Here is the transcript of the conversation we had about 27 (or more) times a day on our road trip around Iceland:
“Wow. Just, wow,” said Aly.
“Oh my god ICELAND IS SO BEAUTIFUL,” I said.
I didn’t even realize that I had captioned three photos in a row on Instagram with a variation of “Iceland is so beautiful” until I looked back later. Honestly, Iceland is without a doubt one of the most naturally stunning places I’ve ever visited: the view out the window was one constant stream of waterfalls (FOSS!), glaciers, fields of flowers, and so much good sky. Here’s a little peek at our trip, in completely random order:
This girl, and Horatio. The trip wouldn’t have been nearly as fun without our favorite CSI Miami man staring down the sheep as we passed them and it wouldn’t have even happened without her ability to drive stick.
The hot springs scattered across Iceland are officially the best thing EVER. Even better was the fact that we always had them to ourselves: you have not lived until you have blasted American hip-hop on speakers in the middle of Icelandic countryside while skinny dipping in a natural pool of hot water. Because, yes, Drake was playing as this photo was taken. Just saying.
HARPA music venue. Traditional Icelandic architecture didn’t do much for me, but this recently-completed building is a photographer’s dream.
The beauty of the campervan (thanks, Kuku Campers!): reading magazines and drinking a beer at 11 p.m. with a waterfall in the background.
Iceland’s first swimming pool! The moment when you’re skinny dipping and then people show up. An entire busload of them.
Reykjavik: cutest little capital city EVER.
The Blue Lagoon: all of the hype is worth it. We went here straight from the airport and it was just so cool.
The black sand beaches at Vik are the rainiest place in Iceland, and we managed to score some blue skies. We were actually having a coffee at a hotel in town after sleeping in the campervan on the beach (fell asleep to the waves crashing and rain falling: heaven), and I made Aly go back so that we could take photos of this rare moment.
More typical of Vik: moody skies over dramatic cliffs.
We met a couple of guys at the Blue Lagoon on the first day of our trip, and they showed us photos of the glacier lagoon. Aly and I turned to each other and gave each other a look: like, we MUST go there. So we changed all of our plans around and we did. Totally worth it.
Gullfoss. Standard Icelandic tourist fare. We had seen SO MANY waterfalls by this point that we were a little underwhelmed, particularly because there were just so many people around! The farther out of Reykjavik you go, the more stunning and emptier it gets.
Like Svartifoss. Crazy beautiful and practically no one around.
OK, so this hike was supposed to be super easy: instead, it was cold and muddy and all uphill. But it ended at the convergence of a steaming hot river and a freezing cold river. Of course, we let our beers chill in the cold while we soaked in the hot. That’s how Chico State prepared us for the real world.
And then, on the hike back we found natural clay bubbling out of the group. Naturally, we decided they would make excellent masks.
Reykjavik at midnight on Friday night. Standard.
That’s the continental split between Europe and America! And we snorkeled through it!
I mean, does it get better than this?
Aly drove, I found us cool things to see. And attempted to navigate with no real map. Just how I like it.
We saw more sheep than people. And it was lambing season. Too cute.
We started from the Loveboat, now we’re here. Love you to the moon and back, AG!
Note: Kuku Campers kindly offered us a discount on our campervan and Dive.Is provided me with a complimentary Silfra snorkeling tour.