We started off the day with our first Icelandic breakfast. Eric the Red sets out a fairly robust repast with various breads, meats, cheeses, fish, cereals, and oatmeal. The smoked salmon and other fish (no idea what it was) were tastier than I expected at 8 in the morning. The coffee is instant which is expected but definitely has me longing for a latte. However, at these prices I’ll be waiting until I get home for a fix.
After breakfast we made our way to the parliament building to meet our citytour group. In spite of the awful weather the tour was fantastic. Martin, our guide, was informative and entertaining as we wandered for about 2 hours from parliament to city hall, past a famous hot dog stand, to the beautiful new concert hall. We learned about the Viking sagas and the naming of Reykjavik and just how much Viking heritage Icelanders possess, as well as the difficulties in dating on an isolated island where everyone is a relation… we saw a rock believed to be imbued with the spirit of “the hidden people”, elves, trolls, fairies, etc…..and learned about an elf school where you can receive a certificate in elf studies on Friday afternoons (had the trip advisor ratings been less dismal we would have enrolled. Haha). Martin even had samples of licorice for everyone as it’s a very popular treat here.
It was incredibly windy and rainy on the tour so our guide made the most of any indoor or sheltered spots possible. By the end the rain was pelting down and the wind was strong enough to be tough to walk against. It’s like the rain is driven into sideways like little needles against your skin. We decided to back to the hotel to dry off after stopping at the grocery store again. We were soaked through by the time we made it back, even our water resistant (obviously not waterproof) layers were drenched.
We hung out in the room for a while warming up with hot soup and tea before deciding to brave the elements again in search of dinner and tour information. After looking at a few more menus and balking at the prices, we ended up eating our grocery store leftovers in the room. Sigh. I do promise we will eat better at some point soon.
We did stop at a tourist info place to find out the likelihood of the weather being good enough for tours to run tomorrow and were told that it should be much less rainy and the tours should all run. Yay! So we booked a golden circle tour with a stop at another thermal bath and, hopefully, a sample of geothermal baked bread.
We switch hotels tomorrow so we’ve been airing our wet clothes in the hopes they’ll be dry enough to pack soon.
Up bright and early tomorrow for breakfast, check out, and pickup for the tour!! Fingers crossed the weather cooperates!