Earlier today, I walked down Laugavegur, the main shopping street in Iceland’s capital.
It struck me that it must be strange to be a visitor, and the only people you see are other visitors—and me.
Only one Icelander.
It’s a city’s people who create its atmosphere but here the only people you meet are the couple who are sitting on the other side of the aisle on the plane to the vacation land of Iceland.
And outside Reykjavík there is not much difference.
Last year maybe 200,000 people visited Landmannalaugar, the gateway to Iceland’s interior.
More are expected to visit this year; the area is now marked red as the fragile nature is in great danger of being destroyed.
My strangest moment in Iceland for a long, long time, was in Snæfellsnes peninsula a few nights ago.
When I arrived—late—tens of photographers were battling the exact same spot with their tripods; battling to get the picture, exactly the same picture that thousands of photographers have taken over the last few years. A picture of the mountain Kirkjufell.
Nice mountain but in the more than ten books I have published about Iceland, none feature Kirkjufell.
We have hundreds of more picturesque mountains but it seems every photographer wants to take just that mountain. Strange.
Páll Stefánsson - [email protected]