Rising up from the black sand like rock gods  

Rising up from the black sand like rock gods

Any visitor to Iceland knows that driving the Ring Road rewards the traveler with incredible changing landscapes. Today, we"re taking a quick detour to visit this chiseled stretch of Iceland"s southern coast, where black sand beaches meet spiky basalt sea stacks. This is Reynisfjara Beach, widely considered the most beautiful example of Iceland"s black sand beaches. The sea stacks fronting the beach are known as Reynisdrangar and were formed when a volcano erupted, spewing flowing lava that cooled into these formations. Ask the locals how they formed, however, and you may get a different story, one involving trolls and a battle with a three-masted ship.

© Cavan Images/Getty Images

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