Iceland Trip (Part 3 of 4) – Snorkeling

In order to visit Iceland, you need a sense of adventure. There are so many bucket list items that you can check off – one of those items being snorkeling. You’re probably thinking “Wait…I thought Iceland was cold. How can you snorkel?” You heard right. In fact, Iceland is a famous and popular destination for snorkeling.

I signed up with Arctic Adventures and registered for the Golden Circle and Snorkeling tour. It was such a great deal since you got to see multiple attractions. The tour guide picks you up from your hotel and takes you to the Geysir Hot Spring, Gulfoss Waterfall, Thingvellir National Park, and Snorkeling in Silfra Fissure.

The Silfra Fissure is a crack between North America and Eurasian continents. They are actually drifting apart from each other about 2 cm per year so you can go swimming between the tectonic plates. This is the only place where you can dive or snorkel between two continental plates so I had to add this to my list of Iceland adventures. Another special thing about snorkeling in Iceland is how clear the water is. This water is coming from a nearby glacier and is filtered through lava for about fifty years before reaching the fissure. This is one of the purest and clearest water on our planet! Pretty cool right?

The water at Silfra is ice cold. It is about thirty-five degrees. It only takes fifteen minutes for the human body to experience hypothermia so you need to wear some special gear before entering the water. It took so long putting the gear on, especially since you need the help of an instructor. It probably took longer to put the gear on than to actually snorkel haha! You start off keeping on a base layer of your clothing and putting on a quilted onesie. Then, you put on a dry suit that has tight rubber seals around the neck and wrists, which prevents the water from entering. After that, you put on a hood, gloves that look like oven-mitt lobster claws, a mask, and flippers. The only body parts exposed to the water are your face and hands.

And then it was finally the moment of getting into the water.

At this point, I was freaking out. I HATE cold water. I’m the person who takes forever to go in the water at the beach so I was thinking how can my face touch that freezing water, but I had to escape my comfort zone. I kept telling myself that I was about to experience the adventure of a lifetime. But, in fact, I had nothing to worry about because the suit you wear keeps your body so warm that I did not even feel how cold the water was. It was also probably because my face went numb right away!

Once I looked underwater, it was the most magical thing I have ever seen. There were so many beautiful shades of blue and green and it was crazy how clear the water was. To think I was swimming between tectonic plates was such an epic experience. Mother Nature can be pretty amazing. This was hands down my favorite Iceland adventure.

The other stops on the tour were also amazing. The Geysir hot spring was really cool to see and it erupted every 10 min so you wouldn’t have to wait too long to see the eruption. The Gullfoss Waterfall was another favorite of mine on this tour. It’s translation means “Golden Waterfall.” It was such a beautiful sight to see. The last part of the tour was seeing the Thingvellir National Park. You get to see a panoramic view of the park so you get to see a great view of where we snorkeled between the tectonic plates. It’s amazing to think that one small country has so many breath-taking views.

With lots of love,

Dee

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