Friday July 10th
We had one last breakfast together then did a big clean up of the house before being taken to Reykjavik at 11:30, we then found our respective accommodations and then met up again to go to the Blue Lagoon. The girls had rented a flat in Rejkavik and it was just perfect! A 1 bedroom with double bed plus futon, easily fit 4 of us. It had a beautiful view and was right downtown in a trendy neighbourhood. That night we relaxed and Coline made a quick pasta dinner and cheese/meat platter.
I rented a car with a lady Carrine from France I found on the carpool website in Iceland and while I was waiting for the rental company to pick me up I met another lady-Jennifer from Portland Oregon who was planning her day, so I asked if she wanted to come along. They were a great group to travel with and we saw a place called Pingviller which is where the North American and European tectonic plates meet and also where they held parliament for Iceland when there was not yet even a written language. We then went to Gulfoss, a beautiful waterfall, then Hveregerdi where I was doing volunteer work and showed them the geothermal areas and small waterfall.
We returned to Reykavik and after dropping off my new friends went out for Crepes with Lorenzo and Coline, then out for drinks and eventually dancing. We found a cool little band who was playing some popular older American music: I will survive, You’re simply the best, Fever etc. was a great way to end my Icelandic adventure! I said farewell with sadness that I may not see them again at 3 am and headed for the airport.
-Be prepared to pay $130-$180/ day for an economy rental car, around $200 for a 4×4 if you want to use some of he interior roads. Yes ash and sandstorm insurance exist and are extra. Using car sharing with other travellers will make this less expensive.
– meals will cost you minimum $20 at any restaurant. Use the local grocery and not the tourist marts and buy food to prepare at your hostel. Every hostel I went to had a free left behind by other travellers section that had something useful for me to prepare (pasta, fruit etc.)
-hostel dorm rooms ranged from $35 to $50 a night, more private rooms will run you $120 and up. Hotels and guest houses were not even an option for me, however there are a lot of air bnb available for reasonable prices, but I wanted to meet other travellers.
– clothing is very pricey, I went to the mall to find cheap flip flops and lowest I could find was about $35 000 ISK OR $35CAD a Burts bees lib balm I pay $4 for in Canada was about $11
– the landscape changes everywhere you go and in just minutes it will change from mountainous to hilly to flat green to flat black lava fields to glacier.
– Hotdogs are amazing, made with crunchy coated onions and 2 sauces, no idea what the sauce on them is but addictive. One of the cheaper available meals at about $35.50 to $5.00
– Skyr is a local yogurt type product and I will miss it greatly! More cheesy feeling then straight yogurt we used it in everything from salad dressings to porridge to meat sauces to desserts to dipping Oreos in it.
– Local currency is the Icelandic Kroner or ISK and is about 2 decimal points off the CAD. for example a$350.00 ISK hot dog equates to about $3.50 CAD
– Icelanders almost all speak English and are friendly and helpful when you ask.
– weather is cooler and can change quickly even in summer. Even when it was 17 the air still had a chill to it. Seldom was I able to go without at least a light jacket.
GO! Was such a stunning and beautiful surprise to me at every turn. The people, places and experiences will be hard to match!