Exhausted but excited in the same time, we had reached the forth day in Iceland. Just fell asleep at 03:00 AM in chilly car parked in Fjallsárlón glacier lagoon; we’ve been creeping up before the buzzer ringing. My phone screen showed 06:30. We merely slept but it felt like ages. If you don’t know why we were so devastated this morning, you can check our story a day before in here. Don’t miss our forth day video below!
Day 4: Exploration South & East Fjords Iceland
Left our crisp and weary behind, went we towards Jökullsárlón hoping for mood-altering. That day was like any ordinary morning; sipping hot tea and listening to Ed Sheeran’s peaceful song. His song describes it right, misty eye of the mountain was unbelievable.
Merely in a half hour, Jökullsárlón welcomed us with its majestic setting. Nestled at the edge of the Vatnajökull National Park area, stunning façade of mountain Breiðamerkurjökull could be seen from view point just before the bridge crossing this icy lagoon. The glacier retreat into Atlantic Ocean had formed this deepest Icelandic lake. Expanded vastly than last decades, a bridge was built over Jökullsárlón to overcome poured water in the ring road 1. Continue further across the bridge, you’ll find massive flying birds above ground nearby the lagoon.
Jökullsárlón in the morning was spectacular. I can assure you that morning is the best time visiting this glacier lake. What can go wrong with ease brisk, mixture of red-blue sky, desolate place hardly any crowd, ice sculpt moved by strong morning drift, and especially shy seals swimming around.
Jökullsárlón made us an addict. That’s being said, we hardly stop saying ‘wow’ and taking pictures. In one moment, our hunger stopped us. Boiling Vietnamese pho noodle was amusedly luxurious today. The neighbor old German man gave greetings and complimented to our breakfast aroma. Grateful for everything in each moment, should we?
Our another addiction was with free Wi-Fi. By spending few Kronas in souvenirs and an hour to charge cameras, we took advantage of the Jökullsárlón tourism office for keeping warm as well as updated in the web world.
Map of Touch Iceland in 13 Days Road Trip – Day 04
Surprisingly, we hovered in Iceland for 15 hours. We pushed our limit, it was 441 Km in a day! As planned, we deployed from South Iceland to East Fjords. Thrilled by the new beginning, at 11:00 we drove ahead to the eastern city of South Iceland named Höfn. Quick pause in Höfn camping site was really resourceful.
Besides a nice shower time, we got useful tips from the Höfn camp ranger: runaway from South ASAP due to the incoming wind storm. He suggested to stay at the camp site in Bakkagerði town, the nicest camp ever. Another plus is this is the place where you can get closer to the famous puffin bird. Our first plan was camping in Breiðdalsvík. Trust the local, we’ll give it a shot!
And… guess whom we met? It was the green cyclist, our road trip companion on the second day of our trip. Atta boy!
Literally means the harbor, Höfn offers whatever sea can provide. Among those fancy seafoods, lobster is the specialty of this pier. How about it? Just ask Ben Stiller and crew of The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, whose spending splendid time in this lobster town.
No wonder the next thing we did is entering molecular gastronomy restaurant Humarhöfnin to taste their finest lobster in Iceland. And yes, Walter Mitty was here in this noteworthy and mentionable place.
Gosh, I was over the moon. Tasting juiciest langoustine tails truly made my day! What a pity (but lucky me), William is allergic so he had fun with his grilled arctic char. Too bad; I dragged back to reality when we need to continue our voyage. This place is really recommended for dining. Without longer due, check their cuisine here!
Remember about the importance of stock food up and fill the tank up? You should be. Höfn is the next big city after Vík that we passed along ring road 1. Save for the rainy day, we bought food supplies in a nearby supermarket. Around 17:00, we were in ring road 1 again approaching East Fjord Peninsula of Iceland.
Initially, we planned to spend time in Stokksnes, black dunes aside Höfn. Altered by execrable weather, we skipped it. Luckily we could gaze a part of Vestrahorn, a Batman look-alike mountain, from the side of the road. Hope you get a better view (and better weather) than ours!
Adieu, South Iceland! We steered in the East Fjords now. By its name, you can guess the major panorama of East Fjords. The road sets beside ocean cliffs and maneuvers along numerous fjords. Although blue Norwegian Sea was very pleasant to see, the harsh ocean wind gave us a hard time. Showers not, high elevation and cloudy atmosphere were enough to make us numb.
We owned the spectacular road ringed by eroding rock mountains. How cool was that? Mark it on your map! On two fjords before Djúpivogur city and approximately the opposite of sea stacks around Papey Island, you will find a small junction from ring road 1 to Muli village with signage.
An hour later, we beamed to the icon of East Fjords, reindeer. Somewhere surround Berufjörður, the reindeer just laid down quaintly. For a moment, we totally puzzled to choose the right way. There is a junction between ring road 1 towards Breiðdalsvík and route 939 to Öxi (nice shortcut to Egilsstaðir, by the way). Thirst for more adventure, our car forwarded to gravel road alongside the fjords, which is peculiarly the ring road 1.
We arrived in Stöðvarfjörður; resting and dining as fuel for the long journey ahead. This city is the coolest among Icelandic cities we went to. Creativity splashed throughout this city on the mural. They are persistent, silently spoken, and afraid not to the forceful windblown.
We had tough time going to Egilsstaðir. Swirling wind became stronger; blowing sand as well as shaking the car. The disadvantage of driving in that situation was the fuel drained more than usual. Cautiously, we turned off the air conditioning to secure enough burning till the next gas station after 30 km. Another crucial point is to insure your car when you face sand-and-ash storm. Their fine molecule could scratch the car paint; it will cost a pretty penny.
Fáskrúðsfjörður is a small city near relatively new route 96 to Egilsstaðir. The owner of the gas station and small shop there was really nice to us. ‘Icelandic people got cut-rate for the fuel’, he explained. After the payment of reduced price with his credit card, then we paid cash to him. We got a bargain thanks to him! What a hero, the Viking in the new era.
Egilsstaðir on golden hour was elegant. This place is classy with large houses, broad lane, and a lot of green space. The air was filled with tranquility.
When proceeding directly to Bakkagerði, we found a gravel road continuously. We did pause in front of the twisted river on route 94. The next landscape was picturesque like African dessert under the glorious twilight. Around at 22:30, we saw this amazing sunset. Actually, I wonder when we did not see any splendid sunset in Iceland.
Everything seemed to be perfect, but the real thing wasn’t. The road to Bakkagerði was a real deal. We were facing 14-15 m/s of wind speed, almost the border level of gale. Imagine what we fear of death was. Well, wind like that is nothing for Viking, I guess.
This route is the one and only way to reach Bakkagerði. It was crossing snowy mountains, with the slippery gravel road near to the cliff edge. Just one slip, you’ll drop down. Climbing up after the sun nearly gone was cold and snowy. At the summit, we felt on top of the world (and literally). As a plus, we had our fun on the snow though.
That was it! After the most horror hour of our day, we arrived safe and sound (hooray!) in Bakkagerði. Nothing more to say, Bakkagerði was such a beautiful town. With joyful tears we looked for the nicest camp site according to Höfn camp ranger. Look alike a hollow town was Bakkagerði that evening. No wonder, there was a hurricane coming in.
Unfortunately, our sorrow has not ended yet… The wind still remained (even stronger, in my opinion). We could not even build our tent. Guess what, we slept in the car again at the end! It was the best decision actually. Three tents built were trembling by the wind, overdone. The next day, they simply follow our lead sleeping inside the car.
It’s our pleasure to sum up our fourth day in below video.
Folks, I really wish you don’t have to experience our day, aside from those stunning landscapes.