Our third day in Iceland was another long one! After grabbing our donuts and coffee from Dunkin’, we headed northwest for some more exploring.
We started by driving north of Reykjavik, which took us through the Hvalfjörður Tunnel. This tunnel was completed in 1998, and ended up saving us close to an hour of driving while heading northwest. The tunnel is over 3.5 miles long and roughly 550 feet below the sea. There was one toll to enter, but only cost us a dollar. The time and milage we saved made it worth it.
Since Iceland is one giant Island, there are tons of different lighthouses to see. As we came out of the tunnel, we drove through a small town where we stopped to look at one! We got there just in time to see the sun rising.
The lighthouse had these adorably painted rocks all over the place.
We wanted to go inside, but it was locked. In order to climb to the top, you had to call the number listed. We wanted to go inside, but we didn’t have the time to call nor a phone that would have worked. So, we just roamed around outside and enjoyed all the little rock paintings.
Once we all loaded back into the car, we drove around the small town and stopped to take some incredible shots of the boats out on the water.
We spent a ton of time in the car on this day. Most of the places we wanted to see, were farther away from our apartment in the city . However, the views were so stunning that the distance flew by quickly. I made Taylor pull over several times just to take some pictures. These pictures don’t even do it justice!
About two hours away from Reykjavik, we stopped at another beautiful waterfall called Barnafossar! This one was wider than the one from the previous day, and it had an amazing turquoise color.
Since this waterfall is a lot further away from the capital than most of the others, not as many tourists get the chance to visit it. However, it’s so different from all the others and it turned out to be one of our favorites!
There’s a neat bridge that you can use to cross over the river and look down at the water. There used to be a natural bridge in this spot, but it caved long ago.
All of the water is this pretty blue color because it emerges from a nearby lava field. Most of the surrounding rock is pillow lava from a past eruption.
This was one of the most beautiful waterfalls we’ve ever seen before. It may take longer to get to, but we highly recommend seeing it if you find yourself in Iceland!
When we were finished taking in the beauty of the waterfall, we drove to a nearby geothermal heating plant.
The water bubbling out from under the earth’s surface is about 200 degrees and is collected and piped all around the country. It’s then used for geothermal energy.
After we were done staring at the bubbling water, we drove an hour to Leif Erickson’s home.
While we were driving, we saw a group of horses hanging out near the fence. They were eating, so of course we stopped to pet them!
Horses can be spotted all over Iceland, and they’re super friendly. As soon as they saw us stand by the fence, they came up to say hello!
We hated to say goodbye, but we were on a mission to see Lief Erickson’s home before the sun went down.
It was such a nice day outside, which made the next part of our adventure possible.
When driving to Lief Erickson’s home, you have to go through the mountains. They were covered in fresh white snow, so it was breathtaking!
it started to blizzard while we were halfway up the mountain. This is when I thought we were going to die. We slipped and slid up this mountain road, all while it was snowing heavily. Thank goodness it only lasted for about 20 minutes, because I was not thinking that we were going to make it off that mountain in one piece!
As Taylor was driving, Grandma and I were in the back begging him to turn around. However, Taylor is a very stubborn person. Thankfully, we made it safely down the mountain. We ended up getting fantastic pictures and a good laugh out of it, so I’ll count that as a win.
We finally made it to Leif Erickson’s home where he was supposedly born and lived while he was younger, before moving to Greenland and discovering North America.
I’m so glad we decided to venture all the way to his home, because it was so neat to see it in person!
Once we were done touring his home, we drove to the town of Stykkishólmur for dinner.
This was a fishing town, and it was so unique. There was a peaceful harbor area that we enjoyed walking around.
We hadn’t eaten anything since breakfast, so we were starving! We chose to eat at the most amazing restaurant right on the harbor. It was called Sjávarpakkhúsiö, and they served fresh seafood that the fisherman had caught that day. We selected a table right beside the window so we could watch the boats.
The restaurant is open all year round, so there is plenty of seating inside and outside.
The restaurant was so cozy and welcoming. It was the perfect place to end our long and adventurous day.
I got the fresh seafood soup, which was a creamy soup with white fish and scallops!
Taylor and Grandma ordered the fish sandwich, which they say tasted incredible.
Our friend Waite ordered the lamb! He practically licked the plate clean, so you know that was yummy as well!
The food and service was impeccable. We dream about coming back to this restaurant one day! We didn’t want to leave this charming town, so we walked around after dinner before heading back to Reykjavik.
It took us about two hours to get back to the city. As soon as we got back to the apartment, we each showered and fell asleep. We were exhausted from the long day!