Part 2 of our Iceland travel itinerary started off with a early morning drive from Reykjavik through south Iceland. An hour into our drive we were greeted with the most spectacular sunrise. So many people were stopping on the side of the road to take pictures, that we had to join in too. We stopped at a few stops to admire the sunrise, especially once we arrived to a valley before the waterfalls. The sunshine was interacting so beautifully with the mist in the valley that it looked like the whole valley was lit. Truly spectacular!
ICELAND TRAVEL ITINERARY | DAY 3
SELJALANDSFOSS WATERFALL |
Seljalandsfoss waterfall was our first official stop on our Iceland travel itinerary on day 3. The beauty of this waterfall is that you can get really close to the water. Another plus is being able to walk behind the waterfall! How amazing is that? Be careful though, visitors can get really wet, and i hear that the pathway gets very icy and difficult to walk later on in winter. There is also a walking area to see other smaller waterfalls further down in this area. Visitors can also find a little gift shop with food/drinks in front of the waterfall.
SKÓGAFOSS WATERFALL |
Skógafoss was next up on our list, but before we got there we made a stop to take a quick snap of a picturesque farm. Snowy mountains in the back, long driveway, super green grass all around. How magical does this look? I was truly in awe, the farm literally looked like a postcard.
The Skógafoss waterfall looks like it comes straight out of a fairy tale. Multiple rainbows embrace the powerful waterfall as it pours down. Close to it is a huge mountain, when you step back and take in the scenery it’s hard to decide if this place is better than the last or the next place you’ll see. That’s one of the good problems in Iceland, the next scenery is always better than the next, it’s hard to pick a favorite. Besides walking to the waterfall up close, you are also able to climb up the stairs to the top of the waterfall and enjoy the scenery from above. I highly suggest doing that and putting this spot on your Iceland travel itinerary.
SÓLHEIMASANDUR PLANE CRASH |
We planned on seeing the Sólheimasandur Plane but weren’t really sure where it was. Luckily as we kept driving towards Vik we saw a sign and multiple cars parked and realized this was the place. Honestly though, as much as I liked to see the area (because it’s a great spot to take photos) I wish we hadn’t gone to see it 🙁 . The driveway was closed and we had to walk to it for 45 minutes each way. Instead of driving for 10 minutes. This cut our other plans for the day very short since took such a large chunk of our time. We weren’t able to make it to Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon. So I’d say beware if you are walking, it’s a very very far walk for a minimal payoff. I wish I knew that before we embarked on that long walk.
The Sólheimasandur Plane Crash happened when a U.S. Navy plane ran out of fuel and crash landed on Black Sand Beach. Luckily everyone survived, but the wreckage remains still to this day on the site. Many people were climbing on the plane trying to take the perfect shot. And it did produce really interesting images. How many times can you say you climbed a airplane wreckage? Not many times.
Our walk back to the car took what seems like forever. My husband and I were really tired and hungry and couldn’t wait to plop ourselves into the car. We realized that since it was already past 3pm we had no time to drive another 2 hours to the Glacier Lagoon since it would be dark by the time we got there. Instead we decided to just drive to the next town of Vik for a late lunch. We arrived at the tiny town and ate at a Gas Station type Restaurant. The sun was setting nicely, so we took a quick walk after lunch down to Black Sand Beach.
Next up on our drive back was a stop at the small peninsula of Dyrhólaey. It’s a nice relaxing stop with huge stone structures in the middle of the ocean that look like spectacular statues. There is a path that you can further walk down if you want to walk on the beach, rather than admire it from the cliffs. On our drive out of the area we managed to stop at a field with a large hill. Since the sun was setting nicely it was the perfect sunlight and we took some of my favorite photos that really showcase the beauty of the nature of Iceland and it’s landscapes.
SELJAVALLALAUG ZWEMBAD |
A payoff of driving back and not going seeing the Glacier lagoon 🙁 was experiencing the Seljavallalaug Zwembad. It is one of the oldest outdoor swimming pools in Iceland, built in 1923 and protected and kept up by the locals. It is a bit hard to find, but a quick google search (Yay for wi-fi internet in the car!) will get you there with no problems. Once you drive down the road all the way to the river and park, you will need to walk another 15 minutes up the river. And even crossing the river at certain places to get across. While the views are very gorgeous the little house where you change your clothes in was anything but. It was really dirty. We were careful not to touch anything.
I wish the water itself was a bit warmer once we got in. But there were a few hot spots where the natural hotspring water was pouring in that was more soothing than other spots. Also beware the pool is actually very slippery from the algae. However all of this made up for the incredible views of the mountains that you get and you realize “Hey I’m swimming in the oldest pool in Iceland with a backdrop of the mountains and a sunset”. I’m glad the two of us made it a stop on our Iceland travel itinerary, as this was one of my favorite moments of the trip.