10 Day Self Drive Tour | Best Ring Road Attractions with Snæfellsnes Peninsula

Based on 10 traveller reviews

Make the most of your time in Iceland with this extensive 10-day, self-drive tour. Over the course of your adventure, you will discover all the popular natural wonders Iceland has to offer, and many sights you may not even know exist. 

This self-drive package helps you save money without sacrificing anything! It circles the Ring Road, taking you around the whole country, including the Snæfellsnes Peninsula, the famous Golden Circle and a visit to the healing waters of the Blue Lagoon. Better yet, it offers full comfort, - your accommodation will always have an ensuite bathroom and breakfast is included.

Best of all, you choose where to drive, and when to leave. There are no bus schedules or impatient tour guides to worry about. You're free to spend as much time in each spot as you'd like.

At Guide to Iceland, we want you to experience the best of the natural beauty this country has to offer. We hope you’ll leave feeling revitalised and exhilarated by the beauty of the Icelandic landscape. To help with this, we've handpicked hidden locations across the land where you can be almost entirely alone, far from noisy people or busy streets. These are included in our travel plan, which you'll receive after you book. 

Customise your vacation during booking so that it's exactly what you've been dreaming of. On your way around the Golden Circle, snorkel in the space between two Continental plates, go snowmobiling on Langjökull glacier or explore the inside of a volcanic magma chamber (if you're here between May and November). There is even the option to visit a natural ice cave in the Mýrdalsjökull glacier.

Furthermore, you can hike a glacier, or board a ship to see the giants of the deep in the whale-watching capital of Europe. You can also get the lay of the land with a horse riding trek, journey into dark lava caves, or even walk inside man-made channels within Langjökull glacier. 

Should you wish to explore Iceland in a more economical way, you can book the budget-friendly self-drive package with the same itinerary by clicking here: 10 Day Self Drive Tour on a Budget | Best Ring Road Attractions with Snæfellsnes Peninsula

See how many stunning sights and great activities you can cram into only 10 days in Iceland! Check availability by choosing a date.


Quick facts

Tour information:
  • Available: Apr. - Oct.
  • Duration: 10 days
  • Activities: Glacier Hiking, Snorkelling, Caving, Diving, ATV, Snowmobile, Horse Riding, Whale Watching, Sightseeing, Hot Spring Bathing, Bird watching, Ice Caving, Self drive
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Highlights: Blue Lagoon, Reykjavík, Akureyri, Jökulsárlón, Dimmuborgir, Húsavík, Ásbyrgi, Dettifoss, Skógafoss, Seljalandsfoss, Geysir, Gullfoss, Dyrhólaey, Þingvellir, Snæfellsnes, Höfn, Borgarnes, Vík i Mýrdal, Egilsstaðir, Siglufjörður, Blönduós, Lake Myvatn, South Coast, Ring Road
Pickup information:
  • Starting time : Flexible

Included:
  • 9 nights of accommodation (different levels available; breakfast included. More detailed info below)

  • Vehicle for 10 days (VW Polo or similar. Upgrades available)

  • CDW, SCDW and gravel protection insurance for vehicle

  • GPS system

  • Blue Lagoon standard entrance (upgrades available)

  • Detailed Itinerary with fun and practical information on the nature, history and culture of Iceland

  • Hands-on travel agent to oversee your itinerary

  • Taxes

  • Fuel

  • Dinner

  • Lunch


What to bring:
  • Driver's License

  • Warm clothes

  • Swimsuit

  • Hiking shoes


Good to know:

Self-drive tours begin either in Reykjavík City or at Keflavik International Airport. A valid driver's license is required, along with a one-year long on-road experience. Please be aware that your itinerary may be rearranged to better fit with your arrival date and time.

Although it is summertime, the Icelandic weather can be very unpredictable. Please bring appropriate clothing.



Daily itinerary

Day 1 - Arrival in Reykjavík


10 Day Self Drive Tour | Best Ring Road Attractions with Snæfellsnes Peninsula


Collect your car at the international airport in Keflavík before driving to your accommodation in downtown Reykjavík. The world-famous Blue Lagoon spa is in between the two, so you may want to check it out if you aren't too excited to get to the capital city. You can also choose to save the Blue Lagoon for the final day of your stay with us, as one last relaxing treat before bidding Iceland a fond farewell.

After settling in your hotel in Reykjavík, make the most of your proximity to one of Europe's most vibrant city centres. Explore the abundance of museums, galleries, restaurants and bars to your heart´s content.

Spend the night in the beautiful city of Reykjavík.


Preferred accommodation in Reykjavík

Reykjavík Comfort

The Fosshótel chain has four 3-4 star Hotels located in and around the city center of Reykjavík. There is a short walk from all of the hotels to attractions, cafés, restaurants, museums and the nightlife. All offer private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.

Reykjavík Quality

Alda Hotel is a 4 star hotel situated on Laugavegur, Reykjavík's main shopping street in the city centre. Private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Free access to a fitness room with a sauna and a hot tub. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.


Day 2 - The Golden Circle


10 Day Self Drive Tour | Best Ring Road Attractions with Snæfellsnes Peninsula


Day two sends you off to some of the best-known natural phenomena in Iceland on the Golden Circle route. The first stop on the Golden Circle tour is Þingvellir National Park. Here, you can walk between the rift valley of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge and explore an area which played a huge role in Iceland's heritage; its history as the site of the world's first representative parliament has warranted its place on the UNESCO world heritage list. You can even opt into a snorkel in the crystal clear fissure Silfra, which runs right between the tectonic plates.

Next up is the geothermal valley of Haukadalur, where you can see the geysers Strokkur and Geysir amongst many beautiful hot springs. Only a few kilometres away is Iceland's most popular attraction, the powerful waterfall named Gullfoss. A pathway takes you right to the water's edge, where you can get a real sense of the enormous, natural power of the falls.

You also have the chance to go on an optional snowmobile tour on Langjökull glacier; you'll be picked up at Gullfoss waterfall. This is an excellent way to add some adrenaline to your trip - and to see some sweeping glacial vistas. You can also book a horse ride on this day, if neither of these appeal to you. 

Spend the night in or near the quiet town of Hvolsvöllur.


Preferred accommodation by Hvolsvöllur

Hvolsvöllur Comfort

Hotel Hvolsvöllur is a 3 star hotel centrally located in Hvolsvöllur. Private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Free access to outdoor hot tubs. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.

Hvolsvöllur Quality

Hotel Rangá is a 4 star hotel situated between the towns of Hella and Hvolsvöllur. Private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Views towards Rangá river or Hekla volcano. Free access to outdoor hot tubs. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.


Day 3 - South Coast - Vatnajökull National Park


10 Day Self Drive Tour | Best Ring Road Attractions with Snæfellsnes Peninsula


On day three, you will take in the sight of two majestic waterfalls, Seljalandsfoss and Skógafoss. Further down the coast near the town of Vík, take a slight detour to admire the black volcanic beach and the dramatic Dyrhólaey and Reynisdrangar rock formations. This is a great place for puffin watching. 

If you'd like, you can use this unique opportunity to visit a natural ice cave in the Mýrdalsjökull glacier. Only accessible via super jeep, this is the only cave that is open to visits all year long, leading deep into the age old ice.  

Other sights as you head east include the Mýrdalsjökull glacier and the quaint village of Kirkjubæjarklaustur. At the glacier tongue of Sólheimajökull, you can partake in a glacier hike or snowmobile tour.

Spend the rest of your day taking in the stunning landscapes of the Skaftafell area of Vatnajökull National Park. This place is great for any outdoor enthusiast, particularly if you enjoy hiking. There are many excellent tracks and trails, including one that leads to the stunning Svartifoss waterfall, which plunges over a wide cliff of hexagonal basalt columns.

Spend the night in the Vatnajökull area.


Preferred accommodation by Skaftafell

Skaftafell Comfort

Hotel Geirland is a 3 star hotel located in the countryside 2 kilometres away from Kirkjubæjarklaustur. Private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.

Skaftafell Quality

Fosshotel Glacier Lagoon is a 4 star hotel located right between Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon and Skaftafell Nature Reserve. Private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Ocean or mountain views. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.


Day 4 - Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon


10 Day Self Drive Tour | Best Ring Road Attractions with Snæfellsnes Peninsula


Today, you have the option to start your day with a hike on Europe's largest glacier, Vatnajökull, starting back in Skaftafell Nature Reserve. 

Afterwards, drive further east to one of Iceland’s most famous natural wonders, the Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon. Here you can hop on an optional boat tour, which takes you on a meandering path through the lagoon, amongst stunning icebergs of all shapes and sizes. You can choose between an amphibious boat, and a smaller zodiac.

Make sure you stroll down to the black sandy beach nearby, affectionately named Diamond Beach due to the number of sparkling icebergs that are scattered along it.

Finally, you'll start on a zigzagging journey along the East Fjords, passing tranquil fishing villages and sweeping coastal landscapes along the way.

Spend the night in the secluded Egilsstaðir area.


Preferred accommodation by Egilsstaðir

Egilsstaðir Comfort

Lake Hotel Egilsstaðir is a 3 star hotel located in a short walking distance from the centre of Egilsstaðir but also right by the lake. Private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Spa on site for additional price. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.

Egilsstaðir Quality

Icelandair Hotel Hérað is a 3 star hotel centrally located within Egilsstaðir town. Bright, private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included, with focus on local ingredients.


Day 5 - Mývatn Area


10 Day Self Drive Tour | Best Ring Road Attractions with Snæfellsnes Peninsula


The driving on day five brings you north to Lake Mývatn, which is known for its geothermal landscapes, including the Námaskarð hot springs, the Skútustaðagígar pseudo-craters, the Dimmuborgir lava formations and Volcano Krafla, one of Iceland’s most visited volcanoes.

After exploring these many wonders, relax by taking a dip in the soothing geothermal waters of the Mývatn Nature Baths. Afterwards, head to the town of Húsavík for a whale-watch, or the capital of the north, Akureyri, where you'll spend the night.


Preferred accommodation by Akureyri

Akureyri Comfort

Hotel Norðurland is a 3 star hotel centrally located in Akureyri. Spacious and bright private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.

Akureyri Quality

Icelandair Hotel Akureyri (Deluxe room) is a 3 star hotel centrally located in Akureyri, right next to the swimming pool. Private bedroom with a living room area and a private bathroom. Great views from the 5th floor. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.


Day 6 - Dettifoss Falls - Ásbyrgi Canyon - Húsavík


10 Day Self Drive Tour | Best Ring Road Attractions with Snæfellsnes Peninsula


Use the sixth day to explore a little more of Lake Mývatn and its unique surroundings. A drive through the Jökulsárgljúfur part of Vatnajökull National Park, with a visit to the Ásbyrgi canyon and Dettifoss waterfall, is highly recommended.

 Alternatively, explore the fantastic Eyjafjörður area, and climb the Súlur peak.

There are two tours you can add on to today: a whale-watch from Akureyri, and an hour-long horse-ride.

Stay another night in the charming town of Akureyri.


Preferred accommodation by Akureyri

Akureyri Comfort

Hotel Norðurland is a 3 star hotel centrally located in Akureyri. Spacious and bright private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.

Akureyri Quality

Icelandair Hotel Akureyri (Deluxe room) is a 3 star hotel centrally located in Akureyri, right next to the swimming pool. Private bedroom with a living room area and a private bathroom. Great views from the 5th floor. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.


Day 7 - More of Akureyri - Fishing Villages and Historical Settlements


10 Day Self Drive Tour | Best Ring Road Attractions with Snæfellsnes Peninsula


On day seven, you'll have more time to explore the area around Akureyri. You will then pass through the beautiful, mountainous area of Tröllaskagi, to the old herring-fishing village of Siglufjörður, and then to Hofsós, where you can enjoy the wonderful scenery while relaxing in the town’s thermal pool.

If you like local Icelandic handicrafts or if you are traveling with children, then we recommend a stop at Stórhóll farm where the gallery Rúnalist is located. Children can play with and pet some sheep, goats, horses, ducks, chicken, rabbit, dogs and cats while you browse the crafts showroom, filled with handmade items of natural wool, salmon leather or cod skin.

Spend the night in nearby Blönduós.


Preferred accommodation by Blönduós

Blönduós Comfort

Hotel Blanda is centrally located within Blönduós town in north Iceland with a view towards Blanda river and the sea. Private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Free Wi-Fi in public areas. Breakfast is included.

Blönduós Quality

Hotel Laugarbakki (Superior room) is a 3 star hotel situated in the countryside south of the town Hvammstangi with a view over nearby river. Spacious private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Free access to outside hot tubs and an indoor gym. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.


Day 8 - The Snæfellsnes Peninsula


10 Day Self Drive Tour | Best Ring Road Attractions with Snæfellsnes Peninsula


Head to Snæfellsnes peninsula today. On the way, you will pass the rolling hills of Vatnsdalshólar and the beautiful Þingeyarkirkja church.

You might also want to stop at a longhouse at Eiríksstaðir, home of the infamous Viking Erik the Red, father to Leif the Lucky who was the first European to sail to North America. You can also pay a visit to Stykkishólmur, a picture-perfect fishing village overlooking Breiðafjörður Bay.

Here, you can travel out to a small island, accessible from the harbour. This is Súgandisey, and you'll see a wonderful panorama of the town, the sea, and the surrounding mountains from here.

The crown jewel of Snæfellsnes peninsula is the Snæfellsjökull glacier and volcano, nestled in the heart of a national park. Nearby are many beautiful attractions, such as Djúpalónssandur beach and the picturesque towns of Hellnar and Arnarstapi.

Spend the night at charming accommodation on Snæfellsnes Peninsula.


Preferred accommodation by Snæfellsnes

Snæfellsnes Comfort

Fosshotel Stykkishólmur is a 3 star hotel centrally located within the town Stykkishólmur. Spacious hotel with a view towards the bay. Private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.

Snæfellsnes Quality

Hotel Búðir is a 4 star hotel on the southern side of Snæfellsnes peninsula, with a view towards Snæfellsjökull glacier and to the sea. Private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.


Day 9 - West Iceland


10 Day Self Drive Tour | Best Ring Road Attractions with Snæfellsnes Peninsula


On day nine, you can explore West Iceland with its diverse attractions, including the Icelandic settlement exhibition in Borgarnes, and Deildartunguhver, the largest hot spring in Europe.

Further along, be sure to visit the captivating Hraunfossar and Barnafoss waterfalls.

History buffs may also enjoy a visit to Snorrastofa, the medieval research institute in Reykholt, where the politician, poet, and historian Snorri Sturluson wrote the saga of the Norwegian kings, Heimskringla, in the 13th century. He is also famous for writing the bible of old Norse mythology, Edda.

On this day, you can opt into one of two exciting caving tours. You can explore the incredible, man made ice caves at Langjökull, or else take a lava tube adventure into Viðgelmir cave. You can also explore the inside of a magma chamber on the incredible 'Into the Volcano' tour.

On the way back to Reykjavik, take a short break at Fossatún, a waterfall said to be guarded by a troll woman named Drifa, before spending another night in the capital.


Preferred accommodation in Reykjavík

Reykjavík Comfort

The Fosshótel chain has four 3-4 star Hotels located in and around the city center of Reykjavík. There is a short walk from all of the hotels to attractions, cafés, restaurants, museums and the nightlife. All offer private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.

Reykjavík Quality

Alda Hotel is a 4 star hotel situated on Laugavegur, Reykjavík's main shopping street in the city centre. Private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Free access to a fitness room with a sauna and a hot tub. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.


Day 10 - Farewell to Iceland


10 Day Self Drive Tour | Best Ring Road Attractions with Snæfellsnes Peninsula


Drop off your car at Keflavík airport in time for your departure. If you are taking an afternoon or evening flight, you have time to fit in one last fantastic Icelandic experience. You can visit the Blue Lagoon (if you didn't go there on your first day).

Of course, a revitalising visit to the world-famous Blue Lagoon spa is a great way to end your Icelandic adventure. The water is rich in silica and blue-green algae, which gives the lagoon its reputed healing powers, as well as its captivating turquoise tint. It is sure to set you up for a great flight, and leave you aching to come back for more!


Accommodation

See our accommodation levels below and our preferred accommodation partners under each day in the daily itinerary. Single person bookings will be arranged in a single room, while bookings of 2 or more people will share twin/double room(s) or triple room(s). Guide to Iceland will provide you with the best available hotels and guesthouses at the time of your booking from our preferred partners. Please keep in mind that hotel quality in Iceland varies among locations and availability is highly limited. We always do our best to accommodate special requests, which may incur additional costs. The sooner you reserve the higher quality accommodation we can provide. Press choose a date at the top to find availability.

Comfort

Rooms with a private bathroom in three star hotels or quality guesthouses. Very close to the best attractions at each location. Breakfast is included.

Quality

Rooms with a private bathroom in a four star hotel or superior rooms in a quality three star hotel at the best locations in Iceland. Breakfast is included.


Car

Below you can see the car rental options available for this self drive tour. All our vehicles are new or current models, maximum two years of age, and come equipped with a GPS, CDW, GP, and SCDW insurances. You can also upgrade to an automatic model, free of charge.

Budget

A small 2WD vehicle fit for basic travelling in everyday conditions, such as VW Polo, Toyota Yaris or similar. This vehicle does not have highland capabilities.

Comfort 4X4

A medium sized jeep or SUV with 4WD (4x4) fit for most travel, and good for snow and off-asphalt travel, such as Toyota Rav4 or similar. This vehicle has basic highland capabilities.

Luxury 4x4

A large sized jeep with 4WD (4x4) such as Toyota Land Cruiser or similar, fit for nearly all traveling. This vehicle has full highland capabilities to drive on accessible mountain roads.


Map


Reviews

Average rating 4.8 / Number of reviews 10

Guide to Iceland was a great choice for us. We opted for the mid-level accommodations, and they were clean and comfortable with helpful staff. We enjoyed being able to drive ourselves and to pick and choose from the menu of suggested activities on the itinerary. We had a couple of minor issues (neither Guide to Iceland's fault), and when I contacted them, they responded promptly with the information we needed. It was a fantastic experience, and Guide to Iceland took the stress out of planning so that we could just enjoy our stay.

Thank you Mita Erika for making our trip to Iceland a memory we will never forget. The waterfalls were spectacular, the people were nice. The hotels were clean and in very accessible locations. Unfortunately we did not get to see any whales on either of our whale watching cruises, but both companies took our names and told us, if we ever get back to Iceland, our next cruise would be no charge. We ate some spectacular meals with very nice Icelandic beers. The highlight of the trip had to have been the ride up to the glacier cave. Unbelievable view, and an awesome guide while in the cave. I will definitely recommend "Guide to Iceland" to anyone interested in traveling to this fine country.

Best 10 days of my life. Guide to Iceland planned this trip for us perfectly. Thanks to Unnur Helga all our expectations of this beautiful island were met. We found the solitude and peacefulness that were looking for after a hard year and for that we will be forever grateful.

Had a magnificent time with my girlfriend on this trip. Truly an unforgettable experience. We loved every detail of the itinerary and all the hotels were clean and of good quality. First time to book a self drive tour but clearly not the last. We might even visit Iceland again!

This journey was amazing. The people at Guide to Iceland were so helpful in planning our trip we could not believe it. We even had a flat tyre one day and they sent a car to help us change it! We asked them to help us avoid the crowds and show us unique locations and the result was an incredible 10 day road trip where we felt as if we were alone on the island without any other tourists there except us. North Iceland was by far the highlight of our trip. We had a picnic in the big horse shoe canyon (can never remember any Icelandic names) and that was so lovely. We also went river rafting which was very exciting and beautiful. I have recommended Guide to Iceland to everyone I know who is planning to visit Iceland. Thank you for making our trip unforgettable!

The only way to travel Iceland. With excursions almost everyday, our agent Helga did an amazing job planning our itinerary. I couldn't imagine doing it from the US. We got the comfort hotels and it was great! The roads are fun to drive, the excursions are incredible ( we did the silfra dive, snowmobiles, ATV tour, whale watching, the ice cave tunnel, and the blue lagoon), and the landscape is breathtaking. What a memorable 2 weeks.

Using this company to arrange your daily itineraries is a no brainer. I chose the 10 day Ring Road tour. Unnar Helga was my booking agent and she did a great job arranging the rental car, hotel accommodations and add on tours. I picked the comfort level hotel category which was fine. Buffet breakfast was included at all hotels. The only minor issue (not really a complaint) was that every single hotel had nearly the exact same spread- sliced hams and salamis, sliced cheeses, various breads, fruits, cereals, yogurts, scrambled eggs, sausage, bacon and a few other things. Almost all had in room coffee makers (instant coffee at most). The SUV I rented was as ordered. All tours (glacier hike, snowmobile on glacier and glacier lagoon boat tour were great and worthwhile. I also did an all day super jeep tour from Reykjavik to landmannalaugar on my own which I highly recommend. I believe I lucked out with the weather as I only had 1 1/2 days of rain out of 12. When it does rain, it is absolutely miserable. But when the weather is nice, pure joy. Great trip, fantastic country

My daughter and I just returned from a 14 day stay in Iceland, 10 of which were driving the self guided tour booked with Guide to Iceland's Unur Helga. Just under 2 weeks prior to our date of departure for Iceland, "Oops, we'd better start planning where to go, where to stay, and where to rent a car!" Fortunately, we came across Guide to Iceland, and within a few days we had rooms, car rental, and itinerary offerings all in place. Unnur listened to what we wanted to experience and what we could afford, and adjusted the tour offerings accordingly. When we arrived in Iceland, we had in hand: our itinerary , vouchers for each of our stays, really helpful information about comfort, driving safety, etc provided by Olafur (Travellers' Happiness and quality assurance agent), and a car that was delivered (A Car Rental) to us at the airport. We cannot express, accurately enough, how smoothly and epic everything about this tour was. The car: clean and economical, rooms: comfy with amazingly snuggable duvets, the country: astoundingly beautiful, with crazy and amazing vistas seemingly at every turn. The 10 day tour is so do-able. We never felt pressed, felt that we could really explore and enjoy the various stops and just relax. The Golden Circle will blow your mind, and by day 9 you wonder if you can really stand more stunning beauty. Please, if you do this tour, tell me if this isn't true!! Thank you Guide to Iceland Unnur and Olafur......, one day I hope to return and I will be contacting you for another memorable vacation! Annie, Vermont, USA

We had a great time exploring Iceland. We had no prior experience with Iceland so using Guide to Iceland was very helpful. We had a few snags-with only gps coordinates, we had some difficulty getting to some locations. We booked comfort level hotels. There was one hotel in Lake Myvatn that was unacceptable. The room was smaller than a single dorm room, not even a chair to sit in. We were at that location for two nights.

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