Iceland 2018 – An Unforgettable Experience

Halle Greenwood, Libby Kershaw and Jessica Evans recall the Iceand trip which took place in February.

What an amazing opportunity and such a brilliant experience that we have had for the students who visited Iceland from Wednesday 7th February till Sunday 11th. I’m sure everyone will agree that it was an unforgettable few days in such a beautiful natural place.

Our trip started early Wednesday morning where we all met at Manchester airport for our 12:25 flight to Keflavik. We landed in Iceland at around 15:20 to start our adventure properly! We all boarded the coach, ready to start being tourists for the following few days. First of all, we visited Reykjanes Peninsula Geopark. The only place in the World where the Mid-Atlantic Ridge is visible above sea level. The Geopark lies on major plate boundaries along the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. We also went to see boiling mud pools and hot springs, but the smell wasn’t so pleasant!  After we checked in at Hotel Cabin for the night, we had some time to get refreshed and we then went for a meal to the Icelandic Hamburger Factory. We then went back to the hotel for a good nights sleep, ready for the next exciting day!

We woke up to a blanket of snow the next morning. Setting of at 9am heading straight for the National Park where Iceland’s parliament was established. The site straddles the Mid- Atlantic Ridge, its rifts valley forming where the Eurasian and North American tectonic plates pull apart at an average of 3cm a year. What spectacular scenery! We also then visited the Geysers on the Golden Circle route and then onto the breathtaking Gulfoss, a spectacular view of the forces and beauty of untouched nature. On the way to Farm Vatnsholti, we stopped off at Faxi Waterfall, a smaller version of Gulfoss. As we arrived at the Farm, we had a short amount of time to settle in and freshen up before our evening meal. The following morning, an early breakfast and then off to the Sólheimajökull Glacier, kitted up with crampons, helmets and ice picks. The eye-catching surroundings are marked by rugged and majestic rock formations thoroughly shaped by the glacier. We were told lots of facts about the glacier, how they’re retreating due to climate change and about the volcano below. After our entertaining walk over the glaciers we headed to see some amazing waterfalls, one of which that was hidden inside a gorge where we could stand at the bottom of it! Later on in the afternoon, we visited the Lava Centre where we saw an exhibition about volcanic activity, earthquakes and the creation of Iceland over millions of years. We then went back to the hotel for our evening meal and a relaxed evening or should I say eventful!

Another early start, back to Reykjavik, away from the Icelandic countryside. We visited Hallgrímskirkja, a iconic parish church and a national sanctuary in Iceland. Then onto Seltjarnarneslaug, an outdoor geothermal swimming pool. It was very cold outside but the water was really warm. Whilst in the pool, Hayden and Grace had a race to see who was the fastest. Turned out it was Hayden. The long-awaited visit to the Blue Lagoon had finally come. As we arrived, we all joined together for a group picture underneath the renowned blue lagoon sign with our matching red hoodies. We then excitedly walked to the entrance of the blue lagoon, and upon entering immediately saw the light blue waters, the hot steam rising, and the masses of people visiting one of the many wonders of the world. After our relaxed afternoon, we went back to the hotel cabin to unload our luggage and to get ready for our final evening in Iceland. We headed to the all you can eat pizza restaurant for our last meal.  After a long day and week, we all chilled together for one last night, got packed up and most of us had an early night before our early flight back to Manchester the next morning.

An early wake-up of 3:30 am in order to finish our packing, then down for breakfast for 4am. As you can imagine, everybody still half asleep while eating breakfast. So was a very quiet sad morning. We then set off for Keflavik airport for our flight at 8am back to Manchester. We landed back in Manchester for around 10:30 am and then had a long wait for our luggage to come through. Through the exiting doors to see our parents, out trip was now over. We had only wished that our flight had been later so that we would have been stuck for one final night! Iceland was a fab trip but the cold weather will not be missed.

On behalf of all the students who attended Iceland, we would like to say a huge thank you to Mr Douglas for organising an incredible trip and to Mrs Brown, Mr Leach and Mr Creevy for accompanying us on our trip.

4 nights, 5 days in such a beautiful, natural place. What an adventure!

Apologies for the lateness – the blog does not seem to allow rolling images which we are still  waiting to be fixed.

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