Published October 16, 2018
While Þingvellir might be most famous for its historical importance as a former judicial site, its geological uniqueness is equally intriguing. Indeed, especially during the bright days of summer, once simply cannot skip a visit to Þingvellir to admire the intriguing rock formations and, of course, to take a picture standing right in-between the Northern American and European tectonic plates. In fact, Þingvellir is the only site worldwide where one can actually see the traces of the movement of the tectonic plates through the fissures left behind and even take a stroll around it.
Let’s hear it from you!
Name: Klaus Juergen
From: Cochem in Germany
What are your impressions of Þingvellir?: “It’s amazing to see the European and the North American continental plates this close together,” he explains. “And you don’t even need a permission from you-know-whom to set foot on North America!” He then adds, “It’s also historically interesting because the parliament used to be here.”
Who are you travelling with?: “I’m here with four biker friends,” Klaus says. “We’re biking around the country. The landscape is breathtaking, I love it—except for the wind.”
Is this your first time in Iceland?: “No, I’ve been here once before. Actually, I was also exploring Iceland by bike the first time I was here two years ago,” Klaus says. “Once a biker, always a biker!”
Name: Ladina and Christelle
From: Bern and Zurich in Switzerland
How long have you been here?: “This is our third day in Iceland and we will be staying for two weeks,” Ladina explains.
What drove you towards Þingvellir?: “We are heading north and we wanted to stop by at Þingvellir to enjoy the nature,” Christelle says. “Our main interest here are the tectonic plates, so less the political and more the nature aspect of Þingvellir,” Ladina adds with a laugh.
What have you been doing so far?: “We haven’t been here long, so we haven’t seen that much yet,” Ladina says. “But we were on a tour around Reykjanes and had lobster soup in Grindavík,” Christelle adds.
What’s up next?: “After our stop at Þingvellir, we’ll be heading to Húsafell, Stýkkishólmur and Flatey,” Christelle explains. “Then, we will be coming back to Reykjavík to then go biking in the highlands!” Ladina adds excitedly.
Meet a local!
Names: Valdimar & Örn
Occupation: Both have summer jobs as tourist assistants at Þingvellir: During the year, Valdimar studies economics and Örn studies computer science.
How do you like working at Þingvellir? “It’s pretty good, I like it,” Valdimar says. “It’s busy, but it’s a nice summer job.”
What is the question you get asked the most?: “That’s probably ‘Where can I stand between two tectonic plates?’” Valdimar says. “Yeah, people often want to know where exactly they can stand between the two continents,” Örn adds.
How have you been coping with the weather?: “This is the worst summer ever,” Valdimar says. “We’ve only had nine days of sun so far. It’s horrible,” Örn adds.