Today we hired a car so that we could get out and about under our own steam.
Wonderful as the public transport system is here, we wanted to be able to stop where we liked, enjoy the outdoors and make the most of the few hours of daylight.
The forecast was for sun and cloud, but no rain until 3pm, so we set off early, aiming to be back before 3.
First thing you need to know about the Faroe Islands, is to totally ignore the weather forecast.
Seriously, this place just gets an awful lot of weather. You know the expression ‘four seasons in one day’? Well, here it’s more like four seasons every 5 minutes. At one point today, we were standing in a full-on snow storm, but across the narrow valley it was blue skies and sunshine.
Literally 2 minutes later, we were in sunshine.
So of course, as soon as the car keys were handed over, and while I was still adjusting the mirrors and working out what side of the road to drive off on, the sun disappeared and we were engulfed in a massive hail shower, turning the road and everything around us white in a matter of minutes.
As Lauren jumped up and down and screeched ‘cool, look mummy snow!!!!’ from the backseat, I tentatively set off on our road trip on unfamiliar roads, in an unfamiliar car, with the promise of single-lane, unlit subsea tunnels, sheep on the road and all sorts of weather.
It was totally fine. 5 minutes after the hail, it was merely cloudy. People drive considerately, by law everyone must keep their lights on at all times, the roads are incredible (even the minor roads didn’t have a single pothole and have good markings), and the tunnels were a bit nerve-wracking but ultimately fine. The worst danger was getting distracted by yet another “perfect photo shot” and driving off the cliff. In fact there were so many awesome sights we just couldn’t photo because on narrow, windy roads where people drive fast it just wouldn’t have been safe to stop.
Plus, one thing about the weather doesn’t change – its cold out there!
We wandered over to the next island to the west, and up to the very top to a small village called Gasadalur, stopping off en route at the airport (only place on the entire route I could find loos – do the Faroese have stronger bladders than everyone else?).
I’d heard there was a nice walk along the cliffs to a viewpoint of a waterfall that discharges directly into the sea, down the cliffs. It was pretty spectacular, with the force of the waterfall meeting the force of the waves, and both combining to create such a spray that when the sun came out it made rainbows.
We had a lovely walk, in the sun, enjoying the spectacular scenery, regretting having left the picnic in the car, when at the furthest point it started to hail and snow, totally out of nowhere.
We hadn’t put on our waterproof trousers, although our tops and feet were waterproofed, so by the time we got back to the car we were pretty soggy.
Lunch was consumed in the now rather steamy car before we pottered off back to ‘our’ island for a bit of school work and some hot tea.
A lovely day.