Today was all about the glacier called Vatnajökull which is the 3rd largest glacier in the world after Antarctica and Greenland. We spent the entire day driving around this mammoth of a glacier. We drove past areas in the Skaftafell Park that were all bare because of a flood that occurred a couple years ago due to a volcanic eruption that melted the ice and drowned the area.
Our first stop was at a lava field. It was so beautiful seeing these rounded forms that were piled on top of each other and covered in moss. There is something very erie and beautiful about this.
It was incredible driving all day and always seeing a part of the glacier. We went over a bridge at one point and you could clearly see where the salt water mixed with the glacier water like the picture below.
We stopped at a point where we could hike up to get a good view of the glacier. It was so beautiful that we were the trouble makers who got on the bus last.
We had an “excursion” today which means it was an activity not on the prepaid tour agenda but that we could pay extra for and still participate with people from the tour. We went on an amphibian boat tour in Lake Jökulsárlón and got close to the glacier. The James Bond film Die Another Day was filmed here. It was so awesome to be floating next to the giant pieces of ice in the water and look out to the glacier that surrounded us. Today was such a beautiful and clear day that we could see the highest point in Iceland. There were 3 colors of icebergs white, blue, and black. The black was because of the ash from the volcanoes and the blue were hlaciers yhat had recently flipped over and the color was due to the lack of oxygen.
We then went across the street to see the glacier pieces that floated from the fresh water lake to the salt water ocean. The current pushing the pieces of ice to the ocean was so fast. It was very weird walking along a black sanded beach with giant pieces of ice scattered about.
The hotel we were staying at was Hotel Hoft and located in a cute little town of Hoft right on the water. We walked to the grocery store to grab a pack of beer (continuing the theme of not wanting to pay for overpriced things at hotels and restaurants). After our lobster dinner (they’re lobsters are like oversized shrimp) Chris and I sat outside with some people we met on the tour and watched the sun “set”. The pictures below are from 11:30 at night