Before I delve into the 3 day journey myself (Ben) and Sam had in Iceland I just want to point out some key things:
- The story will be called “2 Dope Boyz In A Camper Van” after the OutKast song “2 Dope Boyz In A Cadillac”
- If it gets turned into a film I would like Brad Pitt to play myself and Ryan Gosling to play Sam
- Game Of Thrones references are included so I apologise for those in advance.
- We named our camper van Hewitt after our friend who decided not to make the trip!
Anyway, I hope you are sitting comfortably because I am about to begin…
“2 Dope Boyz In A Camper Van”
Day 1 – 9th Sept 2017
So after a 5 hour flight from Toronto for myself and a 2 hour flight from Manchester for Sam we were finally reunited, after 13 months of me leaving England, in the city of Reykjavik.
Sam pulls up to the Reykjavik campsite in our new four wheel home fresh from the Rent.is headquarters. With its free WiFi, heating, bright orange sleeping bags, mini cooler and covered in Icelandic themed stickers I knew that this trip will be something to tell the grandkids about…if I ever have any!
We decided to spend the first day checking out Reykjavik before our wild adventure began properly.
The first port of call was the Hallgrimskirkja church, which impressed us with its unique design (to represent the lava flows I believe), its elevator to the roof and its rather large Viking statue outside. Thanks to this statue I now want to pursue a career as a Viking so if you know anyone hiring just shoot me a message!
After the flights and church sightseeing was done we felt that we warranted a big greasy burger and some beer so we popped into the Hard Rock Iceland pub. It’s safe to say that the burgers and beer we had didn’t last long…but we still wanted more! That’s when our spontaneous pub crawl began. Pub after pub, beer after beer we drank our night away and our bank accounts away too! Thank you exchange rate!!!
After stumbling and singing our way back to the campsite we made friends with a couple of Hungarians, unfortunately neither myself nor Sam remember much about the encounter due to our alcohol consumption but from what we do recall plenty of laughs were had!
Shortly after it was time to call it a day and test out the sleeping bags and heating in the Hewitt/Camper van.
Day 2 – 10th Sept 2017
It is safe to say we certainly got what we paid for. The sleep we had was amazing, although this could be due to the fact that we were drunk!
With our map out, iPhone GPS on and our chilled out music playlist at the ready it was time to hit the road and head to the Geysers. Well that was the plan until we got stuck driving around Reykjavik looking for a way out of the city as a local bike race cut off all the main roads! Anyway after a lot of diversions and a new hatred for cyclists we made it onto the main road. With Sam driving and me DJ’ing we were a force to be reckoned with.
Like everyone does on these types of trips we made a few spontaneous stops to take photos, risking getting blown away on some occasions, which thanks to the WiFi in the car meant that our fans back home were able to follow our journey whether they wanted to or not!
After around an hour and a half of driving we made it to the Geysers where, funnily enough, we bumped into the two Hungarians from the night before who managed to fill us in with all the good times that we had forgotten due to the booze! Not gonna lie it was mental seeing the earth sneezing out water every 6 minutes as well as the different colored water pools scattered here and there. Good old Mother Nature never fails to amaze!
After we were done seeing water randomly shooting into the air and awkwardly giving the Hungarians goodbye hugs, we drove about 15 minutes down the road to yet another wonder, Gullfoss Falls. I can’t remember the exact scenes that they used it in Game Of Thrones but we felt (and looked) like The Hound & Arya in front of this huge waterfall. No matter how many photos you see of it on google you have to see it to believe it. Such a brilliant experience!
However Gullfoss Falls, as much as you are beautiful we managed to stumble upon a slightly better looking waterfall in Rangárþing whilst we were casually driving around!
We parked up our Hewitt/Camper Van about 10 minutes away from the Rangárþing falls (because who wants to pay parking fees really!?) and strolled along the mountainside laughing at the sheep passing us by…we are easily amused. Once we got to the falls we were taken back by the way it was crashing over the edge of the mountain creating a rainbow on the ground next to it. If this scenery doesn’t get you extra likes and followers on Instagram you’re doing it wrong!
After taking those key snaps we went behind by the falls where we were drenched by its spray but it was so worth it! Current score: Rangárþing 1-0 Gullfoss.
Shortly after we were drenched we decided to get wet some more and drive the Hewitt/Camper Van to the hot springs nearby. Although the potholes caused our van to twerk all over the place we managed to make it to the hot springs in one piece. Not going to lie the person who named the hot springs “hot springs” must have been a white walker (Game of Thrones reference number 2), because they were freezing! To be fair we needed to jump in them anyway as we hadn’t showered that morning, don’t judge us! We didn’t stay in them very long as we probably would’ve gotten hypothermia!
The next couple of hours driving towards our next camping spot in Jökulsárlón involved a large amount of rapping (badly) to some Notorious BIG songs, rest in peace biggie. Even though our rapping wasn’t on point the scenery around us was. We were the only ones on the road with the sky slowly getting darker and mountains surrounding us, perfect night time driving.
A couple of hours later and we made it to the pitch black campsite. We, again, cracked open some beers and sat down outside of our camper van in the freezing dark environment playing Heads Up (seriously lol!) trying to catch a glimpse of the northern lights which sadly never appeared that night or the night to come. Ah well, a great day had ended with more new memories made.
Day 3 – 11th Sept 2017
I started this trip 26 years old, I woke up on the third day in Iceland one year older! I swung open the back door of our Hewitt/Camper Van to see the best scene I’ll ever wake up to (unless of course JLo decides to pay me a visit). In front of me and Sam were huge baby blue colored glaciers, clear blue water and a squad/gang/group (I don’t know the correct term!) of seals! It was incredible. We managed to get some sweet photos, which I can confirm replaced our previous Facebook profile pictures; it was a birthday memory I will never forget!
We hopped in the van, whacked on some Chilli Peppers on the iPod as we felt we couldn’t top our rapping from the previous night, and headed to the Skaftafell Falls.
Even though the hike was only 30 minutes in each direction it felt like forever as we are incredibly unfit these days but we managed to make it there. The falls were cool but not quite what we had seen previously. Rangarping is still number one for us!
After the hike to Skaftafell was done we thought that was the last of the walking…we were wrong! We pulled up along the side of the road and made our way to the DC3 plane wreck located near the black beach. The Icelandic scenery had us fooled, what looked like a 10 minute walk to the plane was actually about 40. We complained a lot as good Englishmen do but we survived, unlike the DC3 plane! It’s a pretty random thing to see in the middle of nowhere and made for some cool photos. Alas once those photos were taken we had the 40 minute walk back to the Hewitt/Camper Van…we complained even more.
Once back to the van it was a short trip to the black beach where I believe some of the Dragonstone scenes were filmed (Game Of Thrones reference number 3). With the black sand beneath our feet, the mountains surrounding us and the waves crashing we felt the tiredness from the previous hikes wash away. We were re-energized and back on the road and heading towards our final campsite, Tjaldsvaedi. Once there we grabbed some food, got our swim shorts on and headed to the Blue Lagoon.
If there is one way to end your birthday it’s sitting in smoky blue 38 degree Celsius water, beer in hand, surrounded by girls in bikinis whist wearing weird mud mask on our faces! What a way to turn 27.
After we were done splashing around like Sandy & Danny Zuko in Grease we grabbed some beers, sat outside of the Hewitt/Camper Van with a group of Russians who invited themselves over and reminisced about the unbelievable 3 day journey we had! In fact I’m still reminiscing now as I’m currently typing this up on my notes section of my iPhone 30,000 feet in the sky passing over Greenland on my way back to Canada with my ears painfully popping.
Like Prince Oberyn in game of thrones once said “Tis a big and beautiful world. Most of us live and die in the same corner where we were born and never get to see any of it. I don’t want to be most of us”. Game of thrones reference number 4.
Anyway before I bore you anymore I have to say that Iceland it has been a pleasure!
Thank you for reading. That was “2 Dope Boyz In A Camper Van” keep your eyes peeled for the sequel……
Read more: Summer in Iceland
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