If anything can save the world, I’d put my money on beauty. - Douglas Tompkins
The biomes are impressive displays of scientific prowess and artistic beauty. But what impressed me most about this tourist attraction - often referred to as the ‘eighth wonder of the world’ - was the spirit in which it was created.
With my suitcase rumbling against the cobblestones behind me, we darted through the darkness of hidden alleyways, crossed time-worn bridges and passed glittering canals. Little did I know that Venice already had me under its spell.
When I was growing up, my grandfather told me that I was an Irish princess and that I descended from a line of brilliant Irish kings. I believed in this fairy tale until I was old enough to know better, much to my grandfather’s amusement and delight.
I fell way behind my pack, limping like the runt of the litter. As my boyfriend fell behind to help me up the millionth step, I felt instant shame, looking around at the faces of my patient pals as they held on for me to catch up.
Each day we went from stages of absolute misery in the mornings as we pulled ourselves up on our aching legs to euphoria as we passed through an ancient ruin site or reached a new peak.
Iceland is such a beautiful place. Being from New Zealand, I was of the biased opinion that no country could come close to rivalling my home in beauty. But I must say that Iceland is that country.
I was so nervous before the hike. Would my shoes be okay? Would the pack be uncomfortable? Would my body be up for the task? What would the weather be like?