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Saturday, July 2, 2016

Golden Circle in Iceland

The Golden Circle is a popular touring route located in the southern part of Iceland covering around 300 kms ( 190 miles )
You might think Iceland is barren but nature always finds a way 
Inside Thingvellir National Park
The Gullfoss Waterfalls ( Golden Falls )
The park became a World Heritage Site in 2004
Water falls into a crevice that is 32 meters deep ( 105 feet )
Thingvellir became a National Park in 1928
Geysir does not erupt very often anymore but below Strokkur spouts every 5 to 10 minutes 
Yes geysers are hot.......had to remind a stupid tourist with his selfie stick who was standing over the opening lol
Haukadalur is the name of the valley where all this geothermal activity is 
I am thinking the sulfur in the air ( very noticeable )  has changed the color of this birch tree
Back on the road to see more awesomeness of  Iceland 
Iceland has 5 major geothermal plants  which meets the heating and hot water needs of approximately  85% of all buildings

Friday, July 1, 2016

Vasa Museum

The Vasa sunk in the Stockholm harbour on her maiden voyage in 1628.........but since the ship was newly built and the waters were cold, dark and mostly oxygen free the wood was well preserved
The ship was salvaged in 1961 after being in the water for over 300 years. The exposure to oxygen caused a chemical change in the wood, so to prevent cracks and shrinkage the ship was sprayed with a water soluble wax
Thousands of small steel bolts were inserted to hold the structure together and some of the upper parts of the ship were reconstructed
The ship was housed temporary at the Wasa Shipyard until it moved to the Vasa Museum in 1990
The museum has had over 29 million visitors to see this Swedish warship
During the 17th century Sweden went from a poor northern European kingdom to one of the major powers in the Baltic
The Vasa was unstable and top heavy which led to her demise. Future ships were built smaller but well suited to escort and patrol the expanding Swedish empire
Many ships were lost during wars but also from running aground as nature really shows who has the power 
Sweden was sparsely populated during the 17th century, but with the rise of the navy and power came the people and culture 
In closing.......a model of the Vasa

The Royal Palace in Stockholm

The Royal Palace is the official residence of His Majesty the King of Sweden
The palace was built in the 18th century in the Italian Baroque style 
It is one of the largest palaces in Europe
Most areas are open to the public and also has five museums on the grounds
Part of the Tre Kronor Museum 
Seven floors in the Palace which still serves as the Royal residence, workplace and cultural historic monument which makes it very unique 
Walking the halls and seeing amazing pieces 
From visiting Heads of State
Just because it is me lol
The Royal Guards has protected the palace and the Royal Family since 1523
An old clock above and below a more recognizable timepiece......which is a tradition that a guest from another country would donate to the palace 
They are offices here for the Royal Court of Sweden which has around 200 employees 
Over 1400 rooms in the Palace.......must be some old secrets hiding in this one though haha
What the old castle looked like before it burnt down in 1697 and now the grounds where the Palace sits