Geysir, Gullfoss and Þingvellir make up the Golden Circle. Spouting hot springs, a huge waterfall, and the site of the world’s first parliament – what more could you ask for in an afternoon!?!?
First up was Geysir. The geyser that all other geysers are named after. Unfortunately some Brits tossed some rocks into the big geyser back in the 50s and it doesn’t go off all that frequently anymore (and I thought only Americans did obnoxious things like that 🙂 ).
The place reminded me of the geothermal areas of Yellowstone and Lassen Volcanic Monument (in NoCal).
While the big geyser (Geysir) only erupts after earthquakes, the smaller geyser (Stokkur) goes off every 10 minutes or so.
From Geysir we travelled to Gulfoss – from water shooting up to water falling down. This was quite possibly one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever seen.
I’m sure this sign says don’t walk down there, but it didn’t say it in English or Icelandic, so I took it to mean that just the French and the Germans should stay away (or maybe it was assumed that only the French and the Germans would risk their lives on a steep, icy and narrow path…). Needless to say, I was one of many who hopped the rope for a better view.
The final stop of the day’s journey was back to Þingvellir (which I had visited with Gretar and Erna a few days prior). It was just a quick stop so I was glad we had walked around the first day.
Þingvellir is one of Iceland’s National Parks and home to the world’s first parliament. The North American and European plates meet, or should I say pull apart in Þingvellir as well.
The plates are pulling apart at some crazy fast rate that I can’t remember – meaning Iceland is growing.
Three days in Iceland weren’t enough. This trip was just a little tease. Iceland in April was great (evident by the blue skies below) but Iceland in June sounds fantastic! I can’t wait to go back!
The complete set of pictures from my trip are here!