The second half of our Iceland tour, although less eerily moody than the west and north, was no less enchanting. From the Hallormsstadarskogur Forest (essentially the only trees we saw the entire trip) we traveled south where we abandoned troll sightings in favor of ice riddled black sand beaches and rolling stones that actually do gather moss. The names remained mysteriously unpronounceable – Vantnajokll, Jokulsarlon, Breidamerkurjokull, culminating with THE name that tongue-tied newscasters (and grounded flights) around the world in 2010- Eyjafjallajokull. We brought the trip full circle with a tour around The Golden Circle. Maybe it was the remoteness of what we had experienced in the west or the way our senses were assaulted in the north, but the landscape seemed less dramatic, Strokkur Geysir a little less enthusiastically spouty than we anticipated. There was redemption in the waterfall Gulfoss, with its tiered drops pouring into a crevice along the Hvita River. And we could have spent days exploring the magic of Pingvellir National Park. We loved the funkiness of Rykjavik – artists, coffeehouses, musicians, Icelandic knits, sheepskin pillows. (Yes they’re amazing!) After two weeks, we left Iceland feeling like we had run out of time. And you can’t complain about leaving a place that gives you so many reasons to want to return.