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Iceland - part 1

From 28th April until May 3rd 2008 I visited Iceland on a solo-tour. The case was that I a few weeks before got the news that we would have 9 days of combined public holidays in Ukraine and so I swiftly decided to have a non-metropolis vacation getting back in touch with nature. So what would be a better place than Iceland's extreme nature? Probably nowhere - so I bought tickets and made some urgent planning, since travelling in Iceland requires at least minimum planning or you will find yourself stuck in a small village for some time.

I decided going there alone, since I would like to use the time enjoying nature, enjoying not having mobile phones and stock market quotes nearby and to be able to reflect on life and my own thoughts and ideas without interference from everyday disturbances. I think everybody once in a while should allow oneself such extravagance - especially if you have faced, are facing or know that you soon will face hard periods in you life - whatever they might be.

Svartsengi geothermal plant - 2008
My ego-sojourn started with a flight from Copenhagen to Keflavik International Airport some 48 km west from the capital Reykjavik. Upon landing I rented a car and immediately went to the famous Blue Lagoon near Grindavik. The Blue Lagoon is a huge lake fed with hot water from the nearby Svartsengi geothermal plant and it situated in an amazing out of this word landscape.

Me on road 36 - 2008
After a short overnight stay in Reykjavik I drove east towards Thingvellir National Park which is the place for the worlds first democratic government - the Althing, but more impressively the separation of the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates materializes here in the shape of a huge rift valley.

Thingvellir National Park - 2008
A view of Thingvellir National Park towards the east - nothing less than a spectacular view.

Ljosifoss hydroelectric power station - 2008
From the ancient place of Thingvellir National Park I drove more towards the east on road 35 to the Geyser Geothermal Field to watch Strokkur erupt into a house-high steam explosion. After almost being blown away (by the wind) I continued east to Gullfoss - Iceland's most famous waterfall.

Above is a picture of the Ljosifoss hydroelectric power station from 1937 capable of providing 14,3 MW of power.

The geyser Strokkur - 2008
The geyser Strokkur dancing in the skies.

Strokkur just about to explode - 2008
Strokkur just about to explode into a tall column of steam.

Me and Strokkur - 2008
If you doubt about how hard it is to take a picture of a geyser with a 10 second timer set on your camera just guess why you only see steam being blown away by the strong wind on this picture. The man on the left is the Dane who is enjoying the smell of rotten egg.

Gullfoss - 2008 I expected Strokkur to be a view of a life-time but however interesting and amazing it was it turned out to be a rather dull experience in compare to the brute force of Gullfoss - where I felt rumbling in my stomach.

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