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Discover Iceland’s Silver Circle

28/09/17 | Scouts and Youth Groups, News

The Travel Places Scouts and Education team have recently returned from their successful trip over to Iceland where they organised and oversaw the travel arrangements, excursions and activities for over 700 scout leaders.

Iceland is a popular destination for our Education tours and many organisers are familiar with the classic Golden Circle excursion day where you visit the stunning Gullfoss, Geysir and Thingvellir National Park rift valley. However it seems less people are aware of the natural beauty and historical landscapes that await them via Iceland’s Silver Circle. Don’t let the name mislead you – there is certainly nothing second rate about this excursion in comparison to the Golden Circle! Here’s a snapshot of what you can expect and why we think the Silver Circle is a perfect addition to any school tour:

We travelled from Reyjavik by coach and headed towards the Hvalfjordur fjord via the impressive Hvalfjörður Tunnel that measures 5,770 meters (18,930 ft) long and reaches a depth of 165 meters (541 feet) below sea. This lead us to Akranes, situated on Reyjavik’s northern peninsula.

Our first stop was the Deildatunguhvr – Europe’s most powerful hot spring where visitors can clearly see how the geothermal energy is captured and transported by pipe work to the local green house situated just 100 metres away.

Next on the tour was a lunch stop at the genuinely impressive Hraunfosser and Barnafosser Waterfalls. The unusual Hraunfossar Falls flows into the Hvítá river from a series of rivulets that span across 900 metres of a lava field (hraun means “lava”). Just a short walk along the Hvítá river is another waterfall, Barnafoss, the “waterfall of the children”, named after a tragic legend.

After lunch, we took the highland trail to Iceland’s second largest ice field, Langjokull Glacier. Here we boarded some impressively large 4X4 trucks (converted Nato Missile Launchers) for a 40 minute journey across the Glacier itself. We travelled across a vast open, snowy landscape to arrive at a large pipe sticking out of the ground – something that looks oddly out of place in the perfect white surroundings. This is the entrance to a man made Ice Cave which turned a spectacular blue as we walked deeper into the glacier.

From here, our guide led us on an intriguing walk around the 33 meter deep tunnels which are about 500 meters in length. The topics covered during the walk included archaeology, evidence of past volcanic eruptions and Global Warming where our guide illustrated that the glacier is in full retreat and in 20 years this part of the glacier will no longer exist!

In summary this excursion is packed full of natural wonders, beautiful scenery and heaps of geographical and historical facts for students to take away.
This full day excursion is the perfect addition to your school tour. If you’ve been to Iceland previously or are looking to explore somewhere a little bit different then the Silver Circle makes a great alternative. If you’d like to discuss Iceland or any other ideas for your school’s next trip, get in touch with our Education experts on 01903 832861 or drop them an email: info@travelplaces.co.uk.

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