Today we start the journey around the whole island. Our first destination is one of the biggest tourist attractions Þingvellir.
We originally wanted to take Route 36, but in Reykjavik we turned and chose a longer option and went up the plateau on Route 431 and 435.
Our detour was worth it. Although the weather was inclement the country was charming.
The plateau ends with a volcanic ridge ...
... and suddenly we found ourselves in the middle of beautiful hills and cliffs.
View from the mountains to Lake Þingvallavatn.
And here is the tourist attraction Þingvellir. Again our famous Atlantic ridge. We'll meet it again in the next few days. This time the upper part is American and the lower European.
The accessible part of the ridge is about 3 km long.
The icing on the cake is this beautiful Öxarárfoss waterfall that flows from the American continent.
Þingvellir is also the place where the Althing - Icelandic Parliament was established in 930. In the white building is a museum commemorating the history of this legislature. You can see the parallel cracks of the Atlantic ridge in the distance.
The Öxará River flows into Lake Þingvallavatn.
On the way south a small stop at the Kerid crater. Depth 55 m age about 3000 years.
At the end of the day we came to the town of Hveragerði where we slept in a former Skyr factory.
The city is characterized by several attractions. The first one is a miracle chair. Everyone who sits on it turns into a dwarf.
They are also brave boys who like to show off in front of girls. Although there is a geothermal zone above the town, the water in the river was really cold.
And hot springs again...
Or rather hot hills. Too bad unused energy.
But the heat is really used. Underground water is not salty, it does not contain dissolved oxygen, sulfur or iron, or soluble minerals. It is slightly alkaline so it is not corrosive at all and does not clog the pipes with deposits. All you have to do is degas it in such a steam separator and send it to the municipal heating plant without a pump. The stupid thing is that they have to push it back into the borehole with a pump so this heat is still not completely free.
And here's a look at the local heat source. Along with sheep it is a typical Icelandic idyll.
But in a detailed look it is more of a gateway to hell. This is the flip side of cheap energy. In 2008, there was one of the strongest earthquakes (6.1 degrees). Fortunately without loss of lives.