​ The Golden Circle

After picking up my car from downtown Reykjavik, I embarked my journey to the renowned Golden Circle of Iceland and end the day at Hveragerði.

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Driving in Iceland is quite easy as there aren’t many cars. But do note that the steering wheel is on the left side so everything is reversed, similar to the United States. My Mazda 3 was very reliable driving over gravel roads and some of the less maintained roads of Iceland. Can consider getting one for your own use. The drive towards the golden circle brings you through the unique landscapes of Iceland. From moss covered plains to rock covered fields and desolate volcanic plains.
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1. Öxarárfoss

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Entering the Thingvellir National Park area, my first stop was at this church that I couldn’t quite remember the name but its along the drive to Thingvellir.
Onwards towards Thingvellir, I turned into a sign that spells Öxarárfoss. That clocked my first waterfall of Iceland. After a short hike through a valley, an ice blue waterfall greets you.
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2.  Geysir

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After a short 45 minute drive from Öxarárfoss, you will reach the Geysir with mists and fog oozing over the road. By the time I got here it was around 1pm, swarmed with tourists. There are 2 geysers here, a small tiny one and a big one. The big one is a short 15 minutes hike/walk from the small one. The interval for each shot of geyser water blasting is about 15 minutes. The big geyser has been consistently powerful for each burst. A true nature wonder but could be ruined by the amount of tourists in that area. So you could come really early in the morning to catch the geyser when there are less tourists. The big geyser is said to be more powerful compared to other geysers seen around the world.
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I didn’t manage to capture the explosion of the geyser sadly. Only the left over gases.
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You could stop by for a lunch here at the food court but be prepared for the amount of people and the price.

3. Gullfoss

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The second waterfall of the trip. This is a must see. You could hear the gushing waters right after you alight from the carpark. The first sight of this waterfall is HOLY SHIT! But why so many tourists? It’s alright you will be able to get a decent shot of the waterfall. Just experience the massiveness and the might of nature.
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4. Hveragerði

This small Icelandic town was my pit stop for the night. I ate at a local restaurant that pride itself with using geothermal heat to cook its food.
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I had the local Icelandic fish cakes that came wit potatoes and boiled vegetables. I expected Icelandic fish cakes to be different from the ones in Singapore. But it turned out to taste the same except they were orange in colour. Presentation is on point though.
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My friend had the fish skillet which tasted much better but of course pricier as well.
The cost for a set of this meal was about 20-30SGD. It’s worth a try if you have the budget for it. There were some local hot pools that I wanted to check out but my knees were in pain from the cold I wanted to head back to the hostel for a rest. The pit stop for the night was Hjardabol Hostel situated right beside a farm with Icelandic horses. I managed to capture some shots of the horses.
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The skies were turning slightly dark with a chance of rain. Hours of daylight are about 20-22 hours each day during summer. When I captured these images it was around 8.30pm. The hint of sunlight created random spots of rainbow around the area.
That scene was straight out of a Nordic mythology.
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On the next post, I will continue on with the journey towards Vik catching two renowned waterfalls and the crashed plane site in Iceland.
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