My Unforgettable Experience with Nature in Iceland

Shad Ahmed, IIK Young Contibutor
Thursday, August 24, 2017
Shad Ahmed
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This summer of ’17, my family, my cousin and I went on a trip to the Land of Fire and Ice, Iceland. Before we actually went there, we had been staying in London with our relatives for a few days. Our first impression, as we got off the Reykjavik International Airport and picked up our rental car from Green Motion (Kuwait’s driver license is valid there) was that we had set foot in the most beautiful place in the world.

Day 1
First we went to the Viking Museum to have a look around and learn about the rich history of Iceland that it owed to the mighty Vikings. We even got to put on replicas of Viking armor and weapons at the end and did some battle poses for fun! We then headed for Blue Lagoon, but the beauty outside with the long stretches of lush, grassy plains, the rocky hills on the horizon and the bright and colorful Alaskan lupines everywhere, compelled us to stop every few hundred meters and get out of the car and experience the beautiful idyll in all its elegance, putting us in such a peaceful state of mind as that of a newborn without any care or worry. Once we had finally entered and adapted to the temperature of the Blue Lagoon, we put on silica (the presence of which made the Blue Lagoon “blue”) face masks, which is said to make skin brighter. We all cooled off there, to forget about the past momentarily and to clear our minds and bodies. Once we had gotten out of there, we went to our hotel, Hotel Orkin, and pitched there for the night after having a couple of slices of pizza (which went on to become our staple diet while we were in Iceland).



Day 2
Our second day in Iceland was a long one, and we started by visiting the Thingvellir National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, which lies on the Golden Circle, a popular route about 300 Km long, looping from Reykjavik to southern Iceland and back. We walked there for about 3 Km through various paths; either between giant rock formations or grass fields, and to take all of it in; all of the glamour that was set right before our eyes in the form of ducks, small waterfalls and vast patches of grass; something that had been evidently been missing in our lives hitherto. The highlight was a small, but fast-flowing waterfall which my cousin, my brother and I got close enough to in order to feel the power and force of the water that was being sprayed. Once we had gotten close enough, we felt immense pride rush through our hearts and felt like we conquered the world. After that, we set out for the Strokkur Geysir, a geyser which erupts every few minutes or so, and sends hot water up to 20 meters high. We then briefly visited Gullfoss, a waterfall, but didn’t really get close to it, but it was nonetheless a breathtaking waterfall, one amongst many more to come. We concluded that day’s trips by going to the Kerid Crater Lake, a lake created by volcanic activities and surrounded by red volcanic rock. The funny part throughout the journey was how our mother would tell my brother, my cousin and I not to get any closer to the edge of a steep place, even if we were well beyond 10 meters from the edge. We got to our cozy apartment at Selfoss, Bankavegur, at last, after a very tiring day. I would recommend it to anyone planning on staying in that area as it pretty much feels like home, with an amazing host and every facility one would need. We all slept well that night.





Day 3
Our third day began with us visiting Seljalandsfoss, (if you have trouble pronouncing that, try Ejyafjallajokull ) a massive and powerful waterfall, 60 meters in height, and Iceland’s most iconic falls. We climbed up till we were right behind it, and by that point the waterfall had drenched all of us, especially me, in water. I was simply awe-struck by its strength and force, and I simply surrendered and submitted myself to it, and felt like I was rather drifting away from my own body and being one with the waterfall. Next, we went to yet another waterfall, Skogafoss, which was different in the way that it was much more majestic and wider, what with all the birds flying around, the steep grassy hills (which we climbed to the point that we were above the waterfalls and could see it below us) and the river being formed from it. We then drove up a rocky hill via the most dangerous roads ever, similar to the ones found in the Himalayas. We slowly managed to drive upwards, holding our breath at every turn, until we finally got to the top. From there, we saw the Dyrholaey Arch, a natural sea arch. We also spotted many birds, but couldn’t find the puffin, Iceland’s national bird and one of its main symbols, anywhere. Going down was even worse than coming up, and we even faced a problem in the form of a car which was coming up at the same time. Thanks to our cousin, who helped in showing us what to do, we were able to manage, and we were off to the Black Sand Beach Km (named after the black sand found there) or Reynisfjara Beach, which we reached after a 20Km. The most notable thing there, besides the arch and the black sand, is the stacks of basalt arranged in beautiful patterns. I was able to climb up to a certain point, and had some snaps taken. That concluded that day’s trips and we stayed at Horgsland Guesthouse for the night.







Day 4
We skipped a national park planned for the fourth day, and instead first went to the Jokulsarlon Glacier, a large and marvelous glacier on a lake. It was a wonderful sight to behold, and we could feel the aura emanating from it and the smaller ice pieces and clear, icy water. Our next destination was the Diamond Beach, called so because of the diamond-shaped ice pieces on the water. Next, we visited Svinafellsjokull Glacier, an enormously long glacier tongue, comprised of icy rocks, spanning a very large area till it touches the base of some snow-capped mountains. Even our thick jackets at that point could not protect us from the freezing temperature. Finally, to culminate that day’s trips we went to the Bobby Fischer Chess Museum, but by the time we had gotten there it was already closed. We then retraced our route all the way back to Reykjavik (we did come very far; nearly 370 Km), which took a good 5 hours, and we slept at Hotel Orkin again.



Day 5
We didn’t do much on our last day in Iceland, apart from visiting some city attractions like the Sun Voyager, a sculpture of a ship, Harpa, a concert hall, Hallgrimskirkja church and a mall. By then we had to return our rental car back and we were taken to the airport by the company, and we waved a final good-bye to Iceland before taking our flight back to London.

Conclusion
Iceland is a country like no other. There isn’t any major city and the whole country has got only a measly population of 300 thousand. However, Iceland’s natural and scenic beauty throughout the journey was more than enough. Just like how the scene outside would change every few minutes, from rocky hills to grassy plains, and then to snow-capped mountains on the horizon, the weather would change too. There’s even a saying that goes, “If you don’t like the weather, just wait for five minutes”. Sometimes rainy weather can spoil your plans. It is best to go in summer as it is not unbearably cold, and the roads are clear (during winters, the road can be blocked by ice, and since there is only one main road, it can cause delays). The only advantage of going in winter is that you will be able to see the Northern Lights. Keep in mind that commodities and goods are extremely expensive in Iceland.


Disclaimer:Statements and opinions expressed in the article are those of the authors and written by them; the author is solely responsible for the content in this article. IndiansinKuwait.com does not hold any responsibility for them.

Express your comment on this article

 
Shamna
Posted on Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Beautifully written travelogue. Expecting more articles from you Shad.

Mrs abdullah
Posted on Saturday, September 2, 2017

Hi
Shad Ahmed .very good description and memory too.minute informations also well assembled.really i will try this place with my family.

Shad
Posted on Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Dear drpkumar, please send your email id address.

drpkumar
Posted on Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Dear Shad, your piece of writing is excellent. Could you enlighten me little about the visa procurement from Kuwait and overall cost per person. you could contact via email. thanks!!

Ahmed
Posted on Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Beautifully written !

SAFARULLAH CEEYEL
Posted on Sunday, August 27, 2017

???? really nice.... keep it up; very interesting.... you've got the talent!
continue with the pen.... every possibility to become an excellent traveloguee. May the Almighty bless n guide you

A R Moodambail
Posted on Sunday, August 27, 2017

Excellent piece of travelogue from Shaad, young writer from who we can expect a lot more articles and blogs

Syed
Posted on Sunday, August 27, 2017

very well written. I am sure you must have had a great time there. Iceland is also a much sought after location for Bollywood.

Job George
Posted on Sunday, August 27, 2017

Shad ... You have done the description so well that it really creates a desire in any one to visit Iceland . The way it is presented is as good as any professional travelogue. Keep up the good work.

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