This blog is about design with travel mixed in, and what better way to get my writing ship shape than talking about a few trips i have been on this year…. don’t you worry, there will be design intertwined somewhere and somehow…. Enjoy!

A welcome Easter break to the city of Reykjavik meant taking layers of warm clothes and boots, rather than the usual summer wardrobe. The main reason for my visit was the desire to see the rarely present northern lights, the most exciting natural phenomenon ever! From the moment we booked it I wondered whether they would grace us with their presence and was near panic when I thought they might not (silly I know!!).

Reykjavik is a fairly small city and so Mr P and I did a LOT of walking. The cold wasn’t too bad and so it was quite enjoyable to walk hand in hand into the city centre. Our hotel was just outside the city and every morning we had a view of the snow-capped mountains which was breath-taking.

On the 2nd night we booked on to the tour to see the northern lights and at 8pm boarded the coach headed out to see them, wherever they were going to be. Usually a convoy of about 6 coaches went out together per tour group, and so there must have been at least 5 or 6 different groups out there. The great thing was that they would all talk to each other and if they glimpsed the lights they would immediately make the others aware which meant we had a better chance of getting to see them! After driving about an hour and a half we finally stopped where they thought we would have the best view. Mr P and myself spent about 3 hours standing outside in the cold night when we got our first glimpse of them it was as if the sky was moving and green-blue light was streaming from the sky down towards the earth. It was as if your eyes were playing tricks on you and at some moments you would wonder if you imagined what you saw. Our exposure was brief (maybe 15 minutes in total) but we spent about 4 hours further standing in the field, hoping and wishing we would see more. Alas it was not meant to be…. Our romantic affair with the lights was over and we headed back to our hotels wanting more.

The other reason for our visit to Iceland was the Blue Lagoon, the geothermal pools fuelled by the heat from the earth. An extract from the website giving us a brief history is ‘The Blue Lagoon was accidentally formed in 1976 during operation at the nearby geothermal power plant. In the years that followed, people began bathe in the unique water and apply the silica mud to their skin. Those with psoriasis noticed an incredible improvement in their condition. Over the years, Blue Lagoon has been innovative in harnessing this gift of nature to develop different spa services and products. Today, Blue Lagoon is recognized as one of the wonders of the world.’

When we arrived we were given a bath robe and guided to the changing rooms where we readied ourselves to go out into the minus temperatures in nothing but our swimwear. Nothing prepared us for how cold we felt and I ran as quickly as I could manage to the ice blue coloured pool. The shock of how hot the water was amazed me. We were all of a sudden in 37-39°C and the contrast between hot and cold was a fantastic experience.

All in all we spent about 5 hours at the lagoon and felt refreshed and rejuvenated when we left. A natural experience not to be missed, it also serves as a reminder as to what nature can actually do. For me the whole trip was about natural phenomenon as natural wonders of the world.

Photo’s will follow (promise!), I seem to have taken them off my Macbook! DOH! You will soon learn how snap happy i actually am.

Until the next time…

My sign off