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Day 2 of Iceland

Updated: Jan 21

Day 2 is filled with more amazing stops, but we have a lot of ground to cover because our cave tour is all the way in the east at 9:30A the next morning. First up was Seljalandsfoss and Skógafoss waterfalls. Again, just stunning. I didn’t want to climb the massive staircase to the top to save my hip for the next day’s hike and the girls decided seeing it from the bottom was good enough when the wind went crazy. The good thing about Iceland is all the big sights are pretty well seen from the parking area!

Right before Skogafoss and the Skógar Museum, we made a stop at Rutshellir Caves. It was a man made cave used to store hay. It is one of 90 man made caves protected on the Island as historical sites. It was in a farmers pasture so he built an A frame set of stairs to climb over his fence. I think these are in the future of Fleur de Lis Farm TN to stop someone’s children from climbing the fences! (Pics further down of the cave)

The Skogar Museum (right across from the falls) was an expensive, but great museum. It had 3 levels of Icelandic History in one building with an original fishing boat, a massive building for transportation and communication changes overtime including the development of the postal service here, and an outdoor section with some original houses of different styles and a schoolhouse. One of the houses was made entirely of driftwood by a ship captain and was quite fancy considering the time and location. It had a room for his wife to sew and read, separate bedrooms, a sitting area, kitchen, office and dining room, but he apparently thought steps were a waste of space and it was more like a leaning ladder with wider planks. My guess is the family wasn’t the same height as ours.

Next up was Reynisfjara Black Sand Beach. It’s fine black sediment and was quite the sight to see. There is also Hálsanefshellir Cave there. It has basalt columns surrounding the walls. It’s stunning, but impossible to get a picture without others in it. It’s a prime picture location! The waves here are very dangerous. A tourist ignored the signs in December and got washed out to sea. We watched a lady fall and get soaked, but luckily didn’t go out with the wave. The intelligence level of some. 🙄 Back to the car to warm up while we drive to Vik and quickly went by the black sand beach here and up to the church to get some good pictures and a little higher to an old cemetery and then back on the road.

On the way to where we would sleep, we stopped at Vatnajökull National Park UNESCO visitor center and learned about the moss covering the rocks that looked like the troll part from Frozen, identified some of the sites we happened upon over the drive (a few gorges and glaciers). We finally arrived at Horgslands Guesthouse on a farm with Icelandic horses. It smelled like home! It was another very small space with just twin beds and a bathroom. We thought we would drive into town and have a nice dinner, but the restaurants were quite pricey and not open yet, so we were going to try the grill at the gas station. Hamburgers were $20 each and the guy when we checked in called it half decent fast food so we decided to manage with sandwiches from our grocery store stop the day before. Tea, sourdough, Gouda and salami worked out just fine. We prepared our food and ate in the communal kitchen, but I think there was only 1 other guest in the part where we where staying. Again, we stayed up for the lights but nothing. There is spot on NOAA and the Iceland Weather Station website that helps you see if you have a decent chance of seeing them and both days we had a 2 which is LOW chances. 

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