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Iceland


Our next port of call was Reykjavik, Iceland.  More about Reykjavik later, there it’s a lot to say about Iceland itself.  It has a population of about 350,000, so small by U.S.standards.  But an interesting place…

It’s main industry is tourism, followed by fisheries and farming.  It is located on the faultline between the European and American plates, so volcanic activity is high.  They have harnessed the energy and it supplies the country with heat and electricity.  Even the streets in Reykjavik are heated and are snow free in winter.

Our excursion took us to the faultline itself, where we were able to walk from America to Europe!  Then we visited some of the thermal plants, the spectacular Gullfoss waterfall, and the Strokkur Geyser.  Smaller than Old Faithful, but much more active.

The thermal plant was very interesting.  Here, they tap some 2 miles down into a volcano, releasing hot water and steam.  The steam is used to generate electricity, and hot water used to heat glacier runoff and pipe it to Reykjavik, some 27 kilometers away.  There it is used for heating, as well as hot water for household use.  The remaining hot water is used for heating the streets, and eventually to heat the ocean at a beach… allowing swimming in arctic waters.

Iceland is also known for its horses.  Originally from Norway, they have been bred for Icelandic conditions.  Although they are smaller than say U.S. horses, they are known for endurance.  Very seldom will you find them in international competitions, because once a horse had left the country they are not allowed to return.

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Categories: Traveling
  1. Linda Romeike
    August 8, 2015 at 6:33 pm

    Great travelogue ! Always learning new things by following your travels! We are currently on Maui with our daughter and family.

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