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  • JON: Hello, I’m Jon Olson, welcome to Next Stop, from the most volcanic island in the

  • world. NEXT STOP ICELAND rolls

  • JON: I’ve always wanted to come to Iceland, and now with Alaska Airlines partnership with

  • Iceland Air, here we are, in the most volcanic island in the world. On this episode, we will

  • actually go inside a volcano, we will also explore the beautiful capital city of Reykjavic,

  • and we will travel a couple of hours outside the city for adventures in glacier water.

  • The Iceland music scene is blowing up on the world stage, and on this episode we feature

  • local favorite Jon Johnson. All this and more on Next Stop, from the land of fire and ice.

  • The fun starts now! Next Stop logo

  • JON: After a scenic, and I do mean scenic, 2 hour drive outside of Reykjavic, we are

  • with Arctic Adventures for white water rafting. This is not what you wear rafting in Iceland.

  • This is what you wear to go rafting in Iceland. MUMMI: OK, I’m going to take a small safety

  • brief before we go in, I am going to start with the paddle. How you hold the paddle,

  • you have a C grip on the top, so place your thumb under here and grab it. Say all forward,

  • use your upper body. Lean forward, all forward, ok? Sometimes you say hold the line, get in,

  • so everybody should get in, ok, so all at the same time, ok, and all forward, and all

  • backwards, all backwards, and get in. Good, very good.

  • JON: What an exhilarating day on the water, and it was beautiful, beautiful color of green.

  • FRIDRICK: Yeah, it is a sort of grayish green color, but we say that rivers with this color

  • are white, hence the name of the river hvitur litur a, means white river.

  • JON: So I love the rapids, it’s very challenging, it’s a lot of fun, but I also like when

  • you get to the spot where everybody can jump of that big rock.

  • FRIDRICK: I did the back flip! JON: That’s right, you did what we are not

  • supposed to do. FRIDRICK: We have to demonstrate that also,

  • yeah? JON: You know what I liked about the tour

  • today, there were people from all over the world, we had a couple from Singapore on our

  • boat, people from the States, people from all over the place. You must attract a lot

  • of different visitors. FRIDRICK: Iceland was nominated as the number

  • one destination by Lonely Planet. JON: Really?

  • FRIDICK: So there have been a lot of advertisement and we are having people from all over the

  • globe. Next Stop logo

  • JON: We were surprised to learn that Icelanders love their hot dogs. You pretty much find

  • them on every street corner, every gas station, convenience store, kiosk, eatery, wherever

  • they sell food they are going to sell hot dogs. They are consumed for lunch, dinner,

  • late night munchies, we are even told that school children consume them for breakfast.

  • Each hot dog comes standard with raw and fried onions, ketchup, mustard and mayonnaise. But

  • the best part, you will pay less that 3 dollars for this national delight.

  • Next Stop logo JON: Today we are going to learn a little

  • bit about Iceland 1101, it kind of all started with this guy.

  • GUNDI: Ingolfur Amarson. JON: So tell us about him.

  • GUNDI: He was a viking, came from Norway in 1874, he found Reykjavic and settled here.

  • JON: What else is around us here? GUNDI: You have the Supreme Court over here,

  • this little gray building with the green and copper top, and the national theater, the

  • black box over there, and then of course we have the harbor.

  • JON: Now you guys have the very first parliament in the world.

  • GUNDI: Yes. JON: Let;s visit that.

  • GUNDI: Yes, let’s do that. JON: So Gundi, we mentioned that the first

  • parliament in the world was in Iceland, but it wasn’t this building, but this is parliament

  • today. ‘GUNDI: Yes, this is the parliament, and

  • we have 63 parliamentarians and it is actually in session now, though it is Saturday, because

  • they are arguing about the fishing policy JON: Well there is your postcard.

  • GUNDI: Yes, Hallgrimskirkja, our largest church in Iceland. In front we have Leif Erickson,

  • which discovered America. JON: So we now know, 500 years before Columbus.

  • GUNDI: Yes, in the year 1000. JON: But they are thinking it was maybe Canada,

  • right? GUNDI: Yeah, it was somewhere around that

  • area. JON: I notice there is a steeple tower up

  • there where people are looking out, can we check out the view? It’s got to be amazing

  • of Reykjavic. GUNDI: Yeah, let’s do that.

  • JON: Let’s do it. So, we are at the beach, the beach in Iceland.

  • GUNDI: Yes, the beach in Iceland. JON: I didn’t expect a beach in Reykjavic.

  • GUNDI: No, but this in the only beach in Reykjavic, and it is man made. We pump hot water, geo

  • thermal water into the ocean here. JON: So all of this is hot water. I like this

  • too though, there is a long man made hot tub up there, it’s just stacked with people.

  • GUNDI: Now this is our last stop, Perlan, the Pearl, it’s a restaurant. Restaurant

  • on top is a revolving restaurant. JON: So I love your city, but you know, we

  • love your landscape, you feel like you are on the moon. I love the geysers flowing out,

  • steam vents all over the place, you really feel like you are in a special place.

  • GUNDI: Yes, it’s like, some people say it is like on the moon, but this is Iceland.

  • JON: It’s a beautiful place, thanks for having us.

  • GUNDI: Thank you very much. Next Stop logo

  • JON: Youll want to stick around for what is coming up, we go inside a volcano, and

  • feature Alaska Airlines partner, Iceland Air. Next Stop logo

  • JON: Iceland is comprised of 40,000 square miles and has a population of just over 300,000

  • people, the least populated country in Europe. Two thirds of its population lives in the

  • beautiful capital of Reykjavic. So what does this low population density mean to the most

  • volcanic island in the world? Gorgeous unspoiled landscape that will impress you beyond words.

  • Next Stop logo JON: For the first time in history, travellers

  • have the opportunity to see what a volcano looks like on the inside, but first, Bjorn,

  • let’s hike. What are we doing today? BJORN: Well we are going to take a hike over

  • the lava hills over here, we;ve got some smaller caves, and some both new and old lava streams.

  • JON: Oh, that’s cool. BJORN: Yeah, that is quite common here in

  • Iceland, it is formed by lava streams. JON: You know what else I like? This is natures

  • trampoline right here folks, this is awesome. So, I just learned something new and interesting,

  • the american and european plates meet in Iceland, and they are splitting apart right now.

  • BJORN: Yes, excellent example about how it is splitting apart and we are going to America,

  • at least this part is. JON: This part is going to America, this part

  • is going here. Cool. JON: So we have arrived at base camp, and

  • now it is time for safety. BJORN: Yep, now everybody puts on helmets

  • and harnesses. JON: It is going to totally clash with my

  • outfit, but we will make it work JON: So I’m not exactly sure of what all

  • this says, but I am pretty sure we are going into this.

  • BJORN: Yes, that is right, so we are here at the top now, and now we are going 120 meters,

  • a little less than 400 feet, down into the bottom of the crater.

  • JON: Here we go! This is kind of intense, in a good way. I am speechless. These formations

  • look almost too perfect to be natural, it looks like a Hollywood set.

  • BJORN: Yeah, Nature overtook prizes. JON: Oh man, this is just fabulous. Um, wow.

  • This was well worth the hike. BJORN: Yes, this is amazing, this size, of

  • course the size and the height, and also the bright colors.

  • JON: What do you want people to take from this?

  • BJORN: Well, of course, just the adventure and see how the plumbing looks like on the

  • inside. JON: The real plumbing.

  • BJORN: Yes the real plumbing, how it all works. JON: Thank you for the experience, this is

  • a once in a lifetime experience. BJORN: Yes, I am happy that you liked it.

  • JON: Takk. BJORN: Thank you.

  • Next Stop logo JON: When we told our friends and family we

  • were coming to Iceland, they saidAlaska Airlines doesn’t fly to IcelandBut their

  • partner, Iceland Air, does. We boarded our flight in Seattle, and a short 7 hours later,

  • here we are in Reykjavic. From the minute we got on the plane to the minute we left,

  • the Iceland Air service was impeccable, we didn’t want the flight to land, but here

  • we are at Keflavik International Airport, Iceland Air’s hub to it’s 31 destinations

  • in North America and Europe. Now I love checking out new airports, and I especially love exploring

  • lounges. Our friends at Iceland Air said you have got to check out our new Sega Lounge,

  • and from what I’ve experienced so far, I’m expecting greatness. What did I tell you?

  • The newly refurbished Sega Class Lounge is a modern state of the art facility, with super

  • cozy furniture, free wifi, a wide assortment of snacks and beverages to your hearts content.

  • It’s the ideal place to spend your layover on your way to your next Iceland Air destination.

  • If you are not able to visit the Sega Lounge, Keflavik Airport, Iceland Air’s international

  • hub has plenty going on. From world class duty free shopping to fabulous restaurant

  • and lounges with wide open spaces to stretch your legs, you will find it here at Keflavik.

  • For more information on Iceland Air and its destinations, visit icelandair.com

  • Next Stop logo JON: Up next, a brand new sustainable hotel

  • on Reykjavic harbor, and world famous Blue lagoon.

  • Next Stop logo JON: We are staying at the brand new, ultra

  • modern, super cool, Icelandair Hotel in the Reykjavic marina. and Snorri, this wasn’t

  • always a hotel? SNORRI: No, certainly wasn’t. In the beginning

  • it was offices for the dry dock, this is actually just right outside. This is probably the only

  • hotel in the world where you can actually touch the ships.

  • JON: So what was the process like building this? You were a part of it?

  • SNORRI: I was a part of it. JON: You kind of used everything, you found

  • stuff in the attic, you found stuff in the attic, you found lights, you found wood to

  • use, that’s so cool, very sustainable. ‘SNORRI: Our architect did a marvelous job

  • on the hotel, and did everything we could recycle, reuse, we did. As you can see here,

  • the bookshelf is made from our carpenters as well.

  • JON: And that was just old wood that you guys were just going to toss, but you found a use

  • for it,it looks so cool. So I noticed this guy when I walked in, who is this handsome

  • guy? SNORRI: This one here, there are two of those,

  • we call them the sailors, and this one is all dressed up and ready to go out.

  • JON: He’s ready for the night. Now this is all used, this is an egg carton?

  • SNORRI: Yes it is, it’s all recycled from the artist who made this.

  • JON: So Snorri, I heard you guys have a very well known chef.

  • SNORRI: Actually we have 2 very well known chefs, one of not enough, but they are really

  • good, they have been culinary chef’s of the year in Iceland a couple of times.

  • JON: And they cook out here in the open? SNORRI: Yes they do, their main station is

  • here at the bar. JON: We fast forward several hours later,

  • back in the lobby bar, and I mean several hours later because it is almost midnight

  • outside and it is still light out. With Chef extrordanaire Johannes, we are going to talk

  • about what is happening with food in Iceland, and I am going to make some stuff. Let’s

  • start out with what is happening with the food scene here.

  • JOHANNES: There are lots of things going on in Iceland.

  • JON: I can tell! JOHANNES: It’s about using your ingredients

  • that appear to you, and make a lot of food. JON: Sustainability. Tell us what you are

  • going to make and lets do it. JOHANNES: We are making cots, a cottis.

  • JON: Very thin. JOHANNES: Very thin, cut very thin. So next

  • thing is horseradish, chili of the north they call it.

  • JON: Chili of the north, I like it. I love horseradish.

  • JOHANNES: OK, next thing we have lovits. JON: That’s the stuff I was smelling.

  • JOHANNES: It’s an herb, actually I picked this herb this morning.

  • JON: You did? JOHANNES: Yeah, before I came to work.

  • JON: So many different tastes going on here, that is really good, the flavor just pops.