Bishop Luffa Geographers were treated to an action packed trip to Iceland exploring the Golden Circle and beyond over the Easter holidays.
From the moment the plane landed we enjoyed a packed itinerary starting with a journey across lava fields to visit the dramatic coastline of Reykjanes peninsula, an introduction to mud pools and steam vents at Gunnhuver before witnessing the fissure between the Eurasian and North American tectonic plates at the Bridge Between the Continents and ending day 1 with a meal out in Reykjavik.
On day 2 we enjoyed a hike through Thingvellir National Park with views of the many rifts and volcanoes followed by a walk up through the bubbling mud and hissing springs of Hveragerdi and onto the most voluminous waterfall in Iceland of Uridafoss. Ending the day with a swim at the local geothermally heated outdoor swimming pool (with ice bath, hot tubs and slides to boot!). Midgard Base Camp became our home for the next 3 nights which provided wonderful hospitality, fabulous food and great facilities from swing seats in the living room to a rooftop hot tub and sauna overlooking Eyjafjallajokull.
Day 3 was a day of sea, fire and ice… we witnessed the dramatic glacial retreat at Solheimajokull, the black sands of Vik and had lots of fun scrambling up the basalt columns for photo shoots! The afternoon was spent hiking to the top of Skogafoss and then heading inside a gorge to feel the full force of the cascading water at Glujjfrabui.
Day 4 started with a visit to Geysir to see the giant spouting hot springs erupting every 10 mins, followed by a walk to Gullfoss - the most photographed waterfall in Iceland. An afternoon was enjoyed floating and relaxing in the sunshine at The Secret Lagoon - Iceland’s oldest geothermal pool. Then off again, to hike around the top rim of Kerid Crater and for some around the crater lake too! The day ended with a 10pm hike up the hill to witness the stars in the dark skies and to our amazement a half hour display of the northern lights!
The trip didn’t end there. Our final day involved a stunning walk along the moonscape of bubbling mud pools and columns of steam of Seltun hot springs with their memorable aroma! It ended with a hike up to the very top of Fagradalsfjall lava flow (which erupted in August 2021), descending with pockets ladened with shiny ‘souvenirs’ and happy memories!
Here's what some of our students thought of their time away:
‘Iceland was a real blast with lots of places to visit. Icelands natural scenery is stunning and lots of geography learnt in school made sense with the places we visited. It has also helped me wih my GCSEs as it has given a real perspective of what tectonic plates can do. A great trip’ - Henry Long (11Otter)
‘Food, weather and sites - Iceland has them all’ Jamie Edwards (11Wilson)
“The Secret Lagoon’s pool noodles were great for just floating around and relaxing and the walks we had in the evening allowed us to bond stronger as a group” Nellie Pegg (12Burrows)
“Iceland was an eye-opening experience and would definitely recommend it to anyone who gets the chance to go. All of the pictures you see online just don’t give it justice, as the natural landscape is massively scaled up, stunning and feels out of this world. The Northern lights were an added bonus for us which we were very luck to see. But just being with friends was great fun as we can share our experiences with each other for many years to come. I enjoyed it so much!” Ben Russell-Wells (12Story)
Mrs M Wilburn, Team Leader Geography