BigWorldAndSmallWorld Blog

West Iceland the Sagaland in winter

Posted in Iceland,Nature,Travel and Adventure,Vacation,Winter by Administrator on the June 23rd, 2022

In January 2018 I took a 5-day trip to Iceland for a Mid-Atlantic Travel Tradeshow sponsored by Iceland Air. It was a very well organized trip just for travel agents. We can choose which hotel we wanted to stay at and which tour we wanted to take from a selection list. In winter time, there is no direct flight from Minneapolis to Reykjavik, I had to route to Chicago. But in the summer time, there is direct flight from Minneapolis to Reykjavik, therefore it is much convenient in the summer.

Upon arrival, the first evening we had a welcome dinner at downtown Harpa Concert Hall and Conference Center hosted by Iceland Air. The Center is a modern building with nice architecture and wonderful lights. We were treated with great hospitality by the host who offered us a huge selection of delicious bite size food and drinks. BTW, is a good website not only for booking flights, but also for day tours as well.

The 2nd day we had a full day tradeshow. Prior to the trip I had already made meeting appointments with vendors and tour operators that I’m interested in finding out more about. Because my schedule was almost full and each appointment was merely 15 minutes; therefore I did my homework ahead of time and marked on my schedule each appointment’s booth number so that I can get to each booth promptly. From 9am to 5pm, in between appointments I had just enough time to cover the entire tradeshow floor; it was a very efficient day. I found today to be very helpful for me because prior to the trip I knew nothing about Iceland, but now I learned a lot by talking to vendors and I had a good idea about Iceland as a whole. That evening, we were entertained at Valsheimilid with lovely food, good company and entertainment.

The 3rd day we were on a full day excursion of our choice. I had chosen the West Iceland the Sagaland tour because of its nature. West Iceland the official tourist guide that I acquired yesterday at the tradeshow became very handy; otherwise I had to say it’s pretty hard to follow the names of the places we were going. As the map shows the Snæfellsnes peninsula projecting out the most on the west was where we toured. I stood there before the 844 meters high Hafnarfjall Mountain outside Borgames and Eldborg Crater rising 60 meters above the surrounding lava, I was amazed by the winter wonderland.

We had a tasty lunch at the ancient fishing station called Arnarstapi in a room with magnificent glacier view. Arnarstapi is known for its stunning basalt cliffs, ravines and grottos as well as unusual rock formations in the ocean. The Snæfellsjokull National Park is the only coastal park in Iceland. We walked on slushy and spongy moss-covered lava fields, it was an interesting walk. We took a nice coffee and cake break in the afternoon along the coast somewhere on the way heading back.

In the evening we had another great food and entertainment.

The 4th day is also the last day, today I went to the famous Blue Lagoon. The colors of the water was so beautiful, words just can’t describe it. The lagoon is big some area deep and some area shallow. The water felt warm even in the coldest January.

After the Blue Lagoon, the bus took us to the airport and I took the flights home. On the way home, I can’t help but thinking next time I want to visit Iceland again in the summer. I want to take a bus tour all around the island on the ring road as the map shows. This way I get to see a green Iceland and all the attractions; that will be fantastic! For a bus tour, I recommend these companies Reykjavik Excursions and GJ Travel

Below are some helpful websites for reference:
1. The Tourist Board for Iceland:
2. Keflavik Airport:
3. Visit Reykjavik:
4. The Iceland Review:

Idaho is a place of boundless beautiful nature

Posted in Nature,Travel and Adventure,Vacation by Administrator on the June 3rd, 2022

We spent a week in Idaho in the summer of 2019. We only covered a fraction of the state mostly in the south and west. The vast north we didn’t even touch yet. One can easily spend two weeks there. We flew to Idaho Falls and flew back from Boise. We rented a car for a road trip east to St. Anthony and Ashton, south to City of Rocks national reserve, and northwest to Lewiston. We marked the places we went to on the map.

I like Idaho Falls, Craters of the Moon, City of Rocks, Shoshone Falls, Three Island Crossing State Park near Glenn’s Ferry (part of Oregon Trail), scenic drive from New Meadows to Lewiston and back, and Hells Gate State Park in Lewiston. Also Idaho potato museum is a must, we had some fried potatoes with cheese, and it was delicious

Idaho Falls is a charming city, the falls are in the city. It is a nice walk along the falls, there are plenty shops and restaurants along the side too. An evening walk when lights were on was very pleasant.

Mesa Falls near Ashton was nice, we even saw a rainbow.

My son had fun sliding down the sand dunes near St. Anthony. We also saw some young people riding dune buggies and doing crazy jumping there.

Craters of the Moon is a unique place on earth. When I was walking on it, I felt like I was walking on a lava land. It was extremely hot.

Idaho Potato Museum is a must-see. The museum also served potato dishes, all were delicious.

On the trip, we also visited a few other museums. They all were nice.

City of Rocks is a fun place to see different shapes of rocks. Trails there were interesting, so were other parts of Idaho where hiking trails are plentiful.

Shoshone Falls is magnificent. It was the largest falls we saw on this trip.

We also saw some other pretty nice falls.

Wasn’t this Balanced Rock interesting? I thought it was.

Lewiston area and the scenic drive from New Meadows to Lewiston were very nice. Lewis and Clark Museum is a must-see. Hells Gate State Park is in Lewiston. My question was why it was called Hells Gate? I thought I found the answer at the time, but now I forgot.