajökull which runs into the lagoon opens a surreal and non rational scenery. The south coast with its picturesque black beaches, waterfalls, characteristic rock formations of Vík and hiking trails through Skaftafell National Park causes us to break out in astonishment and joy facing the indescribable beauty of nature and the world around us.
In this place time seems to stand still. It’s a place where there’s nothing more to do than breath, in a country that has cast a spell upon us. We enjoy the silence.
Text and images © Anke Nunheim