Guided 12 Day Summer Vacation Package of the Complete Ring Road of Iceland & Snaefellsnes Peninsula
Embark on a summer journey around Iceland's Ring Road. Travel in a small group around the country, visiting popular places such as the Golden Circle, Reynisfjara black sand beach, Akureyri, and the Snæfellsnes Peninsula, as well as a few hidden gems known only to your local guide. Those looking to experience the best of Iceland in ease and comfort should book this package now.
There are many reasons to visit Iceland in the summer. In winter, the roads to unreachable attractions—such as Dettifoss waterfall and the Highlands—thaw and welcome those curious enough to find them. It's possible to spot puffins on the South Coast, and everything is bathed in the warmth of the Midnight Sun.
With this package, you'll go on an 8-day guided circle tour of Iceland, including the Snæfellsnes Peninsula and Dettifoss waterfall. You'll stay at comfortable countryside hotels along the way before ending your journey back in Reykjavík, where you will have two whole days to fill with adventure.
You will also be able to customize this package with extra activities. Some are even included, such as glacier hiking and whale watching. You can also ride a horse and fly over steaming geothermal landscapes on a thrilling helicopter tour. There are even opportunities to visit the Highlands or descend into a magma chamber of a volcano.
Look forward to 11 nights and 12 days in Iceland packed with adventure and stunning nature. Follow your experienced local guide around Iceland in the comfort of a minibus. Check availability by choosing a date.
Day 1 - Arrival and Blue Lagoon
You will land at Keflavík International Airport, located in the moonlike landscape that is the Reykjanes peninsula. Once you have gathered your bags, hop on your bus, which will take you to Iceland’s capital city, Reykjavík.
On your way to Iceland’s capital city, you could choose to make a stop at the Blue Lagoon. This world-renowned spa is known for its healing waters, vivid azure colors, and luxurious treatments. It is located in the middle of a moss-covered lava field, giving it an otherworldly atmosphere. If you add the Blue Lagoon, it will be arranged according to your flights. If there is no time to visit the lagoon today, it can be added to another day. Your travel consultant will be able to arrange this for you. There is still plenty to see and do in Reykjavik if you have extra free time.
You will then travel across dramatic lava fields until you reach your accommodation in the city. After settling in, you can head out and explore the city. The Midnight Sun will illuminate the evening sky well into the night.
You could decide to go for a drink at one of the city’s many cafes and bars and indulge in a little of the Reykjavík nightlife. Not too much, though, as you’ll want to save some energy for the days to come.
Day 2 - The Golden Circle
Your minibus tour around the island starts with your guide picking you up in the morning. After some friendly introductions, you will begin your sightseeing route for the day, the Golden Circle.
Your first stop will be Þingvellir National Park, an area characterized by the rugged gorge that runs through it. On one side of the canyon is the exposed Eurasian tectonic plate, and on the other side, the North American plate. Iceland is the only place on earth where it is possible to walk in the middle of a continental divide in this way. Þingvellir is also culturally significant as it was here that the Viking settlers gathered in the year 1000 AD to lay the laws of the land.
Moving on, you will visit the Geysir geothermal area, named after the famous hot spring for which all geysers are consequently called. Watch in amazement as boiling-hot water erupts out of the ground, reaching heights of up to 66 ft (20m).
Once you have fully appreciated this phenomenon, you will move on to see the majestic Gullfoss waterfall. The Hvítá river is made up of pure glacial water, and at Gullfoss, it cascades down two mighty tiers with great force. It is possible to view this natural feature from several angles so you can get the best picture possible.
You will retire to accommodation in Golden Circle the area.
Day 3 - The South Coast
Today it's time to travel the South Coast, a region characterized by its vast black beaches and stunning waterfalls. If the weather is good, keep an eye out to sea, and you may be able to spot the outline of the Westman Islands just off the coast.
Your first stop will be Seljalandsfoss waterfall which you can see from the road as you approach the cliffs of the Southern Highlands. However, nothing can prepare you for this sight up close; water cascades from a height of 197 ft (60m) in front of a large cavern that you can enter to see the waterfall from all angles.
Not far is your second waterfall of the day, Skógafoss. Like Seljalandsfoss, this mighty waterfall falls an impressive 197 ft (60m) in a wide curtain of thundering water. The ground around it is very flat, allowing visitors to get quite close, and on sunny days, it is possible to see several rainbows in the spray of the falls.
You could also choose to visit an ice cave today. Ice caves are an incredible natural wonder that will transport you into an almost crystal palace of icy walls marbled in white and blues.
You will also visit the Dyraholaey Sea Arch, a rocky promenade that stretches out from the mainland of the south coast into the sea. From here, you will get a great few of the surrounding landscape.
Continuing your journey along the South Coast, you'll move onto Reynisfjara black sand beach. This stretch of idyllic coastline is famed for its mesmerizing sand and its spectacular basalt columns and photogenic sea stacks, Reynisdrangar. Keep your eyes on the beach's impressive birdlife. You might spot a puffin or two.
Finally, you will make a stop in the charming town of Vík before heading onto your accommodation close by.
Day 4 - Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon
Your day will begin with a drive across the sands of Sólheimasandur, a vast black desert that stretches up to the edges of the grand Vatnajökull National Park. Marvel at the contrasting landscapes as each new horizon comes into view.
The first stop of the day is guaranteed to leave you spell-bound, and it is often referred to as the “Crown Jewel of Iceland”. Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon is truly a sight to behold; huge icebergs drift in the crystalline waters, breaking off from the Breiðamerkurjökull glacial tongue and floating lazily out to sea.
Here, you have a chance to sail among the ice on a fantastic boat tour in a specialized Amphibian vehicle that drives into the lake and cruises among the bergs, allowing you to take in the unique structure of each as they creak and groan under their own weight.
Once you have fully taken in the majesty of Jökulsárlón, you will make your way to the Diamond Beach, a magnificent stretch of coast where the icebergs wash up to shore. Here, you can walk among the ancient glacier ice and take many photos to make those back home jealous!
Today you will also take in the Skaftafell Nature Reserve, a beautiful part of the country that sits within Vatnajökull National Park. From here, you will go on a glacier hike. You will be fitted with the necessary gear and taken up on the icy slopes to see the incredible views from on top of a glacier.
You will spend your evening in accommodation in the Jökulsárlón area. Make the most of the Midnight Sun. Sit outside or go for a walk to take in your beautiful surroundings.
Day 5 - The Wild Eastfjords
Today, you will explore the remote and wild Eastfjords. This mountainous area is sparsely populated and characterized by small fishing villages and winding rocky roads. Depending on the feelings of the group, your guide will share with you some local gems in the area.
Much of the geology in this area is unique, so pay attention to the rock formations and multi-colored pebbles that litter the ground. You will have the opportunity to get the quintessential small-town experience by stopping at some of the quaint harbor towns dotted along the coast.
There will also be a stop at Lake Lagarfljót, a large and beautiful body of water rumored to be inhabited by an ancient sea monster. This beast is called the Lagarfljót Wyrm, and its legend outdates that of the Loch Ness Monster in Scotland.
You will also see Iceland’s largest forest, Hallormsstaðaskógur, a welcome delight after traveling through the typically treeless Icelandic landscape.
If you want some added adventure to your day, you can choose to go on a horse riding tour. The Icelandic horse is well-known for its lovely temperament and sturdy build, perfect for riders of all ages. You will be able to take in the Icelandic countryside in this experience in a whole new way.
You will then end the day in Egilsstaðir, the largest town in the East and often the sunniest place in Iceland.
You will spend the evening in accommodation in the Eastfjords.
Day 6 - Dettifoss, Lake Myvatn & Akureyri
After leaving the Eastfjords, your trip will take you to some of the attractions that make up the Diamond Circle route, the cousin of the Golden Circle in the southwest.
Before departure, however, you can enjoy the Vok Baths, a spa immersed in a lake, if you elected to do so when booking.
The Diamond Circle is comprised of these main attractions; Dettifoss waterfall, Ásbyrgi canyon, the town of Húsavík, and Lake Mývatn.
First, you will feast your eyes on "The Beast", the nickname bestowed upon the huge waterfall Dettifoss, considered the most powerful in Europe. This colossal natural feature is somewhat of a celebrity as it featured in Ridley Scott's sci-fi movie, 'Prometheus'. After a short walk to the falls, you can take in its tremendous might as it sends massive amounts of water over a sheer 144 ft (44-meter) drop.
Back on the road now onto Ásbyrgi, a horseshoe-shaped canyon which, according to legend, was formed by Odin's eight-legged horse, Slepinir, as he stomped down on the earth. Once you have taken in the verdant landscapes at Ásbyrgi, you'll make a stop in the pretty town of Húsavík, famed for its beautiful harbor and an ornate wooden church.
Next, you will move on to Lake Mývatn, a stunning body of water surrounded by a wealth of fascinating natural features. You will explore the Námskarð Pass, a geothermal area where the earth's geothermal powers rise to the surface as steam spewing out from fumaroles or boiling mud puddles.
You will then head towards the Northern Iceland town of Akureyri. Along the way, you will stop at 'That Waterfall of the Gods,' Goðafoss. It is believed that this was the site where a Viking Chiefton symbolically threw his pagan totems into the water, encouraging Icelanders to adopt Christianity to avoid conflict with Norway.
You will then finish your day at your accommodation in Akureyri.
Day 7 - Making your way to Borganes
Today you will start heading southwest towards even more incredible sights of Iceland. Your day will begin by leaving Akureyri.
Your first stop will be Hauganes. This country town is situated in the magical fjord of Eyjafjörður and has a tiny population of around 140. During your stop here, you can take a walk around the town and take in some of the sights of Icelandic country life.
The coastal towns in the north of Iceland are the perfect places to see whales, and from Hauganes, you will head out into the northern waters on a whale-watching tour.
Your next stop will be the mythical Hvítserkur area. This part of the country is home to a rock formation of the same name. Hvítserkur pokes out from the sea and is one of the most photographed rock formations in Iceland. Local legends say this rock was once a troll who stayed out too late and was turned to stone by the rising sun.
You will spend the evening in the Borganes area.
Day 8 - The Snaefellsnes Peninsula
Traveling west further still, today you will pay a visit to the Snæfellsnes peninsula, affectionately dubbed 'Iceland in Miniature' for the wealth of varied natural features that color its jagged coastline. The peninsula is named after Snæfellsjökull, the grand glacier volcano which featured in Jules Verne's famous story, 'Journey to the Centre of the Earth'.
There will be plenty of sightseeing stops throughout the day. You will visit one of the most photogenic mountains in Iceland, Kirkjufell, which starred in Season 7 of Game of Thrones as the 'mountain shaped like an arrowhead. You can capture the elevation's striking aesthetic with a triple-tiered waterfall in the foreground for the perfect picture.
Within Snæfellsjökull National Park, you will pay a visit to Djúplónssandur black sand beach. Mighty waves crash onto this dramatic beach and smooth its resident pebbles beautifully. As you walk into the area, you will find four heavy lifting stones that sailors used to test their strength.
Add even more adventure to your day by exploring the subterranean world of the Vatnshellir lava tube. Equipped with a headlamp, you will descend to explore the secret colors and structures hiding under the surface of our world.
You'll return to the same accommodation you were out at the night before.
Day 9 - West Iceland
Today you will begin exploring the picturesque and fascinating Western part of Iceland.
First, you will visit Europe’s most powerful hot spring, Deildartunguhver, which delivers 180-liters per second of 100°C water, heating many of the houses on Iceland’s West Coast.
Today you will also visit the Krauma Spa, a geothermal bath in the west. This attraction allows you to soak and relax as you take in the views around you.
You will also visit a goat farm. This might not be something you expect in Iceland, but goat farming is, in fact, somewhat thriving here.
You will then head to the village of Reykholt. This place was the home of Snorri Sturluson. Snorri was a noted Icelandic poet, historian, and law speaker who lived during the middle ages. His work is considered an invaluable record of Old Norse mythology and language.
You will also make a stop at two incredible waterfalls. Barnafoss and Hraunfossar. Hraunfossar is fed by underground water that soaks through the pores of lava rock. Barnafoss pushes its way through a narrow gorge.
Day 10 - Free Day in Reykjavik
You've traveled the full circle around Iceland, but the adventure is not over yet! You have several options to choose from for how you would like to spend your day.
If you didn't go to the Blue Lagoon on arrival, you have the opportunity to bask in the regenerative waters of this world-famous spa. Pick the comfort package, and you will receive a complimentary silica mud mask, a towel, and your first drink completely free. There's a bar poolside which means you can enjoy your beverage while relishing the warm water.
Spoil yourself a little more and go for the premium package whereby you'll get everything you would with a Comfort ticket but with the added treat of a free bathrobe, slippers, a second mud mask, and a table reservation at the luxurious Lava Restaurant.
Perhaps you fancy something a little more adventurous? If so, you can explore the Highlands of Iceland on an adrenaline-packed Super Jeep excursion to Landmannalaugar. This stunning region is characterized by its multicolored hills and riveting hiking trails. It's a place you do not want to miss!
Another option is to explore Iceland's volcanism by descending into an actual volcano. Þríhnúkagígur is now dormant, last erupting over 4000-years ago, but you can still see evidence of its dramatic past. Explore this brilliantly colored magma chamber and prepare for a journey to the center of the earth that you will not forget in a hurry.
If you would rather relax after your Ring Road adventure, you could opt to spend a day discovering the vibrant and varied city of Reykjavík. Visit one of its many museums or spend the day walking around. It's up to you!
Day 11 - Free Day in Reykjavik & Sightseeing
If you didn't opt to explore the inside of a volcano yesterday, don't worry. Today, you have another opportunity to discover the magnificent colors of the inside of a magma chamber.
Perhaps you would rather ascend to the heavens rather than explore under the earth's surface and take an epic helicopter tour. Marvel at the city of Reykjavík as it disappears behind you as you go on to explore a nearby geothermal area from above. Reach impossibly remote places and admire breathtaking views on this once-in-a-lifetime adventure.
You could also opt to experience some of the clearest water in the world on a snorkeling tour of the Silfra fissure at Þingvellir National Park. This mesmerizing body of water has visibility of up to 328 ft (100m), and you have the extra novelty of swimming between continents! Gear up and get ready for an underwater adventure to remember.
If you haven't got your fill of the world's northernmost capital yet, spend a day getting to know Reykjavík. Go shopping in the many boutique shops or go to the top of Hallgrímskirkja church and take in the wonderful panoramic views.
Day 12 - Departure
Your adventure has come to its end. Say farewell to the city and catch your complimentary ride to the airport in time for your return flight.
For those who have a later flight and choose to visit the Blue Lagoon today, you will finish off your stay unwinding before you head to the airport. This is the perfect place to relax as you bathe in the warm, mineral-rich waters as you look back on the incredible adventure you have just taken in the land of fire and ice. If your flight is later, there are plenty of things to do in Reykjavik. If you have an early flight back home, we wish you a pleasant journey.
What to bring
Good to know
Customers traveling on their own will be given a single room. Reservations for two people will be allocated a double room. For bookings of 3 or more, triple rooms will automatically be allocated. For example, a group of 8 will receive two triple rooms and one double. If these arrangements do not meet your requirements, please contact the provider.
It can happen, in the case of extreme weather, that an activity is canceled. If your chosen activity is canceled, we will assist you with rearranging or booking other activities when possible, and any potential price difference will be refunded to you.
Accommodation in Reykjavik
See our accommodation levels below and our preferred accommodation partners under each day in the daily itinerary. Super budget level accommodations will be arranged in hostel dorm beds. For budget and comfort levels, bookings for one person will be arranged in single rooms, and bookings for two or more people will share a twin/double or triple room(s). For quality level, odd number groups will always be allocated a single room. If you are travelling in a group, but prefer a single room, please make separate bookings. Teenagers and children will be arranged in the same room with parents. If additional room(s) is needed, additional costs will incur.
For multi-day guided tours, accommodation cannot be upgraded and the levels below do not apply. Guide to Iceland will provide you with the best available accommodation at the time of your booking from our preferred partners. If our preferred partners are fully booked at the time of your booking, we will find another suitable accommodation for you of similar level.
We always do our best to accommodate special requests, which may incur additional costs. Press choose a date to find availability.
Dormitory beds with shared bathrooms in guesthouses or hostels, such as HI Hostels. Located in the capital region. Breakfast is not included.
Private rooms with shared bathroom in guesthouses or hostels such as Capital Inn Guesthouse. Located in the capital region. Breakfast is not included.
Rooms with a private bathroom at three-star hotels such as Hótel Klettur, or quality guesthouses. Located in the city center or in close vicinity. Breakfast is included.
Rooms at four-star design hotels in the city center with a private bathroom at the absolute best locations downtown such as Hotel Alda. Breakfast is included.