… they are portrayed as white, empty spaces, as if something was missing. It is almost as if the landscape architect forgot to put an actual landscape in these white gaps – mountains, roads, trees, everything seems to have disappeared. On a map they are the error that the artist erased. Dead areas.

Now, toss that map away!

It is nonsense and unreal. Pack your bags, jump on a plane to Iceland and experience with your own eyes the wonders of ice cold glaciers. Then you will see that the architect did indeed not forget anything, because it is exactly the way it supposed to be, the glorious glaciers in all shapes, sizes and colors.

Dangerous force of nature

They are six, the main glaciers in Iceland: Langjökull, Hofsjökull, Mýrdalsjökull, Drangjökull, Vatnajökull and Eyjafjallajökull. Even though Vatnajökull is the biggest glacier in Europe, Eyjafjallajökull has become a tongue-twister for many people since it erupted in 2010 and caused a brief evacuation of around 500 local people and led to the cancellation of thousands of flights across Europe and Iceland. To some it is enough to look at the glaciers from a distance but for those, who are interested in getting closer, many companies offer trips on for example Vatnajökull where you are guided by trained professionals. Glaciers are a dangerous force and it is not recommended to travel on them alone if you are inexperienced or do not carry proper equipment. The dangers are for example deep rifts covered with snow and quagmires that have taken both people and horses. Sudden weather change can also create life threatening circumstances. Icelanders are very familiar with stories of people that traveled on glaciers and never came back…

Frozen water turns into ice. If the ice is given space and time it will form into a glacier. Despite of its name, Iceland’s area is only covered with around 10% ice or about 11.000 km2. In the 20th century about 10% of the ice disappeared from the Icelandic glaciers and in recent years the fact is that they have been shrinking faster and faster. Scholars agree that the Icelandic glaciers will loose about 25-35% of their volume in the next 50 years. So now is the time to come and experience them!

The most magnificent feeling in the world is to face a glacier on a sunny day. It is one of the most glorious forces of nature, so quiet and immovable but still so full of life and energy that one can only feel and experience it in real life. Poetic and terrifying, Icelandic glaciers are one of a kind.

I hope that you will get the opportunity to experience the crystallizing, breathtaking, terrifying, and beautiful Icelandic glaciers. Then you will see that whoever designed Iceland made no mistakes. It is your map that you need to be toss away. Your eyes will be better spent staring into the glacial abyss.

 

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