The sun never sets in Iceland
Husavik Travel Blog› entry 6 of 11 › view all entries
Today we explored the area around Lake Myvatn. We started at the lava fields of Dimmuborgir for a few hours hiking among the twisted lava plumes, with a scattering of a few hardy plants including the carnivorous butterwort. We then drove past the pseudo-craters of Myvatn and to the spectacular waterfall of Godafoss (Waterfall of the Gods). Godafoss is so named because it was here, in the year 1000, that Dogeir the Lawspeaker of the Althing decided to convert Iceland to Christianity and symbolically threw Norse idols into the waterfall.
From Godafoss we drove to Akureyri, a charming little town which is the second largest city in Iceland (with around 16,000 people).
After dinner we drove up to Vikingavatn on the coast. We walked through the coastal meadows looking at the nests of sea birds, watching the seals off the shore watch us in return and building a bonfire on the black sand beaches. Around midnight the sun went into sunset, hovering above the horizon and giving us spectacular pink clouds. It stayed there until 2am when it started to rise again, never having dipped below the horizon. This was the summer solstice, the longest day of the year in Iceland, with 24 hours of sunlight. In Icelandic mythology it is one of the most powerful days of the year. On this night it is said that if you roll around naked on the sunrise dew you will be cured of all that ails you. Also on this night, if you pull up the root of an orchid and put one stem under your pillow and one under the pillow of an unrequited love, they will wake up the next day in love with you. Summer solstice is also the night to visit the wishing stones of Iceland and ask for your desires.