If you’ve been following along on our journey through Iceland, you are probably wondering why it’s taken so long to get part two out… the reality is that we took over 700 photos at Jökulsarlon, and narrowing them down to a reasonable amount for a blog post seemed like an impossible feat. As planned, we will be breaking our photographic journey down into 6 posts:
- Driving the coast to Hali
- Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon boat tour and sunset
- Hiking Vatnajokull: Europe’s largest glacier
- Ice cubes on a black sand beach (& Random waterfalls)
- The Golden Circle Tour & Pingvellir National Park
- The Blue Lagoon
Jökulsarlon is a lagoon, located on the edge of Vatnajökull, Europe’s largest glacier, where pieces of the glacier break off and float down a river and out into the atlantic ocean, to be overtaken by waves and broken down. Our first look at the lagoon:
There are no words that can possibly describe how utterly beautiful this lagoon is. A quick google search says that the lagoon is now 18 square kilometres- filled with floating pieces of the glacier in all shapes and sizes. As the glacier recedes from the atlantic ocean, these pieces break off (at an alarming rate) and the sound echoing around the area is chilling. As a result of the receding glacier, the lagoon is constantly growing and changing. We had pre-scheduled a zodiac boat tour of the lagoon with Glacier Lagoon tours, but due to the warmer weather, the entrance to the lagoon was blocked for the zodiac boats, making it unsafe for entry. We were offered boarding onto an amphibian boat tour as an alternative, which we took.
On the amphibian, we were taken up close to the tongue of Vatnajajökull, past massive icebergs and glaciers. Iceland is the only place in the world (so we were told) where you are able to see layers of ash layered into the ice- caused by the various volcanic eruptions throughout Iceland over thousands of years.
A large piece of glacier was lifted from the water, and we were all given an opportunity to hold it, take a photo or feel it up close. It was explained to us that this ice is created by pressure, as opposed to by temperature, therefore making it incredibly strong and clear. It was broken into pieces and we got our first taste of pure glacier water… YUM!
We spent some time after the tour just walking around the area, taking in all the angles and sides of the lagoon that we could get to while trying desperately to capture images that could even begin to show the sheer size and beauty of the area, which seemed unlikely. We had to concede that there are simply some things a camera cannot capture.
After our boat tour, we went back to the hotel for a bite to eat, and returned for the sunset at the lagoon. The hours we spent walking around the lagoon at sunset are forever ingrained in my memory.
The sounds of the ice cracking, the playful seals swimming among the ice with the vibrant colours of the sunset reflecting off the water, together painted a picture that will never leave our memory.
Our first Icelandic glacier sunset… nature’s beauty at it’s finest!