West Coast & Snaefellsnes Peninsula with Lava Caving & Northern Lights Hunting | 2 Day Tour

West Coast & Snaefellsnes Peninsula with Lava Caving & Northern Lights Hunting | 2 Day Tour
Explore the West of Iceland and see the magical Snæfellsnes peninsula.
Frosty landscapes around Kirkjufell mountain on the Snæfellsnes Peninsula.
A black church on the Snæfellsnes Peninsula under the Northern Lights.
Dramatic cliffs near Arnarstapi village on the Snæfellsnes Peninsula.
The trickling Hraunfossar waterfalls on Iceland's west coast.
The stunning coastline near Snæfellsnes Peninsula's Arnarstapi village.
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Based on 25 traveller reviews

Explore the beauty of west Iceland in the winter with this fantastic 2-day tour to Snæfellsnes Peninsula, where you’ll see waterfalls, hot springs, lava fields, white and black sand beaches, and a legendary glacier. You'll also visit historic villages, step inside an 8,000-year-old lava cave, and hunt for the elusive Northern Lights. Those looking for a tour that combines Iceland’s breathtaking beauty with its rich history (and just a dash of adventure) need to look no further.

The Snæfellsnes Peninsula is often referred to as ‘Iceland in Miniature’ because of its many and varied natural formations. On this tour, you'll not only explore this fascinating region, but also the equally impressive albeit often overlooked west coast.

You'll be picked up in the morning by a professional guide and driver who will take you on an epic journey around western Iceland where you’ll trek the Hvalfjörður fjord, visit the geothermal area at Deildartunguhver hot spring, learn about Vikings and the Sagas, watch waterfalls cascade, and spot seals lounging on a white sand beach.

After spending a restful night at one of the best available hotels on the Snæfellsnes Peninsula, you will hike along a path that takes you past dramatic cliffs, explore a black pebble beach, descend into a lava tube, and photograph Iceland’s most iconic mountain, Kirkjufell, all in the shadow of the impressive Snæfellsjökull glacier.

Discover some of Iceland’s most iconic sites as well as some hidden gems with this excellent tour. Check availability by choosing a date.


Quick facts

Tour information:
  • Available: Oct. - Mar.
  • Duration: 2 days
  • Activities: Caving, Sightseeing, Northern lights hunting, Cultural Activity
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Minimum age: 8 years.
  • Languages: English
  • Highlights: West Iceland , Reykjavík, Snæfellsjökull, Hraunfossar, Deildartunguhver, Snæfellsnes, Hvalfjörður, Hellnar, Reykholt, Barnafoss, Gerðuberg, Arnarstapi, Kirkjufell, Esjan, Grundarfjörður, Vatnshellir Cave, Berserkjahraun, Lóndrangar, Djúpalónssandur, Ytri Tunga Beach
Pickup information:
  • Pickup time : 08:00.

Please be at your pickup location in time for your departure. Should your pickup location be at a bus stop and you need assistance finding it, seek guidance in your Hotel's reception or contact your tour provider directly.

Included:
  • Two day guided minibus tour of the West Coast and Snæfellsnes Peninsula

  • One night in accommodation on the Snæfellsnes Peninsula, breakfast included

  • Lava Cave Tour

  • Professional English speaking guide

  • Taxes

  • Lunch and dinner


What to bring:
  • Warm and waterproof clothes

  • Good hiking shoes


Good to know:

Customers travelling on their own will receive a single room. Reservations for 2 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 2 triple rooms and 1 double. If these arrangements do not meet your requirements, please contact the provider.

The Northern Lights are a natural phenomenon, and therefore cannot be guaranteed, but this itinerary is designed to maximise your chances to see them if weather allows.

It can happen, in the case of extreme weather, that an activity is cancelled. If your chosen activity is cancelled, we will assist you with rearranging or booking other activities when possible, and any potential price difference will be refunded to you.

Note that Icelandic roads and pavements can be slippery in the wintertime. We recommend you bring shoes with slip-resistant soles or ice-grip shoe covers. The covers can be purchased in most supermarkets and gas stations around the country.

For your convenience, it is recommended that you pack lightly for this tour, in a small bag or backpack. If you have large luggage with you, please check with your accommodation if they offer luggage storage for your time on this tour. If that is not a possibility, you can take your larger luggage along for a small fee.

Please note that only pick up and drop-off from designated pick up locations in the greater capital area is available, not from Keflavík International Airport. Therefore, we do not recommend attempting to start this tour on your arrival day in Iceland.

Arrival time back to Reykjavík at the end of your tour can vary depending on weather and traffic. It is highly recommended that you do not book your flight home the same night as bad weather or delays could affect your journey. Please be sure to arrange accommodation for this evening and an airport transfer the next day to take you to Keflavík International Airport for your departure.



Daily itinerary

Day 1 - Vikings on the West Coast


Hraunfossar is a photographer magnet for its unique look and rich colours, especially in the autumn


Today, your two-day adventure in the west of Iceland begins. You'll set off in the morning to explore vast lava fields, cascading waterfalls, dark caves, white and black sand beaches, historical villages, and a mighty glacier.

Your guide will pick you up in a comfortable minibus in the morning and whisk you off to the mountain that overlooks Reykjavik, Mt. Esja. You'll drive along its foot until you reach the scenic Hvalfjörður fjord, also known as the “whale fjord”. As you drive past snow-capped mountains and open fields, you’ll see the remnants of an abandoned naval base that was occupied by the British during WWII.

Once you emerge from the fields of Hvalfjörður, you will make your way to the historic Borgarfjörður, a region where over a thousand years ago Vikings sailors settled after leaving their homeland of Norway to conquer the open sea.

You’ll make a stop in Reykholtsdalur valley where you’ll learn about the powerful forces at work below your feet: Deildartunguhver, Europe’s most powerful hot spring. Then it's off to the village of Reykholt where the poet, lawspeaker, and historian Snorri Sturluson lived during the Middle Ages. Snorri was the author of several codices that are still invaluable records of the Old Norse language and mythology.

Close by are two stunning waterfalls, Hraunfossar and Barnafoss. The former is fed by subterranean water that seeps through pores in the dark lava. The latter, Barnafoss, through a narrow gorge.

You’ll then reach the Snæfellsnes Peninsula, where you'll mount Gerðuberg Cliff, a large wall of hexagonal basalt columns. Then, you’ll head to the beach of Ytri-Tunga. Unlike most Icelandic beaches, Ytri-Tunga has white or golden sand rather than the usual black, and it is considered one of best places in Iceland to spot seals.

You will have the whole day tomorrow to explore the rest of the peninsula. So after your seal-spotting trip at Ytri-Tunga, you'll head to your hotel for some shut eye. Of course, because you're visiting in the winter, there's always a chance you might see the beautiful Northern Lights dancing in the sky above as you nod off to sleep.


Day 2 - A Journey to the Centre of the Earth


Snaefellsnes has a lot of offer, including the famous Kirkjufell mountain, often seen with roaming Icelandic horses around.


Looming over the Snæfellsnes Peninsula is the mighty glacier, Snæfellsjökull, which was the centrepiece in the Jules Verne classic novel, Journey to the Centre of the Earth. It was the entry point to a great subterranean journey.

After a hearty breakfast, you'll set out to explore the sights and have your own underground adventure.

The first stop of the day will be at the hamlet of Arnarstapi. The harbour area at Arnarstapi is surrounded by basalt ravines and caves. A path will lead you along the coastline where you'll see the Atlantic Ocean surge around the dramatic cliffs, rushing against the rock arch Gatklettur.

You’ll then visit the black pebble beach of Djúpalónssandur. Before you reach the ocean, you'll have to trek through a natural labyrinth of akimbo lava pillars ripped straight from the pages of a fantasy novel. Once you reach the beach itself, you’ll walk on pebble shore, where you'll discover the flotsam and jetsam of a fishing trawler that sunk just offshore some 50 years ago.

Then it is time to follow in the footsteps of Professor Otto Lidenbrock and his nephew Axel who, according to Verne’s novel, ventured into a volcanic tube to find Earth’s core. Although you won't make it to the centre of the Earth, you will enter the lava cave Vatnshellir, where you'll follow a path the flowing lava created 8,000 years ago.

Once back on the surface, you'll continue your exploration of Snæfellsnes and head toward the northern side of the peninsula where you’ll see the iconic Kirkjufell mountain. Fans of the Game of Thrones series might recognise this striking feature as the arrowhead mountain in the background when the Children of the Forest created the first White Walker. 

On your way back to Reykjavík, you will drive through Hraunsfjörður, a stunning fjord surrounded by snow-capped mountains. The dark lava field of Berserkjahraun runs into the fjord, and your guide will undoubtedly tell you the baffling story of the road's construction.

As you drive through the open fields of the west coast, keep your eye on the sky; you never know if you might see the greens, pinks, and whites of the Northern Lights. You’ll then reach your accommodation in Reykjavík in the evening, bringing your epic journey around West Iceland to a close.


Accommodation

Below you can see our preferred partners for accommodation, Langaholt Guesthouse or Fosshótel Stykkishólmur. If not available, an alternative of the same standard will be arranged.

Langaholt Guesthouse

Langaholt Guesthouse is a family run guesthouse on the Snæfellsnes peninsula with a spectacular view of surrounding mountains and farmlands. Private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.

Fosshótel Stykkishólmur

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


Map


Verified reviews

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We had an amazing time! The landscapes were beautiful as were all the small towns. We were blessed with Sunny days and very little wind which is quite amazing for Iceland!! Our guide took us to some gorgeous small eating spots where we enjoyed homestyle cooking. I loved seeing the country in Winter but would love to come back in Summer! Totally fell in love with this country and the beautiful people. Thank you for such a wonderful tour!
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Our tour had 12 people in the bus, the seat was a bit small, especially with winter coat on. It could be better if bus has bigger seat. Overall, tour was great, our guide Orri was an excellent guide and driver. The road was icy and windy, Orri drove carefully and remind all passengers to wear seat belt all the time. He told us the story of each stop and gave us plenty of time to walk around the area and took photos. We enjoyed the tour a lot. Thank you Orri for the great job that you have done!
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Our tour early February was small, just four people. Our guide Helga was brilliant, sincere, patient, knowledgeable, excellent winter driver, informative, and allowed us enough time to get to know each stop well with her expert knowledge of folklore, history, and current situation. The Langaholt Guesthouse was commodious with a fine menu and friendly service. I enjoyed the 2-day tour very much and recommend it highly.
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Fantastic tour. Our guide was both personable and knowledgeable and really gave us an intimate look at the west of Iceland. When the weather turned bad, he came up with alternatives so we did not feel like we missed anything. Completely worth it.
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Attended the tour on 23-24 Nov. Our tour guide Almar is professional, kind and patient. In this trip, he always accompanied us to visit all scienc spots and introduced the history , explain local cuture. and tried to coordinate all members' problem. My friend and I have been impressed.
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Our tour guide, Good John, is amazing. He is doubtless rich in knowledge (whether you believe the tales he said or not), talkative, and friendly. This tour is also well-planned in terms of time management. I can't agree more with the previous comments about the spots being serene and breathtaking. That being said, my friends and I agree to disagree on the point of whether it is best to visit these places in wintertime.
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My friends and I have had a very enjoyable time in this tour! Our tour guide Karl is friendly and considerate, showing us the natural beauties around where he grew up, and made our tour as comfortable as possible. He told us about Iceland, its landscapes, lives of the Icelandics, hwo to capture Northern lights and so much more! The West Peninsula is a different scene from other more popular destinations. The places are serene while stunning. We liked every route and stop that we have made.
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A really nice guided tour of Snæfellsnes. knowledgable tour guide Karl. We are the only members of the tour so we basically had a private tour. He showed us several of the really "local places" that is not included in the itinerary, which we liked it very much. He even showed us his hometown! Nice tour, nice guide and most importantly, amazing view of Iceland.
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West Coast & Snaefellsnes Peninsula with Lava Caving & Northern Lights Hunting | 2 Day Tour
 
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