In my recent excitement about going to Iceland in December – where it will undoubtedly be dark, snowy and cold (but you know… in a fun way) – I decided it was time to dig out the photos of when I last went to Iceland. It was in the summer of 2008 – a while ago now, during a time when I was young and still a bit naive to the world around me.
But even so, Iceland remains one of the most memorable locations. It was just so different. I had never quite seen landscapes like these; I had been to my fair share of destinations by the time I was a teenager (from Egypt to Venice to Croatia), but Iceland was something else. It may have been cold, but it was large and fiery – like it didn’t matter whether you were there or not. The waterfalls would rage just as hard and the glaciers would look just as wild.
These are some of the pictures I took on that 2008 visit – excuse my photography, I’m no professional now, let alone when I was 16. And cameras weren’t so efficient in those days… (dark ages, basically)
This is Kerið (Kerid for us English folk), a volcanic crater in south Iceland. It’s part of the Golden Circle tour, which is how I came about seeing this impressive sight. This caldera has red volcanic rock (rather than black), and is actually one of a few volcanic craters in the area – this one is just more prominent because, well, look at it. Stunning.
Gullfoss (Golden Waterfall) is what I remember to have been the main attraction on the Golden Circle tour. A big deal was made out of it, and you can see why. It just looks so powerful and is surrounded by this deserted landscape, which only makes it stand out more.
Despite lacking in photography skills, this is still one of the photos I’m most proud of taking – the Great Geysir of southwest Iceland. I decided I wanted to get the whole eruption in, partly because too many people were standing right at the base, so I walked out and patiently waited. I love having the little figures there so you can see the size scale!
Apparently it’s been active for more than 10,000 years. Seriously, that’s impressive. It’s really fascinating to read about the science behind the Geysir and how it’s influenced by earthquake activity. Geeky? Maybe. But these kind of natural forces completely flummox me, and it’s pretty cool, really.
These two pictures were taken by the Geysir’s surrounding hot springs. I remember being entranced by the lovely blue shade, and the clarity! An Icelandic lady came to boil her eggs in the springs. It was really interesting to watch and I still wonder now ‘is this normal?’.
Parliament Plains in Þingvellir (“Thingvellir”) National Park – where the first parliamentary institution of Iceland, Alþingi, was founded. In 930. Yeah… Iceland’s pretty old.
This is the Church of Akureyri. Akureyri is the second place we went to in Iceland, in the North.