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Snæfellsnes peninsula


3 August 2007

The weather in the third morning in Iceland was different from previous days. It was cloudy and windy. The aim was to explore around the beautiful Snæfellsnes peninsula and to see as much as possible. The peninsula is about 90 km long and graced by a magnificent mountain range of high rugged peaks formed by the force of the Glacier. After the breakfast we drove to Stykkisholmur harbour to go to the boat trip for seeing puffins. But it was really windy, the sea was rough, so we decided not to take this two hour trip.

From Stykkisholmor we drove to south coast of Snæfellsnes peninsula. We stopped at beautiful wooden church Búðakirkja and an other pretty but newer church in Stadarstadur. All the churches in Iceland we saw were really lovely and welcoming.

Next step was at Raudfeldargja gorge. Here was a possibility to go through the chap. It was promised that at the end of Raudfeldargja gorge the view will be gorgeous and includes Snæfellsjökull at sunny day. But this day was cloudy, the bottom of the chap was wet and difficult to go through. So, we did only first couple of meters. I must say it was promising experience, I would recommend at sunny day and if possible without big equipment, as there is needed to jump on stones.

In Arnarstapi we stopped to see the rock arches. Arnarstapi is small fishing community with a growing colony of summer cottages. The weather was not enjoyable, but the view was gorgeous. An extremely unusual rock formation, Gatklettur was main attraction. There are many rock formations at the shoreline. If it was not so windy, we would have gone to 5 km walk from Arnarstapi to Hellnar.
Malarrif lighthouse

Next stop was Hellnar, a picturesque spot overlooking rocky bay. We had a lunch in Fjöruhusid Cafe. The cafe is at the harbour, the soup tasted like homemade. The view at the stormy sea was stunning. At the harbour we picked some lava stones - very glabrous and oval, now those stones are in cactus-pot covering the soil.

From Hellnar we decided to drive the mountain road, in order to get as close to Snæfellsjökull as possible. The icecap Snæfellsjökull is actually an active volcano. Snæfellsjökull is famous as it is exploited in Jules Verne's fantasy tale "Journey to the centre of the Earth". It is believed that Snæfellsjökull is one of the seven main energy centres of the Earth. Poets, writers and artists have often visited the glacier to search inspiration energy.

The mountain road took us to Olafsvik, beautiful fishing village at North coast of Snæfellsnes peninsula. Olafsvik was settled centuries ago because of good harbour facilities and rich offshore fishing grounds. The harbour was full of different size of ships.

Dinner at the hotel was again fabulous, nothing could taste here better than fresh seafood. In conclusion about Snæfellsnes peninsula we can say that the landscape here is diverse and magical. The Peninsula was definitely different from other areas we visited during our short Iceland trip.