The south shore of Iceland is a popular route for visitors to the island. One can do a day trek from Reykjavik (though, arguably, a long day) to see the major sights along the ring road on the south (e.g., waterfalls, glaciers, black sandy beaches). The south shore deserves more than one write-up so I will separate into the waterfalls, the Myrdalsjökull glacier, and the Dyrhólaey peninsula – Vik area. Here, I want to share some of the views from the latter, the Dyrhólaey peninsula and Vik, just a short distance east of the peninsula, where our day trip ended before returning to Reykjavik.
I will start with Vik, since it is a small place to talk about. Vik means “bay” in Icelandic hence why many towns on the island end in “vik” (Reykjavik, Dalvik, Husavik). It is the southernmost town in Iceland. When I read about Vik, it is called a village – it has less than 300 so “village” seems appropriate. Be its size as it may, it is a scenic spot for sure, even if the time of day I visited was not the ideal light for great pictures (I wish I had been there at sunset though that was likely around midnight!). The basalt rock stacks or towers coming out from the ocean (go straight south and you will not hit land until Antarctica!) are quite impressive.
The Dyhólaey nature reserve
Dyhólaey was declared a nature reserve in 1978. This covered not only the landscape but the incredible wildlife there, mostly birds I assume. We saw plenty of cliff birds perching right along the edge of the cliff and then flying off. The contrast of the white feathers and the black sands below was pretty neat to see. The black sands are definitely a reminder of the impact of volcanic activity in Iceland, especially in the south of the island.
There is a lighthouse at the top of the peninsula, one of two structures there (the other seems abandoned, maybe a former residence for the lighthouse keeper?). The lighthouse dates from 1910. I am not sure but I suspect no one lives in the property any more.
As you can see the views from the top of the cliff are spectacular and worth admiring – definitely worth the drive over.
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