Iceland is truly the land of fire and ice. In a literal sense -- it's covered in volcanoes and glaciers. But also in the very real sense that its people have had to learn how to survive in a dynamic environment where the land is often your worst foe. Much of the country is covered in lava rock, cooled from the continual eruptions from its myriad volcanoes. It can take centuries or more for this rock to erode into useful soil, and if it's not properly maintained, much of this new soil will waft away in the constant winds that blow through the country. Trees are few and far between; once, 30% of the island was tree-covered, but the early settlers felled most, and the remainder succumbed to erosion and disease. Glaciers make their slow advance in the mountains, calving icebergs in the north, and feeding the rivers that provide 80+% of the electricity that powers the country. Tremendous lakes of boiling water lurk below ground; Iceland has learned to tap into them for the remaining 20% of their power, to heat their homes and businesses, and to provide restorative pools around the country. Icelanders have learned to live with their land, accepting the volcanoes, using the resources they have, respecting their environment. We loved the culture and the country! Our picture page is here.