Our trip to Iceland & Amsterdam. With photos by yours truly and a little write-up about it all from my husband, Billy…
Sunny. Dry. Warm. Cheap.
None of these words described our trip to Iceland. In fact, it was overcast, wet, cold and pricey… the entire time. But sunshine isn’t what makes an adventure worth while. Sometimes freezing nights are just a natural excuse to get closer. I have no anecdote about how expensive pizza was in Reykjavik- that was just ridiculous.
This trip was two years in the making. Jordan was booked to photograph the wedding of a friend from college, and we decided to make an adventure out of it. Long story short: We’ve never been anywhere like Iceland. We’re talking about a landmass that is still continually expanding due to volcanic activity; a country that operates entirely on geothermal energy; and a Viking past that would shape its future culture. The landscapes were practically prehistoric, the views were prodigious, and the people were…blond. You definitely don’t travel to Iceland to relax. It begs to pull at every adventurous bone in your body. Our raincoats, boots and wool caps became our best friends, and we wouldn’t have it any other way.
Top three memories from this stop:
- Jordan’s face when she finally saw the Northern Lights for the first time. A bucket list item was officially checked off, and I’ve never seen her happier.
- Our entire trip was cloudy, rainy and windy. As the doors of the chapel swung open for the happy couple to walk down the aisle at their wedding, the sun appeared out of nowhere and the skies cleared for the rest of the day. It was a small miracle.
- Me capturing a geyser eruption perfectly on Boomerang.
Iceland was only half of the trip. Amsterdam rears its head below…
From the iphone:
Seriously, we didn’t put on our sunglasses for this entire trip.
The second half of our journey took us to the land of my people… Amsterdam. And by “my people,” I mean that I’m 1/4 Dutch. My grandma’s last name was VanderPerren. That makes me legit, right? I’ll say that the cozy corner pubs and amazing apple pie can pretty much make anyone feel like this is their homeland. What struck us most about our time in this city was how incredibly comfortable we felt the entire time. It was the first European destination where we both said out loud, “We could live here. Immediately.”
While there is a lot to do outside the city, we spent our few days exclusively in Amsterdam. We walked all the canals, drank all the beer, ate everything from fresh seafood to Indonesian to the same apple pie three nights in a row (Winkle 43… look it up). One day we were in a cheese class together, and the next we would split up with Jordan shopping the tiny boutiques on the Nine Little Streets while I spent my time in Rijksmuseum. It was so easy and comfortable.
Another highlight was how friendly the people were. We struck up conversations with seemingly every vendor, waitress and bartender. We felt welcome everywhere we went, and I can’t express how awesome that felt. Amsterdam, we will be back!
From the iphone: