Akuyrei–Trees, Gods, Waterfalls

What a change, transiting from Isalfjord to Akuyrei. Both sit on the northwestern coast line of Iceland, with Akuyrei a bit north and central. It could be expected that it would be even more rural and harsh–but the opposite was true. Already a popular cruise stop…

Oceania Insignia in Akureyri Fjord; with two other cruise ships. The Jewel of the Seas has 2500 passengers and dwarfed our ship. That’s a lot of tourists!

The picture was taken from the bus window across the fjord, so it is unusually green, but TREES are everywhere. Akuyrei has been busily planting seeds for decades, trying to recover the forests stripped bare by Vikings and early settlers. A unique microclimate, nestled between mountain ranges, and some additional depth of soil allows the trees to succeed, and what a difference! The pride and joy in Akuyrei is its Botanical Garden, totally open to the air:

The Akuyrei Botanic Garden

One of these photos is for Bob; you can guess which one! The last one is to allow you to practice your Icelandic or of thinking you are in Longwood. The middle one is to show an example of the tidy, attractive housing we saw in this area, beautifully landscaped. Wood houses here are outlawed, as well as expensive.

Driving through the countryside, south to the tourist-must-see Godafoss Falls, revealed a lush and prosperous farmland with sheep, horses, bales of silage. Again from the bus this photo is intended to illustrate the tidy farm fields:

Farmlands south of Akuyrei, Iceland

Of course, the highlight for the many busloads of tourists is Godafoss. Godafoss Waterfall is redundant, as the Icelandic word for all waterfalls is “foss.” The legend is that the pagans and Christians were about to have a Civil War and a Viking chieftain decided (maybe in counsel with the Althing. ( Read about the Viking governance here) to rule in favor of the Christians. To show his commitment, he took all his pagan icons and images and tossed them in the Godafoss, and thus the name “God’s waterfall.”

Godafoss, Iceland

I didn’t toss a pagan icon into the Godafoss, but Bob’s antigen test this morning came came back negative! At last! Just one more negative and he’ll be free! We are each scheduled for different tours in the Faroe Islands tomorrow. I am SO looking forward to leaving cold and rain behind, but as you can imagine Bob is even more anxious to leave his stateroom. He’d go anywhere, although he has been enjoying reading and listening to music and sorting (as always) his trillion slides. From the Faroe Islands, it’s just a hop over to Scotland’s Orkney Islands…

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Betty Warner

Married female, mother of two, grandmother of five. Living in a senior living community, where dinner, house maintenance, and continuing care are part of the contract. Residents in this community are actively engaged in our lifestyle here; I currently help produce Zoom programs, and help edit our webpage. Physically "healthy for your age" despite shortness of breath, two knee replacements, a cardiac murmur, various skin issues and an incipient back problem.

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