Today we continued our exploration of the wonderful country of Iceland. The morning began with a chance for guests to take a short Zodiac shuttle to Flatey Island. We walked along the narrow paths on this charming little island just off the mainland of Iceland. In the afternoon, we relocated to Grundarfjordur, where the options were to take a shuttle to Kirkjufell Waterfall or a longer bus ride around Hellsin.
National Geographic Endurance
An overcast sky greeted us as National Geographic Endurance entered the old harbour of Reykjavik. With a slight change in the itinerary due to weather, we were given the opportunity to explore in and around Reykjavik today. The Ring of Fire, a 4x4 tour, and a spa visit were on the menu. The Ring of Fire tour took us to one of the geothermal power plants outside the city. Icelanders make it look easy to sequester carbon dioxide. They have come up with a system where they add carbon dioxide to water and push it down into the Earth. Eventually, the bubbly water turns into rock as it reacts with the basalt. The plant supplies Reykjavik with hot water and electricity. So, all you need is geothermal activity, lots of water, and porous basalt…then you can store carbon dioxide. It’s as easy as that! Fittingly, lunch was cooked with geothermal heat, including bread and pastries baked with steam and eggs boiled in the naturally hot water. Just brilliant. Thingvellir was our last stop. We stood with one foot on the Eurasian Plate and one on the American. Well, not quite, but you can walk from one continental plate to another. Iceland is such a unique place in many ways. As the plates slowly move away from each other, the rift created is almost splitting the country in half. After the guest slideshow and farewell dinner, the day ended with a concert in the ice lounge. Hafdís Huld, a local singer-songwriter with incredible talent and charm, brought this beautiful trip to a close.