Saturday, September 3, 2016

Land of Fire and Ice: Day 3


By Day 3 we were considering ourselves experts at this whole camper van thing! We had made it along the southern side of the island by this point and Day 3 was dedicated to a lot of driving to get us up north to Akureyri, Iceland's second largest city.

We woke up before dawn from our campsite in order to make it back to the ice beach before sunrise to capture some moments when the ice was fresh from the tide.





After soaking it all in again, which never got old, we got back on the road for a long haul. This day of driving was harder because we had to make it further than we had any of the other days but there was still amazing scenery everywhere. So although we had to be more selective on our photo stops, it was such beautiful and varied scenery...again!








We jammed out to road-trip tunes and drove through the day up to the north part of the country. We saw an active volcano, Leirhnjukur ('Mud Peak'), which is located to the northeast of Lake Myvatn. Its last eruption was from 1975 to 1984 and you can hike through the lava flow, which is surrounded with mud pools and steam vents.

We then drove around Lake Myvatn, explored the cave from GOT, and then watched the sunset from GoĆ°afoss before making it to Akureyri.


Jon and Ygritte's cave from GOT
More rainbows and waterfalls....of course.





Finally after the day of driving and exploring, we made it to Akureyri and camped up on a hill overlooking the city. It was by far the best campsite of our whole trip - it was picturesque, had a fun obstacle course, not to mention indoor heated showers! Akureyri was an amazing town that I wish we had more time to explore. It is definitely on the list to visit again on our trip back {whenever that might be}!



We arrived quite late and made a late dinner, and although we were exhausted from the day we decided to try to capture some night sky photos. It was a fairly clear night - and around midnight or so - and what looked like wispy white clouds dusting the sky, turned out to be the beginning of a aurora light show!

Now this was something that neither of us expected to see on this trip since it was still the summer season and so early for the northern lights. But it was easily one of the best surprises ever! We watched and shot pictures for about an hour before it ended and we called it a night.



Psalm 19:1 has never been more true: "the heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands." As we watched the night sky dance, this rang clear. It was amazing to witness this in person, and these pictures couldn't properly capture the awe, surprise and excitement we both felt. We would have been happy if that was the only time we got to see them, but in fact the next night was even clearer and more magnificent...so stay tuned for Day 4!

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