By now you already know we’ve spent the last week in Iceland, and boy was it a fun and rather action-packed week.
Now, this is the first part of a two-part post. It’s split into two parts as there are way too many photos to fit into one post. The second post is available immediately over here.
Right, so we flew into a rather icy Iceland (as you can tell from this post) here and started off the trip driving for hours through thick snow.
At one point, all we could see was white on the road as it was both snowing and snowy everywhere! It looked magnificent but turned out too tricky to photography as we couldn’t really stop anywhere.
That’s fine though as we were going to be starting our trip with lunch, some lava baking and a nice bit of relaxation at a set of geothermal pools.
It’s a fantastic place called Laugarvatn Fontana (the first part of the name took me ages to cram but once it sticks in your memory, it sticks!)
Walking in, I was surrounded by a rather scenic view and the delightful smell of food!
We were starving at this point after having flown in early so I was immediately drawn to the food.
Viktor, our kind host for the afternoon, suggested we start by going to check out how they bake bread using the natural heat from the ground.
To be fair, I was intrigued by the whole concept as soon as I heard about it back in the UK so I didn’t need to be asked twice and immediately followed him back outside into the cold Icelandic weather.
Viktor started digging away while telling us more about the rye bread they back at the Laugarvatn Fontana…
In seconds, he’d dug out the bread (which was carefully wrapped) and then showed up how the natural heat from the ground led to ideal temperatures for bread baking…
Just look at the hole the bread was dug out of – it’s literally bubbling from the heat in the ground.
This is why Iceland is truly the land of fire and ice! It has both equally! It was quite literally covered in snow and yet bubbling from the sand; all at the same time.
The bread was then cooled in the naturally cold water…
And whisked back to the main building where we were all eagerly waiting to see what it looked like…
Random aside but it turns out that, despite my years of resisting it, appropriate walking shoes are a must for snowy conditions.
I have never really gotten them in the past but this past week in Iceland has proved why they’re worth it.
Within minutes of walking around, I could feel the cold on my feet with my regular shoes and when Georgia suggested we go and look for proper snowshoes, it turned out to be the best suggestion of the morning as those shoes made such a huge difference!
Anyway, back to the bread now.
Viktor rather deftly soon saw to slicing up pieces of the bread for us to try with some local butter.
It. Was. Amazing! Absolutely delightful. It was warm so the butter melted on it and it is easily the best rye bread I had tasted at that point.
I went back for seconds, thirds, fourths and even fifths.
And all of this before even tucking into lunch!
The lunch has a good selection of hot and cold foods – all fresh and all delicious.
And of course, there was stuff for people with a sweet-tooth like me.
These smoothies (below) were amazing!
Here’s Lloyd’s plate selection…
And here’s mine!
As we were eating, Viktor came over and handed this piece of the rye bread we’d been eating.
It was for us to take home and boy was I ecstatic.
I get the sense that Viktor knew how much I was enjoying this rye bread and did me the hugest favour by giving me this piece to take home.
It didn’t last very long, by the way, we all wolfed it down within a rather short time frame after we left Laugarvatn Fontana that afternoon.
Lunch over, we went out to check out the geothermal pools.
The geothermal pools had 4 temperatures ranging from 32C (90F) – 40C (104F) which was quite fantastic as you could move around to the one that suited you best.
And so off we went into the cold again but this time, dipped into a rather warm pool and taking in the beauty of the Icelandic landscape
Now the ideal thing to do after you’ve been in the heated pools it to take a dip in the river afterwards.
And yes, the river is freezing but seeing as I’m not one to pass up on an opportunity to try something new, I decided to go for a dip in the river.
Carry on reading – head over to the second part of this post to see the rest.