Thursday, 30 June 2011

Second day of the camping trip, penises and waterfalls.

Hmh, the orange colour does not show on the map very well... anyway, added Hlíð there right next to that lake. The name of the lake is Mývatn, "Mosquito lake", and boy if it isn't worth its name! We also visited Húsavík.

This is a cliff right outside of Húsavík. It's particularly showy because almost everywhere around it is fairly flat.

Húsavík itself then, another small town. It used to be a very busy place once upon a time, a fishing village that gathered young people to work in it from all around the country for the summers. Then the herring went away and the town shrank and nearly died out, and was only recently revived. Now it's a tourist-friendly town that offers sailing tours, whale- and sealwatching and a very special, world famous museum... would be this one. Naturally we went to have a look and well, I don't know about you but being in a room full of penises was slightly unnerving, albeit amusing to the maxx too! The biggest specimens are from whales, the smallest from a hamster, so tiny you had to look through a large magnifying glass to see it. Nowadays it also has a human specimen with several others donated already, but those ones' owners are still using them so the museum will have to wait for a bit longer for more human ones.
The museum also has at least one from a troll and several from elves and hidden people.

Húsavík is also built on a hilly area and thus has many little pathways and stairs. It's a lovely little town, and well worth a longer visit than the one we were able to pay it.

The harbour.

The church of Húsavík is fairly well-known in Iceland for being completely unlike the traditional Icelandic church. It dates from 1907 and is built out of wood imported from Norway.

Cute little cafe near the sea.

Back in Akureyri (we had to arrange our tour kind of zooming back and forth because of the opening hours of the museums we wanted to see), the Minjasafn garden. At the moment the Minjasafn has a very interesting exhibition on hidden people and elves!

Curious! Iceland never had an army unless vikings count, so where did these two come from? Now I really wish I had gone to read that sign next to them.

An old church in Akureyri.

On the left, Nonni's house. Jón Sveinsson was among other things a famous author of a children's book series of his namesake, Nonni (diminutive form of Jón).

Then back towards east and Mývatn. On the way we stopped at Goðafoss that has been considered the most beautiful waterfall of Iceland. And beautiful it was indeed. 

There's a path on both sides of the river, we took the one on the left.

A cute little bridge.

I do love them bridges.

In Iceland everything can be walked right up to, if fancy takes you that way. Some places might have warning signs - path icy, ground 100 C hot, slippery and loose rocks near the edge - but other than that this country trusts people to not be stupid. It also seems to enforce the idea that if you definitely want to die you'd find a way into the dangerous places somehow anyway, and at best you get a flimsy string tied around the edge.

Goðafoss doesn't even bother with the string.

The bridge from the opposite side. It's right along Ring Road 1 so it's very easy to find.

There she is!

We saw people walking nonchalantly along the edge of the cliffs on the other side.

The sound drowns everything else away. 

It's about 10 min walk from the parking lot to the waterfall.

When we returned to the car we found that the previously full parking lot had emptied out completely, leaving our little Mitsubishi sitting there all alone. It seems to happen to it a lot. At least the cars by its side go away. Noticing this tendency we named him Hann Sóló and that's the name he has now. Hann Sóló is a powerful little beast and he goes where others do not dare to!

A house that looks like a summer cabin in the shrubbery. For some reasons summer cabins here are always in shrubbery. It's like they grow out of it.

On the way we got stuck behind a car that was winding it way down the hill s-l-o-o-o-o-w-l-y, at least in comparison to Mr Snu whose regular speed is around 100 km/h regardless of weather or road conditions. Then we noticed the licence plate started with XD and lolled a bit, and then we saw the country code on the car: DK. Much amusement ensued. Then the driver pulled aside all of a sudden without signalling or anything, which was a bit fffffffffff but hey gals, you had a great licence plate!

A lonely house. You see these every now and then and just stop to wonder who on earth lives there and why.

Strange rocky area in north Mývatn.

We decided to camp in Hlíð, although Snu was a bit against it because he had a bad gut feeling. We sure should have listened to that, Hlíð was such a miserable place for camping I don't know where to begin! The toilets - or the ground - or the seeming lack of almost everything they advertised. Then again it's a great place for motor homes so maybe we're just a bit biased here. Anyway, never again.

We also had surprise!visitors.

They seemed to consider the place their own. We had noticed the poop before while we were struggling to pitch our tent in the rain so it didn't really come as a surprise, I lied.

They were also very loud. We had a BAAAAAAAAAAHHH-concerto in FFFFF throughout the night.

Then I woke up, fully rested again... at three a.m. The place had somehow morphed from gray misery into pastel morning hues.

Naturally I took a couple of photos while wandering aimlessly around the camping site in search of a shower (which I never found).

The Reykjahlíð church.

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