A few years ago I took a trip to Iceland, it’s somewhere I’ve always wanted to go after being forced into a layover during a major Air France pilot strike which resulted in a 2 week long headache for travelers. Previously I hadn’t heard much about it beyond tour groups going to see the northern lights, glacier trips and enjoying a giant man-made jacuzzi (the Blue Lagoon).
But sure, I’ve always wanted to see Iceland but it wasn’t a top priority — until seeing it from the sky during a forced layover thanks to Air France. If you’ve never been, you have to go. It’s unlike anything else out there, well not quite literally — or maybe literally, I guess it depends on where you’ve traveled before.
Here are a few shots from that trip with my old Canon 5DMkII and some manual prime lenses for experimenting. Not the most ideal situation for windy, rainy, and grey weather but visually it worked out.
In downtown Reykjavik there’s one craft beer bar, and as a craft beer snob, I had to check it out. Though I didn’t grab a drink because of the 8 hours of driving ahead. Was a fun little place with lots of unique options, especially for the location.
Along the drive out of the city, there were of course a whole bunch of waterfalls, wet, green, grey and all sorts of muted and uniform colors. It’s truly a remarkable looking place.
After a good 6 hours of driving through the narrow ring road in complete darkness through fog with about 1 foot of visibility, one of the most treacherous drives I’ve ever encountered – and not realizing what was on the sides of the road – which I later learned was nothing. No shoulder, no guard rails, just a sharp bank down to rocky glacial remains. The outcome of falling asleep at the wheel along the way would have been not so great, let’s just put it that way.
Anyway, after arriving at the nightly destination in Vik for some sleep, the morning yielded much better results.
Following breakfast in Vik, the journey back to Reykjavik began, but not without a stop at one of the few local breweries on Iceland. I was lucky enough to reach out to Olvisholt Brugghus in advance and set up a quick visit to see their operation working out of a former farmhouse and dairy barn.
Alcohol laws in Iceland are super weird, but I was able to get a bunch of really fun photos of the visit and talk to the then brewmaster. If you’re curious you can check out that whole piece at the Brewery Show blog. Lots of beautiful shots like the following one.
Beer mission successful with some Olvisholt Lava Imperial Porter, showing off their proximity to Iceland’s largest volcano, which was normally visible from the brewery door — though unfortunately it was cloudy, grey and raining most of this trip, so it didn’t really exist to me.
Anyhow, that’s my short little photo essay from some of this trip to Iceland, it really doesn’t do justice to the beauty of this place… and I’ll have to visit again to really capture some photos.