My second morning in Reykjavik starts of with a run, this time no rain just the a nice layer of slippery frost. But the mossy grass path is perfect for a run along the harbour. It is 8:30 and still dark. Full daylight won't break until about 10:00. I was hoping to see the Peace Tower on Videy island but it is turned off at midnight

Hannah and I are going on a coach tour today we had booked a small company for a tour of the Reykjanes pennisula but it was cancelled at the last minute due to us being the only clients. So we are going with the Reykjavik Excursions and it is the full size Highland coach and this trip is full.

It is snowing pretty heavy as we reach Geysir

and I would not want to be in a little rental car. The bus is slipping in the slush. Our guide is great and he is full of little facts about Iceland but I can't help the fact that deep down inside I hate these sort of coach trips. We have about a hour at Gullfoss to hike down the wooden stairs to the falls. A lot of the passengers opt out of going the whole route as it is quite a lots of stairs and they are nicely coated in ice.

At Gulfoss Waterfall, where the rainbow ends

On our way back to the city we asked to be dropped off in town and head to our new favorite cafe

the KOKU KOMPANIID /Cake Company. I love love love their pastries and swiss mocha. I think this new cafe will do well. It is only 3 weeks old and the atmosphere is cool and trendy. Were both loving the bright pink interior.

Reykjavik is a wonderful city to visit it is very safe and clean. The town center is full of people strolling and looking for a place to have dinner. The white twinkle lights wrap around the trees to create such a festive holiday feeling. The weather is amazing for the middle of November, however some of the tourists look as if they are heading to Northern Greenland it seems a bit excessive. After all it is still above 0c and there is no snow on the ground

I booked tickets to a concert tonight at Harpa, it features a violinist Baiba playing Beethoven and the Icelandic Symphony orchestra . The concert hall is right across the street from our hotel so we don't even need coats. I booked our tickets on the Harpa website before we came. They were a amazing deal at $23.00 each.

We arrive early and it is a great chance to people watch. Icelandic people are so well dress and have the most amazing shoes. Even ladies in their 70s wear funky shoes. The concert is wonderful, the second half was my favourite, I think I can safely say it was the most enjoyable classical concert I have ever been to. The pieces that were played reminded me of movies like Breakfast at Tiffany's and Disney's Fantasia.

Thingvellir

Our day started with a great breakfast, our package includes a full breakfast not a continental one. We paced ourselves and were not hungry again until dinner. We did love the sign asking the really hungry tourists not to make a pack lunch from the buffet. As I sat and ate, the rain was hitting the windows as if someone was throwing buckets of water at them then swiping them with branches. I have plans on running this morning and I am trying to come up with as many excuses as I can not to go out there. "But no!" I hit the pavement and go for it. After all, I learned young that waiting for the weather to change will get nothing accomplished. It hurts! It really hurts! Icelandic rain in November is like glass shards coming at you sideways.

Against all odds I make it to Hofdi House.

This very Icelandic looking white house was the site were Reagan and Gorbachev signed the agreement to end the Cold War in Oct. of 1986. You can't go in the house and look around so it does not matter what time you arrive. This is also the site of the first radio communication between Iceland and the rest of the world, and most recently a piece of the Berlin Wall.

The weather changed after my self guided tour, so I could continue my run with out the benefit of the glass shards.(I did check out some of the runs and races in Reykjavik while we are here on Running in Iceland but none of them worked out). I am cold and wet once back at the hotel, so decide that we should pay the 10. euros for the wellness center. Well as Hannah pointed out that was a very very bad decision.

I am so please we bought the Reykjavik card. We planned our day according to what we wanted to see. We have more then paid for the card by the amount of galleries and museums we have visited plus circumnavigated central Reykjavik.

When I was here a few years ago there was a hot dog kiosk,Islendingar Borda Ss Pylsur that was all the rage. I mentioned to Hannah that we will have to check out the Icelandic lamb hot dogs with the great mustard. Well it seems progress has sent the iconic hot dog stand packing.

Special Icelandic Hot Dog Mustard. We bought some of this

A big shiny new hotel is going in. In fact there are a lot of bright shiny new things going in around the city . It seems that Reykjavik is pretty much under construction much to the chagrin of the buses and any one else that wants to get through town We did find the company's street store and had our hot dog.

Our final event for the day was a Northern Lights adventure to Fontana Spa with dinner. Dinner was great with lots of traditional foods like salmon, cod potato salad and an orange pea (lentil) and pineapple dish yummy soup and so much more. After that we headed to the hot pools. We were surrounded by candles and snowflakes but the Northern Lights would not be making a appearance tonight.

As our flight touched down I hugged Hannah and said "your in Iceland "Our Icelandair flight landed on time and our day here in Reykjavik started at 6:50 am GMT. Geez Keflavik airport sure has got big in the past 3 years. You have to go through security again once you land then customs . I of course had to be swabbed for explosives and drugs, The look on my face was enough to prompt several apologizes. The line up was as big as those at Gatwick as I am sure 5 flights landed at once. Needless to say we were pretty happy that the airport transfer bus turned around and came back to get us and a lovely gentlemen came running to help us with our luggage.

Once our bags were dropped at our Center Hotel Arnarhvoll we passed on the 40.euro early check in fee and head out. It is still dark at 8:30 but it is as warm as a Prince Rupert day. +5 and drizzle. We found the tourist info place and picked up the:

1] Reykjavik city card: this card gets us into all the museums we are wanting to see while we are in Reykjavik, it is good for 72 hours and cost 4900.kr {49.42CAD). It also covers all the buses and thermal pools,

2} Te og Kaffi a wonderful coffee shop that we frequented on our previous trips. I am sure it is the wonderful glacial water that makes the coffee taste amazing. I always rate the affordability of a country on the price of a coffee.At 500kr for my double latte, this cuppa is worth it

3) Settlement Museum: covered by our card this great exhibition is about the beginning of Iceland. My techy daughter found the inter actives really cool and interesting this museum is located right in the town center

4} Maritime Museum: also covered by our card. Has great fishing and maritime displays. For a girl from Prince Rupert I really enjoyed their collection. It is located right in the harbour a short walk from the town center.

5) Saga museum located about 1 minute from the maritime museum we only got 10% off here so it cost us 1800.kr each. This museum was located at the Perlan and has moved to the harbour which is great as it is easy to get too now. The wax figures are extremely well made. The whole display is very high quality and tells the story of the Icelandic people and the sagas. each of the 17 stations have a audio guide that is done very well. There is a great dressup area at the end for children and adults. Hannah was in her element here.

6] Family! this is a bonus for Hannah and I. How wonderful that Hronn picked us up and had us for tea. Her sister Elin and daughter Sigga joined us. I met Elin for the first time last year when I stayed with Hronn and to my delight her daughter Sigga was able to join us this year. We had a wonderful time with these ladies. It is like I have always known them. I know it is them that keeps me coming back here. It is said you can't choose your family, but you can choose your friends. In this case I have the best of both world.

So now it is back to our lovely hotel that has a amazing view of Harpa and the harbour. Tomorrow is a full day with a lot more adventures to come. For now it is a little English telly and a glass of white wine and maybe the Northern Lights will entertain us with a free show.

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