Keflavik Stories and Tips

Lighthouses and Fissures

Garour Photo, Keflavik, Iceland

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 inside. The "new" lighthouse is very impressive, tall and gleaming white, it was built in the 1800's. Again you cannot go to the top of this lighthouse.

We carried on driving and passed through miles and miles of lava fields. The scenery is spectacular, but weird and eerie. We drove for miles and miles with not a house, person or animal in sight. Some areas had fine lava, others had huge boulders of black rocks. It was fascinating - so much of Iceland is wild and untamed.

The Bridge Between Two Continents is a great place for another stop. This peninsula lies on the Mid Atlantic Ridge. The Continental Drift means that the Eurasian and North American tectonic plates are continuously drifting apart, with the result that fissures form. If you stop here, you will see a major fissure. They have built a little bridge over the fissure which symbolises crossing the continents.

There is lots of car parking, the place was practically deserted during our visit, so we had this place all to ourselves. Our 9 year old found it fascinating, the idea of crossing a bridge and visiting 2 continents. He played with the volcanic ash here too - taking it from Europe to America, back again and mixing it up.

You can walk between the plates right through the fissure. All around is back, powdery, volcanic ash. It is so fine, gets everywhere and our shoes were full of it. Something else we found amazing and intriguing was that, although the weather was freezing cold, the ash on the ground was really hot - the deeper you dug, the hotter it became.

A short distance away is a Geothermal Power Station. We were intrigued by the idea of geothermal energy and were keen to visit. Unfortunately when we got there it was deserted, apart from a couple of workers. We managed to find someone who told us it doesn't actually open for visitors until June. It did look interesting and worth visiting.

We loved this drive and these 2 special places. We saw no other cars on the road here and no other tourists at either stop. It is a shame that people seem to leave these interesting areas off their travels, but great for us as it meant we had the Bridge Between Two Continents all to ourselves.

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