Keflavik Journals

Exploring the Rekyjanes Peninsula

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A May 2013 trip to Keflavik by Joy S

Keflavik harbour Photo, Keflavik, Iceland More Photos
Quote: Sights we enjoyed on the Keflavik Peninsula

Keflavik

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Keflavik harbour Photo, Keflavik, Iceland
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We drove to Keflavik from our base in Reykjavik, it is only about 45 minutes easy drive and is the location of the main airport (but also a US military installation).The area around Keflavik is very interesting and has some attractions that are well worth seeing. We didn't really see any tourists around, so most people seem to miss this area off their itinerary. This is a real shame, we really enjoyed it here.For 55 years a NATO base here protected the island from potential Russian invasion. At the end of the Cold War, the American led contingent left, but right up until 2006, this was an important place for the locals to work. We drove past the old base and all its buildin...Read More

Lighthouses and Fissures

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Garour Photo, Keflavik, Iceland
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About 10 minutes drive from Keflavik and you reach the top of the peninsula at Garour. It is well worth stopping at this little place - we were intrigued by the houses there, some of them were the smallest we had ever seen.Garour is a fishing village and is known for its lighthouses. The older lighthouse was used to study migrating birds arriving from North America to breed on the shores here.We parked our car near the lighthouses and got out to explore. The original old lighthouse is no longer used, due to erosion by the sea. It sits right at the edge of the land, looking a bit precarious. You can walk around the outside of the lighthouse, but unfortunately you can't go ...Read More

Blue Lagoon (Geothermal Spa)

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Attraction | "Blue Lagoon"

Blue Lagoon (Geothermal Spa) Photo, Reykjavik, Iceland
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The Blue Lagoon is the most famous geothermal spa in Iceland. It is one of the most touristy things to do when you visit - everybody does it, it is recommended as a must-do in everything you read about Iceland and all the tour buses call here. Apparently the locals do use it as well. I was not too keen on going, but knew it had to be done!We had driven around the Reykjanes Peninsula all day and were planning to stop here on the way back to Reykjavik. It is about 40 minutes drive away from the city. It had turned really cold when we were visiting some hot springs nearby, as we got closer, the most enormous black cloud settled overhead and the rain started to pour down. My reluctance ...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on August 14, 2013

Blue Lagoon (Geothermal Spa)
Grindavik lava field, Reykjanes Peninsula
Reykjavik, Iceland

Gunnuhver and Seltun Hot Springs

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Gunnuhver Hot Springs Photo, Keflavik, Iceland
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Just a short distance away from the Geothermal Power Station on the Peninsula are the Gunnuhver hot springs. They are not particularly well sign-posted, but it is worth looking out for them and making the short detour to have a look. There is a collection of steam vents and mud pools, with walkways and ramps which make it really easy to explore. Gunnuhver is the most famous of the geothermal zones on the Peninsula. There is a folk tale about how the mud pools and hot springs were formed - we read it with our 9 year old, I think he enjoyed the story, but felt a little anxious around the steamy holes in the ground following the story!!Apparently an old witch was thrown into t...Read More

Hafnarfjordur

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Viking Village Photo, Keflavik, Iceland
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Hafnarfjordur is a little coastal town, renowned for having one of Iceland's largest colonies of elves, dwarves and hidden folk. We had read about the Icelandic fascination with elves and discussed it with our 9 year old before our trip. He was very interested in all of this, so when he heard this place was "home" to a large number of these mythical folk, this place was a must visit for us.Apparently many Icelanders believed in a hidden world - the other worldly landscape of the country lends itself well to this. Many rocks stacks and formations are said to be trolls, petrified for committing bad deeds. There are wooden elf houses in some Icelandic people's gardens too - look out for t...Read More

About the Writer

Joy S

Joy S
Manchester, United Kingdom