#hiticeland

In many warmer places and countries, it is quite popular to take a nice swim in a lake. This, however, is rare in Iceland. One main reason is the temperature of the lake and another the climate in Iceland. Also, most of the lakes are quite shallow. But that does not prevent some of our visitors from trying. Try to find a lake to bath in or swim in, but more often than not, the result is rather embarrassing. These two french dudes tried to find a way to swim in one of the many lakes in Iceland and here is the result.

French dudes in Iceland

Although Rjúkandi is one of only a few waterfalls you can see from the Ring Road in Iceland (Road nr. 1), many visitors do not stop by Rjúkandi or tend to stop by that waterfall.  One reason is the fact that along the way at Lower Jökuldalur valley in the Eastern Region between Egilsstaðir and Akureyri there are many “road side” waterfalls running down the slopes.  Rjúkandi just seems like one of many if you don’t take the time to walk the short path to view this beautiful attraction.  The waterfall Rjúkandi is a lovely waterfall and most defiantly a place to stop by.

Take the short path to the Rjúkandi Waterfall

Rjúkandi is part of a stunning landscape at Jökuldalur valley in the Eastern Region; some attractions that are yet to be discovered.  Attractions like Stuðlafoss and Stuðlagil are places you should also consider. Through the valley lies the magnificent river Jökulsá á Brú that used to be a large glacial river running through the many small gorges hidden in the old Jökusá á Brú long canyon. Ysta Rjúkandi river is a spring fed river, one of many that today feed the beautiful river in the canyon after the glacial river was moved to Fljótsdalur valley in a massive dam project at Kárahnúkar.

On the Ring Road in Iceland just before you hit Skjödólfsstaðir

The waterfall Rjúkandi in the Eastern Region in only less than hour away from Egilsstaðir on the Ring Road nr. 1 in Iceland.  You can stop by the parking lot, and the walk up to the waterfall takes a few minutes. The parking lot is located by the road just before you reach the farm, restaurant, and accommodation at Skjöldólfsstaðir.  You also get a great view at the viewing panel in front of the waterfall, to the Jökuldalur valley.   If you want to get a view of the upper and lower waterfall you can climb a bit up the slopes. 

Rjúkandi is part of a stunning landscape at Jökuldalur valley in the Eastern Region

Less than an hour away from Reykjavík is a small town called Hveragerði. The name derives from the quantity of hot springs and hot water surrounding the town. Many locals make the mistake of driving right through the town, given its close position to the capital, missing out on the wonders and warmth of Hveragerði. One specific gem is the town’s public swimming pool, called Sundlaugin Laugaskarði. Until 1966 it was the only 50 meter swimming pool in Iceland and therefor the main training pool for the national swim team.

Sundlaugin Laugaskarði is perhaps the best swimming pool in Iceland.
Nov 23 2016

Yet again we want to encourage visitors to pay extra attention to the various details, hidden in the overwhelming landscape of Iceland. This photo is taken, on a hike we went on in Nýidalur (New Valley) in the heart of the Icelandic highland. Muddy layers next to the turquoise coloured water form an organic pattern that could almost be mistaken for car tier traces, although this bay-mud is much more beautiful. These soil layers of soft, unconsolidated clay, saturated with water are normally in temperated regions that have experienced cyclical glacial cycles.

Muddy layers next to the turquoise coloured water form an organic pattern.
Nov 16 2016

Here we have the second highest waterfall in Iceland, which is how it deserves its name, Háifoss or The High Waterfall. Since it is so high, it feels relevant to show it in parts, although you can also see beautiful photographs of the whole waterfall here. This photo shows the very start of it, zoomed in, to also be able to enjoy the detailed layers of different rock and mud around it, including tiny basalt rock formations. Háifoss is situated close to the volcano Hekla, as well as the famous glacier river, Þjórsá making it one of many worthy stops on your way through the south of Iceland.

Here we have the second highest waterfall in Iceland

Around the country in many of the recommended pitstops the facilities are always getting better. Whether it is a walking path to experience safely a family of geysers, a support rail to step in to the slippery hot spring or a sightseeing platform like this one. As we have mentioned before there are many ways of viewing Ófærufoss, and this particular platform lets one see the waterfall as a whole from above. It is great when these interventions are subtle and don’t disturb the surrounding view.

As if the waterfall wasn’t enough, the mountains around it with its layers of rocks and moss make this a perfect pitstop.

This amazing rock formation is said to have formed during Ice Age, when sea level was higher and its waves formed the facade of the rocks. These columnar basalt forms are called Dverghamrar or The Dwarf Cliffs. It is a perfect pitstop when travelling in the southern region of Iceland, situated only 10 km east of the Kirkjubæjarklaustur village. This might be one of the most grand homes of dwarfs and elves in Iceland so naturally the cliffs are treated respectfully, since no one wants to risk disturbing these mystical creatures with a history of cruel revenges.

These columnar basalt forms are called Dverghamrar or The Dwarf Cliffs
Oct 28 2016

Another photograph from our capital city, Reykjavík. Here we have an overview of Hlíðar, one of the cities’ most popular residential neighbourhoods. It is positioned very central, in walking distance to the centre, but still far enough from it to be albe to avoid the busy centre if wanted. With good schools and many playgrounds this neighbourhood is quite family orientated. Plus the fact that it is so close to Laugardalslaug, Reykjavík biggest public swimming pool. In the back we see the infamous Esja, which has been called the mother of Reykjavík.

Here we have an overview of Hlíðar.

It is easy, when covering Iceland in pictures and writing, as we do here at Hit Iceland to get lost in the subject of overwhelming waterfalls, majestic mountains and other natural wonders. But what is also important to mention are the details that bind all these things together. Whether it be tiny rock formations or the vegetation, like in this photograph. These circles are called Nornabaugar directly translated to English as Witch's Rings. They are formed by a mushroom trying to grow in Iceland’s’ sensitive highland regions.

Nornabaugar directly translated to English as Witch's Rings.

For those interested in history and the Icelandic Sagas, Borgarvirki is a very relevant place to visit. Although originally formed naturally by an ancient volcanic plug of columnar basalt, that base is believed to have been transformed into a defensive fortification dating around the Settlement (879 - 1030 AD). There are some debates about whether that is true or if it was simply used for peaceful purposes but either way it is a great spot to see and perhaps decide for yourself.

 Borgarvirki

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