The Sassy Scientist – Geolidays

The Sassy Scientist – Geolidays

Recently, we’ve been discussing how you can fit a holiday into your busy schedule. But once you’ve found the time to take a few days off you then have to decide where to go. This can be almost as challenging, which is why Simone has asked me:

What are the best holiday destinations for a geodynamicist?

Dear Simone,

Excellent question! There’s nothing worse than putting all the effort into organising a holiday to find out when you arrive that you don’t actualy like where you have to spend the next week or there isn’t enough to do. Of course, the number one thing to do is research, but given that that is what you’re doing everyday for a living you may be somewhat disinclined to “relax” by doing yet more research. So to help inspire you, here are five of my favourite European based locations that could be perfect for a geodynamicist, showcasing some of the amazing features we can see at the surface thanks to the mantle.

1. Cornwall, England. Farfield effects of the Variscan Orogeny can be seen beautifully throughout the coastal outcrops in Cornwall. Spectacular faulting on folding, gorgeous beaches, and lovely walking paths make this a great choice.
2. Pyrenees, Spain. A classic when it comes to structural geology fieldtrips, what better place to sit back in a mountain bar with some sangria and tapas enjoying great views showcasing just how dramatic plate tectonics can be.
3. Stromboli & Sicily, Italy. Guaranteed excitement with continuous eruptions, visiting Stromboli is an excellent choice. Pizza, pasta & volcanoes is always a winning combination for anyone that loves to see what happens when the mantle we’ve spent so long studying makes its way to the surface.
4. Santorini, Greece. Keeping with the volcano theme, why not visit a beautiful Greek island full of culture, ancient history and calderas. Santorini has it all, along with lush beaches and stunning sunsets.
5. Sognefjord, Norway. Dramatic landscapes carved out by glaciers as they battled with mantle viscosity to depress the continent below sea level make Norway a great, and perhaps more unexpected, destination for a geodynamicist. Whilst the links to geodynamics are more tenuous, this is still and amazing destination for anyone who loves rugged geology and outdoor adventures.

There are of course so many other amazing places you could visit in Europe and I hope that this list provides you with a good starting point and the enthusiasm you need to get researching your next holiday destination

Yours truly,

The Sassy Scientist

PS: Apologies for the lack of sass in this weeks post, but life doesn’t get more serious than holiday planning.

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I am currently employed at a first tier research institute where I am continuously working with the greatest minds to further our understanding of the solid Earth system. Whether it is mantle or lithosphere structure and dynamics, solid Earth rheology parameters, earthquake processes, integrating observations with model predictions or inversions: you have read a paper of mine. Even if you are working on a topic I haven’t mentioned here, I still know everything about it. Do you have any problems in your research career? I have already experienced them. Do you struggle with your work-life balance? Been there, done that. Nowadays, I have only one hobby: helping you out by answering the most poignant questions in geodynamics, research and life. I am waiting for you right here. Get inspired.

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