Golden Circle and Fontana Wellness

Visit the famous Thingvellir National Park, Geysir geothermal area and Gullfoss waterfall and enjoy a relaxing and soothing bath at Fontana Thermal Baths on the Golden Circle and Fontana Wellness tour.

Enjoy the beauty and wellness of Icelandic nature on a day tour around the Golden Circle including a relaxing visit to Fontana Geothermal Baths.

The tour starts by visiting Thingvellir National Park where the Icelandic parliament Althingi was established in 930 AD.

Next stop is Lake Laugarvatn and Fontana Geothermal Baths. Before enjoying a soak in the geothermal pools and having a relaxing moment in the natural steam rooms, you’ll get the chance to visit a geothermal bakery located next to Lake Laugarvatn. For many this is the highlight of the tour; to see where rye bread, which has been baking in a pot in the warm sand, is dug out, and later to get a taste of the bread with delicious Icelandic butter.

After a relaxing bath we continue to Gullfoss waterfall and the spouting hot spring area around Geysir and Strokkur.

Included

  • Guided tour
  • A taste of rye bread at Fontana Wellness.
  • Admission to the Laugarvatn Fontana
  • Pick-up and drop-off from accommodation in Reykjavik

Golden Circle and Langjokull Glacier

The Golden Circle and Langjokull tour is the most popular sightseeing route in Iceland for a reason. Experience the second largest glacier in Iceland on this 4×4 super jeep tour.

The Golden Circle route is the most popular sightseeing route in Iceland for a reason. It includes visits to Thingvellir National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the most renowned hot spring in the world and probably the most beautiful waterfall in Iceland. In this unique 4×4 Jeep tour you will take a drive on Iceland‘s second largest glacier, in addition to the classic Golden circle tour.

After you have been picked up at your hotel, you will drive to Thingvellir National Park. This UNESCO site is where the oldest existing parliament in the world was formed. It´s not only one of the most historic places in Iceland, but also a natural wonder because of its location literally ON one of only two tectonic rift valleys in the worlds.

At Thingvellir, you can actually see how the continental plates of America and Europe have drifted apart. Huge canyons are the most clear manifestation of that, one of which “Peningagja canyon” is thought to make wishes come true when you throw a coin into it.

From Thingvellir we will continue to the geothermal area around the Geysir hot spring and Gullfoss waterfall (Golden waterfall). These attractions are two of the most popular ones in Iceland – and for a reason! Everybody is blown away by the natural power that is reflected in the spouting geysers and huge waterfalls.

The first half of the day features some classic sightseeing. But after lunch, it´s time for some action. The jeep will continue towards Langjokull glacier, Iceland’s second largest glacier, where we will try out our super Jeep vehicles off road: the ride will take you across glaciers and highlands, splashing through rivers and the rough terrain. This drive is only available for monster jeeps and you will be experiencing something absolutely unique.

After an off-road ride, we visit Faxi, a small but beautiful waterfall and then head to the amazing Kerid crater before driving back to Reykjavik.

Included

  • Guided Super Jeep tour
  • Pick-up and drop-off at accommodation in Reykjavik

Important

  • Snowmobiling on Langjokull glacier is optional and is offered at an additional price (subject to weather conditions)
  • Please note that if passengers choose not to do the activity they might have to wait in the car while other passengers enjoy snowmobiling.

Golden Circle Road Trip

The popular Golden Circle self drive tour focuses on the many star attractions of Iceland’s beautiful south. Stopping at impressive waterfalls and gleaming glaciers along the way, the tour hits all the major hot spots of the region, including the famous attractions of the Golden Circle; Geysir geothermal area, Gullfoss waterfall and Thingvellir National Park, and stunning black beaches.

Between mid September and mid April you can search for the elusive and unforgettable Northern Lights, best seen on cold and clear nights.

Between May and mid September the long day light hours give you many opportunities to enjoy Iceland’s natural wonders long into the evening.

Highlights:

  • Visit the must-see attractions of the Golden Circle
  • Travel in the footsteps of the Viking Sagas in Borgarfjordur and surrounding area
  • Explore the South Coast with its black sand beaches, glaciers and volcanoes
  • June – August: With an easy upgrade of your rental car to 4WD, you can travel through the highland track of Kaldidalur, a scenic mountain pass between two glaciers
  • Mid-September- mid-April:  Take advantage of countryside hotel locations to scout for northern lights
  • Enhance your trip by adding one of our discounted activity add-on packages to create the perfect vacation that suits your interests

What you get:

  • Digital itinerary with the Iceland Travel Companion.
  • Electronic version of Iceland Travel Booklet. Prior to your arrival we will send you an electronic version of our Iceland Travel Guide booklet. You can start preparing yourself for your upcoming Iceland trip and be prepared for your Iceland adventure!
  • Flexibility. With comprehensive maps and your own vehicle, drive at your own pace. Choose your preferred stops during the day and hunt for northern lights in the evening.
  • Expertise– take advantage of our many years of experience.  We plan routes that let you combine driving with good time to explore each area
  • We focus on safety– We use safe cars and plan the best itineraries for road conditions in each season.  We also have a 24 hour emergency line if issues arise during your visit.

**Please note that the package price is based on 4 x 24-hour rental days starting at the time of rental. If your flight arrives early on day 1 and departs late on day 5 an additional supplement will be necessary unless you choose to return the car in Reykjavik when the 4 day rental is up and use our Flybus Plus departure transfer.

Included

  • 4 nights accommodation
  • 4 Icelandic style breakfasts (except arrival day)
  • Rental car for 4 days with unlimited mileage, CDW, theft protection and VAT** Types of Car recommended: any type.
  • GPS system with car and additional authorized driver
  • Fuel Discount Card
  • Car pick-up/drop-off at Keflavik international airport
  • Airport Service Charge
  • Customer Care Service during office hours
  • Emergency phone line open 24 hours, including weekdays and public holidays
  • Tablet with a new travel app called Iceland Travel Companion (picked up at Keflavik airport with your car rental). The app includes:
    •  Thousands of points of nature sites, historic places, and road side services that can be filtered to suit your interests
    • Highlight section for each day of the tour
    • Your hotel bookings with check-in and check-out dates
    • Safety guidelines and the apps of the Icelandic Meteorological Office and The Icelandic Road Administration
    • A map view of the Iceland road trip
    • In-app purchase feature to book day tours or activities directly into the app
    • Iceland Travel Road Guide about Iceland in English, Spanish, Italian, Dutch and French

Not included

  • Breakfast on arrival day
  • International airfare
  • Personal travel insurance (highly recommended)
  • Gasoline/petrol
  • Admissions and activities
  • Beverages, snacks, lunches, dinners unless otherwise noted in itinerary
  • Guaranteed early check-in (check-in time for most hotels in Iceland is 1400 (2:00 pm)
  • Guaranteed late check-out
  • Any service not specifically listed under “included”

Important

  • Must be 21 years of age to rent a car, 23 years of age to rent car category 5.0 or higher.
  • Our road trip packages are designed by our team of travel experts. They are created for people like you who want to experience the very best of what Iceland has to offer. To get the best value Iceland Travel has to offer, book our road trips online. Please note that changes to the packages will incur a service fee.
  • With our exclusive road trip app you don´t have to worry about missing out and you will always find your way to your hotel after a full day of traveling. It is easy to book day tours and activities in the app when you are on the road.

Day 1: Arrival

Highlights: Hveragerdi The Blue Lagoon Reykjavik Viking World

Approximate distance: ca 100 km / 62 miles

Geothermal Lagoon – Flower Village – Geothermal Greenhouses

Once you have landed at Keflavík Aiport, please pick up your luggage and head through customs.  Collect your rental car at the airport and proceed to your hotel.   Depending on your arrival time in Iceland, it may be ideal to stop and visit the renowned Blue Lagoon where you can relax in its geothermal waters.  Important:  admission to the Blue Lagoon needs to be booked in advance.

October – April:  Drive to your hotel in Reykjavik, the colorful capital of Iceland.  (Approximate distance:  ca. 50km/30 miles)

May – September:  Drive along the southern coast of the Reykjanes Peninsula to the charming village of Hveragerdi for your overnight.   This village is one of the few sites in the world located directly on top of a geothermal area and, because of its many greenhouses heated by hot water from nearby springs, it is often called the “flower village.”  (Approximate distance: ca100km / 62miles)

Please note check-in for most hotels begins at 14:00 (2:00pm)

Optional Tours:

Day 2: South Coast

Highlights: Seljalandsfoss Skogafoss Dyrholaey Eyjafjallajokull Reynisdrangar Cliffs Vík

Approximate distance: ca190km / 118miles

Thundering Waterfalls – Cliffs & Stone Arches – Black Sand Beaches of the South Shore

Drive along the scenic South Shore and the area near the infamous Eyjafjallajokullvolcano. This is the site of the massive 2010 eruption that stopped international air traffic. We recommend a stop at the exciting interactive new Lava Center where you’ll discover the powerful volcanic and tectonic forces that shaped both Iceland and Earth. The center has interesting exhibits for all age groups.

Continue onwards, past the beautiful Skogafoss and Seljalandsfoss waterfalls and Myrdalsjokull glacier, which covers powerful Katla volcano. Here it‘s possible to go snowmobiling on the glacier and hopefully get a splendid view over southern Iceland.  Stop by the seafront village of Vik to explore a dramatic stretch of coastline poised between glacier-topped mountains, rugged sea cliffs and black- sand beaches.  Dyrholaey* is a rocky headland characterised by a black lava arch.  During the summer, thousands of sea birds and puffins nest here (puffins are generally in Iceland between mid-May and early August)

*Important: Please note that Dyrholaey is closed during nesting season, from about the middle of May until late June.

Overnight in South Iceland

Optional Suggestions: Lava Center Interactive Exhibition, Skogar folk museum near Skogafoss, snowmobiling or glacier hiking on Myrdalsjokull.

Optional Tours:

Day 3: Thjorsardalur Valley – Gullfoss – Geysir

Highlights: Thjorsardalur Hekla Geysir Gullfoss Laugarvatn Fontana Nature Baths

Approximate distance: ca 300 km / 186 miles

Colorful Valley – Hekla Volcano – The Famous Golden Falls – Exploding Geysers

Explore Thjorsardalur valley and its contrasting landscapes of birch woods, sandy lava fields, rivers and waterfalls. The impressive Hekla volcano towers over the region. This valley is also where you can visit the excavated site of a Viking age farm that had been destroyed one of Hekla’s eruptions.

Continue to the amazing sites of Gullfoss waterfall and the Geysir hot spring area.

Overnight in the Golden Circle area.

Optional afternoon/evening visit to the Secret Lagoon in Fludir or the Fontana Baths at Laugarvatn

Optional Tours:

Day 4: Thingvellir – Borgarfjordur Area

Highlights: Thingvellir National Park Barnafoss Hraunfossar Deildartunguhver Snorrastofa – Reykholt Borgarnes Settlement Center of Iceland

Approximate distance: ca 300 km / 186 miles

National Park with Geological Wonders (UNESCO) – Picturesque Fjords – Waterfalls

Visit Thingvellir National Park, site of the ancient Icelandic parliament and a jewel of nature. Here you can see the rift between the continents.

Then via either Hvalfjordur fjord or the Kaldidalur highland track (Open June-August, 4WD needed), your journey continues to the beautiful Borgarfjordur region and Reykholt, home of the 13th-century scholar Saga author Snorri Sturluson.

Return to Reykjavik in the afternoon for your last night in Iceland.

Optional Tours:

Day 5: Departure

Highlights: Reykjavik The Blue Lagoon

Approximate distance: ca 52 km / 32 miles

Drive back to Keflavik International Airport and even stop at Blue Lagoon as it is on your way to the airport, if you did not have time to do it on your arrival day. *

*Please note that the package price is based on 4 x 24-hour rental days starting at the time of rental. If your flight arrives early on day 1 and departs late on day 5 an additional supplement will be necessary unless you choose to return the car in Reykjavik when the 4 day rental is up and use our Flybus departure transfer.

Golden Circle & Secret Lagoon

On this tour you will explore the iconic Golden Circle and afterwards unwind as you soak in a genuine Icelandic hot spring!
On our first stop we retrace the footsteps of ancient Vikings by visiting the Thingvellir National Park.
From there we move on to see the world-famous Geysir area, where the ground trembles and steaming hot water spouts spectacularly skywards from Strokkur Geyser every few minutes.
Our next stop is the dramatic Gullfoss Waterfall, a breathtaking sight to behold.
The last stop on our tour and the most relaxing is the Secret Lagoon. The pool’s natural surroundings and steam rising into the air gives the place a magical feeling.  Whatever the weather it´s the perfect spot for relaxing in between sightseeing and enjoying Icelandic nature at its very best.

Tour highlights

Thingvellir. Located on the northern shores of lake Þingvallavatn, Þingvellir is the national pride of Iceland and our first National Park. It is, for one, a key location in Icelandic history as the oldest existing parliament in the world first assembled there in 930 AD. Þingvellir has for this reason been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Besides being a location of historical significance, Þingvellir is also protected as a national park due to its unique geology and natural features. Almannagja is a canyon formed between two tectonic plates, a visual representation of a continental drift.

Geysir. The home of the original geyser and Iceland´s most iconic natural site. There the ground shakes and superheated water erupts into the sky from the famous Strokkur geyser every few minutes.

Gullfoss Waterfall is a powerful and inspiring place. There the glacier water thunders down 32 meters in three steps and into a narrow canyon.

The Secret Lagoon. Whatever the weather The Secret lagoon is the perfect spot for relaxing in between sightseeing and enjoying Icelandic nature at it’s very best. Around the Secret Lagoon you’ll find several hot spots. A path has been built so you can have a closer look at the bubbling hot springs and a little Geysir even erupts every 5 minutes, showing off for the guests bathing in the hot spring.

Included

  • In bus audio guide with a choice of 10 languages 
  • Free tour pick up from your accommodation in Reykjavik
  • Knowledgeable local guide (Personal Host)
  • Free Wi-fi and USB charger for each seat
  • Admission to the Lagoon.

Important

In-bus-audio guide available in English, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Deutsch, French, Spanish, Italian, Dutch and Finnish.

Scenic Trails – Soft Hiking & Small Group Travel

Now!  Lower prices for Summer 2019!

Explore the majestic landscapes and natural wonders of Iceland‘s most beloved attractions up close.  “Scenic Trails” is a combination of guided hikes and small group sightseeing in a small bus/van.  Take in the fiery volcanic zone of the South Shore, the geothermal desert of the uninhabited interior, and the lush vegetation in the North. 

You’ll also enjoy the benefits of a relaxed travelling pace and minimal hotel changes through your stay, so there‘s more time to experience the true essence of Iceland‘s nature and culture.

Each day enjoy inspiring guided short hikes on trails in both world-famous areas as well as lesser known—but equally fantastic—destinations.  Some examples include majestic Asbyrgi Canyon, the beloved Thorsmork and Myvatn Nature Reserves and the colorful Landmannalaugar hot spring wilderness.   Your expert guide will also share Icelandic stories and folktales connected to the areas where you hike. A highlight of the trip is a visit to charming Siglufjordur, a town becoming known for its excellent outdoor recreation.

At the end of day, relax in comfortable countryside hotels with private bathroom facilities. Several hotels have outdoor geothermal hot tubs– a perfect way to end a day on scenic trails!

Activity level for this tour: 3 out of 5 (Moderate)

Here’s what you will get out of this trip:

  • Variety- Iceland´s fantastic trails take you closer to  its beautiful natural wonders. Each trail has its own special natural features, reflecting Iceland’s ever-changing landscape.
  • Refreshing Experience- Hiking immerses you in the invigorating scents, sounds and colors unique to Iceland.
  • Health Benefits – Walking is healthy for both your body and mind, an excellent way to refresh and recharge yourself. On several evenings you’ll have the chance to relax in geothermal hot tubs.
  • Authentic- Hiking is a very popular activity for Icelanders, so you’ll have better opportunities to meet locals on the trail and experience a bit about daily life in Iceland.
  • Small group size-  The small group size makes it easier to get to know your guide and the other people in your group
  • Local Focus – The trails you will hike are full of folklore, saga history and ghost stories, and your guide is eager to share them with you. There is no better way to experience a tale than to hike through the landscape where it took place!
  • Inspiration- The trails you will hike are full of folklore, saga history and ghost stories, and your guide is eager to share them with you. There is no better way to experience a tale than to hike through the landscape where it took place!
  • Great Hotels-  Stay in the best hotels in each area, generally a mix of four-star hotels and quality three star hotels. Several hotels have hot tubs on location.
  • Slow pace- Discover more by traveling less!  Stay several nights in the same accommodation, giving you more time to get to know each area’s unique secrets.  (And less time spent packing and unpacking)

Hiking Information

This tour is combines enjoyable short hikes with sightseeing in a small coach or tour van.  Each hike generally ranges from 1- 5 hours, with the longest hiking done on Day 6.  Hikes offered during the tour are mixture of easy and moderate routes. Participants do not need to be expert hikers, but they should be in reasonable physical shape. The trip hiking is also designed to be flexible:  each day’s hiking will be adjusted to your group’s general fitness level, weather and trail conditions.

A big appeal of hiking in Iceland is that it is an authentic, natural experience. This means most hiking paths in Iceland are not paved.  Expect trails to have lava rocks, loose gravel, soft dirt and muddy areas.  In some cases, trails follow narrow paths created from sheep trails.  We highly recommend that you bring hiking poles/alpine walking sticks on this tour

The guide has the right to change hiking routes in the itinerary based on weather conditions or unforeseen circumstances

Some of the days involve driving on unpaved wilderness tracks in the highlands. Be prepared to expect bumpy roads!   It‘s all part of the authentic adventure and fun of exploring the highlands!

What to Bring

  • Good waterproof hiking shoes (necessary)
  • Wind and waterproof jacket and trousers (rain coat and rain pants)
  • Warm hat
  • Gloves
  • Scarf or bandanna
  • Extra socks (your feet may get wet on some days)
  • A light day pack with 2.5 – 4.0 litre volume (for items you might use during the hiking)
  • Hiking poles (highly recommended)
  • Water bottle/Flask (fill it with Iceland’s fresh, healthy tap water- it’s a greener alternative to bottled water!)
  • Swimsuit and towel (for Hveravellir on Day 7 and Landmannalaugar on Day 8)
  • Sunscreen
  • Recommended:  wading shoes/water shoes for the Glymur Waterfall hike  (Day 2) and for wilderness hot spring pools (Day 7, 8)
  • Recommended: alpine walking poles
  • Optional:  Mosquito/Fly Head net for hiking in the Myvatn area (Day 5)

GENERAL HIKING DETAILS FOR 2019 “SCENIC TRAILS”

This table provides some general information about each day’s hikes. Please note this is a general guide. Actual times may vary based on weather and trail conditions.

Hiking*Tour DayApproximate DistanceElevationApproximate Time
meters/feet
Glymur25 km (3.1 miles)357 m/ 1,172 ft.about 4 – 5 hours
Glanni*3350 meters/< 1 mileVery littleabout 10 minutes
Grábrók31.000 meters/< 1 mile100m/328 ft.About 1 hour
Kolugljúfur3varies; route chosen by guideVery littleAbout 30 minutes to 1 hour
Staðarbjargarvík*3minimalVery littleAbout 5- 10 minutes
Siglufjörður area4varies; route chosen by guidevaries; route chosen by guide, max. elevation 630 meters/2.067 ft.varies; guide chooses route- ca. 4 – 5 hours max.
Hverfjall54km/2.5 miles190 m/623 ft.2 – 2.5 hours
Dimmuborgir*52.4 km/1.5 milesvery littleAbout 1 – 2 hours
Ásbyrgi61km/ < 1 mileVery littleAbout 30 minutes to 1 hour
Hljóðaklettar area610 km / 6 milesapprox. 50 – 100 m/164- 328 ft.)3 – 4 hours total (several trails combined)
Landmannalaugar area88.5km/5 milesapprox. 300 m/ 984  ft.4- 5 hours total (several trails combined)
Þórsmörk95 – 6 km/3 -4 miles200 – 300 m/656 – 984 ft.4 – 5 hours total (several trails combined)
*  Nature walk, not hiking

Optional tours and activities:

Booked via your guide at the start of your tour. 

Day 5 or 6:   Jeep tour in the Lake Myvatn area | 2 – 3.5 hrs | Price for summer 2019:  TBA
Day 7 or 8:  Horse riding tour in the evening | 2 hrs | Price for summer 2019:  TBA
Day 7 or 8 – Super jeep tour to Vik Village, driving in the black sand | TBA | 4 hrs | Price for summer 2019:  TBA
Day 1 or 10:  Non guided tour to the Blue Lagoon on arrival/departure | 2-4 hrs | Book in advance. Price depends on availability

Accommodation:

This tour stays in hotels with private bathrooms, generally a mix of four and three star hotels. Most of the groups stay at the following hotels. Please note this is an advised hotel list and subject to change.

Day 1  – Centerhotel Midgardur

Day 2 – Fosshotel Reykholt

Day 3 & 4 – Hotel Siglo or similar

Day 5 & 6 – Laxa Hotel or similar

Day 7 & 8 – Stracta Hotel Hella

Day 9 – Centerhotel Midgardur

Included

  • 8 day guided tour as per itinerary from/to Reykjavík
  • Pick-up from Reykjavik hotel on Day 2 and drop-off at Reykjavik hotel on Day 9
  • Accommodation 2 nights w/facilities in Reykjavík
  • Accommodation 7 nights w/facilities in countryside
  • Icelandic breakfast daily except arrival day
  • 4 lunch boxes (day 6, 7, 8 and 9)
  • 4 three-course dinners in the countryside (day 2, 5, 6 and 7)
  • Icelandic meat-soup dinner at a local’s home (day 4)
  • Hiking in the Siglufjordur area with a local guide (day 4)
  • Entrance to the Herring Era Maritime Museum (day 4)
  • Entrance to the Myvatn Nature Baths (day 5)
  • Service fee at Landmannalaugar Hot Springs (day 8)

Accommodation

This tour stays in hotels with private bathrooms, generally a mix of four and three star hotels.  Most of the groups stay at the following hotels.  Please note this is an advised hotel list and subject to change.

Day 1-  Radisson Blu Saga Hotel or CenterHotel Midgardur

Day 2-  Bifrost Hotel or similar

Day 3 & 4-  Hotel Sigló or similar

Day 5 & 6-  Laxa Hotel or similar

Day 7 & 8-  Stracta Hotel Hella

Day 9 –  Radisson Blu Saga Hotel

Not Included

  • International airfare
  • Round-trip transfers between Keflavik airport and Reykjavik
  • Swimsuit and towel at Myvatn Nature Baths (rental available) and at other hot spring pools
  • Dinners in Reykjavik (day 1 and 9), in Siglufjordur (day 3) and on day 8.
  • Lunches in Reykjavik (day 1 and 9) and  on day 3, 4, 5
  • Beverages with meals other than coffee/tea and fresh tap water
  • Guaranteed early check-in or late check-out
  • Optional tours and activities
  • Any service not specifically listed under “included”

Important

Minimum age: 10 years old

All departures are guaranteed with minimum of 2 participants

Maximum group size: 16 people

Note: We reserve the right to alter routes without prior notice, due to road conditions

Day 1: Arrival

Highlights: Reykjavik Parliament House Perlan The Sun Voyager Harpa Concert Hall

Important:   If you have added extra nights in Reykjavík before your tour, the guide will meet your group for the start of the tour on Day 2 according to the standard “Scenic Trails” itinerary.

Arrival in Iceland.

On your own, transfer to Reykjavik.  We recommend the easy and convenient FlyBus Plus transfers, which can be booked through Iceland Travel. If your flight lands early in the day, a great suggestion is to explore Reykjavik, the largest municipality in Iceland.

If you would enjoy a scenic walk on your arrival day, Reykjavik has many local walking trails that take you by the seaside and through pretty neighborhoods.

Dinner is on your own. Reykjavik offers a multitude of restaurants and/or coffee-houses, making dinner a great way to get better acquainted with Iceland’s capital.

Please note guaranteed early check-in is not included in the price.  Most hotels begin check-in around 14:00 (2:00pm). 

Overnight stay in Reykjavik (airport transfer not included).

Optional Tours:

Day 2: Reykjavik – Hvalfjordur – Borgarfjordur

Highlights: Reykjavik Glymur Hvalfjordur Fjord Hraunfossar Deildartunguhver Snorrastofa – Reykholt

Whale Fjord–  Fabulous Waterfall Hike – Europe’s most powerful hot springs – Lava Falls

Approximate driving distance: ca 210 km / 130 miles

Today’s Hiking Level:  3.5 (out of 5) Moderate Plus

Breakfast at your hotel. The tour departs your hotel at 8:00 (8:00am). Begin the day with a short orientation tour of Reykjavik. Drive along the scenic coastline of Hvalfjordur Fjord, one of Iceland´s longest and deepest, on the way to Glymur.  This is Iceland’s second highest waterfall, which descends gracefully in streaming ribbons down a 200-metre (658 foot) drop into a massive canyon adorned in lush, green moss. Both the fjord and the waterfall are linked to a local legend about a mythical whale that swam up the waterfall into the lake at the top.  Eerily enough, whale bones have been found here!  Spend some time hiking in the area to enjoy different views of the waterfall and surrounding nature.

Before heading to your overnight accommodation, you will also visit the amazing Hraunfossar “Lava” waterfalls and the Deildartunguhver, the most powerful rushing hot springs in Europe.

Dinner and overnight stay in the Borgarfjordur area.


Hiking information for Glymur waterfall:

Distance: 5 km / 3,1 miles

Elevation: 357 m / 1.1172 ft

Walking time: About 4-5 hours

Note:  Part of the trail includes walking through a small river on a natural bridge in the water.  The crossing is not difficult but good to know about it.  (Some people like to carry along a pair of wading shoes to use during this part of the trail, but this is not required)

Please note this is a general guide.  Actual times may vary based on weather and trail conditions.  Our expert guides will assess and choose the actual hiking routes and hiking duration for each day based on weather and the fitness/experience level of your group.

Day 3: Borgarfjordur – Glanni and Grabrok – Vididalur Valley – Hofsos – Siglufjordur

Highlights: Glanni Waterfall Grabrok Hofsos Trollaskagi – Troll Peninsula Siglufjordur

Elven waterfall – Intriguing Crater – Lava Rock Canyon – Seaside Basalt Columns

Approximate driving distance: ca 300 km / 186 miles

Today’s Hiking Level:  2 (out of 5) Easy

Breakfast at your hotel.  Continue your discoveries of Borgarfjordur with a refreshing short walk to Glanni, a multi-tiered waterfall rumored to be a home for elves and trolls. You will then visit the 3,500-year-old Grabrok crater, which has hiking trails to the top of the crater for remarkable views over moss-covered lava fields. The hike up the crater is steep, but steps have built on part of the route to make the hike easier. Continue your scenic journey as you cross Holtavorduheidi plateau, the gateway between North and South Iceland.

Head to the Vididalur Valley and its rushing river.  Here you will hike in Kolugljufur, a lava rock canyon that leads to a hidden waterfall.  Continue to the charming village of Hofsos and take a short stroll down to Stadarbjargarvik inlet to admire a group of beautifully geometric basalt columns located.   Then drive to the stunning Trollaskagi (Troll Peninsula) with its amazing views of mountains and fjords to your destination in Siglufjordur town.

Overnight stay in Siglufjordur for the next two nights.  Dinner is on your own at one of the town’s charming restaurants.  Tonight, recharge your body and soul with a soak in the hotel’s geothermal hot tubs.  With a view over the harbor and the fjord, the hot tubs are a perfect setting for relaxation.


Nature walk information for Glanni waterfall:

Distance: 350 m / less than a mile

Elevation: Very little

Walking time: About 10 minutes

———-

Hiking information for Grabrok:

Distance: Varies

Elevation: 1.000 m / 328 ft

Walking time: About 1 hour

———-

Hiking information for Kolugljufur:

Distance: Varies, route chosen by guide

Elevation: Very little

Walking time: About 30 minutes to 1 hour

———-

Nature walk information for Stadarvikurbjarg:

Distance: Minimal

Elevation: Very little

Walking time: About 5-10 minutes

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Please note this is a general guide.  Actual times may vary based on weather and trail conditions.  Our expert guides will assess and choose the actual hiking routes and hiking duration for each day based on weather and the fitness/experience level of your group.

Day 4: Siglufjordur – Troll Peninsula Hiking – Local Heritage

Highlights: Siglufjordur The Herring Era Museum Siglufjardarskard

Award Winning Herring Era Museum – Spectacular Hiking – Traditional Meat Soup Dinner

Distance is variable

Today’s Hiking Level:  Varies, based on group activity level

Breakfast at your hotel.  Trollaskagi, The Troll Peninsula, is a hidden gem in Iceland, a bit separated from the rest of the country by its high mountain range.  The area is home to numerous little-known hiking routes showcasing spectacular scenery.

In the morning visit the award-winning Herring Era Maritime Museum, where the harbour atmosphere of the early 20th century is brought to life in three historical buildings.

In the afternoon, take an exciting and scenic hike.  This afternoon’s hike is led by an expert local guide who will decide which trail is best to explore based on the experience level of the group and trail conditions.  The total hiking time is variable, based on group experience. Those who do not wish to participate in the locally-guided hike can stay behind in Siglufjordur and enjoy a light walk in the scenic areas around the village with the tour group guide.

After an active day in the outdoors, visit the home of a local resident for a home-cooked meal of hearty Icelandic meat soup featuring local ingredients.

Overnight in Siglufjordur, where you can enjoy the hotel’s geothermal hot tubs.


Hiking information for Siglufjordur area:

Distance:  Varies, route chosen by guide

Elevation: Varies, route chosen by guide

Walking time: Varies, route chosen by guide, max 4-5 hours

If you decide to walk the Siglufjardarskard trail it is a 3.5 – 4 level hike with a distance of 11-12 km (6 -7 miles), elevation of 630 metres/2.067 feet) and 4-5 hours hiking time. Otherwise, alternate routes will be available.

Day 5: Godafoss – Hverfjall – Lake Myvatn Wonders

Highlights: Godafoss Myvatn Hverfjall Krafla Geothermal Center Myvatn Nature BathsDimmuborgir

Waterfall of the Gods – Geothermal & Volcanic Activity – Outdoor Nature Spa

Approximate driving distance: ca 235 km / 146 miles

Today’s Hiking Level: 2 (out of 5) Easy

Breakfast at your hotel.  The day begins with spectacular views of mountains and coast as you head along the Troll Peninsula and Eyjafjordur fjord.  Make a short stop in Akureyri, the colorful “capital” of North Iceland.  After some time to enjoy the atmosphere of this charming town, drive to picturesque Godafoss, the ‘Waterfall of the Gods’ before heading to Lake Myvatn Nature Reserve, a geological wonderland of amazing landscape contrasts. With the powerful peaks of Mt. Hverfjall and Krafla volcano as a backdrop, Lake Myvatn has a surprising serenity that is ideal for light hiking. Summertime is peak birding season, so it‘s good to have some binoculars on hand to catch diverse species, possibly even the rare Barrow’s golden eye. Begin your Myvatn adventure with a hike to Hverfjall crater. Nearby is Dimmuborgir, where you’ll take a walk among the strange “Dark Castles” with their rugged stacks of towering rocks.

Take a walk through the Martian-like terrain of Namaskard geothermal field. Here you will view boiling fumaroles, brightly colored slopes and violently bubbling pools of mud. The tour will then stop at the Myvatn Nature Baths where you can see how the locals benefit from the geothermal activity. Enjoy the benefits yourself, with a relaxing swim in these azure blue geothermal springs. It’s a relaxing reward for an adventurous day in the outdoors!

Dinner and overnight in the Myvatn area.


Hiking information for Hverfjall:

Distance: 4 km / 2,5 miles

Elevation: 190 m / 623 ft

Walking time: About 2-2,5 hours

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Nature walk information for Dimmuborgir:

Distance: 2,4 km / 1,5 miles

Elevation: Very little

Walking time: About 1 – 2 hours

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Please note this is a general guide.  Actual times may vary based on weather and trail conditions.  Our expert guides will assess and choose the actual hiking routes and hiking duration for each day based on weather and the fitness/experience level of your group.

Day 6: Asbyrgi – Jokulsargljufur – Dettifoss

Highlights: Ásbyrgi Hljodaklettar Dettifoss

Edge of the Arctic – Horseshoe Canyon – Europe’s Mightiest Waterfall – Echoing Rocks

Approximate driving distance: ca 270 km / 168 miles

Today’s Hiking Level: 2.5 (out of 5) A mix of Easy and Moderate Trails

Breakfast at your hotel.  Today you will be hiking in the northern part of Vatnajokull National Park, the largest national park in Western Europe. The park is named after vast Vatnajokull Glacier and covers about 14% of Iceland’s surface.

Drive around the fossil-rich Tjornes Peninsula on the edge of the Arctic Circle as you head to Vatnajokull National Park. Your first discovery in the park is the enormous horseshoe-shaped Asbyrgi canyon. According to Norse mythology, the canyon is the hoof-print left by Sleipnir, the god Odinn‘s magical eight-legged horse. Take a trail leading to the bottom of the canyon with views of an enchanting pond as well as an area where you can look over the canyon. Continue onwards to Hljodaklettar or ‘Echo Rocks’, a distinctive cluster of angular rock columns. The unique shape of the rocks creates interesting acoustics and echoes. Hljodaklettar is near Jokulsargljufur, Iceland’s longest canyon.  The canyon was carved by a river flowing from Vatnajokull Glacier.

Spend the remainder of your afternoon exploring the lush vegetation and forested areas of Hljodaklettar where stones stand like troll sentinels.  (hiking route can be adjusted to the level of the group).

The day ends with an unforgettable visit to Europe’s mightiest waterfall, Dettifoss, a thundering cascade of glacial water and mist among shattered cliffs.  An easy trail leads you down to the waterfall. Afterwards, return to the Lake Myvatn area for your overnight.

Dinner and overnight in the Myvatn area.


Hiking information for Asbyrgi:

Distance: 1 km / less than 1 mile

Elevation: Very little

Walking time: About 30 minutes to 1 hour

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Hiking information for Hljodaklettar:

Distance: 10 km / 6 miles

Elevation: About 50-100 m / About 164 – 328 ft

Walking time: About 4-4,5 hours  (several trails combined)

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Please note this is a general guide.  Actual times may vary based on weather and trail conditions.  Our expert guides will assess and choose the actual hiking routes and hiking duration for each day based on weather and the fitness/experience level of your group.

Day 7: Kjolur – Hveravellir – Gullfoss – Geysir

Highlights: Kjolur Hveravellir Gullfoss Geysir

Historical Highland Track– Glacial Views – Geothermal Scenery – Golden Falls and Active Geysers

Approximate driving distance: ca 470 km / 292 miles

Today’s Hiking Level:  1 (out of 5) Very Easy (Expect to be driving on bumpy roads today – part of the fun!)

Breakfast at your hotel.  Today you will head into the wilderness heartland via Kjolur mountain track.  This route goes back to Viking times and heads straight through Iceland’s uninhabited interior highlands, passing between the mighty Langjokull and Hofsjokull glaciers.   You will see Iceland’s true remoteness and nature at its rawest. This area of black sand deserts has numerous scenic walking paths along the way, dotted with hidden geothermal treasures and green oases. The highlands also hold ghost stories and tales of outlaws, including the famous couple Eyvindur and Halla. Your group will stop at Hveravellir, a multi-coloured geothermal field with a natural pool that is perfect for a relaxing break.

The Kjolur highland route emerges into civilization again in the Gullfoss and Geysir area.  Gullfoss, the majestic waterfall of sparkling mist and thundering water, is situated on the Hvita River, which is fed by Iceland’s second largest glacier, Langjokull. The intriguing great Geysir area is nearby, a steamy geothermal field of bubbling mud and high-shooting hot springs.

Dinner and overnight in the Hella area.  A perfect way to end the day is a soothing soak in the hotel’s geothermal hot tub and sauna.

Day 8: Day in Landmannalaugar

Highlights: Landmannalaugar Hekla

Hekla Volcano – Brilliantly-Coloured Wilderness – Hot Springs

Approximate driving distance: ca 210 km / 130 miles

Today’s Hiking Level: 3 (out of 5) Moderate (Expect some roads you drive on today to be quite bumpy)

Breakfast at your hotel.  Iceland’s southern highland wilderness sets a surreal stage for today’s adventure. The uninhabited areas of Landmannalaugar and Fjallabak are a geological paradise with volcanic craters, multi-colored rhyolite mountains, steaming lava fields, and the ominous Hekla volcano. There are many beautiful walking trails in the area, and a crater-filled lake lush with brown trout. Today your guide will choose the best route for your group based on your overall experience level and trail conditions. Hiking times vary based on route chosen.

Afterwards, enjoy the benefits of this geothermal area with a refreshing swim in Landmannalaugar’s hot-spring fed river, one of the most unique natural springs in Iceland.

Overnight in the Hella area. Dinner is on your own.


Hiking information for Landmannalaugar:

Distance: 8,5 km / 5 miles

Elevation: About 300 m / About 984 ft

Walking time: About 4-5 hours  (several trails combined)

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Please note this is a general guide.  Actual times may vary based on weather and trail conditions.  Our expert guides will assess and choose the actual hiking routes and hiking duration for each day based on weather and the fitness/experience level of your group.

Day 9: Thorsmork – Seljalandsfoss – Reykjavik

Highlights: Thorsmork Seljalandsfoss Skogafoss Reykjavik

Thor’s Playground – Glacial Views – Walk behind a Waterfall

Approximate driving distance:  ca 225 km / 140 miles

Today’s Hiking Level: 3 (out of 5) Moderate (Expect some roads used today to be quite bumpy)

Breakfast at your hotel.  Thorsmork Nature Reserve (also known as the Thor’s Playground) should be on every nature lover’s bucket list.  This enchanted hidden valley is nestled between two glaciers and protected by rivers and mountains. On the way Thorsmork, stop at Seljalandsfoss waterfall, where you can gain a different perspective by walking behind the curtain of cascading water. Once within Thorsmork, walk along marked trails in the beautiful scenery of delicate trees and green grass surrounded by towering mountains and glacial tongues.  Your guide will choose the best route for your group based on your overall experience level and trail conditions.  Hiking times vary based on route chosen.

After a beautiful day here, the tour heads to Reykjavik, arriving around 18:00 (6:00pm)

Overnight stay in Reykjavik.  Dinner is on your own.

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Hiking information for Thorsmork:

Distance: 5-6 km / 3-4 miles

Elevation: About 200-300 m / About 656 – 984 ft

Walking time: About 4-5 hours  (several trails combined)

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Please note this is a general guide.  Actual times may vary based on weather and trail conditions.  Our expert guides will assess and choose the actual hiking routes and hiking duration for each day based on weather and the fitness/experience level of your group.

Day 10: Departure

Highlights: Reykjavik

Breakfast at your hotel.  Please note that this might be a light breakfast if you are taking an early morning departure flight.   If your flight is in the afternoon we recommend taking the time to explore Reykjavik or to enjoy a relaxing dip in the popular Blue Lagoon on your way to Keflavik airport. (Airport transfer not included, but we would be happy to arrange it for you.)

Note: We reserve the right to alter routes without prior notice due to road conditions.

Optional Tours:

Across the Wilderness- Iceland‘s interior mysteries and more

Small-Group Sightseeing and Easy Nature Hikes

Experience the otherworldly volcanic landscapes of Iceland’s uninhabited interior. With a specially 4×4 mountain coach, travel off the beaten track through the untamed highlands of Iceland, highlighted by the multi-coloured mountains of the Landmannalaugar Nature Reserve and the barren black sands of Sprengisandur. When combined with other major attractions such as the Geysir geothermal area, Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon, and Dettifoss waterfall, this tour is sure to conquer the hearts of all first-time visitors, as well as those who have been here before.

The tour includes some short, guided nature walks/hiking that let you experience more of Iceland’s natural beauty.

With our flexible itinerary there’s always plenty of time to stop and experience the magnificence of Icelandic nature.

Highlights

  • Discover the beauty and power of Iceland’s wilderness, an area that few travellers visit
  • Visit beloved “must see” natural wonders of the Golden Circle region and the South Shore
  • Get a taste of adventure with travel on unpaved mountain tracks in a specially-outfitted vehicle
  • Relax with hot spring bathing in the natural springs of Landmannalaugar
  • Enjoy short guided walks/hikes that give you more insights into natural wonders
  • Excellent locally-based guides who know and are passionate about Iceland
  • Take part in protecting Icelandic nature with a visit to Iceland Travel’s Reforestation project
  • Enjoy the benefits of a small-group tour
  • Stay in comfortable three star hotels well-situated to experience Iceland’s nature and wilderness

Activity/Difficulty Level:  2 out of 5 (Easy)

All departures are guaranteed with minimum of 2 participants

Maximum group size: 19 people

Important:   This tour is also available with hotel nights in Reykjavik. Just let us know at booking time if you prefer to have your Reykjavik nights included as well!

Travel Tips:

  • We recommend comfortable trekking shoes/hiking shoes for this tour, as some of the walking is on unpaved surfaces.
  • Some people like to bring hiking poles, though this is not a requirement
  • We also suggest bringing a mosquito/fly head net for use on Day 7, as there can be harmless midges around Lake Myvatn.  It’s not required, but people often find it more comfortable.

Create your own reviewAcross the Wilderness – Icelandic Interior and MoreAverage rating:   1 reviewsSep 14, 2016by Simon P. on Across the Wilderness – Icelandic Interior and More

Let’s get something straight from the start, Iceland is billed as one of the most beautiful and spectacular places to visit and certainly lives up to its reputation.

The 10 – day tour started in Reykjavik and headed off east. Our guide, Heimir Morthens, was a very knowledgeable, patient and humorous individual who quickly gained the appreciation of our group. His gentle wit and passion for his country was evident from the start. He was very good at sending us off for hikes to discover Iceland for ourselves, and he was always there to answer questions.

With waterfalls in abundance at every turn it would be easy to think that the traveller would get weary. However, every waterfall was different and came with a new story – told by Heimir. His narrative opened our minds to the depth of history and culture in Iceland: from harsh nature to Elves and ‘Yule Lads’. Each day gave Heimir the chance to open a new chapter of our ‘book of Iceland’, populated with historical characters, natural wonders and just a little bit of magic.

Iceland has an abundance of geological wonders to behold, from the continental divide and Rift Valley at Thingvellir to the vast wilderness of the Sprengisandur highland plateau, defined roughly as the area between the Hofsjökull and Vatnajökull glaciers.

Unique experiences were at every turn: sitting in a geothermal river at Landmannalaugar, walking behind a waterfall at Seljalandsfoss and visiting the glacial lagoon at Jokulsarlon. Every day was different.

Our hotels were excellent, providing comfortable accommodation and very good food. Of note were a wide variety of homemade soups (fish, lamb, vegetables, etc.) and local meats. The local lamb is especially good.

As we travelled in September, the start of the aurora season meant that we had a chance of seeing the northern lights for the first time. After several disappointments (it became a running joke with Heimir’s predictive ability) we were roused from our rooms at 10.30pm to experience the green dancing lights in the night sky.

It must not go without mention that our group helped make the trip a very special experience. With fellow travellers from New Zealand, Australia, England, Denmark, Canada and the US, we were an agreeable, good humoured group who were determined to make the most of every day.

Our thanks (in order of appearance) go to: Heimir Mortens, our outstanding guide, to Iceland Travel for helping to make this possible, to Iceland for being a truly remarkable and stunning country and finally to our fellow tourists, who we are missing already.

Included

  • 9-day tour with driver-guide from/to Reykjavik
  • Handpicked and carefully selected local guide
  • Return transfers from pre-arranged bus stops in Reykjavik to meeting point prior to and after tour
  • 8 nights with private facilities in the countryside
  • 8 three-course dinners in the countryside
  • Breakfast daily (except arrival day)
  • Participation in Iceland Travel’s Reforestation Project in Haukadalur (day 1)
  • Entrance to Eiriksstadir Museum (day 8)

Optional tours and activities:

Price in ISK:

(Booked via your guide at the start of your tour.)

Day 4: Boat tour on the Iceberg Lagoon – 30-40 min – ISK 5800 per pax

Day 8: Horse riding tour in Gauksmýri – 1.5 hour –ISK  9500 per pax

Day 10: Tour to the Blue Lagoon – Flexible time –

Day 10: Whale watching from Reykjvík – 2.5 – 3 hours – ISK 10.990 per pax

Not Included

  • International airfare
  • Round-trip transfers between Keflavik airport and Reykjavik
  • Accommodation in Reykjavik
  • Lunches
  • Beverages with meals other than coffee/tea and fresh tap water
  • Porterage at airport and hotels
  • Guaranteed early check-in or late check-out
  • Optional tours and activities
  • Any service not specifically listed under “included”

Important

  • Some wilderness interior roads during the trip are unpaved with bumpy driving conditions– it‘s all part of the authentic adventure and fun of exploring the highlands!
  • We reserve the right to alter routes without prior notice, due to road conditions
  • This tour does not include hotel nights in Reykjavik, but we can add these in for you upon request, please contact us for pricing

Day 1: Thingvellir – Gullfoss – Geysir:

Highlights: Gullfoss Geysir Thingvellir National Park

UNESCO World Heritage site with Geological Wonders – The beautiful Golden Falls – Exploding Geysers – Iceland Travel’s Conservation Project

Transfer from pre-arranged bus stops in Reykjavík to the tour’s meeting point. Please check your confirmation for your pre-arranged bus stop in Reykjavik. Please be at the pre-arranged bus stop no later than 15 minutes before the pick-up time.

Make sure that your phone number and e-mail are listed with Iceland Travel so we can contact you if needed.

The first day of your tour begins with a visit to Thingvellir National Park, the ancient site of the world’s first parliament. Here you can see the dramatic continental drift between the North-American and Eurasian tectonic plates. An hour’s drive away,  the popular Geysir geothermal area awaits. The most active geyser, Strokkur, shoots water high into the air every few minutes, but you’ll also witness several other boiling pools and hot springs.

Next your group will take part in Iceland Travel’s reforestation program, located in Haukadalur valley. You can help your group plant a total of five trees, which not only allows you to leave your mark in Iceland but also for your tour group to reduce your carbon footprint!

Then you will head onwards to Iceland’s most popular waterfall, the impressive two-stage Gullfoss (“Golden Falls”).

Dinner and overnight stay in Hvolsvöllur area.

Approximate travel distance: ca 279 km / 173 miles

Day 2: Hvollsvollur – Dyrholaey – Vik:

Highlights: Seljalandsfoss Myrdalsjokull Eyjafjallajokull Skogafoss Vík Dyrholaey

Thundering Waterfalls – Seabird Colony – Black Sand Beaches of the South Shore – Lava Fields

Breakfast at your hotel. Start the day by driving along the highway, making a stop at two impressive waterfalls: Seljalandsfoss and Skogafoss.  Head to the black sand beaches to enjoy the far-reaching views from Dyrholaey headland, where thousands of puffins and other seabirds nest (puffins generally seen between May and mid-August. Enjoy a stop in the quaint village of Vik before crossing the Myrdalssandur volcanic ash outwash plains created by flowing water from nearby glaciers. The day ends after passing through the vast Eldhraun lava field, the world’s largest recorded single lava flow in the last 10.000 years.

Dinner and overnight stay in the Vik area for the next two nights.

Approximate travel distance: 190km / 118miles

Day 3: Vik – Jokulsarlon – Skaftafell – Vik:

Highlights: Jokulsarlon Glacial Lagoon Skaftafell National Park Hvannadalshnjukur Eldhraun Lava Field

Glacial Lagoon with Icebergs – Scenic Glacial Park – Europe’s Largest Glacier

Breakfast at your hotel.  The day starts with a drive through beautiful scenery towards Vatnajokull, the largest glacier in Europe.  You will also get a view of Hvannadalshnjukur, the country’s highest peak. The highlight of the day will surely be surely Jokulsarlon Glacial Lagoon, where huge icebergs dance around in icy seawater. Continuing on your way, pass by several outlet glaciers from Vatnajokull, visiting at least one of them. Along the route you also will get magnificent views of Skaftafell, a glacier-crowned wonderland within Vatnajokull National Park.

Dinner and overnight stay in the Vik area.

Approximate travel distance: 260km / 162 miles

Day 4: Vik – Landmannalaugar – Thjorsardalur Valley:

Highlights: Landmannalaugar Thjorsardalur

Multi-coloured Wilderness Mountains  – Lava Fields – Hot Spring Bathing – Hekla Volcano

Breakfast at your hotel.  Today some of the roads will be bumpy since you’ll be on wilderness tracks, but the views will be amazing!  It’s finally time to leave the asphalt behind and meander along the Fjallabaksleid interior track to Landmannalaugar, an astonishing area surrounded by colourful rhyolite mountains. The surreal beauty of the uninhabited interior reveals deep valleys and sculptured mountains, many formed in volcanic eruptions under glaciers during the Ice Age.

After a nice walk (optional) enjoy a relaxing swim in a warm brook created by the convergence of hot and cold springs.

Dinner and overnight stay in the Thjorsardalur area.

Approximate travel distance:  200km / 125 miles

Day 5: Thjorsardalur – Sprengisandur Wilderness Track – Laugar:

Wild Heart of Iceland and Black Sand Desert

Breakfast at your hotel. Today wilderness adventure awaits!   It’s time to head north through the very heart of Iceland.  Discover hidden treasures of Iceland’s uninhabited interior along the Sprengisandur highland route, a vast, barren, black desert connecting Iceland´s north and south. With only rough tracks and un-bridged glacial rivers, your group will rely on your experienced driver to navigate the rugged passage between the glaciers.  This is a true taste of Iceland‘s wild side—bumpy roads and driving through rivers are a part of the amazing experience!  (Note: If Sprengisandur is closed, your group will take the Kjolur highland route instead.)

Dinner and overnight stay in the Laugar/Lake Myvatn area for the next 2 nights.

Approximate travel distance: 300km / 185 miles

Day 6: Laugar – Tjornes – Asbyrgi – Dettifoss – Lake Myvatn – Laugar:

Highlights: Dettifoss Ásbyrgi Myvatn Jokulsargljufur National Park Húsavík Krafla

Glacial River Gorge – Europe’s Most Powerful Waterfall – Geothermal Wonderland– Rich Birdlife

Breakfast at your hotel. After travelling on the gravel roads of the highlands, the smooth highways of the north make the fully-packed day seem more comfortable. Travel through the town of Husavik and around the Tjornes peninsula, the northernmost point of your journey. Discover the impressive 100 meter (328 feet) high walls of the horseshoe-shaped canyon of Asbyrgi. According to Norse mythology, the canyon is the hoof-print left by Sleipnir, the magical eight-legged horse of the pagan god Odinn. The journey continues to Dettifoss, Europe’s most powerful waterfall,  located in the awe-inspiring Jokulsargljufur canyon. Next travel to the unforgettable Lake Myvatn area, a geological wonderland and paradise for bird watchers. Some of the most visually bizarre attractions in the region include the mud pits of Hverarond and the still-warm lava fields of Krafla, teeming with lava flows, fissures and explosion craters.

Dinner and overnight stay in the Laugar/Lake Myvatn area.

Approximate travel distance: 300km / 185 miles

Day 7: Laugar – Akureyri – Skagafjordur- Laugarbakki:

Highlights: Godafoss Akureyri Skagafjordur Fjord

Waterfall “Of the Gods” – The Capital of the North – Viking Horses

Breakfast at your hotel.  Start the adventure today with a visit to Godafoss, one of the most impressive waterfalls in the country. (The name means “Waterfall of the Gods.) Continue to Akureyri, the vibrant “Capital of the North.”  Enjoy some free time to explore this colourful and charming town.  Some activities might include a visit to the delightful botanical garden, a swim in the local geothermal pool, or perhaps enjoying the culture, art and fine food of the Listagil artists‘ district. The route then continues to the Skagafjordur area, known as the traditional heart of horse breeding in Iceland.  This area also boasts many historical sites from the classic Sagas. Tonight, horseback riding on a purebred Viking horse might be an appealing option, as would be an invigorating walk in the picturesque surroundings.

Dinner and overnight stay in the Laugarbakki area.

Approximate travel  distance: 285 km /183 miles

Day 8: Laugarbakki – Hvammstangi – Vatnsnes Peninsula – Budardalur:

Highlights: Vatnsnes Peninsula Eiriksstadir Viking Home Hvítserkur

Historical Farmlands – Birthplace of Leif Eiriksson

Breakfast at your hotel.  Your journey continues around Vatnsnes Peninsula, which contains the extraordinary rock formation of Hvitserkur, a 15 meter (49 feet) tall cliff jutting out straight from the sea.  You might even see seals resting close to the beach.  In the afternoon, drive through rolling farmlands and across Laxardalsheidi heath to the Viking Age house at Eiriksstadir.  This was the original homestead of Erik the Red and the birthplace of his son Leif Eiriksson.  These men are two of the most legendary Vikings in the world. In a replica of a grass-roofed house, meet modern day Vikings who will demonstrate the lifestyle from 1000 years ago, sharing their crafts and knowledge.

Dinner and overnight stay in the Budardalur area.

Approximate travel distance: 150km / 93 miles

Day 9: Budardalur – Snaefellsjokull National Park – Reykjavik:

Highlights: Snaefellsjokull National Park Stykkisholmur Djupalonssandur Arnarstapi Hellnar

Snaefellsjokull Glacier – Pebble Beaches – Sea Cliffs with Birdlife – Quaint Fishing Villages

Breakfast at your hotel.  Today is spent exploring the amazing variety of natural landscapes in Snaefellsjokull National Park. The park‘s crown jewel is Snaefellsjokull glacier itself, which covers a dormant volcano that last erupted in 250 AD. Walk along the uniquely pebbled seascape of Djupalonssandur beach. At the picturesque harbour village of Arnarstapi, you can observe magnificent basalt rock in stacked formations and take a walk along the unique hiking trail linking the settlements of Arnarstapi and Hellnar.  Afterwards the journey leads back to Reykjavik, where the tour ends.  The tour bus will drop you off at Bus Hostel, where you will be transferred to a pre-arranged bus stop in Reykjavik.

Approximate distance:  440 km / 273 miles

North Iceland Coastal Charm

North Iceland is Icelanders’ favorite winter activity destination. Try skiing and snowboarding, along with ice skating, snowmobiling and whale watching. North Iceland Coastal Charm is the perfect Road Trip for the active traveler.

Northern Iceland has long been a favourite outdoor recreation destination for Icelanders. While once difficult to reach in cold weather months, new roads and tunnels have opened up the area for year-round driving. With this road trip, you’ll have access to a variety of activities available in the north – from skiing, snowmobiling to river rafting – for the whole family to enjoy. Stay in the culturally-vibrant Akureyri and the newly-popular actvity destination of Siglufjordur to enjoy northern Iceland’s brand of outdoor fun, beautiful scenery and local charm.

Whether you are using the direct flights between Keflavik airport and Akureyri or are adding on a visit to Akureyri to your Iceland package, this is a great option for outdoors and local culture enthusiasts!

Summer: The long daylight hours make it possible to fill your itinerary with activities! Hike on trails taking you to breath-taking scenic vistas. Paddle through glacier-white water on rafting trips. Ride a surefooted, friendly Icelandic horse into beautiful landscapes. Go whalewatching in a traditional oak boat or a RIB boat. Play golf long into the evening. Afterwards, relax in geothermal pools and friendly cafes. Recommended car type: Category 2.0 or higher.

Winter: North Iceland is a winter sports paradise! Try skiing and snowboarding at scenic resorts, along with ice skating, snowmobiling and whalewatching. Warm up in geothermal pools and cosy cafes. Create a flexible ski holiday by adding in the 5×5 Ski Iceland pass (details below). Category 1.3 (Suzuki Swift 4WD or similar).

**Please note that the package price is based on 4 x 24-hour rental days starting at the time of rental. If your flight arrives early on day 1 and departs late on day 7, an additional supplement will be charged unless you choose to return the car in Reykjavik when the 6- day rental is up and use our FlyBus departure transfer.

Please note the ring road today contains a toll tunnel  www.tunnel.is

Winter Idea:  The 5 X 5 Ski Iceland Pass Add-on

Winter in the North offers a true winter sports paradise, promising pleasure and spiritual renewal in the embrace of snow-covered mountains. There is even the chance of skiing under northern lights. The new 5 X 5 Ski Iceland Pass gives you access to five well-equipped and well-lit ski resorts open between November and May. Each ski area has its own special focus within North Iceland’s magnificent landscape. Both families and extreme ski adventurers can experience their own type of fantastic ski holiday with excellent facilities for downhill and cross-country skiing, snowboarding and extreme sport experiences. Ski rental and instruction in English is also available.

The Ski Iceland pass grants you access to five resorts over five days. Whether you ski at all the resorts or focus on one resort for the period, the pass gives you total flexibility at a great price.

Highlights

  • Visit Akureyri, famous for its year-round natural beauty and lively cultural scene.
  • Stay in Siglufjordur, a colorful town with its own distinctive heritage and great access to outdoor activities
  • Discover the charming coastal culture of Eyjafjordur, Skagafjordur and the Troll Peninsula, areas gaining international popularity for year-round recreation and stunning views of the sea and mountains.
  • Wind along roads taking you by black-sand beaches, beautiful old churches and quality local museums.
  • Indulge in locally-crafted delights in area microbreweries, bakeries, and dairy farms.
  • Enjoy fun winter activities like skiing, ice skating and snowmobiling in an outdoor adventure paradise.
  • Stay in a part of Iceland ideal for glimpsing the amazing northern lights. (For travel between Mid-September and mid-April)
  • If travelling in summer, enjoy whale watching, bird watching, fishing, golf, river rafting, hiking and so much more under the midnight sun.

What you get

  • Digital itinerary with the Iceland Travel Companion.
  • Electronic version of Iceland Travel Booklet. Prior to your arrival we will send you an electronic version of our Iceland Travel Guide booklet. You can start preparing yourself for your upcoming Iceland trip and be prepared for your Iceland adventure!
  • Flexibility. With comprehensive maps and your own vehicle, drive at your own pace. Choose your preferred stops during the day and hunt for northern lights in the evening.

Included

  • 2 nights in Akureyri at Icelandair Hotel Akureyri or similar
  • 2 nights in Siglufjordur at Hotel Siglo, or similar
  • Daily breakfast (except for arrival day)
  • 4WD Rental car for 4 days with unlimited mileage, CDW, theft protection and VAT**
  • GPS system with car and additional authorized driver
  • Car pick-up/drop-off at Akureyri Airport
  • Fuel Discount Card
  • Customer Care service during office hours
  • Emergency phone line open 24 hours, including weekends and public holidays.
  • Tablet with a new travel app called Iceland Travel Companion (picked up at Keflavik airport with your car rental). The app includes:
    •  Thousands of points of nature sites, historic places, and road side services that can be filtered to suit your interests
    • Highlight section for each day of the tour
    • Your hotel bookings with check-in and check-out dates
    • Safety guidelines and the apps of the Icelandic Meteorological Office and The Icelandic Road Administration
    • A map view of the Iceland road trip
    • Iceland Travel Road Guide about Iceland in English, Spanish, Italian, Dutch and French

Not Included

  • Breakfast on arrival day.
  • International airfare.
  • Airfare to/from Akureyri  (can be arranged through Iceland Travel).
  • Hotel nights in Reykjavik (can be arranged through Iceland Travel).
  • Personal travel insurance (highly recommended).
  • Gasoline/petrol.
  • Admissions and activities.
  • Beverages, snacks, lunches, dinners unless otherwise noted in itinerary .
  • Guaranteed early check-in (check-in time for most hotels in Iceland is 1400 (2:00pm).
  • Guaranteed late check-out .
  • Winter Ski rental (available at Hlidarfjall ski area).
  • Winter Admission to ski areas (can be included with purchase of 5 X 5 pass).
  • Any service not specifically listed under “included”.

Important

Our road trip packages are designed by our team of travel experts. They are created for people like you who want to experience the very best of what Iceland has to offer. To get the best value Iceland Travel has to offer, book our road trips online. Please note that changes to the packages will incur a service fee.

With our exclusive road trip app you don´t have to worry about missing out and you will always find your way to your hotel after a full day of traveling. It is easy to book day tours and activities in the app when you are on the road.

Day 1 – Akureyri:

Highlights: Akureyri Akureyri Folk Museum Nonni House

Cultural Capital of Northern Iceland – Eyjafjordur – Year-Round Outdoor Fun

Pick up your car from the Akureyri airport and drive to your hotel in Akureyri.

The rest of the day is open to enjoy Akureyri and surroundings. This town has gained an international reputation for its combination of small-town charm and a great cultural scene. Take a stroll down the art gallery street and drink in the atmosphere of a local coffee shop. Enjoy outdoor fun just on the city‘s door step. The surrounding Eyjafjordur area also has a nice focus on local food culture with microbreweries, family-run bakeries, ice cream shops and a cafe located on a dairy farm. A great selection of restaurants and pubs makes Akureyri a great town for friendly nightlife.  After enjoying a day of fun, you can relax in the Akureyri Geothermal Swimming Poolwith its lap pool, varied hot tubs and steam room.

Winter Activity Recommendations:

  • Hlidarfjall (Akureyri Ski area) is a favourite ski area of Icelanders located just a short drive from the town centre. You can also take a local bus from the town to the ski area. Enjoy high-quality snow, great cross country ski tracks and exciting ski slopes with breath-taking views over Eyjafjordur Fjord.  Snow blowers and well-lighted slopes ensure fine skiing conditions through the winter.  Expert ski and snowboard trainers are on hand to assist skiers from all experience levels.  Ski rentals are available.  Hlidarfjall admission is included in  the Ski Iceland Pass add-on
  • Horseback Riding – A winter ride on friendly Icelandic horses in the beautiful area around Eyjafjordur is a memorable and fun experience for people of all riding abilities.  All necessary riding equipment is provided.
  • The Akureyri Skating Hall, operated by the Akureyri Skate Association, is a first-class skating rink within walking distance of the old city centre. The rink is open for general skating on weekends.  Skate rental available
  • Dogsledding – Experience a fun ride in a sled pulled by friendly huskies.   You can even try your own hand at dog mushing.
  • Snowmobiling – Take a thrilling one-hour snowmobile through areas with spectacular views over the Eyjafjordur Fjord and the mountains of Troll Peninsula.
  • Take a northern lights excursion by bus or jeep. The area makes a stunning backdrop if the conditions are right for the elusive northern lights to make an appearance.
  • Buggy Rides- Hurtle along coastal paths and roads in a special all-terrain Buggy vehicle.  Guided tours are available near Akureyri

Summer Activity Recommendations

  • Whale Watching- The deep waters of Eyjafjordur make this area ideal for whale watching, especially for glimpsing humpbacked whales (whale sightings are very likely but not guaranteed): Try classic whale watching in a boat or board an adrenaline –pumping high speed RIB boat
  • Golf- Play golf in a spectacular natural setting at the Jadar Golf Course in Akureyri.  The course is open May – October, and it has the distinction of being the world’s northernmost 18-hole golf course.
  • Hiking- There are great hiking paths in and around Akureyri.  Kjarnaskogur forest reserve is a local favourite with a vast network of backcountry trails winding through the forest, and even a bird watching shelter. You can also hike up Sulur mountain to get an astonishing view over the town and the fjord.
  • Trout Fishing– several local operators offer guided fly fishing tours for Brown Trout or Arctic Char on rivers and lakes in North Iceland
  • Horseback Riding – A summer ride on friendly Icelandic horses in the lush green nature around Eyjafjordur is a memorable and fun experience for people of all riding abilities.  All necessary riding equipment is provided.
  • Biking- If you have brought your own bike to Iceland, enjoy the specially-designed mountain bike trail in Kjarnaskogur forest.
  • Buggy Rides- Hurtle along coastal paths and roads in a special all-terrain Buggy vehicle.  Guided tours are available near Akureyri
  • Boat trips- Take a guided boat tour to Grimsey island (population 80), located only 25 nautical miles from the Arctic Circle.  Learn about the area’s whale and bird life and enjoy the scenery.  You’ll also meet some of the locals and try a delicious island fish dish.
  • Bird Watching- There are11 sites in and around Akureyri that are ideal for bird watching.
  • Rafting- North Iceland’s glacier fed rivers offer an ideal blend of adventure and scenery.  Rafting trips are available from scenic floats to action-packed adrenaline day tours.

Day 2 – Open Day in Akureyri:

Highlights: Akureyri The Christmas Garden Kjarnaskógur

Breakfast at your hotel.  Today is yours to enjoy more of the Akureyri area and its great outdoor recreation. If you didn’t manage to yesterday, why not try river rafting (in summer), a dip in the warm waters of Lake Myvatn’s Nature Baths, whale watching or skiing (in winter)?

Overnight in Akureyri

Nuuk the Capital of Greenland (3 days or more)

Spend 4 days in Nuuk, the smallest and northernmost capital in the world. Go hiking, whale watching and explore abandoned settlements.

This fascinating town of contrasts will offer you a glimpse of old Greenlandic culture and at the same time show you a modern capital with shopping possibilities, good restaurants and the beautiful Arctic nature just outside town.

Approx 16.000 people live in Nuuk, the capital of Greenland.  The town is situated in a beautiful fjord system where, in the summer, the whales come in close and can be seen from the shore.

Nuuk has it all – a new shopping mall and good restaurants, whilst at the same time you can go to the harbour and see how the Greenlandic hunters still bring in seal and reindeer to be sold at the local market.

During your stay in Nuuk, you have several options on whale watching or boat trips to small settlements or abandoned locations.  We also offer a visit to a Greenlandic family or a hike around the mountain Lille Malene.

Included

  • 3 or 4 nights Hotel Hans Egede, including breakfast
  • Return flights Reykjavik-Nuuk (airport tax included)
  • Transfer to/from hotel in Nuuk

Important

Please note that tours to Greenland are only available during the following months

February to April

May to September

Day 1: Fly to Nuuk from Reykjavik:

Air Iceland flight from Reykjavik Domestic Airport to Nuuk (please note that you need to take care of your own transfer to the domestic airport, but it is easy to take a taxi).  The flight is about 3 hours and the time difference is 2 hours.

Meet and greet and transfer to the hotel for information meeting. City tour en route.

Day 2: Free day:

Free day for optional excursions.

Times and dates of each excursion varies from day to day, so they can only be confirmed upon request.

  • Atamik boat tour.  A sail to a typical Greenlandic settlement. The 250 inhabitants make a living from hunting or fishing (8 hours)
  • Boat trip to Kaangeq. A sail to one of the many abandoned settlements from the 1960´s (4-5 hours)
  • Hike around Lille Malene.  The hike is moderate in difficulty and 4 km long (3-4 hours)

Day 3: Return to Reykjavik:

The hotel will advise about exact pick-up time for the transfer to the airport, followed by a flight from Nuuk to Reykjavik.

Possibility to extend your stay upon request.

Spring Fling in Reykjavik

Visit Reykjavik on a city break that is suitable for all types of travelers looking for a short vacation or a stopover in Iceland. This package offers you a selection of comfortable hotels in Reykjavik as well as our most popular day-tours for this time of year. Come to Iceland and explore the highlights of Reykjavik and surrounding area on our limited time only Spring Fling Package.

Highlights:

  • Enjoy staying in Reykjavik, the capital of cool
  • Stroll around downtown Reykjavik on your own, see famous city landmarks such as Hallgrimskirkja & Harpa Concert Hall
  • Visit the must-see Golden Circle, including Thingvellir National Park, Gullfoss waterfall & Geysir hot spring area
  • Bathe in the famous Blue Lagoon
  • Explore the open Atlantic ocean and the giants of the sea on a Whale Watching tour from Reykjavik

Additional Services 

Looking for a longer vacation than 3 nights? Extend your stay in Reykjavik and try some of our favorite tours and activities for this season.

 Recommended optional tours and activities:

Included

  • 3 nights accommodation (included in the package price) at:
    • 3 star hotels: Fosshotel LindFosshotel Raudara or Fosshotel Baron
      • All located in downtown Reykjavik
  • Daily Breakfast
  • Golden Circle Tour – full day guided excursion
  • A non-guided coach tour to/from the Blue Lagoon
  • Blue Lagoon Comfort Bathing Fee including use of towel, Silica Mud Mask, 1st drink of your choice. The Blue Lagoon has an age minimum of 2 years.
  • Whale Watching tour from Reykjavik Old Harbor
  • Map of Reykjavik
  • Restaurant Recommendations for Reykjavik
  • Customer Care service during office hours
  • Emergency phone line open 24 hours, including weekends and public holidays.
  • Service fee and taxes 

Possible to upgrade to a 4-star hotel at an extra cost. Available hotels:

  • 4 star hotel: Fosshotel Reykjavik
    • Located in Borgartun, Reykjavik‘s financial district, in short walking distance from center
  • 4 star hotel: Grand Hotel
    • Located just outside the main city center, offers spa facilities
  • 4 star hotel: Centrum Hotel Reykjavik
    • Located in the heart of downtown

Not Included

  • Breakfast on arrival day 
  • International airfare 
  • Personal travel insurance (highly recommended) 
  • Petrol 
  • Admissions and activities 
  • Beverages, snacks, lunches, dinners unless otherwise noted in itinerary 
  • Guaranteed early check-in (check-in time for most hotels in Iceland is 2:00pm) 
  • Guaranteed late check-out 
  • Any service not specifically listed under “included”  

Important

  • Please note that this package can only be booked online.
  • Prices in booking widget are per package, not per person.
  • The Northern Lights are a natural phenomenon and sightings cannot be guaranteed.
  • Triple rooms only available at Fosshotel Raudara and Grand Hotel. Due to limited availability, triple rooms cannot be guaranteed but we do our best to secure it.
  • Family rooms/suites (fits 2 adults and 2 children) available upon request at Fosshotel Baron and Fosshotel Raudara. Contact us for pricing.
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Day 1: Arrival in Iceland:

Highlights: Reykjavik Austurvollur Square Hallgrimskirkja Harpa Concert Hall Reykjavik City Hall Hofdi Perlan National Museum

Upon landing in Iceland, there is only the mysterious lava plain of the Reykjanes Peninsula standing between you and the buzz from the energetic capital city Reykjavik. The ride across the barren lava only takes about 45 – 60 minutes.  Airport transfer is not included in the package but we are happy to assist you with arranging either private or regular airport transfers upon request. If your flight schedule allows, it is also possible to change the Blue Lagoon transfer (included in the package) to an Arrival via Blue Lagoon or Departure via Blue Lagoon.

If you have arrived early today, you have a treat waiting for you! Though Reykjavik may be small, it is a vibrant city full of culture and activities. A great way to shake off the jet lag is a swim in one of the city’s outdoor geothermal swimming pools. Swimming areas have lap pools, hot tubs of various temperatures and often a steam bath. This is a great way to enjoy daily life in Iceland.

You can also take a stroll down main streets Laugavegur and Skolavordustigur, enjoy the city view from the top of the tower of Hallgrimskirkja church or check out the downtown harbor village. Reykjavik also offers a good selection of galleries and museums within the downtown area.

In the evening, enjoy a visit to one of Reykjavik’s modern restaurants. We will supply you with our list of favorite restaurants.

Interested in checking out our beer/pub culture or seeing a history/comedy show in the evening? Then add on the Reykjavik Beer Tour or the Icelandic Sagas: Greates Hits show.

Please note check-in for most hotels begins at 14:00 (2:00pm)

Overnight in Reykjavik.

Optional Tours:

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Day 2: The Golden Circle:

Highlights: Thingvellir National Park Gullfoss Geysir

Discover three of the most outstanding attractions in Iceland on a full day guided excursion. The first stop is at Thingvellir National Park (UNESCO World Heritage Site), where Viking settlers established an annual assembly in AD 930 which has become the world’s oldest ongoing parliament. Thingvellir is also a geological masterpiece, as it marks the visible site of the mid-Atlantic Ridge where the North American and Eurasian continental plates meet.

Afterwards, head for the Geysir hot spring area, named after the biggest Icelandic geyser Geysir that all other geysers in the world are named after. Here you get to explore the hot spring area and to see the very active Strokkur, a hot spring that spouts every few minutes. Travel onwards to Gullfoss, one of Iceland’s most impressive and picturesque waterfalls. The three-level waterfall is formed by the waters of the glacial river Hvita.

Head back to Reykjavik in the late afternoon.

Overnight in Reykjavik.

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Day 3: Whale Watching and Blue Lagoon:

Highlights: Reykjavik The Blue Lagoon

Start the day by going on a whale watching tour in the morning. During the tour, your friendly guides will give you lots of interesting information about the different kinds of whales and seabirds that you can expect to see on the tour and point out where to spot them. The boats offer a large outside viewing deck as well as an inside area with Wi-Fi and Café. The tour normally takes about 3 – 3,5 hours and departs from the Old Harbor in downtown Reykjavik.

After the tour, enjoy lunch on your own in downtown Reykjavik. In the afternoon, take a non-guided transfer to the Blue Lagoon. Relax and harmonize with nature in the milky blue water. The Blue Lagoon Comfort package includes bathing entry, use of towel, silica mud mask and 1st drink of your own choice. We highly recommend having dinner at the award-winning LAVA restaurant, located at the Blue Lagoon or return back to Reykjavik for dinner on your own.

If you would prefer to use your Blue Lagoon visit in connection with your arrival or departure airport transfer, then this afternoon is yours to enjoy for leisure.

Overnight in Reykjavik.

Day 4: Departure:

If your flight is in the afternoon, use your last moments to walk along the harbor seafront and breathe the fresh Atlantic breeze or enjoy a stroll around the city. We recommend arriving at Keflavik International Airport no later than 2 hours before your scheduled flight.

Should you wish to extend your stay in Reykjavik, we would be happy to book additional nights and tours for you. Please take a look at our suggested list of optional tours and activities in the overview and feel free to contact us for further information.

Optional Tours:

Things to Do in Reykjavík When it Rains

One of the benefits of living on an island in the North Atlantic oceans is that the weather is never boring. But this can also mean that some days you get A LOT of weather. On those days you might be inclined to leave all the adventurous outdoor stuff alone and head indoors instead. But inside doesn’t have to mean inactive. There’s plenty to do in the bustling city of Reykjavík on those days the weather is less than agreeable. Here are a few suggestions for things to do in Reykjavik when it rains.

Whales of Iceland

things to do in reykjavik when it rains, Things to Do in Reykjavík When it Rains

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You’ll never get closer to some of the biggest mammals on Earth than at the Whales of Iceland exhibition. With 23 life-size, models the converted warehouse in the “Grandinn” area near the harbour is like stepping into an underwater world full of the gentle giants of the sea.18 €Per personWhales of IcelandView tour

Interactive displays and multi-lingual audio guides will give you all the information you need to understand the life and habits of these incredible creatures. Once you’ve learned all that you can, you can sit in the small café and eat whale themed cakes while donning the Virtual Reality glasses that let you swim with killer whales. Just be careful you don’t fall off your chair!

Harpa Concert Hall

things to do in reykjavik when it rains, Things to Do in Reykjavík When it Rains

If you’re in Reykjavík you can’t have missed the large glass house down by the harbour. The Harpa Concert Hall and Conference Centre is an architectural marvel, both inside and out. Its distinctive glass façade was designed by Icelandic artist Ólafur Elíasson and is lit up at night with a light show resembling the Northern Lights.

Harpa offers plenty of activities on a rainy day. There are concerts almost every day all year round (the Pearls of Icelandic Song series is particularly great for those with an interest in Icelandic culture) and comedy plays like How to Become Icelandic in 60 minutes or Icelandic Sagas: The Greatest Hits will give you a crash-course in Icelandic history and customs so you’ll fit right in with the locals. There are also two restaurants, Smurstöðin and Kolabrautin, and several shops to keep you occupied until the weather turns.

Hallgrímskirkja

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Another prominent landmark in the Reykjavík skyline is the Hallgrímskirkja church. This much photographed building is known for its unique architecture, based on the basalt lava flows of the Icelandic landscape, but inside it there is also a wealth of hidden treasure. The large pipe organ will immediately catch your eye as you enter. It is 15m tall and weighs over 25 tonnes. It has 72 stops and the largest pipe in it is over 10 m. The organ produces powerful sounds that would make any opera phantom weep with joy. You can also go up into the church tower where you will experience a view over the city you can’t get anywhere else. The church is open every day from 9-5, has a service every Sunday and regular concerts.

Kolaportið

things to do in reykjavik when it rains, Things to Do in Reykjavík When it Rains

Who doesn’t love browsing the stalls at a good flea market in search of a great bargain? Due to the sometimes fickle weather, the people of Reykjavík decided that it would be best to keep the city’s flea market indoors. The Kolaportið flea market is located down by the old harbour and is open from 11-5 every weekend. A mix of regular vendors who are there every weekend and people who rent stalls when they need to clear out their closets or garage, Kolaportið offers an eclectic mix of second hand clothes, accessories, books and food. It’s a great way to spend a rainy afternoon and get a great deal while you’re at it.

Aurora Reykjavík – Saga Museum

things to do in reykjavik when it rains, Things to Do in Reykjavík When it Rains

The Aurora Reykjavík Northern Lights Centre is located near the harbour, in the part known as “Grandinn”. So when the weather is not favourable for actual Northern Lights viewing, or you’re in Iceland during summer, the Aurora Reykjavík is an excellent place to visit for all your Northern Lights related interests. They have interactive displays, folktales and legends connected to the Northern Lights as well as information on what causes this beautiful natural phenomenon and tips on how to photograph them. Next door is the Saga Museum. There you can experience key moments from Icelandic history and the Sagas, all illustrated with remarkably life-like replicas of famous Icelanders. If the journey through time has left you hungry the Saga Museum is located in the same building as the popular restaurant Matur & Drykkur that serves traditional Icelandic food in a way you’ve never seen before.

Local in Focal

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Speaking of food, maybe you want to do more than just sit down at a restaurant and order the most exotic thing on the menu. Cook and Dine is a cooking class taught by the talented chefs of Salt Kitchen.182 €Per personCook and Dine – Exclusive Cooking ClassView tour

Whether you’re a complete beginner or an expert in the kitchen, Cook and Dine caters to everyone. The class works together to create a 3 course Icelandic meal for everyone to enjoy at the end and you even get the recipe to take home with you. It’s a great way to sharpen your culinary skills and to get to know other people with similar interests.

Þjóðminjasafnið National Museum

things to do in reykjavik when it rains, Things to Do in Reykjavík When it Rains

Spend a pleasant afternoon looking at artifacts from Icelandic history. The National Museum of Iceland is located next to the University of Iceland and has two permanent exhibitions on life in the country in centuries past, as well as several temporary exhibitions and regular event. The museum also has a great gift shop where you can buy Icelandic design and a coffee shop that’s perfect to sit in with a hot cup of cocoa and listen to the wind outside.

Local Swimming Pool

things to do in reykjavik when it rains, Things to Do in Reykjavík When it Rains

Hang on a minute, Reykjavík mostly has outdoor swimming pools. Surely we’re not suggesting you go swim outside in bad weather. Actually, we are. There is nothing better than lounging around in the hot tubs when it’s raining or snowing. There’s a certain feeling of defying nature when you’re lying in your swimsuit in hot water in sub-zero temperatures. Our favourite swimming pools in central Reykjavik are Vesturbæjarlaugin, Laugardalslaug and Sundhöll Reykjavíkur (ok that one is an indoor pool, but the hot tubs are outside so no excuses). Join the locals in their hot tub discussions to get a feel for the community and you must make sure to get a hot dog afterwards, an essential part of the swimming pool experience.

Taste the Saga – Cheers to Reykjavík

things to do in reykjavik when it rains, Things to Do in Reykjavík When it Rains

After a full day of activities you are no doubt starting to get a little thirsty. For those with an interest in Icelandic beer, and its tumultuous history, the Taste the Saga tour hosted by Ölgerðin brewery is an informative and thirst quenching way to spend an afternoon.

Your host will tell you all about the prohibition in Iceland and the ingenious ways Icelanders found to get around it. If you feel like something a bit more casual and want a way to get to know the locals better, Cheers to Reykjavík might be more up your alley. Two locals will meet you at a bar downtown where they’ll entertain you with stories about Icelandic culture while you sample the newest craft beers and the freshest Icelandic cuisine.