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Destination Race Recap: Reykjavik Marathon

This month we are featuring a story from Bob, a customer from AppRunCo-Carlisle. Bob is a long time  customer, member of Carlisle’s Fun Run group and lover of destination races. 

Many runners have a favorite race & destination. I would enjoy sharing one of mine with you.

In August 2019, my running travels took me to Iceland, the land of fire and ice. The European island nation is home to roughly 350,000 people. An overnight flight from BWI was uneventful, but the sun was shining in Keflavik, Iceland when the plane landed. This was my first trip to a European country and my first European marathon!

The Reykjavik marathon traversed city neighborhoods, gravel park trails, went along several bays & water areas, across a concrete pedestrian bridge, paved park trails, and on closed major city highways. A very large red triangular shaped bridge over a river was really neat. Harpa, the Icelandic music center, had a really unusual visual shape. Some sights were so incredible, I actually stopped during the marathon to take pictures. Considering that I was dealing with knee issues, along with the pictures, my finish time was 5 hours, 1 minute.

During the rest of my trip to Iceland, several bus trips were available and I enjoyed going to several different areas in Iceland. Time was spent visiting several waterfalls, geyser’s, a black sand beach, and The Blue Lagoon – a naturally heated thermal pool.

The marathon is run on the same day as Culture Night, a big celebration that is held every year to kick off the city of Reykjavik’s cultural year of events. The celebration is held in streets and squares, museums, businesses, and even in resident’s yards all across the city.

A few tidbits of Icelandic trivia: you pay to use public restrooms, usually $2 – 3, US dollars. The only two fast food chains are Subway & KFC. “Maryland” cookies were found in mini markets. Iceland yogurt, called skyr, is the best in the world.

Respectfully submitted,
Bob Smith