Iceland Impressions 2

May 7, 2013

“We do not take a trip, a trip takes us.”
— John Steinbeck, from Travels with Charley

Paved path following the coastline near Keflavik

Paved path following the coastline near Keflavik

One of my favorite things to do on my travels is to simply walk or drive around, see what presents itself, and take photos.  So on my stopover in Iceland, I donned walking shoes and set out from my lodging at the Hotel Keflavik and followed the paved path along the coastline.  I walked for about four miles before I turned around to come back, and I did not even reach the end of the path.  I felt like a solitary walker, so few people did I meet en route.

I fell in love with the tidy, modest-sized houses, with their red and blue roofs.  One yellow house was particularly cheerful.  I felt that, in comparison, our huge sprawling houses in the U.S. are too often ostentatious and wasteful.

The red-roofed houses of Keflavik

The red-roofed houses of Keflavik

Blue roofs, Keflavik

Blue roofs, Keflavik

Cheerful yellow house along the Iceland coast

Cheerful yellow house along the Iceland coast

Two historic "summer houses" in Keflavik

Two historic “summer houses” in Keflavik

Downtown Keflavik, how tidy and clean

Downtown Keflavik, how tidy and clean

Along the path was a restored cottage called a “Stekkjarkot.”  This sod-covered dwelling was typical of those from the mid-1800s.  The family who lived here would have made its living from the sea.

Stekkjarkot near Keflavik

Stekkjarkot near Keflavik

Keflavik is a sea town, with fishing boats and working harbors.  Very picturesque.

Breakwater leading into a harbor

Breakwater leading into a harbor

One of Keflavik's harbors

One of Keflavik’s harbors

Weathered blue shed

Weathered blue shed

Fishing boat seen from a bluff

Fishing boat seen from a bluff

After walking four miles in one direction, I returned to the hotel and then walked in the other direction, through the town, and up a bluff where I followed a hard path of volcanic rock along the cliffs.

Hard path on the bluff over Keflavik

Hard path on the bluff over Keflavik

Coming back down, I passed this woman basking in the spring sunshine like a seal on a rock.  (Don’t we all celebrate the return on light and warmth in the Spring?)

Welcome back sun!

Welcome back sun!

I ended my day by swimming with the locals at Keflavik’s public swimming pool.  For one-twentieth the cost of the Blue Lagoon, I enjoyed four or five warm soaking pools/hot tubs, a lap pool, a big general swimming pool while around me families played in the kiddie pools and water park with giant slides into yet another pool.  And then I splurged on a dinner of Icelandic lamb.  A perfect day.

My dinner of Icelandic lamb at the restaurant in the Hotel Keflavik

My dinner of Icelandic lamb at the restaurant in the Hotel Keflavik

 

 

 

 

 

 

7 Responses to “Iceland Impressions 2”

  1. Janet Foss Says:

    That sod house made me think of the children’s story ” The Husband Who Was To Mind The House” when he put the cow on the roof to eat the grass as a farm kid I often wondered what was he thinking? Now I have a bit of understanding? Love the bright roofs. Lovely.


  2. Rosemary it looks and sounds like heaven…a simple clean wonderful place to relax away from our hectic crazy cluttered world sometimes…I love finding these peaceful spots…and the lamb dinner looks delicious.

    • Rosemary Says:

      Donna, Iceland really was a special place, and I imagine it would be very head-clearing if one stayed there longer. Before my trip, I read a memoir by Charles Fergus about his longer stay in Iceland. It is called Summer at Little Lava: A Season at the Edge of the World. He was looking for a “fugitive” place, and he called Iceland an “outermost house of the Western World.”

  3. allesistgut Says:

    Thank you so much for bringing back some good memories of Iceland. Your post is so heartwarming. I don’t know Keflavik, only the airport. But it looks so peaceful and quite. And the food looks so delicious. Great photos. In summer I’ll come back to Iceland. Can’t wait until I breathe that fresh and clear Icelandic Air again.

    • Rosemary Says:

      You are very welcome. I’d love to return in the summer — those long days. One could pack in a lot each day.

  4. shoreacres Says:

    This is the sort of environment I love – simple, clean and open. I love the houses, and their roofs. A few of these photos remind me of the paintings of Edward Hopper, especially the first and the one of the blue shed.

    As for that fishing boat and its blue water – oh, my!


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