Well after another overnight flight with no sleep (did get some gorgeous views over Greenland) we are finally in Iceland. Picked up the rental car and eventually managed to drive to the Aurora Guesthouse where we are staying. First time driving in the right side of the road? Check. Minimal road markings and Icelandic drivers who haven’t heard of indicators? Check. Roads that either aren’t signposted or are signposted with names like Kaplaskjólsvegur or Vatnsmýrarvegur? Check.
The first afternoon was spent finding the accommodation, then going for a small wander around before grabbing an early tea and falling asleep before 8pm. Then after being wide awake at 3am due to the jetlag, we both somehow slept until 9:45! Luckily breakfast is served until 10 so we were able to rush downstairs and grab something to eat. We walked down to the harbor around 11 to grab lunch consisting of a Icelandic hotdog from the famous Baejerins Betzu hotdog stand. They might not look like much, but the crispy onions underneath and the tasty remoulade sauce made it the best hotdog I’ve ever had.
We then headed up to the parliament building to meet our guide for the free city walk. This was a 2 hour “free” (tip based) tour which covered some of the most important and interesting historic sites around the town. Our guide Sara was a history major and was very informative and interesting to listen to throughout the walk. She talked about the history of Iceland, the current political issues of the country, the culture of the people and various foods to try while we are here. A great way to learn a lot about Iceland in our very limited time here, glad we did this walk.
After finding out that most petrol stations around Iceland only accept credit cards, we find ourselves with a lot more cash than required. Seeing as neither of us are able to buy more stuff to take in our bag / suitcase and we didn’t have the time to use the money on a tour, we decided to go out for a nice meal. We went to a place called KOL not too far from where we are staying, it’s definitely on the pricey side (most places are in this country) but it was hands down the best meal of the trip and one of the best I’ve ever had.
The meal started out by sharing the braised ox and parmesan risotto. I’ve anyways loved a good Parmesan risotto and this was no exception. For the main course I had the lamb sirloin (raised free range in the hills of Iceland) which came with malted barley, carrots, rutabaga, goat cheese and a demi-glaze vinaigrette. Just wow, such a tender and delicious meat and the vinaigrette was beautiful. Then for dessert we couldn’t decide and had half of one each. First was a creamy white chocolate cheesecake served with passion fruit sauce and a coconut sorbet. Next was a dish called Grandma’s Pancake, which was a fluffy pancake wrapped around whipped cream and banana with salted caramel chocolate sauce drizzled over the top. Just an absolute perfect meal from start to finish. Hope no one read that paragraph while hungry, my stomach started rumbling just writing it.
Planning on doing the Golden Circle tomorrow, so wanted to get this post up since I’ll probably have a lot of photos from that to come.