Contextualization: The Ring Rd.

Itinerary (wish list):

I’ve outlined far too much to do, and am certain to discover more along the way! I hope to find myself caught up in an Icelandic travel current once I begin.  It would take a super-human to see all the places/attractions I’ve listed (in this 12-day expedition). However, I can’t cut back any more – these decisions will have to happen on the road. This incredible journey, circumnavigating the country, will help place my areas of research in the larger setting, from which they emerge.

Travel Companion:

For this part of my journey I am lucky to have my Mother join me!

For those of you interested in virtually traveling along with us, or getting in touch with us, I’ve added links to our accommodation and potential attractions as well as a comprehensive travel map at the end of this post.

(Tuesday) August 9th

  • FLY: Icelandic Express (Confirmation code: GL56N4)
  • Boston to Reykjavik; depart 21:20 pm, arrive 6:30 am
  • LOCATION (on map): a

(Wednesday) August 10th

(Thursday) August 11th

(Friday) August 12th

  • STAY: Patreksfjörður, Guesthouse Eyrar 
  • DISTANCE: Husafell to Patreksfjörður : 115 miles + ferry
  • VISIT: Stykkisholmur, Vatnasafn (Library of Water)
  • FERRY: Baldur Ferry (9am departure) from  Stykkisholmur to Brjanslækur
  • VISIT: Flatey Island
  • VISIT: Open air swimming pool at Patreksfjörður
  • VISIT:  Vatnsfjörður Nature Reserve
  • VISIT: Explore Latrabjarg region
  • HIKE: Vatnsfjörður, Latrabjarg cliffs, Raudisanður (‘red sand’) beach

(Saturday) August 13th

  • STAY: Reykjanes, Hotel Reykjanes
  • DISTANCE: Patreksfjörður to Reykjanes : 109 miles
  • VISIT: Car Tour of West Fjords
  • VISIT:  Skötufirði: Litlibær, drying shack 
  • VISIT: Ararfjörður: Dynjandi (Fjallfoss) (‘The Thundering One’)
  • VISIT: Reykjanes: public outdoor pool + sauna

(Sunday) August 14th

(Monday) August 15th

(Tuesday) August 16th

(Wednesday) August 17th

(Thursday) August 18h

  • STAY: Svinafell, Oraefi
  • DISTANCE: Stöðvarfjorður to Svinafell: 191 miles
  • HIKE: Skaftafell, Lonsöræfi Nature Reserve
  • VISIT: Skeiðararjökull glacier
  • VISIT: Osland, protected nature reserve- best views of glaciers

(Friday) August 19th

Saturday August 20th

Sunday August 21st

  • STAY: Reykjavik, Kalli’s apartment #2 (my home-base from here on out)
  • DISTANCE: Selfoss to Reykjavik: 34 miles
  • VISIT: Reykjavik, Arbær Museum
  • VISIT: Reykjavik, Dælustöðvar, Pumping Stations on shoreline
  • VISIT: Grindavik, Blue Lagoon

Thank you

To The Howland family, for making this experience possible! I am extremely grateful for this incredible opportunity!  Each year this generous fellowship motivates, inspires, and expands University of Virginia (UVA) Masters of Landscape Architecture (MLA) students.

To Professor Nancy Takahashi, the current chair of the landscape architecture department at UVA and my first studio professor. Nancy sparked this research at the beginning of my three-year master’s in landscape architecture program with stories of her visit to Iceland, and mention of a traveling fellowship. In my final year of the program, Nancy agreed to work with me on an independent study examining culture, history, sagas, systems, and flows of this unique place, which resulted in this proposal. Her energy, enthusiasm, expertise, and provocative thinking were essential ingredients in this process.

To Professor Roxi Thoren, a dual degree UVA alumni, currently an associate professor at the University of Oregon in the departments of both architecture and landscape architecture. Roxi proved to be an invaluable resource throughout this process. She was a Fulbright Scholar in Iceland and generously shared her first-hand knowledge, valuable connections, resources, and provided great inspiration through her emails and scholarly articles. The dialogue between Roxi and I went above and beyond anything I could have expected.

To Professor William Sherman, associate professor of architecture and associate vice president for research at UVA. Bill taught a course, “Systems, Sites, & Building”, which influenced how I carried out research for this proposal. His encouragement, cross-disciplinary synthesis, enthusiasm,  and guidance were important contributions.

To The Icelandic Academy of the Arts. This academic community has graciously accepted me as a visiting scholar during my time in Iceland. Architecture program director, Sigrun Birgisdotir, was generous with local information and assisted greatly in making my acceptance at the Academy possible.

To, Kristin Thorleifsdottir, who holds a Phd in landscape architecture from North Carolina State University, and is currently a project manager for collaborative work on sustainability for the Icelandic Architecture Society. Kristin generously agreed to be my mentor for this research. Already her knowledge of local culture and place has greatly impacted my research. I feel extremely fortunate to have found a local expert who is willing to be a part of this process.

Thank you also to, the MANY classmates, professors, family, and friends, who have helped make this dream a reality!