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Day 5

It's a somber day. We're down one camera due to the reckless driving of the captain of our whale watching boat the evening before (see Day 4). It's still overcast. We're still on highway 85, now heading south to rejoin Highway 1. And, yes, the day starts out at another waterfall. Goðafoss is relatively small but steeped in Icelandic history. We had to backtrack 5km or so from where 85 joins 1.

Akureyri - The second largest city in Iceland is a cute little town, by most standards. I must admit I didn't come to Iceland for the cities or social experiences. I'm not really a city kind of guy to begin with, so it's not intended as any kind of intentional insult to the people of the fine city that I didn't invest any more time exploring the city itself. We did spend a couple of hours in the much acclaimed botanical garden. After a bite of lunch - Cheese pizza with jam (yes, jam, and it's something I'll ask for next time I'm at Pizza Hut in the US!) - we traveled north on 82 all the way to Olafsfjörður. The drive was less than inspiring, mostly because of the overcast weather, I think.

Back on highway 1 we're running late to our 6pm hotel check in time. Sauðárkrokur is just north of Highway 1 on 76, followed by a left on 75. The sun is finally beginning to break through the clouds when we arrive at Hótel Tindastóll, the oldest hotel in Iceland. The building is quite historic itself, having arrived from Norway in 1820 and serving as a storehouse in Hofsós before being moved to Grafarós, then finally assembled at its current location in 1833 in Sauðárkrokur. It became a hotel in 1884 and has been operating there ever since. The hotel is named for Mt Tindastóll, which is to this day inhabited by Trolls, so beware. Anyway, we were nearly an hour late getting to the hotel. We kind of interrupted the proprietor's dinner, and then I had an urgent message to call my work office back at home. My apologies.

The rooms in Hótel Tindastóll are named for famous people in Icelandic history. Our room was the Guðriður Þorbjarnadottír room. She was one of the first Vikings to visit North America and her son Snorri was the first European born in North America. Marlene Dietrich stayed in this room when she was in Iceland promoting one of her movies. The hotel is very charming. We enjoyed it immensely the two nights we stayed there.

We spent the evening wandering about town, checking out the residential neighborhoods, the hospital, the cemetery and golf course, and finally ending up in a little cafe for a cup of hot chocolate.

Highlights -

are you ready for Day 6?

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