Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Akureyri, Iceland

Today we are in Akureyri on the northern side of Iceland. Akureyri is about 33 nautical miles in the Eyjafjordhur fjord. (I don't have the slightest idea how to pronounce the name of that fjord . . . I have enough trouble pronouncing the word 'fjord.') Akureyri is the second largest city in Iceland with a population of 15,000 and is an important trading and commercial center for the north of Iceland. As I guess with most fjords, both sides of the fjord ( and the city) are large mountains.

When we arrived at the port city this morning it was almost 50 degrees and the sun was shining. Quite a change from the past few days. After breakfast we left the ship and walked into town which was only about a ten minute walk. As we walked and sat for a coffee it warmed and in the sun it was probably close to 60. I hope that it stays like this for this part of the cruise.

Nancy purchased her standard postcard for her father (which he will probably receive after we get home!) and looked for Christmas ornaments. Although the local currency is the Icelandic krona, shops will also accept US dollars and Euros. Change of course is in krona. After spending most of the morning in town we returned to the ship for lunch. The ms Maasdam is scheduled to leave Akureyri about 6:00 PM and until then the casino and shops are closed.

After we leave the dock we will head back up to fjord (whose name we can't pronounce) and the sea. From there we will pass Grimsley Island which is about 45 miles from the mouth of the fjord and then head for tomorrow's port - Husavik, Iceland. The only reason for sailing north rather than east right away is so that the ship (and passengers) can cross the Arctic Circle.

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