We wrapped up our Northern road trip in Dalvik. We stayed in a family-run hostel decorated with antiques from Denmark including ice skates, skis, books, and chests. When we arrived, the air was filed with a fishy smell, but we could not find any fresh fish to eat, and we really wanted it. We had heard that the whale watching company in town also caught fish during every tour. We took a walk down to the harbour and asked if they had any extra fish that they were selling. They told us that they did not. As we were walking away, we heard somebody running after us and shouting for us to come back. It turned out that they had some extra filleted cod that they were going to give us for free. We had a great dinner.
The next day, we took a drive to Siglufjörður, a small fishing village on the Northern tip of the fjord. Our host told us to go there because his family used to own the Folk Music Center House. There was a lot to see in this little fishing town including the Herring Era Museum, the largest maritime museum in Iceland. There were a couple of old factories converted into museums around the town that showed the process involved in the herring industry and also how this industry greatly transformed a small town's economy. The Folk Music Center was also an interesting place because it documents all of Iceland's folk music which would otherwise be lost. Bjarni Thorsteinsson was responsible for preserving this traditional music and this house is also dedicated to his legacy.
We returned to Reykjavik and dedicated our remaining time seeing the art institutions we haven't seen yet and spending time with local artists and musicians. We spent a day going to all three Reykjavik Art Museums which gave us a good idea of the modern and contemporary art and artists in Iceland. Nazli also made a good friend, Gudmunda (see her art: http://www.gudmunda.com) who is a painter based in Reykjavik. Her works are mostly inspired by landscapes of Iceland. For example, ice melting in a glacier or a volcanic eruption. She also uses volcanic ash to create textures and Nazli was very interested in her color palette. Her works are pretty large scale. She also took us both to a gallery opening in Reykjavik and also to her house for dinner. Her house was like another art gallery and we had a great time getting to know her.
Our friend, Baldur, took us on a day trip on the Golden Circle which includes Geysir, Gullfoss and Þingvellir. He is a guitarist at the jazz school here and also leads the jams at Faktory. It was raining very hard that day but we managed to see Geysir shoot its water one hundred feet high. Our favorite was Þingvellir which is the sacred site where the Vikings held the first parliament of Iceland.