road trip

Iceland Day 2 by Julian Chokkattu

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Things have been a little hectic, being on the road and all. Right now we're holed up high in the mountains in Seydisfjordur at a coffee shop. Our data has also been spotty, otherwise we'd have updated much quicker. Unfortunately that means more photos to sift through, but no worries, below are photos from day 2 of our trip. We left Reykjavik a little late, around 10 a.m. and headed straight to Reykjanesfolkvangur, a national park. We climbed a tiny hill, stopped at a lake, saw horses, walked through a mud spots and sulfurous hot springs (Seltun) before we headed towards the town of Selfoss.

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The odor from these mud spots are vomit-inducing but it's still really awesome to see up close.

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Near this sulfur field in Seltun, we ate a small breakfast at a food truck. I had a ham and cheese sandwich with a potato salad, and Ms. Chan had a really delicious vegetable soup. We can't stress enough how nice people are here, and you'll read more about that in upcoming posts. The owners of the food truck, a nice old lady and her husband, gave us directions to Selfoss as our GPS wasn't working.

Selfoss was mostly a pit stop. We got gas and some snacks at a gas station and continued towards Solheimar eco-village. The entire village is sustainably-driven. We stopped at the coffee shop (below), where we were served by a half-Japanese and half-Filipino woman, who said she left Japan to follow and live with her husband.

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We left Solheimar and headed to Geysir.

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Walking towards the Geysir.

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I have more photos and a video, which I'll probably update later. This Geysir erupted every 10 minutes or so.

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Gulfoss waterfall was 10 minutes away. Here are a few pics of the scenery on the way!

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Gulfoss!

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After that we drove for quite a while to our next destination, Skogafoss. We passed the famous Eyjafjallajokull, a volcano that last erupted in 2010.

We were out of food and it was nearing midnight. We were hopeful we'd find something but everything was closed (even though it was still nearly bright as day outside). We stopped at this inn and even though the restaurant was closed, the chef, who was about to leave, brought us soup and bread, both of which were delicious. We thanked them and headed to Skogafoss, where we slept in the car for a few hours until daybreak.

We're on day 4 currently, but day 3 will be coming soon! We're about to go kayaking along the fjord.

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Reykjavik, Iceland by Julian Chokkattu

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Why Iceland? Well, I'm a sucker for cold weather, so escaping the humidity and heat in the Northeast U.S. for a week is a welcome change. But Iceland is also a great place to do a road trip, and so Ms. Chan and I plotted a route along the Ring Road (more or less) and booked our flight and car. We landed in Reykjavik on Wednesday morning and we spent most of the day driving around the city. Thankfully, everything we wanted to see was in the same vicinity. Note: Most of these photographs were uploaded and edited on my tablet, which is something new that I'm trying. Forgive me if the quality isn't as up to par as my previous posts.

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When we began planning, most people advised to stay in Reykjavik for a day and then move on as it can be a bit dull. The city is really colorful and calm, with abundant speed bumps and nice people, but after our day driving around, I would agree and say only spend a day or two here. We definitely had a lot of fun driving around the city and we'd recommend not to skip the city at all. We hit everything we wanted to see and we still had plenty of time left.

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Most of the city's architecture is also a nice change of pace from the boring monotonous stack of buildings back in Jersey. But it doesn't mean it's all bright and clean. There are always a few rough spots.

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And a lot of graffiti and murals; most of them were really beautiful.

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Our first stop was Hallgrimskirkja, a majestic, old church.

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The top of the church provided 360 views of Reykjavik.

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Buildings are strikingly varied in Reykjavik, and one of the prettiest we came across was the Harpa Concert Hall.

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We also had to stop at the Iceland Phallological Museum, of course. It houses a collection of penises from various animals, ranging from men, to bulls and orcas.

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This is another famous church called Landakotskirkja that we stopped by. Afterwards, we hung out by a lake called Tjornin nearby.

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The high ceiling of Landakotskirkja.

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We made our way downtown and had dinner at Fishmarkadurinn. We had a tasting menu and tried puffin (pictured above) and minke whale, along with various other local delights. Puffin is delicious!

Tomorrow we actually begin the road trip by heading out onto the Ring Road. Wish us luck!