Today’s Icelandic topic? The Snæfellsnes Peninsula (pronounced Snafel-sness).
While doable as a “day-trip” from Reykjavik, get ready for a 12-15 hour day. There’s a lot to see & do here so to fit it all in one day is tough. I know I have mentioned my mom before on this blog, but Kathy really kicks it into high gear when we travel together and she is the main reason why we are always able to get so much done.
My mom hired a private guide to take us and let me tell you it was worth every penny. Tyffi, the owner of Seasons Tours, was nothing short of amazing. He trekked with us the whole day, was extremely knowledgeable and took tons of fabulous pictures. All of the pictures in this post were shot by him. I would be happy to travel to ANY part of Iceland with Tyffi as our guide.
We began the day with a stop at the “Best Bakery in all of Iceland” according to our guide, Mosfellsbakari. It’s a little outside of Reykjavik we munched on some little raisin donuts.
This is also the place where we saw a mound house. The traditional type of Viking home.
Then comes the first big natural formation which is one reason people travel to Snæfellsnes. The Eldborg Crater and surrounding lava field. The largest crater in this volcanic chain, it looks like someone took a big spoonful Earth out of the ground.
Further west you’ll find Gerðuberg Basalt Columns along with a small church. Walk all the way over to the church if you’d like a more secluded look at the columns, away from all the
tourists at the base. The way all the columns are seemingly uniform is amazing piece of nature.
Tyffi brought us to a secret spot of his, the “Fountain of Youth.” A natural water spring the water is heavily enriched with iron. Makes it taste like rusty nails. But apparently the benefits outweigh the horrible metallic taste. I’m not totally convinced yet.
Bjarnarfoss, our first “offical” waterfall. Official is in quotes because there are waterfalls all along the highway. Literally no one knows the exact number of waterfalls in Iceland because there are SO MANY. Google “how many waterfalls are there in Iceland” and I promise, you will not find an answer.
We then stopped at Hotel Buðir for lunch and a look at the iconic black church. I had an amazing fish stew with caviar. It was probably the best meal I had in Iceland. In the winter this is apparently the place to stay if you’d like to see the Northern Lights.
Lóndrangar was our next stop. It is two rock formations that jut up straight from the ocean. They are the only pieces left of a volcano that has otherwise eroded away.
In the distance from Lóndrangar we could see our next stop, the Malarrif Light House and its surrounding beach. From there we stopped by a natural rock bridge, a statue of the troll protector of the peninsula, and got attacked by territorial Arctic Terns.
Me and my mom then descended into Vatnshellir Cave. It’s the lave tube cave that inspired the book “Journey to the Center of the Earth.” It’s an 8000 year old cave that without supplemental light is pitch dark inside.
Iceland has had its fair share of shipwrecks so went off to see the ruins on Djúpalónssandur, a black pebble beach. The next beach we went to was a light sand beach, Skarðsvík, which is one of the only of its kind on Iceland.
We finally finished out the day at Kirkjufell mountain, the most photographed mountain in all of Iceland, and Kirkjufellfoss (translated to mean Elf Church and Elf Church Waterfall). Amazing formations that seemed to be shrouded in mystery and had me thinking twice about believing in elves.
Well if you’re still reading I congratulate you. It was a long but rewarding day, (just like this post) and believe it or not but this post could have been twice as long as it was. Tyffi also had a few other treats up his sleeve. You’ll just have to book him for a tour to find them out.
He did let us stop and feed some Icelandic horses though.