Iceland – Silfra, Geysir & Golfoss

What a day today!

Last night, Nick somehow managed to convince me to swim in 3 degree water from a glacier.

In fact, Silfra fissure is the name of the area where 2 tectonic plates meet (North American and Eurasian), and the water in the crack comes from a glacier 60km away. This water is filtered by the earth and comes out where the plates meet, crystal clear. It is meant to be one of the purest and clearest water in the world, with over 100m clarity.

We arrived in Silfra at 9.45am for our 10am slot. Our guide, Xabi, prepared us for the big dip. Luckily you don’t get in the water in a bikini or swim shorts!

You can keep your clothes on as long as they’re not too thick. They provide you with an undersuit to keep you warm, and then you put on a ‘dry suit’. As opposed to a wet suit, a dry suit keeps the water away from your body.

Only your head and your hands get wet.

With all of these layers on and the dry suit attached very tightly around the neck, it can get very claustrophobic in there, especially because you can’t really swim either so it’s really a weird experience.

Once you’re all geared up, you walk towards the ramp where everyone waits for their group’s turn to go. Most groups were 6-8, however due to cancellations (it was pretty miserable weather, it would have been easy to cancel!) we luckily ended up with a private tour!

When we finally made it in, it actually wasn’t that bad. The water was cold on our hands and face (by cold I mean numb), but you kind of get over it after a while. You’re in the water around 30min in total, which is about the right time.

The experience was very cool. The water was so clear, and the rocks below were awesome to look at.

We also took a picture of Nick and I touching the tectonic plates where they meet. They move about 2cm apart each year.

After the experience, they provided hot chocolate and cookies to warm you back up, which was more than welcome.

After such an experience, we walked around the Thingvillier National Park and enjoyed the view from the top of the wall (North American plate).

After a quick sandwich lunch stop, we made our way to the famous Geysir area in the golden circle.

This Geysir is famous for blowing up every 5 to 7 min and it did indeed. Water in the Geysir is between 80 and 100 degrees so we kept our distance.

Our last stop for the day was the Golfoss waterfalls. Nick thought it might be a poor version of Iguazu Falls that we visited back in Brazil, but it truly wasn’t. They are magnificent.

It’s always amazing to look at such powerful waterfalls. It really makes you feel insignificant.

We’ve found a cool camp-site with showers and facilities for tonight’s stop. We thought the fact that the camping had power would be a bonus, but that was before we realised we didn’t have a power cable in the car. That Solstice camper company is just bloody useless.

Tomorrow we’re heading to the south to continue our tour.

#TheDexplorers

TIPS

  • The company we used for the Silfra snorkling was called Troll Expeditions. Link here. Our guide was really nice and gave us good advice to ensure a smooth experience. Though it was expensive ($180/person) it was an unforgettable and different experience.
  • There’s a cluster of Geysirs. Be aware, one of them erupts around once a week, so you could find yourself waiting a while! If you’re very lucky and timed it right, you’d be in for a treat. It’s the 2nd highest in the world.

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