Day 2 of our Iceland trip starts early. We’re being picked up for our tour of the Golden Circle. When I originally booked this, it was one of the only tourist sites I knew about (aside from the city and the Blue Lagoon), so it seemed like a must-do. As time got closer to our trip, I read a few articles that mentioned it might not be the highlight I had originally thought. So it’s with measured expectations that I go into this day.
Our first stop is Thingvellir National Park, where we dove the Silfra Fissure the day before. Today we’ll be looking at it from above. I love how it looks in the early morning light, all covered in snow.
To the left is the Thingvellir church. It’s only open from May-September, so we can’t visit it while we’re here, but it’s pretty from a distance.
Next we head down the walkway towards Iceland’s ancient assembly site.
Aside from being the point where the North American and Eurasian continents meet, Thingvellir National Park is also where the first Icelandic parliament was established in 930AD. 1000 years later, it was made a national park in 1930, and a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2004. Today a flag pole marks the spot where the parliament supposedly met once a year. A least it’s somewhere in this general vicinity.
We continue our walk down to the bus, stoping for a few more photos along the way. There are never too many selfies for Emma, and I never get tired of taking pictures of her taking them.
She even gets a few pictures of me, which is nice. Being behind the camera, I often forget to make sure I take pictures of myself.
Back on the bus, we drive over to the Eurasian continent towards Geysir. The views along the way are stunning. It’s times like this though, that I wish I was on my own and could pull over whenever I want to take pictures. I’m definitely renting a car next time.
I spy Icelandic horses! We end up seeing them a lot, but I still get excited every time.
Our next stop is Fridheimar, a tomato greenhouse. It seems a bit odd to be eating tomatoes off the vine in the middle of winter, but little grows in Iceland naturally, so greenhouses are how they are able to grow their own food. While everyone else heads inside, Emma and I sneak up the road to pet some Icelandic horses without having to fight the crowds. They are so fluffy, I wish I could take one home with me!
I’m not sure why their chest is shaved. Do any of my horse friends know what this might be for?
Inside, we catch the tail end of a speech one of the representatives of the greenhouse is giving, then grab a bloody mary and some tomato soup. Everything they serve is tomato-based. It’s all very delicious.
The ice cream deserts come in little flower pots. I don’t order one, but the people at the table in the forefront of the photo below do, and they are lovely.
Our stop is shorter than I would have liked, and soon we’re making the auick drive over to Geysir. I’ll share those photos with you in my next post!