The Golden Circle

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Here’s to a pit stop in Iceland after a Mediterranean adventure!

Sophie and I flew in to Keflavik International Airport at an early two in the morning and stayed in Hotel Borg in Reykjavik. IMG_4993After weeks without a proper hearty breakfast, a morning full of eggs, bacon, potatoes, and traditional Icelandic skyr prepared us for the many long hours of sightseeing and adventures.Processed with VSCO with s3 presetA typical Icelandic road has a speed limit of 80-90km/hr, but if we’re being completely honest, you will be pulling over so often that you won’t have time to get up to speed.

Iceland has three staple foods: fish, lamb, and skyr. So when Sophie and I dined at the Lava Restaurant overlooking the Blue Lagoon, I opted for cod for my main dish, accented with a glass of sweet sparkling wine. For dessert, there were countless options, so I went with my gut and tried the sorrel and skyr, with a rhubarb ice and soup at its base.

And always be on the lookout for puffins! Catch me in the puffin inspired stores.

Did you know that Iceland has the largest population of puffins in the world?Processed with VSCO with s2 presetAnd if this wasn’t the most accurately named store in Reykjavik… The Icelandic language is absolutely beyond me, no matter how cool it sounds.IMG_5383Off to the Golden Circle tour!!

This was a waterfall in Þingvellir National Forest. Once you outrun the swarms of gnats and tourists, you can really step back and admire the crashing falls.IMG_1116Another stop in the Golden Circle is Gullfoss Falls.

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Yes, you have now entered the realm of Game of Thrones. Welcome.

You can warm up from the spray of the falls and the rain inside the shop and food court right next to the parking lot.

After a long day of driving through rural Iceland, be sure to make a pit stop at a pub or restaurant and try some local cuisine! I noticed that if you’re not feeling too adventurous or just need some warm, comfort food; there is always pizza, fish & chips, and burgers.

Reykjavik itself is a hub of activity. I know that personally, I could have spent hours just walking the streets!

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The church of Reykjavik truly transports you to Vulcan (Cue the Star Trek reference)

It is so vastly different than the typical architecture in Iceland, with its organ and piped columns that come to a sharp point. Combined with the vaulted ceilings, it is a very central point of the city.IMG_5285 2And somehow, even the coffee was photogenic. IMG_5068Sophie and I stumbled upon a Te & Kaffi nestled in a bookstore, and were both stunned at the high quality drinks they served! We later found out that Te & Kaffi is a common chain.

I think it’s safe to say that our two favorites are the íslatte and the Swiss mokka.

Before you even think about heading out, stock up on snacks. In our rented Toyota Yaris (curtesy of MyCar) you would have found peanut butter, rice cakes, Danish cheese, and Icelandic skyr. This way you wouldn’t have to worry about where to eat or be for hours on end and simply explore!

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Okay, okay. You’ve waited long enough for photos from the Blue Lagoon…

You must make sure that you book your entry tickets in advance otherwise you will most likely not be able to get in. Sophie and I had the premium package that included a Silica and Algae mask, towels, a robe, flip-flops, one free drink, and reservations at the Lava Restaurant.

Geysir is one of the other stops on the Golden Circle, complete with a periodical geyser that makes sure to please the tourists that stop by. There is a resort of sorts surrounding the thermal activity, with what looked like an excellent restaurant!

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And now it is back to the states, to morning runs, and steak dinners.

So I will leave you with a common roadside view, that being the fields of purple.

Till next year Europe.

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