The biggest waterfall I have seen for many years, the Hvítá river thunders over the twin falls of Gullfoss before scuttling through a narrow gorge. Plenty of spray but no rainbows on my visit. It was worth hiking a little way from the tourist paths to get a wider view.
A few kilometres further down the river's course is the settlement around Geysir, which gave its name to geysers everywhere. Geysir is the biggest geyser here but Strokkur is the tourists’ friend, erupting or less reliably every ten minutes or so to a height of tens of metres.
Gullfoss and Geysir are highlights on the Golden Circle tour out from Reykavik. However, I’ve been based in Laugarvatn which has been very peaceful indeed. There’s a lake with a hydrothermal spa. The birds all sound exotic, like an omnibus edition of “Tweet of the Day”, as the countryside is green with lots of trees. Food good. A small party of Danish hikers in this hotel and a German PhD student with his Icelandic supervisor, I think they’re botanists. And a solo biker from Germany on a muddy GS1200 with knobbly tyres and full metal baggage.