In the Land of Fire and Ice

Live from the ‘Blue Lagoon‘!
Which is one of the many geothermal power plants in Iceland (serving electricity for about 30000 homes), but with a special twist: some of the hot water has been diverted to create a geothermal spa, including a large natural outdoor pool, steam and mud baths. The water is rich with minerals, silica and algae, making it look turquoise tropical; the silica mud is supposed to have an extremely beneficial and cleansing effect on the skin. As the surrounding land basically consists of solidified and cracked lava fields, the place looks rather surreal, a mixture of Mordor and Cancun comes to mind (I’ll post pics when I get my camera gizmo’s sorted out and hooked up). As an extra bonus, after a very refreshing spa and silica mud experience, the guests can enjoy free WiFi – for which I’m highly appreciative.
The Land of Fire and Ice acts as my stepping stone en route to Belgium – I’ll have a couple of days to check the place out. Initially I had a simple plan: rent a mountain bike and find the best and most technical trails around here – though there is a nice mountain bike club in Reykjavik, it turns out that renting isn’t really a good option (at least if you want serious bikes) – plus, cycling is considered here more as a ‘touring experience’: lots of road and gravel miles are to be digested before any interesting trails are found (AFAIK – if someone knows any good trails, please let me know!); unfortunately I don’t have that much time and I do want to check a bunch of things out here, so enter plan B: rent a motorcycle and cruise around! This plan was quickly abandoned as well: too much hassle with gear and rather expensive. So I settled with renting a cage (a rather underwhelming Toyota Yaris), which turned out to be pretty expensive as well but it should allow me to execute plan C: circumnavigate the island – if necessary, I can give up a night of sleep; after all, up north there is daylight all the time these days…

3 Responses to “In the Land of Fire and Ice“

  1. LVB Says:

    I would be interested to know which air carrier offers interesting fares for transatlantic flights with a stop in Iceland.

    Currently a trip Brussels-Reykjavik-LAX-Brussels costs more than 2 separate return-trips to both destinations.

  2. El Hombre Says:

    Luc,
    I’m flying with Icelandair from SFO to Amsterdam, then I’m taking the train to Antwerpen (which I pay separately, without booking). For some unexplicable reason, if you try to book a connecting flight (from AMS) to Brussels on the Icelandair website it suddenly becomes extremely expensive. For SFO-AMS I got very competitive prices, a slightly better deal than anything else I could come up with (qixo.com, travelocity, orbitz, United, Continental etc). I’m not sure whether a round trip in the other direction works as well (but it should). I like also the fact that it’s fast (for the west coast at least) – the travel time on my way back is about 15 hours…

  3. Hombre Says:

    Probeer zeker ook de grote openluchtbaden in Reykjavik! Wij hebben er buiten gezwommen terwijl het sneeuwde.


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