The Land of Ice and Fire - My Family Travels
Icelandic Puffins

Visiting another country is an amazing experience, especially when the country that you are visiting is vastly different from your own. When my family went to Iceland I was placed in another world. We visited numerous volcanoes and flew in a plane over Iceland’s glaciers. The view was amazing although after taking about a hundred pictures I got a little air sick. Later we took a tour of a geothermal plant that utilized Iceland’s natural hotspots to generate power for a large portion of Iceland. The facility provides some of the cleaner energy available in the world. Coupled with the geothermal plants is the abundance of hot springs. The largest hot springs in Iceland is the blue lagoon where my family and I spent the entire day. The entire bottom of the lagoon was composed of a white silicon mixture that was advertised to be good for your skin. My sister and I didn’t really care about the health benefits, but we took a lot of funny pictures with the clay all over our faces.

Also since Iceland has copious water resources every town has its own pool. Some of the water fountains even run endlessly. There are waterfalls everywhere and some of the local kayakers go over the falls in their kayaks. We didn’t get to see anyone go over the falls but we talked with some of them. Godafoss was one of the main waterfalls in Iceland. Most of the waterfall names ended in foss which is Icelandic for waterfall. Most of the Icelandic words that we saw seemed to be unusually long and we tried to pronounce a few of them, but my guess is that we weren’t even close. One of my favorite foods that I tried was called Skyr. It is something resembling thick yogurt and tastes great with muesli. All of the groceries we bought in Iceland were dramatically more expensive than they were back home because a large majority of the food available has to be shipped in. A strange fact that we learned while searching for fish and chips is that Iceland has a large fishing industry but they export all the fish and finding some locally can be difficult.

At another point in our vacation I was privileged enough to see puffins for the first time. They are really cool birds, but they don’t fly as well as some of the other species. The ideal place to locate them is on rocky ledges close to the ocean. They live in little burrows in the sides of cliffs. When we went to Iceland it was during the summer. Since the country is located so far to the north the sun never went down which was somewhat weird. My dad and I even got to go rafting at midnight because the sun was still up. We tried to block out the sun from our tent so that we could sleep better. I didn’t mind the light that much, but my mom couldn’t sleep. The locals told us that it is worse during the winter when it is always dark. Iceland was a fantastic place to visit and I learned a lot about the country while I was there.



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