We thought today would be an easy day… just a little drive round the rocky coastline of the Snæfellsnes peninsula, seeing the sights. We’ve walked 12k though, and taken 100s more pictures! There are just so many beautiful places to explore! Lighthouses, sea stacks, caves, and a well… today’s blog is full of photos!
Although we didn’t sleep late, we had a leisurely start, which was nice for a change. We hit the road at about 10.30, stopping at a lovely bakery in Ólafsvík for a coffee and pastry for breakfast. The weather has been mixed, ranging from sunshine to heavy snow showers… typical Iceland!
Our first main stop was Öndverðarnes. This used to be a fishing village but has been deserted since 1945. There are ruins of the fishermen’s buildings and farmer’s huts, and also a well among the lava fields. The coast is so rocky, it must have been a difficult place to fish.
There were also two orange lighthouses in the area guarding the coastline… a tall one and a little fat one.
They looked great against the landscape and moody sky.
While I was photographing the tall lighthouse, John wandered off and found a pretty cove where the waves were crashing onto the rocks.
He also enjoyed poking around in the rock pools and even found a 4 legged starfish. They must be very hardy, this rock pool has ice on it!
From here, we drove down the end of the peninsula to Djúpalónssandur, the black lava pearl beach, covered in smooth, round black pebbles.
There are huge lava formations on the beach. The photo doesn’t do their size and colour justice. The one on the right is the church of the elves, according to folklore. Others are said to be trolls who turned to stone when they saw daylight.
Walking back up another part of the beach, there were iron remains from a British trawler from Grimsby that was shipwrecked here in 1948. Sadly 14 fishermen died. The remains are protected.
A little further down the coast we stopped to look at the rocket-shaped lighthouse at Malarrif.
From the lighthouse, we couldn’t miss the massive rock pillars at Lóndrangar, which are the remains of an eroded crater. Again, a photo can’t do them justice, but I like this one, taken from a viewpoint not far from the road.
In Hellnar, another fishing village in years gone by, we looked up at this mountain, which towered over the pretty church. We commented how high it looked, yet it was so small in the pictures we took when we climbed Snæfellsjökull yesterday!
Our final stop was Arnarstapi, the village where we started and ended our hiking trip yesterday, but which we hadn’t had time to explore.
There were more amazing sea cliffs and stacks here, covered in birds. We must have stopped at every viewpoint along the coast!
John wasn’t impressed with the smell of bird poo! He did enjoy walking out for this photo though, high above the sea 🙂
After reaching the pretty harbour, we took the road back to the car, stopping at the same cafe that we ate in yesterday… well, it was delicious!
As we drove back it started snowing heavily and carried on through the evening. We couldn’t even see Kirkjufell mountain from our cabin. No more Northern lights, but at least we saw them once 🙂 Tomorrow, we travel back to Keflavík, where the airport is. It’s been an awesome trip. 😎