Day One of Svava and Jona’s road trip to the Snaefellsnes peninsula
Ok, so a mother and daughter road trip is not quite ‘Thelma and Louise’ but it was an adventure nonetheless, exploring this very mystical and beautiful area of Iceland during the super-long days of midsummer. During mid-June there are almost 24 hours of daylight, which has an amazing effect on your body clock. You never seem to get tired which means that at 11pm and in full daylight, you can find yourself setting out on a walk to see another breath-taking view and watch the relentless activity of the hundreds of nesting birds!
In Mum’s trusty jeep, we take the road out of Reykjavik towards the West with clear blue skies, which means there’s a very good chance of catching sight of the 1446 metre high snowcapped volcano of the Snaefellsnes glacier which dominates the whole area.
Similar to yoga, in Iceland its not about the destination, its about the journey! In geological terms, Iceland is a young island, formed about 20 million years ago as a result of volcanic eruptions between the North American and Eurasian plates. Being sparsely populated means that the landscape is mostly untouched, raw, dramatic, vast and other-worldly. Some of the best photos I have taken are from the car window en-route - there is always something new and stunning to see along the way; waterfalls, mountains and valleys, rivers, lava fields or coastlines.
Only an hour after leaving Reykjavik, we are crossing into the west on the second-largest bridge in Iceland, Borgarfjarðarbrú and head directly to Geiri’s Bakery which has great views over the water and serves fantastic fresh breads and pastries. It’s Friday and the roads are busy with people leaving the city for a weekend of camping. Many families have summerhouses out in the countryside or use one of the brilliantly-maintained campsites. It’s what Icelanders do, come rain or shine, they spend time enjoying and relaxing in nature.
A short way up the road we make a stop in Borganes at the Settlement Centre. The interactive exhibits tells the story of Egill Skallagrimsson and recreate the most important of all the sagas, Egill’s saga, poet and Viking. This area is rich with stories of the first settlers and the second exhibit outlines the history of Iceland’s settlement.
Good driving Mum! We reach our first stop, Hotel Hamar and after a three course dinner, we end our first day with the panoramic views of the mountains from the hotel's outdoor geothermal-heated hot tub!