We had a lot of time to discuss our impressions of Iceland and the Faroe Islands while driving back to Switzerland. Except for the drive back and forth to the ferry which was an express affair, we practiced slow travelling. Would we take the ferry another time? Definitely, and for several positive reasons and only one negative. Voyaging by sea gives time to read, talk, work, make new friends, eat and drink and enjoy the changing ocean conditions. On the negative side is the impact of bad weather. Indeed we had only about 24 hours of moderate winds and waves compared to 65 with wind speeds between 18 and 35 m/s going back and forth to Iceland. Despite strong winds and heavy seas we never felt unsafe on board M/S Norröna. Our cabins were fine. Just remember to book early, those who had reserved the week before found themselves in six-bed cabins under the water line but above the swimming pool, to be shared with unknown fellow passengers.
We had our trip organized by Smyril Line's representatives and their choices were almost spot on what we had expected. There are literally thousands of lodgings available in Iceland and we never would have had the time needed to explore the different overnight stays offered. We particularly appreciated that they had calculated reasonable driving distances each day, around 300-350 kilometers. The mass of tourists that flock to Iceland is overwhelming, even during low season. Their number corresponds to approximately eight times the population of the country. If the same proportion would apply to Switzerland and France, these countries would see 65 and 500 million tourists respectively in a year. Fortunately, the number of tourists decreases with the distance from Reykjavik and with the exception of the south coast we were not too bothered. In Reykjavik it was difficult to find an Icelandic person with the exception of during Good Friday mass.
Eating well in Iceland is possible despite opposite opinions from other travellers. Breakfast is most often a standardized presentation of industrial food products. We usually ate light during the day and supper was usually taken at the hotel if available.
We had great luck with the weather, seeing mostly sun every day with the exception of a snow storm for a couple of hours when arriving in Seydisfjördur. This largely contributed to the ability to make numerous stops to shoot the beautiful sceneries. These constitute the major reason to visit Iceland and for that matter also the Faroe Islands.
Finally, what equipment did we use for taking our photos? A lot, the main reason being to avoid changing lenses on our camera bodies. Bringing all this stuff would not have been possible travelling by air.
Canon 7D with 24-105mm/f4 and 70-300/f4-5.6 lenses for everything.
Nikon D500 with a 200-500/f5.6 lens for birds (slow and sometimes impossible to autofocus)
Nikon D4 with a 35-70/f2.8 for landscape and portraits
Hasselblad HV (essentially a more solid version of the Sony A99) with a Sony 70-200/f2.8 lens for landscape and portraits.
iPhone 6 for video clips and "discrete" photography.
All the photographs presented are JPEG-s directly out of the camera and then compressed to about 1MB for the blog. We had neither time nor the technical possibilities to do any post processing of our RAW images en route since Dad's computer had given up on us. The reason, we later found out, was 18000 photos in the trash!!