Photo Diary: The Land of Fire and Ice – Experiencing the natural wonder of Iceland

Sofie Kim recently travelled to Iceland for the Secret Solstice Festival, during which time she captured the natural wonder of the country, a land she describes as “the land of fire, ice and all things nice…”, in this exclusive photo diary. Witness the wonders for yourself:

1

GEYSIR.

2

Waiting for the Geysir to erupt.

3

The Geysir erupts – there’s your fire and ice.

4

For a minute there I lost myself…

5

Eldborg crater in the background, but was unsuccessful in getting any closer. The spatter cone is the largest crater along a short volcanic rift, 200 m in diameter and 50m deep. Its last eruption was about 5000-6000 years ago.

6

Seljalandsfoss: One of the best known waterfalls in Iceland. And I got to walk behind it.

7

Seljalandsfoss: Behind the waterfall.

8

Lava Fields.

9

Kerið Crater: A volcanic crater lake located in the Grímsnes area in the south.

10

Where to next?

11

Reykjadalur (Smoke Valley) is a valley characterised by geothermal activity, famous for its hot rivers and hour long hike.

12

Reykjadalur: brave cyclists.

13

Reykjadalur hot rivers.

14

Reykjadalur: Riding down the mountain.

15

Gullfoss Waterfall, one of the most famous waterfalls in Iceland. Beautiful, cascading and oh-so-windy.

16

Þingvellir National Park. We are walking in the Rift Valley, on the North American continental plate.

Some of the rifts are full of clear water. One, Nikulásargjá, is better known as Peningagjá as its bottom is littered with coins. After being bridged in 1907 for the occasion of the visit of King Frederick VIII of Denmark, visitors began to throw coins in the fissure, a tradition based on European legends. This is also where you’ll find the site of the remains of the first parliament.

17

Þingvellir National Park, rocks touching. The North American continent wall.

18

Þingvellir located in the Þingvellir National Park. SIFRA Lake is the rift that is part of the divergent tectonic boundary between the North American and Eurasian plates and each year it drifts apart about 2cm per year… so effectively Iceland is getting bigger!! It’s one of the top diving sites in the world, as you can swim between the 2 continental plates.

19

Eyjafjallajökull. Remember when this erupted in 2010?

20

On a beach in Vik.

21

Fjaðrárgljúfur. A 100m deep canyon stretching 2km. Big, Bold and magnificent!

All photos by the author. Sofie travelled to Iceland at her own expense.