After a morning of delicious coffee, conversation and breakfast, we are off to see the Golden Circle. Our first stop is the mighty Gullfoss waterfall, Wow! As we first approached the falls, the crevice is obscured from view, so that it appears that the river simply vanishes into the earth. We continued along the misty path and found Gullfoss, meaning “Golden Falls”. With a 105-foot double-cascade, Gullfoss dramatically plummets into the canyon below.
The annual fall roundup where Icelandic farmers on horseback retrieve their grazing flocks from the mountains and drive them into specially designed sorting rings called retts.
This boisterous celebration is filled with laughter, drinking and music, punctuated by Icelandic ballads and spontaneous games of tug of war while friends and neighbors help one another wrangle their sheep. More about this later.
Geysir is Iceland’s famous geyser located along the Golden Circle in the Haukadalur Valley. In recent years, the Great Geysir has stopped erupting. Luckily, the neighboring Strokkur geyser continues puts on a magical show every 4-10 minutes. We waited and enjoyed the show!
A little research fun fact: The word geysir (or as written in English, geyser) originates in Iceland with Geysir, as it is called, being the first geyser known to Europeans. So without knowing it, many of us may have been using an Icelandic word for a long time.
Our lunch stop was in the beautiful greenhouse called Friðheimar. The concept is great, they have a simple menu and you dine in the midst of all the tomato’s and among the 600+ busy, buzzing bumblebees that float graciously from plant to plant to pollinate. Main course is tomato soup and freshly baked bread, as well as fresh pasta and grilled tortillas with tomato. On the side they offer fresh salad also from the greenhouse. The soup is made out of new and fresh tomatoes picked from the greenhouse next to your table. And they have a great selection of Bloody Mary’s! The environment of the restaurant was fantastic!
Visiting an Ecovillage. Sólheimar was founded by Sesselja Sigmundsdottir on the 5th July 1930; inspired by both her Christian values and the anthropological musings of Austrian philosopher, Rudolf Steiner, Sesselja aimed to create a settlement based around the values of individualism, sustainable living and caring for those with learning difficulties.
Visiting a local who designs and creates her own wool garments and accessories.