Statue of Leifur Eiríksson
Statue of Leifur Eiríksson

Iceland - 2003


Iceland - 2003


Our second visit, this time with David.

Statue of Leifur Eiríksson 0079 2Standing at the end of Skólavörðustígur street and in front of Hallgrímskirkja church is one of the best-known landmarks in Reykjavik, the statue of the explorer, Leifur Eiríksson. Enhanced by Wendy and David.


As evidenced by Wendy with David at the base of the statue, on a somewhat grey day.


On our first visit, as we wanted to travel through the central region, it was compulsory to be guided and supported. That government regulation resulted in us booking a package holiday. We travelled in a group, with two 4x4 coaches.

The central region is unpopulated and remote, hence the requirement for a minimum of two vechiles in a convoy.

This trip was basically a circumnavigation, without any need to cross the centre. I also think that over time there was a relaxation of the regulations.

We were one family, in an ordinary, hired, family car, travelling at our own pace, ish.

Both trips were arranged through Arctic Experience, re-branded as Discover the World, from 2002, a specialist travel agent, founded in 1984, and based in Banstead. Which is conveniently close to our home. Iceland was a prime location for Arctic Experience for our first trip in 1987. Their range had widened, not surprisingly, by 2003, but they were still in the elite for Iceland holidays.

 It is not quite true that we could travel at our own pace, there were constraints, other than the speed limit.

Discover the World don't just dump you at the airport, point you to the hire car and let you loose. Although, that may be and option these days. The first part of the process of booking is to select a basic route, A, B, C etc.

Within the parameters of the chosen route, they discuss where you want to go and what you want to see. How far you want to drive, or more importantly, how long you want to drive for each day. Based on the conversations and their experience they select a number of night locations. All very achievable, from the previous night, taking into account the roads and the places of interest on the way. Another conversation, and if all is agreed, then they book appropriate accommodation. That, at least, is how it seemed to me. Perhaps, it was just select the route and duration, and all else flows.

So you do need to get to the next bed each day. You also need to eat at the end of the day, and there are not always multiple options.

Before we get into the sequential section, an image of our trusted stead, our hire car. Somewhat dirty due to the unmetalled roads.

 Our hire car near Stykkishólmur on road 54, in Western Iceland, with Wendy and David

You can see from the photo that the road here was not metalled, a gravel road. In fact, at the time, the majority of road 1, the main road around the island, was single carriageway, and a significant proportion was not metalled, similar to the photo, graded gravel. Although, the gravel was frequently lava based, and black.

This was the last year that David would be considered a child, in respect of fares and fees. Hence, get in there quick. He was also old enough to appreciate and remember the trip.




 An old Google Maps rendition of the route. Note that this is not a GPS log from a Satnav or similar, it is merely plotting the approximate route on a modern map. There is therefore a possibility that some of the roads are new, especially dual carriageways, and hence not yet in existence for our trip. 


ArcGIS StoryMaps


A lot for the same information as this web site, including text and photos, but does show progress by photos and night stops. Follow link to open in new window. This Story Map is being enhanced and turned into an immersive data rich environment. So is worth a look.




 Our circumnavigation of Iceland





 Photo Gallery held in SmugMug. Follow link to SmugMug to Open Gallery in new tab, with larger images.



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Iceland - 1987






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Fabrik is one of those applications, if fact a significant 'Joomla Custom Website Application Builder'.

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