Northern Iceland is more sparsely populated and austere than the southern coast. The rough roads and whipping wind are worth it for the scenery, though. Particularly Dettifoss, the most powerful waterfall in Europe. You can hear every bit of that power as soon as you step foot in the canyon.
Ideally, if you’re going to take a five-hour trip, you want to do it in Iceland. The whole time I felt compelled to have my phone or camera at the ready. I’m not sure if that’s a good instinct. How do you really convey the beauty of a singularly stunning place with a haphazard photo you took on the side of the road?
We walked around the city heading toward Hallgrímskirkja. The wind stung my ears as we walked uphill, but it was worth it upon seeing the church for the first time. Even without religion, one can’t help being filled with awe in its presence.
I swam in turquoise and azure waters and sat on white sand. The sun felt like it was right on top of us, like I could touch it if I wanted to, but it wasn’t unpleasant. How could it be? It also became obvious that there is no better drink than a cold Sands lager in the shade of a beachside hut—well, maybe save a simple rum cocktail.