The land of ice and fire: camping road trip round Iceland Part 8

The blue lagoon geothermal spa in November

Image via Wikipedia


I’m not sure if I’m boring you with this series of posts, but I’m going to go on for a while longer yet – sorry. This is part eight in the series about my camping road trip around Iceland, we have just got to day 3. 

Previously I told you all about hubby having woken up the campsite at 2am in the morning by pressing his arm on the horn. 

We had decided that it would be wise to make an early exit and were even cheeky enough to not bother paying. To be honest we couldn’t take the shame of it, we wanted to get off and away as soon as possible.Waiting around till the campsite warden arrived at 9am while we got death threats from the surrounding campers, was not my idea of holiday fun. 

The first mission for the morning was to go to the camp store and buy a new fuel pump for our expedition mission MSR stove, but guess what? They didn’t have it in stock. Apparently it was not stocked anywhere in Iceland. Every other fuel pump and stove was, but not this one! So we had to buy a new cheapo stove and hope that the weather stayed mild – luckily it did.  

We then headed off to the much talked about Lake Myvatyn with its curious geological features and rich bird life, said to be one of Iceland’s biggest tourist areas, cited as number 5 in the list of must see places in the Rough Guide to Iceland. The first paragraph on this place in the Rough Guide passively mentions that flies can get up your nose in the summer. To me this was the under statement of the year! It’s like saying eating arsenic has mild side effects of nausea and light headedness. 

In my opinion, the people of the middle ages got it right, avoiding the ‘devils piss’ (their definition not mine) lake and its steaming surrounds. You may think that this is mildly harsh of me, given that there are some most amazing geologically features including spectacular water falls, lava swapped hamlets, remnants of a lava lake…and so the list goes on. 

Arriving at Myvatyn
We got our first taste of the place, a forced mouthful of black flies that not only jammed themselves into your gob, but also journeyed into every other orifice exposed. Up your nose, into your ears…up your clothes…horrible, horrible, horrible.  

What not to do in a sauna
After food, the first stop was Myvatyn’s equivalent of Reykjavik’s Blue Lagoon but undiscovered. It stank to high heaven of sulphur, but that is unavoidable – sulphur in Iceland equaled heat. 

After overcoming the group naked shower experience, we were free to swim and waddle around in the pools for as long as we wished. It was a quiet and peaceful place with astounding views over lake Myvatyn and no midges – yeah. The calm and tranquility was soon to be broken as we headed into the sauna. No, it’s not what you’re thinking, no mischief of that kind anyway. In the sauna it was all rather cool, in fact there was no steam.  I’d summized that the big red button on the wall by the door was obviously the on/off trigger to start the steam and persuaded hubby to press it. 

‘Are you sure?’ he asked hesitantly before pressing. 

‘Yes, go on’, I replied. 

I doubt you’re surprised, this set off the fire alarm in the whole facility.

‘Oh shit, oh shit’ I muttered as a ran out of the sauna running towards the office, as people looked up startled staring. They were not impressed. I explained that it really should have a sign on it saying that it’s an alarm. From then on, the establishment was even more quiet and tranquil, what ever crowds there had been, were cleared and for a few minutes we had the place to ourselves. 

Some quiet, midge free relaxation at last!

If you are still interested and have only just discussed this series of posts, check out the previous ones…

  • Read part 1
  • Read part 2
  • Read part 3
  • Read part 4
  • Read part 5
  • Read part 6
  • Read part 7
  • Back next week with more stories of Iceland fun.


    One thought on “The land of ice and fire: camping road trip round Iceland Part 8

    1. Barbara Childs says:

      We went to Iceland in late August i think and lake Myvatn wasn’t too bad but when we arrived home i discovered that Myvatn actually means “Lake of the midges” or something similar!


    Leave a Reply

    Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

    You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

    Google+ photo

    You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

    Twitter picture

    You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

    Facebook photo

    You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


    Connecting to %s