Iceland is Open

Icelandair starting resuming some kind of scheduled flights finally on June 15, and since then its been a gradual increase in normality. It comes at such perfect timing, as summer blossoms to its brightest days and everything has finally turned green. The highlands have opened and all the hard to reach places, including Hornstrandir and secret fly fishing salmon rivers.

big salmon fishermen at Blanda

Seeing as I had no work this summer, a problem most tour guides shared, I got to travel domestically with plenty of free time to explore local rivers. I visited a few for the first time, including Norðurá and Blandá, where friends help run these lodges. I got to work a few days at Blanda, with the lovely Erik Koberling, and even fished my first salmon of the season there in the lower beat.

fishing at Blanda

I visited Þverá and Kjarrá a handful of times, also working a few days at each lodge. I only lost 1 sea trout at Þverá, but got to take 4 home after spending a day driving the guides Gími and Egill around fishing. I fished at Haukadalsá and caught nothing, but had endless happy hours on the riverbank with the other more serious fishermen.


The highland roads have opened, making some of my favourite summer destinations finally accessible. I´ll find myself in the Hveravellir pool atleast 3 or 4 times this summer, definitely twice at Laugafell pool, and visit Kerlingarfjoll a couple of times. The hot pool there is a bit of a hike, so I may not make it into the pool there everytime, but its important to find refuge in a mountain cabin with a good supply of natural hot water springs.

golf at Húsafell

Now that covid restrictions are relaxing, its time for more yoga and golf, and taking advantage of all kinds of sales and package deals around the country. I can finally stay at Icelandic hotels as a guest, not a guide, and even go horse back riding as a tourist. I can play golf and check out the new spa at Húsafell, the Canyon Baths. Going out for bike rides and hosting jam sessions with musicians is finally okay, and we´ve been making great progess with our band Tunesdays and our first (soon-to-be-hit) single ´Fluffy Cougar Bear.´

Bike gang and Tunesdays members Sandra and Steve looking at a midnight sun

The days are still long, nearly 24 hours long frankly, and even politics seem normal again. On the presidential election held June 27th, Guðni Th. was voted in again, and will be again and again for years to come. Hopefully our PM and government can keep the country out of any major crises, and life and economics can slowly creep back to normal, pre-covid. Although, it´s been kinda nice to slow down and simplify, so hopefully it doesn´t happen too fast.

The Seychelles

The Maldives and the Seychelles are two destinations I always thought were reserved for couples, and not just any couples, but rich, getting-married or honeymooning couples. But, fun fact, there is a lot more to do than just sit at a Hilton bungalow resort for an all inclusive week of seeing nothing else.

the Hilton’s infinity pool

The culture of the Seychelles is a crazy mix of imports and exports. All the tourism and associated industry caters to English, French and Russian speaking white people, but the local people and Seychellois food was mostly Indian and Indian influenced. There were hindu temples, christian churches and muslim mosques, but total peace seems to reign between all the islanders. People smiled and greeted strangers wherever and whenever, and I had the impression people were happy. Even when the tropical rain storms hit and the hillside streets flash-flooded, it was normal to go out and play in the puddles in your bathing suit, and this made people smile at us, the crazy white people doing it too.

one tune and one dorado!

I didn’t totally do things wrong, since I had some handsome male company too and we actually stayed a few nights at the Hilton, but I also couchsurfed with some not-so-local locals and partied with all of their friends. My couchsurf host was an off-shore banking something something kind of guy, and his friends were the managers and HR heads of local hotel resorts.

the top of Morne Blanc

We hiked up to the top of Morne Blanc and looked down at Mahe island as if we were flying above it. We had fresh fish and local rum and even celebrated someone else’s birthday, and caught or own fresh fish off a deep sea fishing boat. I met more Mauritians and Russians than Seychellois, except for the fishing boat captain and the first person I met on m way over to the Seychelles.

this tortoise was trying to escape the male mounting her but didnt fit thru the fence

I flew Air Seychelles from Madagascar to Mahe, and got upgraded to first class after being the last one to check in on the overbooked flight. An engineer from the airline sat beside me and he was the only local friend I made all week. He took us hiking to some secret spots on the very far south of the island, including a bottomless rock pool carved into the cliffs beside the ocean. Nearby at the beach resort, we saw some giant tortoises, and even some tortoise mating! I guess humans arent the only ones having sex at the honeymoon spots.