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Road Trips Discussions about road trips you have made with your TDI.

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Old April 29th, 2019, 03:39   #1
RobinPhillips
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Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Switzerland (formerly Lethbridge, AB, Canada and before that Volcano, Hawaii, USA)
Fuel Economy: As excellent as it always has been
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As I write this, I'm approaching the end of a 9 day tour of Iceland. The route to get here goes from Switzerland, through the entire length of German and up through to Hirtshals on the northern tip of Denmark. There is a weekly ferry from Denmark, via the Faroe Islands, to the western coast of Iceland. The scenery (and especially the volcanic geology) is amazing.
Although the main ring road around the Island is paved, a large number of side roads (including all the ones to the interior highlands) are travel, so you inevitably spend several hundred km on unpaved roads.
The scenery lends itself to lots of spectacular car photos, a selection of which follow below.
Getting into the boat in Denmark:

Arrival in Iceland in a snow storm (it's not called Iceland for nothing!):




Some views in the Westfield's region (top left corner of Iceland, it's only a little over 300km to Greenland from here):

Even in late April most of the higher the roads are stopping still closed, we drove past several of the "road closed - impassible" signs as these are often the best locations, but inevitably you eventually get to a point where you can't continue. I was fairly conservative in deciding when to turn as you really are a long way from help here, so definitely don't want to get stuck!

Heading south on the west coast:

A good example of the type of unpaved road you spend quite a bit of time on if you go exploring off the main ring road:


The lava scenery is quite amazing. If you've ever been to Hawaii you'll recognize the fields of Pahoehoe and A'a, just the vegetation growing on it is different.
Adding to my collection of pictures of my Jetta and signifcant road signs:
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Old April 29th, 2019, 03:39   #2
RobinPhillips
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This has got to be a classic shot, Jetta with geyser going off in the background. I realized whislt standing next to the geyser that I could see a corner of the parking lot and hence it should be possible to position the Jetta so that I got the geyser in the background. With an appropriate lens on the camera (and then waiting for the geyser to go off again) I go the shot. I'm going to make the claim that this is the only picture ever taken of a Jetta and a geyser in the same frame

Next it was onto one of the many waterfalls. Since it was very late in the day and there was hardly anyone else there I was able to park in the corner of the coach car park and get this shot:

The remaining pictures are all various locations in the central highlands. For the unpaved roads here you drive past more "road closed - if you get into difficulty recovery main entail significant expense" signs an then are able to drive up to 30+km before reaching impassible obstacles. Note that they distinguish between roads that are only "closed", but you are still allowed to drive down (at your own risk) and roads which are "no entry" - I strictly observed the difference and never went down roads marked as "no entry". There are masses of tourists underway with 4x4 rentals, but i don't know what they are doing with them all day, I never saw any of them up on these back roads. You do of course need to be careful, there are lots of potholes and rocks which could disable your car, so I made sure I always stayed in mobile phone range (this caused me to turn round on one road where I was about to loose reception).





These last ones were high up, not far from the icecap. It seemed like driving across the surface of the moon would be like with this landcape:

And this unfortunatey was the end of the road in a normal car, I wasn't about to risk getting stuck in that:
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Old April 29th, 2019, 17:00   #3
prsa01
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Looks and sounds fantastic, thanks!

One of many places I hope to get to one day.

(somewhat) funny story - Had a co-worker many years ago show me pics of a trip to Hawaii. He didn't realize until I pointed it out that a majority of the pics were of elevation signs.

One of the most scenic places on earth and he comes home with pics of signs;-)
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Old April 29th, 2019, 19:49   #4
ToxicDoc
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Congratulations! We went to Iceland 3 years ago, an amazing trip. Whale watching, volcano tubes, geysers, waterfall, horseback riding, geothermal-heated water, and glaciers - all within 1 hour distance. That being said, I have travelled this world a decent bit and I have NEVER been to a place more expensive. $10 coffees, $50 for a basic knit hat, I had planned to spend double my budget. I was mistaken, it cost me triple my budget lol
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Old April 30th, 2019, 02:08   #5
RobinPhillips
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One of the "good" things about living in Switzerland is that most things are so expensive there that when you go to other places that are normally considered expensive it doesn't seem so bad. Having said that, some things in Iceland really do have ridiculous prices. But since we came with the car we did some shopping in Denmark and brought most of what we needed for food with us. We've been mainly staying in apartments or vacation rentals (eg. small cottages) so beyond the expensive of getting here and the accommodation it hasn't been too bad (but the ferry cost $2500!!! - slightly more than it had to be as I paid for a nicer cabin and included meals). So add in 8 nights at say $120 per night plus a few restaurant dinners plus fuel, there isn't going to be much change out of $6k. But it is worth every cent - it's an amazing place, I can't really make the pictures do it justice (and with reference to prsa01's amusing comment about road signs in Hawaii - I do have versions of nearly all the landscapes without the Jetta in the picture, but obviously that's not what people are interested in here :-) )
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Old April 30th, 2019, 11:25   #6
AndyBees
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Wow! Absolutely amazing! Thanks for sharing!

Tidbit of trivia: In 1986, on our first trip to Alaska, we tried to stay at or under $100.00 per day (fuel, food, & lodging). We camped and hit a few motels, cooked a lot of our meals and went easy on souvenirs............. 28 days and about $2800 later we were happy.

Again, thanks for sharing your awesome road trip!
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