Thirdeyemom

Entranced in Iceland: A visit to the remote Skaftafell National Park: Part I The Arrival

After a day of driving filled with natural wonders, I couldn’t wait to finally reach remote Skaftafell National Park.  Europe’s largest and perhaps grandest national park is a hiker’s delight filled with awe-inspiring glacial tongues, waterfalls, twisted birch trees, verdant grass, and the crème de la crème, the aquamarine Vatnajökull at it’s glory.

As you get further along in the drive, there is nothing but glaciers and the haunting dead, black sand deltas known as sandars juxtaposed against the brilliant green-covered hills and plains.  It is quite a sight to see!  Life against death could never be so sensationally beautiful. 

We pull into our lonely hotel, Hotel Skaftafell (the ONLY hotel for hours) close to dinner time.  The undistinguished hotel has 63 small, clean rooms.  There is nothing luxurious about this place.  However, unless you want to camp, it is the only option.

Here is a photo of Hotel Skaftafell which in my opinion looks a little more like a military base than a hotel.

A glimpse of the hotel from above.  Note there is nothing in the horizon except the sandars, the brownish, gray or sometimes black sand deltas.

Looking the other direction outside of our hotel room is a lovely view of what awaits….

As you walk a bit further behind the hotel, you are suddenly and surprisingly encountered by Svinafellsjokull, another gigantic glacier lurking off the immense ice cap:

Looking back again on the hotel, you can see and feel the remoteness of the place.  Lost in Iceland, is anybody out there?

After a fine dinner (nothing fancy, but wholesome good food and of course at a price, given our remoteness), we head out again for a short hike beyond the hotel.  For some reason, I love this picture of my dad walking off into the distance.  It is mysterious, magical and intimidating all at the same time.   Also, it is about 10:30 pm….and it is still light!

And this is what we find…..

The sun slowly dips behind the clouds and it is almost bedtime.  We have a big day ahead of us of hiking and exploring this unbelievable land.  I can hardly wait!

Goodnight glacier…we will see you tomorrow!

Stay tuned….next post will show the outrageously spectacular photos of our day hike in Skaftafell National Park.  A hike of a lifetime!

10 comments

  1. Wow, every time I read your blog there’s always a new post about places which happen to be in my list to visit. Morocco and Iceland are among the top places in my list! So interesting reading your stories.

    • Glad you enjoy! I am writing stories about travels I’ve done recently and over the years. I’ve been fortunate to have traveled quite a bit for the last twenty years or so. now I am finally writing about them and it has been really fun. Next stop is New Zealand…another wonderful place. Thanks for reading!!!!:)

    • I don’t know! I honestly am moving backwards through time writing about things I’ve done over the last ten-twenty years. I have always loved travel and have spent my time and money doing it. I grew up traveling and thankfully my parents and husband are very supportive as my mom or husband ususally watch the kids once or twice a year so I can follow my dreams! 🙂 Happy wife, happy life, right!

  2. Hi Madam
    I am reading your blog from this month..i got info about new place from every blog.The Snaps from your blog are awesome.I wish i could visit this place.
    And i am very thankful for sharing your moments.

    • Thanks! I’m still laughing over your FPressed post. That picture was so incredibly hilarious! The whole post made me laugh so hard. Women go through that every summer! 🙂 Keep up the great posts!

  3. i was on the skaftafell day hike. when we were there, everything was blanketed in snow. i’m writing about my hike there now on my blog. i too, just returned from this unbelievable country about a month and half ago and i’m already waiting to jump into the plane again and go back. nice post. 😀

  4. Pingback: A Sea of Ice: Iceland’s Myrdalsjökull Glacier | Thirdeyemom

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