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A combination of a short hike and a waterfall is always a delightful and enlightening experience.  You get your bloodstream moving as you walk along a river upstream and you get to see a stunning waterfall.  Fardagafoss is the perfect example of this kind of outdoor activity and as such a good option for families and children traveling in Iceland.  It is an outdoor activity with an adventure and takes about one to one and a half hour.  Great option if you are traveling the ring road in the Eastern Region and need to release some energy before continuing in the car. Even along the way up the gully, you can see another beautiful waterfall, Gufufoss. And the path by the waterfall seems harder than it actually is.

Fardagafoss and the stories

In addition to the natural phenomenon, the waterfall also has a remarkable story and a mysterious cave behind the falling water.  For centuries a troll lived in the cave behind the waterfall and guarded Fardagafoss until the cave collapsed.  Although you can still walk behind the waterfall and still see what remains of the cave, in the past the cave was much bigger and deeper.  It was even thought to have a tunnel going through the mountain all the way to the fjord Seyðisfjörður.  The story of the troll makes the waterfall even a better option for families and people traveling with children.  It is not only a waterfall but also part of a mystical folklore. 

Fardagar refers to old laws and regulations

The name refers to the period from May to end of June when, in the past people bound by law to live in one place particularly one farm, had the permission to change their home address and place of residence.  It may seem strange today, but it was part of an agrarian society in need of labor stability.  But at Fardagar you had a short window to move to another farm, and the waterfall is named after that time.  And Fardagafoss and Gufufoss are located just five kilometers from the town Egillsstaðir in the Eastern Region and one of the places you should visit if you are in the area, or at least if you are planning on visiting the beautiful fjord and town Seyðisfjörður. 

Fardagafoss is the perfect example of this kind of outdoor activity and as such a good option for families and children traveling in Iceland

Even if your main objective when traveling in Iceland is to see natural wonders and beautiful landscape, it is also worth it to stop at some of the beautiful and charming towns and villages.  For those who are traveling by car, an obvious option is to stop at one of the many camping sites in a town or a village around the shoreline.  Most of the towns and villages offer good overall services for tourists and most of the also offer a museum or an adventure tour.   It is also common to come across a fine restaurant and a good café in most small towns and villages.

Needless to say, almost all of the communities around the shoreline are set in a stunning landscape surrounded by beautiful mountains.

Although nothing but, this beautiful maar or volcanic crater bears the name ugly as a name.  Ljótipollur translated means ugly puddle or ugly pound.  But most craters that have lakes within them are exceptionally scenic and photogenic.  Ljótipollur is no exception with its read and vegetated slopes and visible lava layers at the brim.  Maars are usually quite deep as the water originates in ground water below and do not have any creeks into or out of the lake, only underground.  Most often craters with small lakes have this beautiful turquoise blue lake which gives the crater an enhance value for photographers.   All such craters are great attractions for photographers.

Ljótipollur crater is quite accessible

Like its neighbor Hnausapollur, the meer Ljótipollur is part of the Veiðivötn volcanic fissure system.  It is easily accessible from the mountain road Fjallabak Nyrðri F208 only a few kilometers from Landmannalaugar. And like all natural wonders in the highland of Iceland, only accessible during summer.  If you are going to visit Landmannalaugar, you might want to take the hike from the camping area to Ljótipollur and enjoy the magnificent lava and rhyolite mountains along the way in a peaceful manner. The crater is around 1.5 kilometers long, and the brims are quite high.  The form makes it a bit difficult to capture in one shot son prepare yourself with a 12 to 15 mm lens on the camera.

The view from Ljótipollur is also spectacular

One advantage of driving up the short distance from F208 to the brim of Ljótipollur is the view.  Although the elevation from the road is less than 100 meters, the view to the east and south is spectacular.  All this adds to the photo opportunity, as the view is also a great background to the many colors by Ljótipollur.  Red lava rocks, layers of lava, green vegetation and turquoise blue water on the lake. 

 

Ljótipollur is no exception with its read and vegetated slopes and visible lava layers at the brim.

People have different reasons when visiting a country like Iceland with such a high selection of natural wonders, stunning landscape and fascinating history.  Often the tour is organized to see the most popular places that have gained the most attraction. Places that have even become landmarks in the worldwide flora of attractions on an international scale.  The good thing about Iceland is the fact that there are many places that are highly attractive that few people visit.  Many of these locations are interesting from a geological perspective and as a landscape to experience. Some are even famous for their connection to history and folklore.  Most of those places are fantastic places to visit for photographers and people interested in landscape photography.  Places that are different and have a lot to offer. One such place is Hnausapollur.

Hnausapollur is on the road Sigölduleið to Landmannalaugar

Like most volcanic craters that have small lakes within its boundaries, Hnausapollur is a maar, formed and erupted about 11 thousand years ago. Usually, the reason for the lake within the crater is the depth of the that goes down to subsoil water or ground water. This combination of water, crater, and vegetated brims is usually a beautiful sight where colors interact fabulously. Similar maar volcanic craters in Iceland are Grænavatn and Víti in Askja. Hnausapollur also has another name, often called Bláhylur because of the turquoise blue color of the water. It is a highland lake in an altitude of about 570 meters above sea-level. You might think that this a remote place, but don’t be surprised if you see someone fishing down in the crater. The lake is packed with trout although quite difficult to catch.

Located on the Icelandic highland road Fjallabak Nyrðir

Hnausapollur might not be one of those natural wonders in Iceland worth a particular trip to the highland.  But if you are traveling on the Highland road Fjallabak Nyrðri or visiting Landmannalaugar on F208 it is a must to stop by Hnausapollur.  It is the next door neighbor to its similar brother bearing the awful name Ugly Pound or Ljótipollur.  Both extraordinary sights and perfect for photographing.

 

Hnausapollur is a maar, formed and erupted about 11 thousand years ago

Iceland is a paradise for photographers.  The motives and natural wonders all around the country are almost infinitive. But apart from the motives, there are also other important factors involved.

Capturing Hjálparfoss waterfall

Natural wonders are by far the most appreciated and the most popular attractions in Iceland.  When you are traveling and taking a vacation, it is priceless to have the option to stop by a beautiful waterfall, a rare sight by a lagoon or to view a hot spring with boiling clay and blasting steam.  But while driving it is also priceless to have a spectacular view of mountains or drive through a beautiful fjord.  Although natural wonders are the main attractions in Iceland, some places and areas can stand alone as a spectacular scenic drive.

Five most interesting scenic drives in Iceland

Increasing number of tourists in Iceland arrive on a ship or a cruise.  One of the largest ships sailing to Iceland is MSC Prezi¬osa.  The enormous ship has scheduled three tours to Iceland this summer, and it is hard to miss when in the harbor in the small city of Reykjavík.   Almost towering above all buildings in the city and bringing thousands of tourists for a few days stay in the city.  Sailing by the shore of Iceland is a fascinating way to visit and gives a rare view of the country from the Atlantic Ocean.

Cruising to Iceland

Iceland is now entering the most interesting time of the year. There is no arguing that the summer months June and July are the best months to visit Iceland and travel in Iceland.  And this year we do not need to make a fuss about the weather. Winter has been mild, and now nature is more responsive.

A good start for the best season in Iceland
Hotel in Iceland

The glacier Mýrdalsjökull is a very strange beast in the flora of natural wonders in Iceland. As the fourth largest ice cap in Iceland, approximately 600 square kilometers in size, it puts its mark on all its neighbors in all directions.  It is the ever- percent beauty seen from the south shore at Sólheimasandur. It is a dominating part of the landscape from at the east side at Mýrdalssandur. On the north side in the Highland, it is on your south side when driving on the Fjallabaksleið Syðri at Mælifellssandur.  On the west site, it contributes to the magnificent landscape in the oasis Þórsmörk.  It displays the stunning background of snowy white mountains for enjoyment and beauty of the landscape. But despite all the beauty and peace, the glacier throws at us from all directions it has a very dark side, it is the home of one of the most destructive forces in the Icelandic nature, the dangerous volcano Katla.

The beauty hiding the beast

With its 200-meter thick ice cap, the glacier has often, throughout the centuries and through Iceland’s geological history, transformed into a great force when Katla has erupted. When the glowing magma contacts the ice all hell breaks loose when the layer of ice starts to melt and glacial water loaded with ash, sand, rocks and lava goes out of control.  This odd unity of contrasting forces has often transformed and changed the landscape on all sides of the glacier again and again.  Sometimes forming vast canyons like Markarfljótsgljúfur on the west side or totally destroying the whole landscape for thousands of square kilometers on the east.  The most horrible thing is the fact that this could occur at any time and is not necessarily part of a long gone accent history.  Currently, it is even predicted by our leading geologists that Katla is about to erupt; it is actually overdue.

There are many interesting places around Mýrdalsjökull

Notwithstanding the danger, there are many captivating places to visit around the glacier Mýrdalsjökull.  Sólheimajökull outlet glacier being one. It is even an interesting place to visit to take a tour on a snowmobile. Mind you that today the glacier and the terrifying volcano Katla are monitored by some of the most capable geologists on the plant with state of the art technology.  Whatever the outcome might be when Katla starts to melt Mýrdalsjökull with its surfacing magma, we will know in time enough to run away under the supervision of Department of Civil Protection and Emergency Management in Iceland.

The glacier Mýrdalsjökull is a very strange beast in the flora of natural wonders in Iceland.

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