West Iceland: the Snaefellsnes Peninsula

The next morning, Borghildur was alive and well and in her own home, and she sent us to a bakery for bread and pastries. We had a satisfying breakfast of cheese, fruit, tomatoes, baked goods and coffee (B. is a textile artist who collects handmade mugs and sometimes designs fabric inspired by the mugs. We got to choose our mugs from her personal exhibit.) Then, on B.’s recommendation, Jamie and I headed to the Snaefellsnes peninsula.

seal beach Iceland

First up was a beach near Ytri Tunga farm, which has a seal colony and intense, plastic-y seaweed.

Iceland seaweed


west iceland

Then we hiked from Arnastapi to Hellnar, a 4km path that curls through misty, enchanted moss-and-rock formations and along deep, textural cliffs. Below the cliffs, larger, more fantastic formations are pounded by waves, and colonies of seagulls make their homes in porous nooks.

Iceland moon rocks

The hike ended at a tiny, perfect beach with a cave and a grey-scale assortment of egg-shaped rocks and the most endearing cafe, where we had tea, skyr pie and carrot cake.

skyr pie

And of course, on the drive back, the light was incredible, transforming the sea into silver and the dead grass into spun gold. Because this is Iceland.

Iceland light

We stayed up late, drinking wine with Borghildur, until, in the wee hours of morning, the sun set over the sea and we marveled and then decided it was time for sleep.

sunset Iceland



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