My second cousin loves to explore Iceland so he is very knowledgeable about all the tourist spots. He was willing to tour us around on our fourth day because it was his day off from work. Unfortunately, we’re going back to Norway on that day. How I wish we have more time to visit other places. So if ever you are going to Iceland, make sure to allot one week.
It was already late at night but off we went to Reykjanes to see the bridge between Europe and North America. It was evening already but the sky is still clear, sa tototo lang hindi ko nakita na dumilim sa Iceland, maybe dahil maaga tulog ko?
If you are getting a tour, it can be part of Reykjanes Peninsula Tour but if you are renting a car, you can just go there. It is open and no entrance fee. It just a few minutes walk from the parking lot.
When you see the bridge, you might say that “This is it?”. You won’t appreciate the small footbridge but if you know why it is there, you will learn to value the bridge. This bridge is not just an ordinary bridge. This bridge is a clear evidence that the Eurasian and North American tectonic plates are drifting apart. It is estimated that the plates drift apart around 2cm/year or 2m/100years. That is the wonder of nature, the earth moves and reshaping.
The Bridge Between Two Continents was opened on July 3, 2002. It is a symbol that illustrates the phenomenon of continental drift. The small footbridge is 18 meters long and 6 meters in height.
It was a surreal experience.
1. This bridge connects two continents, Europe and North America.
2. You can see and stand between the two continental plates above sea level. I can’t imagine that I’m standing between two continents.
3. I can go to Europe and North America in less than a minute.
4. When you cross the bridge, you see an information board “Welcome to the North American Plate” and “Welcome to the Eurasian Plate”
Welcome to the Eurasian Plate
Imagine yourself standing on the Eurasian Plate, Earth’s largest continental tectonic plate. The plate contains some of the oldest rock formations in the earth’s crust, in East Siberia on the most expansive plains on Earth.
The North America plate is drifting to the west away from the Eurasian plate, widening the Atlantic Ocean in the process. In the east, the Pacific and Philippine plates flow under the Eurasian plate and form an arc of the volcanic island. In the south, the Indian and Australian plates are drifting to the north. The collision of these plates forms the highest mountain range on Earth, the Himalayas.
Welcome to the North American Plate
Imagine yourself standing on the North American plate, Earth’s sixth largest continental tectonic plate. Around 200 million years ago, it was joined with the Eurasian, African, and South American plates until this supercontinent, known as Pangaea, started to break apart. The Atlantic Ocean began to form to the south between Africa and South America about 135 million years ago, while the separation of the North America and Eurasian plates began around 65 million years ago.
The western part of the North America plate has some fairly young mountains where it collides with the Pacific plate. The eastern part of the plate, on the other hand, has the Appalachian mountain range that formed more than 250 million years ago when the supercontinent Pangaea was forming.
5. No visa needed to cross North America. Wow, I’ve been to America without a visa. :)
6. Don’t forget to go down the bridge. America to the West and Europe to the East.
7. I saw some love locks on the bridge. I wish I have an extra lock and my husband was in Iceland too.
I’m so happy to experience this once in a lifetime opportunity. Better to include this in your itinerary if you are going to Blue Lagoon or before going to the airport. You only need a few minutes here. You can also see the tectonic plate at Thingvellir National Park, it is located in Mid Atlantic Ridge too.
Read: Reykjanes Peninsula Tour in Iceland
Blue Lagoon in Iceland
The Golden Circle Tour in Iceland
The Great Geysir in Iceland
Breathtaking Gullfoss in Iceland
Thingvellir National Park in Iceland