Category Archives: Landscape

Autumn in the highlands

It is high autumn and the scenery has changed colours. Already there have been nights with temperatures below zero.

Despite autumn storms with strong winds and rain, we have beautiful days in between. These photoes were taken last weekend when we enjoyed the stillness and colours of the serene autumn atmosphere in the highlands.

The midnight sun

It is summer solstice, the shortest night of the year and the longest day of the year.  Icelandic summer nights are ideal for outings and camping. No darkness makes everything easier especially for those who are afraid of the dark.

There is little that beats the beauty of the midnight sun. In the middle of summer the sun  sets after midnight and is up again before three in the night so there is more or less daylight  also at nighttime.

Brúarfoss Waterfall

The waterfall Brúarfoss has suddenly become a popular scenic attraction in South Iceland.  To get there one has to walk for about 20 minutes from a dirt road which was almost exclusively  used by the ones staying in the summer houses in the area. Some very adept photographers took some more than amazing photos of the waterfall which went viral, – and Voilà! Click here

The path to the waterfall is a mess. In April when we went there the only suitable footwear was wellies. So before you go consider whether you want to spoil your shoes or make do with watching amazing photos on-line.

Note: This spring landowners were given a grant to construct a footpath from the main road. That means the hike will in future take about one hour.

Hólmatungur – Jökulsárgljúfur National Park

Hólmatungur is a beautiful area in Jökulsárgljúfur Canyon with lush green vegetation and spectacular rock formations. It is on the  hiking trail alongside River Jökulsá á Fjöllum, one of the most scenic hiking trails in Iceland.

In Hólmatungur water bubbles up from the ground and falls down some ridges into River Jökla. It is an interesting area with some very special natural formations.

Hólmatungur is part of Jökulsárgljúfur Nationa Park.

Frozen paradise

Frosen paradise – the nature reserve in Flói

The Nature Reserve in Flói consist of wetlands, ponds and grassland. In the winter time when everything is frozen over it looks like something from á fairiy tale, – a winter wonderland.

The bird watching house in Nature Reserve Flói

In the summer time the Nature Reserve in Flói is teeming with birds. Today in mid winter I was surpised to see a pair of Wooper Swans, a Snow Bunting, a Redwing and a Wren.

Hjálp waterfall

Hjálp waterfall in Þjórsárdalur

Hjálparfoss Waterfall in Thjosardalur (Þjórsárdalur)  is situated just before the road takes you into the Southern Highlands and is easy to access from the main road. It is a beautiful place, the double waterfall, the lagoon and some interesting lava formations make it a place you should definitely not leave out if you are in the area. It is more than worth the while to hike down the short footpath to the river although the view from the parking place is great.

There are some very interesting places to visit in Thjorsardalur Valley and you should not pass them by. One of these is Gjáin, not far from Hálparfoss.

Hjálp at summer time

Gauksmýri – bird watching

gauksmyri-3

Gauksmýri is in the western part of North Iceland, in the county Húnavatnssýsla. Near the farm, by the same name, is a birdwatching location where wetland has been restored. The birdlife there is colourful and diverse.

gauksmyri-4

On your way North it is ideal to visit the bird watching house by the pond. There you will find some binoculars and birding guidebooks. 35 different bird species have been spotted there, e.g. swans, ducks, geese, horned grebes to name a few.

Selfoss from high up

selfoss
River Ölfusá with the bridge and the church in the foreground

Selfoss is the biggest town in the south of Iceland about 50 km southeast of the capital Reykjavík. It is in the vicinity of some of the most popular scenic attractions such as Thingvellir, Geysir and Gullfoss.

selfoss-2
A view from the east with the stables and riding grounds in foreground

It is also the civic center for the region with a hospital, swimming pool, banks, supermarkets, library, high school e.t.c. The number of inhabitants is around 7 thousand.

selfoss-3
View to the north with the Southern Highlands in the background

The pictures are from last weekend when a friend took me for a spin.

Fireweed autumn colours

haustlitir
Fireweed (Chamerion angustifolium) in an island in Rivr Ölfusá and Mt Hekla in the background

Autumn colours catch the eye everywhere at this time of year. Red, orange and yellow in adundance.  The bright red here is the autumn colour of the Rosebay Willowherb, more commonly referred to as Fireweed (Chamerion angustifolium). This beautiful plant is used both for food and medicine. Fireweed builds a thriving plant community by spreading its tiny seeds and with lateral root networks.  In an island in River Ölfusá this is the case and the plant is overrunning other vegetation.