Monday, July 06, 2009



Iceland, world's 18th largest island, and Europe's second largest island after Great Britain, is known as the Land of Ice and Fire, due to its glaciers and volcanoes. We'll start however with the green side of it. With all that rain, it's not such a wonder!!












"TURF HOUSES - Home to most of Icelanders until late in the 20th century"






"ALTHING - The Alþingi, the national parliament, was founded in 930 at Þingvellir, (the «assembly fields»), some 45 km east of Reykjavík. That's the place!"



"PAINTING - No, just a picture taken from a running bus. No Photoshop additions..."


Trotter said...

Hi Everybody! Fireworks didn’t catch much attention, so I hope you like this Green Icelandic experience better!! Have a great week and a marvellous vacation, in case you’re lucky enough to manage to get some... ;))

Jen Laceda | Milk Guides said...

What a great capture - the rainbow! Was there a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow? :)

Shionge said...

I love this place Gil and it is good for the soul for some soul-searching & self-reflection :D

I wanna visit someday too :D Love all the pictures and the beautfiul rainbow ;D

Rhonda Hartis Smith said...

I haven't been able to visit much lately but glad I did--this is so beautiful that there are no words to describe it. I would like to add this to my list of places to see (it's a long list).

Unknown said...

Hi Gil, what magnificent photos, never thought I'd read about this place anywhere...I am so drawn upon the rainbow picture, and as usual, you gave us the best visual treat ever. Have a good week ahead.

Asian Traveler said...

I just love gazing the green picturesque valley. Stunning!

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Rakesh Vanamali said...

Oh what scintillating beauty? It is appealing to the soul more than the eye!

I am at loss for words! Thanks very much for sharing!

alicesg said...

Wow these photos are amazing. Love the houses with grass growing on their roofs. OMG, I think I will start digging at the end of the rainbow. This is the first picture I saw the end of the rainbow. Cool. Thanks for sharing.

Stella Bella said...

This is amazing! :)


Olivier said...

un paysage minimaliste magnifique, surtout les "Turf Houses"

Marie said...

Incredible photos, and so different from what you usually show.

Z said...

I could never survive if I had to live in such a place year round, but it is gorgeous! The photo titled "South Coast" reminds me a little of a mountain pass in the Alps in Graubünden, Switzerland.

SusuPetal said...

These photos are just beautiful, the green is like velvet! And the last photo is pure art!
Good work, Gil!

april said...

Wonderful photos and a wonderful rainbow. My son visited iceland for some weeks. He says it's fascinating.

hpy said...

Iceland must be worth a visit.

Irina said...

What a spacious place! Those endless greens and magnificence of rocks make one feel so small and insignificant...

Miss Kim said...

Okay.... Coelho is a bit of a quack but the words I posted were so meaning-full!

Anyhow, these photos remind me of Canada :) So open, so pure, so beautiful! (And I do love the rainbow !)

P.N. Subramanian said...

I feel like living in those turf houses. One could have the real peace with lots of introspection. The Painting, though by accident looks great. Thanks.

Thérèse said...

Un minimalisme qui n'est pas pour me déplaire... en fait c'est l'un des rares pays que j'aimerais visiter ainsi que le Pérou...
Photos magnifiques.
Une raison de plus pour faire attention à notre héritage planétaire.

Daniel Chérouvrier said...

Islande could be called Greenland (Groenland) too !

Mandy said...

It's very pretty but imagine living there! Iceland must see more miserable days than England (shock, horror!)

Alexander said...

Fantastic scenery. I've never been to Iceland, and it was never on my list of places to visit. Now I think I must plan a trip soon! :D

Alex's World! -

Ron said...

Oh my, these pics are wonderful. I really like the turf house. So far, this might be my favorite place you've been to.

I had no idea Iceland was this green.

Venksh said...

Hey Gil,
wow such awesome picx i don't hav ny words to say..
this Iceland is really cool n so green place..
looking forward for more picx of this Iceland...


alice said...

J'adore les petites maisons en tenue de camouflage!

eye in the sky said...

as ive always read, "iceland is green" and "greenland is ice"... nature at its best... great photos

Mariposa said...

in awe of the lush greenery. I love the rainbow..did you find the pot of gold?

Louise said...

Awww,lovely! It's not ALWAYS that green. If it doesn't rain for a few days, the moss gets grayish.

FABULOUS rainbow shot. Wall art-worthy. The farm in that photo reminded me a lot of where I used to live there.

bindu said...

Beautiful, beautiful pictures. The book Collapse by Jared Diamond devotes a whole chapter to Iceland's fragile environment and history. After reading that, it's all the more amazing to see these pictures.

JO said...

oh that rainbow pic is great!!! love it

this looks like a great place to meditate

PeterParis said...

Now, this is really beautiful, more attractive than the city if you want my honest opinion! You have captured it so nicely and obe feels the atmosphere of the place!

I wonder if I have some Viking ancestors around?

L. Neusiedler said...

amazing place! the rainbow photo is stunning!

Anonymous said...

Oh My! I flipped over the thatched rooftop homes. Fascinating photos Gil!

indicaspecies said...

Yes, for me, this post with the different shades of green is certainly better. Fabulous landscape Gil.

kyh said...

wow!!! the views r just breathtaking! they have this energy in it.. so powerful i'm speechless!

the green plains somewhat remind me of ireland, lol.

Light and Voices said...

Ditto, I haven't seen anything so green as I did in Ireland except your photographs of Iceland. I adore the rainbow shot with the horses.

Rajesh said...

Fantastic snaps. Loved the landscape, so green. The turf houses are beautiful. Thanks for sharing such marvelous views.

Ash said...

Wonderful shots....the rainbow photograph is surreal!!!

Shantanu said...

Wow, those are some really pretty vistas. Those houses with the green top remind me of the Lord of the Rings.

Pietro Brosio said...

Wonderful pictures, Gil! The last one looks like a painting, and also "towards the sea", "green tones", "lava and moss". I like very much the little blue church!
Have a good weekend! :-)

A Joyful Chaos said...

Thanks for sharing these lovely pictures! I enjoyed your post very much.

Trotter said...

Hi everybody! It seems Iceland isn’t on the top of the audiences here; must confess that it’s quite unfair, as it is a wonderful country. Or probably, it’s the format of the blog; but I’m sorry to say that I don’t know how to make it more attractive, and I also have no time to learn how. Unless the lack of comments is only the effect of vacation time and the flu threat; we’ll see what’s coming in the near future... ;))

No pot, no gold! What a shame... ;)

I’m sure you’ll find some time to do some soul-searching & self-reflection and to visit Iceland… ;)

I’m sure the exhibition is a success and I’m glad that you enjoyed this tour through a green Iceland!!

I’m happy to have brought your attention to a beautiful place! Iceland surely deserves much more than just the news of the awful financial crisis…

Asian Traveller,
It seems something happened with the page you’re linking to: Blogger says the page does not exist… ;))

I thought a bit before posting all these pictures together, as they come from different places in Iceland; but in the end, it seems to make sense...

Alice SG,
The Turf houses are part of the Skogar museum, a quite interesting spot! As for the end of the rainbow, I didn’t find any gold pot... ;))

That picture is actually amazing and was a bit surprising when I saw it; actually, the glacier seems to be on the top of the hill, just over the houses: photographic illusion... ;))

C’est vrai que, sauf pour la couleur (et les bars de Reykjavik, mais ça c’est tout une autre histoire), tout le reste semble vide…

C’est vrai que normalement je suis beaucoup plus urbain que rural et mes posts montrent plutôt les villes que la campagne. Mais l’Islande est vraiment spécial et n’a pas beaucoup de villes… ;))

It’s probably hard to survive there, but at least three hundred thousand are permanent residents there, so there must be a way out… ;))
Ah, but the Graubünden (Grisons) have St. Moritz, Davos and all the rest… ;))

The green came out quite well, and the last picture was an incredible surprise: I took it from the bus when this was running a bit faster than I supposed; and it came out as if the colours melted just like in a painting... ;))

I surely agree with your son: it’s fascinating. But I’m afraid the window of time to get there is very short and when I visited, around August 23rd, was already autumn and cold... ;))

It definitely deserves a visit!!

Truly magnificent and immense indeed! Lots of space for just a few people living there; but it’s hard to live in such a place in certain times...

Coelho is much more than a bit of a quack; is a huge quack... OK, the words were interesting, probably taken from somewhere else... ;))
It’s quite close to Canada, so no wonder you notice the similarity...

It can be hard to live in such houses, at least in winter time... ;) But it’s true that it seems they were used at least until the early fifties of last century...
As for the painting, it was a true accident. Lovely one, indeed!!

C’est vrai qu’il y a un minimalisme sous-jacent dans tous ces paysages… Mais à mon avis il y a beaucoup plus que le Pérou et l’Islande à voir dans notre planète… ;))

C’est intéressant parce que L’Islande (Ice land) a un nom parfait pour le territoire appelé Groenland (qui n'est pas complètement couvert de glace, mais presque…) et, par contre, Groenland (Green Land) a un nom magnifique pour l’Islande… Drôle! ;))

There are probably much more places in the world where live is more difficult than in Iceland, I believe… but it’s true that times are hard now in Iceland due to the terrible financial crisis!! Nothing that England or the US don’t know, actually… ;))

Trotter said...

Part Two of the answers, due to Blogger's restrictions... ;))

You’re not that far from there, and Iceland Air always had a reputation of good deals for travelling; it was actually a low cost «avant la letter»… ;))

I wouldn’t say this is my favourite from all the places I’ve been to; but anyhow it’s a wonderful spot to know... ;)

You’ll get some more pictures of Iceland, don’t worry... ;))
Meanwhile I’m having some trouble to get to your blog; after I open the page, there opens a box that blocks everything and I’ve to close and reopen the Internet Explorer to get back to Internet... Today I managed to leave a comment on the last post, because I made really fast to get to the comments page, but when I returned to the post page, it was blocked... Is it happening only to me? Otherwise, you could try to fix it! Thanks!

Les maisons couverts de turf sont sympa à voir, mais il me semble que la vie là dedans n’avait rien d’agréable : elles me rappellent une maison de Masai que j ?ai visité à Masai Mara en Kenya…

You’re truly right: Iceland is green and Greenland is ice; not everywhere, though… One day I’ll try to make it to Nuuk and to the least densely populated country in the world. No wonder the curiosity: according to Wikipedia, «in 1500, King Manuel I of Portugal sent Gaspar Corte-Real to Greenland in search for a Northwest Passage to Asia which, according to the Treaty of Tordesillas was part of the Portuguese area of influence. In 1501 Corte-Real returned with his brother, Miguel Corte-Real. Finding the Sea too frozen, they headed south and arrived in Labrador and Terra Nova. It is possible that some Portuguese settlements were created there in that period, as attested in some maps»... ;))

Didn’t find that gold at the end of the rainbow; my pot is here when you all comment on the posts... ;)

It’s true that it may become grayish, but it must be very seldom; as seldom as it doesn’t rain for a few days… ;))
You used to live in a farm in Iceland? That was surely an amazing experience…

I’ll try to check out «The Collapse», but I thought the Author was dealing with Greenland rather than Iceland… The place is gorgeous!!

Great to read you back here! Long time no see… ;) Great rainbow to search the gold pot!! ;))

I’m much more moved by the urban jungle than by the rural atmosphere, but must confess that I had a terrific experience in Iceland. Great place to visit and enjoy the countryside!!
No Vikings around here, I presume… ;))

Glad you enjoyed that rainbow performance!! ;)

It seems that the «turf houses» made a huge success among the few visitors that dared to comment on this post… ;)) I’m g Glad that you liked it!!

I can imagine that someone used to enjoy the beauties of the Himalayan Mountains is keener on this kind of posts than on the city ones, but for me there is a lot of interesting things to see in the cities… ;)). Anyhow, it’s true that Iceland is basically rural landscape, and a gorgeous one, indeed!!

Actually there is a lot of energy over there; mostly geo-thermal, as you’ll see in the next post… ;).Green is actually Ireland, where I caught even much more rain than in Iceland… ;)

OK, I agree with you. But Scotland may also be green in some parts of it, at least…;))

My pleasure to show for you to comment! It’s amazingly green, though Louise, who lived there for a while, has some reservations on the «maintenance» of the quality of the colour… ;))

Surreal! Yu know what you’re talking about; and what about the «painting»? I don’t even know today how I manage to catch that one... ;)

OK! Iceland and New Zealand, it makes sense!!

Thanks for mentioning the «blue church». I thought it deserved a short reference at least... ;). The rest is an amazing landscape!!

A Joyful chaos,
Thanks for your visit and first time comment here! Hope to read you often in the future; I’m glad you enjoyed this one!!

Cergie said...

Il est très frustrant de voyager dans un bus et donc en "commun", on ne peut s'arrêter partout où on voudrait pour immortaliser ce que l'on voit, mais cela est le cas aussi sur l'autoroute je te rassure : en revenant de Lyon l'autre jour j'ai fait de belles photos en roulant mais j'ai pu descendre la vitre cependant et ce n'était pas moi qui conduisais.
J'aime beaucoup le vert de cette série que l'on ne retrouve pas sur la suivante.

Trotter said...

C'est vrai que voyager «en commun» a des limitations en ce qui concerne la liberté de choix; et je dois avouer que ça me gêne... Mais quelques fois il y a des benefices - tout est programmé à l'avance et on n'a rien à decider... ;)

Maria Verivaki said...

so iceland can be green!

Trotter said...

That's true! As green as you can imagine!!

ALiNe said...

W O W!!!

Trotter said...


PS: Are you coming back from the song of salvatore adamo? ;))

Lakshmi said...

havent seen a rainbow in ages..thanks for the beautiful pics

Trotter said...

Glad to have caught it for you!!

Dick said...

Oh, this is really a beautiful country and not that far from the Netherlands, who knows!!!!!!!!

Trotter said...

Come on start packing; the weather window is short and summer is just fading right now... ;))

Emery Roth said...

A lovely abstract, but I really liked the turf houses and the rainbow shot.

Trotter said...

This accident painting came out quite surprisingly...