More than half the people in Iceland believe in elves and it’s not hard to understand why. The Icelandic landscape practically lends itself to supernatural belief with its vast volcanic plains and tall mountains that appear to harbor something more mystical. In many ways, Iceland is a lot like Hawaii where I grew up. Both volcanic islands of fire and ice (Hawaii has some ice), they each host unique landscapes, a menu of mythologies, incredibly friendly people and unique cuisine. I quickly felt the familiarity of home.
There’s magic here, power in the terrain so menacing yet serene at the same time. Jagged rocks stretch into the distance, harsh if not for the soft layer of green forming above, adding color to the cold mist that always seems to linger about. Sheep and diminutive Icelandic horses roam the lands with no natural predators, save for the occasional polar bear that sneaks in from Greenland when things freeze over.
Iceland is not a big country, and its premier city, Reykjavík, can certainly be explored in a few days. But the more one uncovers here, the more the land seems to give, and it appears Iceland is a country that can’t really be thoroughly understood in just a quick visit (the language alone is daunting), however small the country may appear.
I spent about five days in Reykjavík. The following is a recollection of where I’ve been, serving as highlights (in the order in which I experienced them) for you should you find yourself in Iceland on your own whirlwind adventure. read more »