Riding Icelandic Horses

After a nice breakfast made by Chef Dad we packed up our stuff, waved by to our lovely box house, and hit the road to start on our South Coast adventure!

Our first stop was the Seljandrofoss Waterfall. The thing that separates this waterfall from the rest is that visitors have the opportunity to walk around the backside of the falls, under the mountain. When driving to the waterfall, it is so grand that you can see it from miles away. The weather was kinda foggy but it made the falls look even more mystical. Getting soaked in the cold weather was well worth it to be able to see the waterfall up close. The wind constantly sprayed you with water when circling the falls but the view made getting wet feel like nothing. It was a neat experience because we literally got the “behind the scenes” of the waterfall. Also, for all of the Justin Bieber fans out there, this waterfall was featured in his “I’ll Show You” music video. All of the wild flowers around the waterfall made the landscape even prettier. There are a few smaller waterfalls along the same mountain side but they in not way compare to the main attraction. After getting freezing cold there is a cute coffee shop before you leave to help warm you up. My sister and I got some very very yummy donuts!!

After the Seljandrofoss Waterfall we drove to the Reynisfjara Black Sand Beach. It is pretty self explanatory but the coolest part is textured mountains and caves on the beach. The mountains, which are actually basalt stacks, look like layered building blocks and they were very fun to climb on. The inside of the caves were very jagged, making them look a little creepy. It’s amazing the things our earth can create. The water itself can be very dangerous because there are very strong tides and current. They advise you to never turn your back to the waves because they can move so quickly. Farther along the beach in the water there are two very tall rocks sticking out of the ocean which are pretty famously captured on camera. We stopped for some lunch at the Black Sand Beach Restaurant and shared a lovely fish and chips.

Next we were off to South Iceland Riding Tours to gain an experience of a life time. No horses have been imported to Iceland so they are all purebred. On arrival at the family owned farm, they were very kind and welcomed us as if we were family. They introduced us to our horses and after very little instruction we were off! The horses are so well trained and calm that no matter your horse riding experience, you will still have a very enjoyable. This was probably the best part of the day. I was riding such a beautiful animal in one of the prettiest counties. The scenery took my breath away every time I looked up to survey the surroundings. We walked in great big fields and along the rivers edge. Our instructor stopped us once to explain the difference between Icelandic horses and all others. Other horses have three gaites and can walk, trot, and gallop, while Icelandic horses have 5 gates. We learned how to tölt, which is above a gallop and the horse moves its legs a certain way so the ride is more smooth and less bumpy. It was really fun and I got the hang of it pretty easy. We all had lots of fun even though we were so sore after!

We stopped for dinner on our way to the next AirBNB in Reykjavik and settled down for a relaxing night.