August 18, 2016

Iceland: The Adventure Of Water, Wind, and Volcanoes

Words + Photos : Chris Konig

The wind is making so much noise that it’s almost impossible to catch some sleep. Every few seconds I’m wondering whether the tent will hold up, because it feels like I can fly away together with my tent at any moment. After this stormy night I open my tent, which is still standing in the same spot, and I stare right at a beautiful glacier, only a few hundred meters in away from me.

Whether it’s the unpredictable weather, the rugged landscapes or the overall peacefulness: Iceland is a country where adventures are experienced and memories are made, guaranteed.



Together with 3 friends and fellow photographers/filmmakers I went on a 9 day journey through this beautiful country and these are some of the spots and moments that really appealed to me.



The Háifoss waterfall

Situated in the center of the country this beautiful waterfall seems to appear out of nowhere. After driving a small F-road (these roads are only accessible to 4×4’s and sometimes you can barely call them ‘roads’; so much fun though!) for a few kilometers this beautiful scene with a 122 meters high waterfall unfolds itself. Doesn’t feel like it’s real, honestly.




Landmannalaugar

This volcanic area is well known for the beautiful patterns you’ll find on every corner. The ground is full with iron, sulfur and all different types of rocks…making you feel like you are on a different planet. There are plenty of accessible hiking trails throughout the area so if you brought your walking boots (which you should do anyway when visiting Iceland) you’ll have so much fun here! Photographic landscapes are everywhere.





The South Coast

The coastline of Iceland is really special since all the sand is completely black. Think of Iceland as one big pile of volcanos and the ashes are remains of previous volcanic eruptions. It creates this beautiful black color. The combination of rock and scale makes the coastline feel infinite in length. And if you are adventurous enough, the epic waves make for some fantastically cold surfing.






Skaftafell

Situated in the South-East of the country you’ll find the Vatnajökull Glacier. The size of the glacier is around 8100 km2 which is huge and one of the biggest to be found in Europe. All around the glacier there are beautiful hiking areas and the ones in the south are really well accessible. You can go on the more established trails starting at the tourist center in Skaftafell or just park your car in a safe spot and explore some areas by yourself. Be warned, it is not recommendable to go on the glacier itself without any guidance: you can imagine melting ice plus large holes in the ground equate for some dangerous conditions.





Desolate Cabins

Not too far from the famous Kirkjufell volcano, you’ll find different cabins situated along road 54. The fun part is that you can access some cabins for free if you’re passing through the area to stay for the night. A welcome change to a cold tent. I mean what beats a warm window side view in an old cabin overlooking stunning landscapes?




Actually, it doesn’t really matter where you’re heading to in Iceland. Around every corner you’ll find special places and I truly was amazed by all the different types of landscapes you find, varying from lakes filled with icebergs, beautiful green hills, black beaches, rocky mountains and everything in between. A beautiful adventure and great memories.



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