The sun has finally broken through in these final hours of our time in Reykjavik. Tomorrow we will be at the airport bright and early to catch our flight home.
Our amazingly good luck with the weather over the past 2 weeks came to a screeching halt when we arrived in Iceland on Friday. We were greeted with heavily overcast skies and finally rain. Dull, grey, persistent rain.
It didn’t stop us from exploring Reykjavik and the territory within a 2 hour driving radius of the capital. It is a place full of the unexpected.
I had high expectations of its major tourist draws. I don’t know why. I know better … I generally don’t like tourist hotspots and this turned out to be no exception.
At the risk of sounding like a jaded tourist, the “must-see” highlights did not provide me with a *wow*. I’m going to blame the dull, grey rain and the persistent headache I nursed all day.
On the flipside, we didn’t expect Reykjavik to be such a likeable city. It is considerably larger than we expected and the big surprise was that – for once – we were in a city on a race weekend … and we weren’t racing.
The Reykjavik Marathon was held on Saturday and that evening the city celebrated Cultural Night. According to Mr Google, this has been an annual festival for 20 years when the entire city celebrates with parties, street musicians, fireworks, and an overall carnival atmosphere.
The downtown core was completely blocked to car traffic with music and entertainment scattered throughout the crowded streets. This city had its *party* on, in spite of temperatures that felt more like October than August.
This morning, we needed a little more action so Gilles and I headed down to the harbour for some whale watching.
Zooming across the choppy water was a considerably more physical ride than we were expecting. In a semi-standing position, the knees are used to absorb the shock of the boat hitting the waves. By the end of the 2 hour trip, we were all feeling a little wobbly in the legs.
Did we see whales? Oh yes!
Did I get a single photograph? Uhh … no. I did however manage to capture many photos of the sea AFTER the whale had already slipped below the surface.
Sometimes we don’t always find what we are looking for, but instead discover something else entirely. That’s how I feel about Reykjavik. I was captivated by the city and, yes – all the stories of how insanely expensive it is are true, but this is one trip I would make again.
There is so much more of this country to explore than a mere 2 days can cover.