Tuesday, June 11

Iceland, Day 3 - Reykjavik

 On Wednesday our excursion was to the famous sites of the capital and it´s surroundings.
  First we went through the western part of the city and ended up at Grotta Lighthous. From here it is only water until you reach Greenland and America.
 The Hallgrim´s Church is a landmark wherever you are in Reykjavik. The memorial of Leiv Eriksson is placed in front of the church.
Leiv Eiriksson c. 970 – c. 1020) was a Norse explorer regarded as the first European to land in North America (excluding Greenland), nearly 500 years before Christopher Columbus. According to the Sagas of Icelanders, he established a Norse settlement at Vinland, tentatively identified with the Norse L'Anse aux Meadows on the northern tip of Newfoundland in modern-day Canada.
The beauty of the church must be seen from inside although the facade also has a spectacular exterior. This is the organ opposite the alter which impressed us by it´s clean and majestic design.
From the top of Perlan the view over Reykjavik is fantastic. On this image you can see Hallvard´s Church at the horizon. Behind it, you find the city center and further on; Akranes peninsula. The area where Akranes city is located was settled in the ninth century
Outside the restaurant on the top of Perlan there is a viewpoint of 360 degrees.
Perlan is situated on the hill Öskjuhlíð where there had been hot water storage tanks for decades. In 1991 the tanks were updated and a hemispherical structure placed on top. This project was largely done at the behest of Davíð Oddsson, during his time as mayor of Reykjavík.
Before the financial scandals and crack in 2007 the building activity was extremely high in Iceland. This is the skyline which among ordinary people now is called "Madhattan"
At Thingvellir the Alltingi was closed in 1881 and moved to the capital situated in a building made of Icelandic stones. Here it it very restricted access for ordinary people as us.
Near by the Alltingishusid the Cathedral of the Icelandic church is located. A beautiful building made of trees and a delighted choir and high altar. Rather small compared to the Hallvard Church
At the Tjørnin Reykjavik City Hall is located. It was built in 1991 and is quite special. A typographic map of  Iceland is placed in the lobby.
Visiting Reykjavik also include Shopping in the two main shopping streets. This is on the corner of Skólavörðustígur, running from ,Laugavegur  up to Hallgrimskirkja. In the side streets you may find interesting and nice restaurants and bars.

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