Trip to Iceland - Geysir, Gullfoss & Whale Watching

28 January 2012

On the second day of the trip, we made a coach journey to the Geysir park, which contains the original Geysir which gave all such phenomena their name. The original Geysir is currently dormant, but there was another lovely regular spout, as well as plenty of steam and bubbling boiling water holes.

The Utli geysir, a cheerfully bubbling little pool

The Strokkur geyser erupts!

And about five minutes later, it does it again - it was very active today, going off every 4/5 minutes instead of the official 8-10. Once it erupted three times in quick succession, which was very exciting

A comparison - Strokkur is not one of the tallest geysers, but it's very impressive all the same!

A lot of people have these 'super jeeps' with massive tyres to get around in the Icelandic weather

Our second stop of the afternoon was to Gulfoss or the Golden Waterfall, a beautiful and impressive sight, particular in the midst of the snow and ice

29 January 2012

On the final day, Lucy & her Mum chose to go whale watching - we'd been warned that it wasn't really the season and that the weather might be too bad, but took the risk, and in the event the weather had improved and the boat trip went ahead

We hadn't been going long when we had the news from other boats in the area that a humpbacked whale had been sighted, so we wrestled on our wet weather gear provided and went up on the chilly deck for a better look. That whale was a bit shy, as was the next, but then our luck changed and we spotted a pair of humpbacks, which was very unusual apparently

Here you can clearly see two blows as the whales surface

After a few blows, they flip over, show the tail (fluke) and dive again

This pair were inquisitive and unafraid and came very close to the boat

Here you can clearly see the backs of both whales as they swim on the surface to look at us

And another fluke showing as they dive again

We watched these whales for quite some time, but then received even more exciting news of more whales, of a species so rarely seen in this bay that the guide hadn't even mentioned it as a slight possibility

We headed over where they had been reported, and soon catch sight of at least two or three fins

More fins showing

And a good clear view - it is a pod of eight to ten orcas or killer-whales. You can clearly see the white patch on the cheek, and even more exciting, there is a young whale with the pod!

Four fins and one just under the surface all at once! It was lovely to hear that even the tour guide, who does this every day, was extremely excited at both our sightings, and particular over the pod of orcas with their baby. A real climax to a wonderful holiday!

Back at the hotel, it was sadly cloudy yet again

The viewing gallery with balcony where you can view the Lights in comfort, popping outside should they appear. Alas, we weren't quite that lucky, but perhaps another time we will try again. In any case it was a lovely holiday!



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Unless otherwise stated, all images copyright (c) Stephen and Lucy Dawson