Iceland is a place of delightful contradictions where flowers flourish amid ice and snow. Some of nature's most powerful antics, from active volcanoes to geothermal phenomena, exist only a few miles from charming towns and major cultural centers. For those in search of the unexpected, the surprises begin in Akureyri — Iceland's second-largest city.
The Botanical Garden in Akureyri is the most northerly one of its kind, home to nearly 2,000 plant species. First opened in 1912, the gardens boast every species native to Iceland and more.
The sulphur pits and boiling mud pools at Namaskard are in constant action — roaring and splashing while sending up vapor plumes.
The falls' name was derived from the momentous occasion when Chieftain Thorgeir of Ljosvatn threw his collection of heathen statues into the falls as a public declaration of his conversion to the Christian faith in the year 1000 A.D.
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