Finding our way in Iceland for a week made us conclude one thing: Iceland has been kind to us. Experiencing hurricane-to-be (It’s true, take a peek in our 4th day) and twisted journey (like yesterday) gave us bitter sweet touch during the adventure. Today as our 8th day of exploration was not an exception.
In a glance, enjoy it via our day 8 video!
Video Iceland Trip Day 08: Takes Two Peninsula to Tango
Woke up in Patreksfjörður campsite was a fine start of the day. Campsite’s kitchen and living room area equipped with radiator. We were having free unlimited showers, which is simply perfect, without any coins insertion machine or timer. Proper kitchen equipment allowed us to cook our warm breakfast. Its campsite facilities and cleanliness was the best so far!
Day 08: Exploration of West Fjords Peninsula and Snæfellsnes Peninsula
What’s on the menu today? Wandering in West Fjords Peninsula area, went further south to Snæfellsnes Peninsula. These two areas were not a mainstream tourist places, so expect hardly crowd(y) place.
Map of Touch Iceland in 13 Days Road Trip – Day 08
Lessons learnt, we noted how important to check weather and road condition was. Sorrow moment was having detour due to road closure that we didn’t know (bitter sweet of 3 days ago, check in here). No wonder Patreksfjörður information center was our first destination today. That place was really helpful; we got information for puffin and seals watching.
Lucky was on our side today. Under cloudless blue sky with sun radiant, we drove to ashore deserted ship BA 64. This former Norway vessel laid to rust on a seas shore at Skápadalur valley, in between Patreksfjörður and Breiðavík.
Neglected aside road 612, this ship wreck never had her lonely time. Tourists were stopping by for capture or simply admire her mighty beauty.
Halfway to go, we climbed up gravel roads on route 612 to reach Hnjotur town, the home of Aviation Museum. This isolated town was quiet and dry, with a wreck of plane in front of Aviation Museum, try to make an impression.
Still in the neighborhood, we aimed to reach cliff Látrabjarg. I must say that this place is one of must visit in Iceland. Surprisingly, sandy beach truly exists in Iceland. You can enjoy it here in Breiðavík, on the way to Látrabjarg
White sand beach line in border with dark blue ocean was not the only pleasant one to see. Rock cliff Látrabjarg was the main attraction in this area. As the largest rock cliff in Europe and the most beautiful puffin bird watching place, its location in the corner of Iceland was superfluous.
The trademark of Látrabjarg is the stand alone Bjargtangar, a plain white lighthouse at the cliff’s edge. Worth information given on the info board nearby the lighthouse Bjargtangar; likewise the wind on the cliff could be sudden forceful.
Látrabjarg cliff was a perfect home for puffin birds. High cliff directly face to Norwegian Sea allowed them to dive in for preying in no time. The ground on top of cliff edge is mostly mushy due to puffins’nest built up. For knowing better the puffin birds, the iconic animal in Iceland, you can check this article.
Combination of delicate rim ground and strong wind blown could make puffin watching a dangerous thing to do. The secret recipe to do it safely is to crawling approaching the edge. Afterwards, stay calm on the ground in face down position. These two steps help you avoiding wind force and equally distribute your body weight.
Having enough fun with the puffins, we drove back on the same route – route 612) to go out from this isolated corner. In junction between route 612 to bigger (gravel) road 62, we stopped for small lunch break. Not too bad, we had view of seashore and abandoned shipwreck we visited this morning.
Iceland surprised us endlessly. Route 62 was also crossing mountains but still creating unique view. This time, the view was dry and dusty rocky mountains like remote desert.
Stop scoffing yet folks, the road continued with rocky seaside view. Of course, we did not disappointed. This part of sea was totally different, looks shallow and packed with deserted dying red algae on its shore. The view was going on for 140 km from route 62 to mid of route 60.
Our plan is to have a short but nice dip in natural geothermal pool namely Hellulaug. The location is pretty bewildered. Eventually, we skipped it for saving more time. Quick photo, off we went.
Unstoppable and passionate, we were. Under bright sunshine, we headed to Stykkisholmur. GPS Mr. Garmin told us it will be a long one, 272 km with approximate 3,5 hours driving time.
Music, check. Camera, ready. IPhone, charged. Icelandic chocolate raisins, still in half-stock. So, we’re ready to take off.
Take example in life, planning is the perfect picture but reality hurts. We planned to have straight 3,5 hours journey in order to rest in Stykisholmur on time. However, it was not happening. Like Lao Tzu once said, “a good traveler has no fixed plans, and is not intent on arriving.” We stopped by in small city called Búðardalur to get rest and – the most important – dinner ala Icelandic while watching football match.
Thanks to our break, we bite the tastiest burger in the gas station. Although it sounds like chessy cheap fast food, but it wasn’t. The burger meat made of fresh grilled lamb meat. To add more heaven in this burger, they add crispy bacon and fresh vegetables. Nicely, we could refill your soda cup to accompany the football match. Iceland versus unknown team (sorry, we’re not a football fan). I assumed Iceland won because everyone is cheering in happiness.
Nice time we had leads to another enjoyable but seriously sleepy journey. Boost from soda coke’s caffeine was not enough. At least relaxing in front of Holy mountain Helgafell in Stykisholmur could pleased our eyes.
Once Icelandic believe the holiness of this place, giving the name of this Holy Mountain. Walk up to peak of Helgafell to whisper your wishes, they will come true. Aside from the superstitious, we knew how holy a place can be under its lush aura.
We left Helgafell with a bit of disappointment. The night was crawling near; we couldn’t climb up Helgafell. But the view towards our last point, Grundarfjörður, was able to give the healing power. Jolly joy!
Nothing beats the midnight sunset hunting (we’re a bit late, though) in Kirkjufell, the pyramid mountain nearby Grundarfjörður. Amazingly beautiful with every perfect setting of nature.
Camping in Ólafsvík in the end of the day, we were satisfied with everything we had today. Although we did not wish in Holy Mountain, seems like we still got splash of the blissful Iceland charm. Perfect day, we could say!