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Incredible 3-Day Golden Circle and South Coast Tour with Ice Caving from Reykjavik

Travelers explore a glacier in Skaftafell.
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Description

Details

Tour starts
Reykjavík, Iceland
Duration
3 days
Difficulty
Easy
Languages
English
Available
All year
Minimum age
8 years old

Description

Embark on an epic three-day winter trip through the incredible landscapes of Iceland by booking this once-in-a-lifetime adventure around the Golden Circle, into an ice cave, and across the South Coast. Any traveler hoping to pack their time in this magical country with unforgettable experiences should book while availability lasts!

This tour will be conducted in a modern minibus, providing you with a small group experience and free Wifi. Your guide is a friendly, local expert who will keep you safe and entertained throughout, and for two nights, you will stay in charming countryside hotels. All rooms have private bathrooms, and breakfast is complimentary. 

As this excursion is conducted in winter, you’ll also get several opportunities to hunt for and marvel over the spectacular northern lights!

After being picked up from Reykjavik, you will spend your first day touring the three fantastic sites of the Golden Circle: Thingvellir National Park, the Geysir Geothermal Area, and Gullfoss waterfall. Your guide will then take you to your lovely accommodation around the village of Kirkjubaejarklaustur. 

Day two will have you witness some of the country’s most sought-after and revered attractions. Jokulsarlon is a glacier lagoon renowned for the thousands of icebergs that fill it, while the Diamond Beach is a black-sand stretch of shore where the ice washes up to form a fairytale-like vision. You’ll then head to the breathtaking Skaftafell Nature Reserve, where your glacier hiking and ice-caving adventure awaits. Ice caves are incredibly rare natural phenomena, making this opportunity even more special.

After another night in the hotel, you’ll return to Reykjavik via the parade of sites that make up the South Coast. The canyon of Fjadrargljufur, the lava field of Eldhraun, the black sand beach of Reynisfjara with its geological marvels, and the waterfalls of Seljalandsfoss and Skogafoss are all on your schedule. With these attractions explored and enjoyed, you’ll return to your accommodation in Reykjavik.

Don’t miss this incredible three-day adventure around Iceland’s most iconic attractions by booking this Golden Circle, ice-caving, and South Coast tour. Check availability by choosing a date.

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Included

Pick-up and drop off from Reykjavik
A guided tour in a minibus
Visit to Golden Circle (Thingvellir National Park, Geysir and Gullfoss)
Visit to Seljalandsfoss, Skogafoss, Reynisfjara, Skaftafell, Jokulsarlon Ice Glacier Lagoon.
Hotel room with private bathroom
Breakfast included
Wifi on minibus

Activities

Glacier Hiking
Sightseeing
Northern lights hunting
Ice Caving

Daily itinerary

Day 1
A photo of Thingvellir from a drone.

Day 1 - The Golden Circle

Your friendly guide will pick you up in a modern minibus on the morning of day one of your three-day adventure in Iceland. After introductions to your small group, you’ll set out for the first major attraction of the Golden Circle, Thingvellir National Park.

This UNESCO World Heritage Site has something for everyone. Those fascinated by Iceland’s geological forces can marvel over the two tectonic plates that frame the park and enjoy being in a no-man’s-land between North America and Europe. Nature lovers will love the crystal clear springs, twisted birch forests, and surrounding volcanoes that define the site. Meanwhile, those interested in history can learn all about its role in the formation of Iceland’s parliament from 930 AD.

You’ll then head to the Geysir Geothermal Area. This place is best known for being home to the geyser of Strokkur, which can blast boiling water and steam over 60 feet (18 meters) into the air. You’ll watch it go off several times and can fill the minutes between by marveling over the surrounding hot springs, fumaroles, and smaller geysers.

You’ll next reach Gullfoss, one of Iceland’s most recognizable waterfalls. Falling in two dramatic tiers with an enormous cascade, it is a fantastic example of the country’s magnificent waterways. It is even more beautiful in winter due to the ice encasing the surrounding rocks and snow covering the surrounding landscapes.

Following your time here, your guide will escort you to your accommodation in Kirkjubaejarklaustur. Though quite a long drive away, the landscapes around you will be mesmerizing. Even when the sky falls dark, you can keep your eyes out the window in the hope of catching the aurora borealis.

You’ll have even more opportunities to hunt for the northern lights when you arrive at your countryside hotel due to its remoteness. Otherwise, get a good night’s sleep, as tomorrow promises to be one of the most unforgettable days of your holiday.

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Day 2
The entrance to an ice cave in Iceland.

Day 2 - Jokulsarlon and Ice Caving

On the second day of your excursion exploring the wonders of Iceland in winter, you will marvel over the Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon, Diamond Beach, Skaftafell Nature Reserve, and a rare and spectacular ice cave. Before setting out, you’ll enjoy breakfast at the hotel.

Jokulsarlon’s icebergs are breathtaking in their scale, vivid coloration, and sheer numbers. The lake is cluttered with them throughout the year as they slowly make their way towards the ocean. You’ll have plenty of time to stroll along the shore and will hopefully also spot some of the seals that call these waters home.

The black-sand Diamond Beach is just a short walk from here, where these icebergs finally come to rest after spending many months escaping the lagoon. The contrasts are stunning, with the blue ice shimmering against the dark shores and gleaming in the white foam of the gentle waves.

After making the most of these two unforgettable sites, your guide will drive you to Skaftafell, often called Iceland’s hiking paradise due to its abundance of trails and array of things to see. You’ll see the skeletons of birch trees nestled in the sheltered nooks of mountains, expanses of lava from past eruptions, beautiful rivers, and mighty surrounding glacier tongues, descending from Europe’s largest ice cap, Vatnajokull.

You will embark on your ice-caving adventure within one of these glacier tongues. Your guide will provide you with the necessary safety equipment before leading you up the white slopes to the entrance of your destination. As soon as you enter, you’ll see why such phenomena are at the top of the to-do list for many travelers. Vivid blues you can't imagine, magical rays of light bouncing off the ceiling, and winding corridors and open chambers make them fantastic places to explore and photograph.

With your thrilling adventure complete, you’ll return to your hotel. Hopefully, you’ll get a viewing of the northern lights as the cherry on top of your incredible day.

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Day 3
Skogafoss thunders to the earth in South Iceland.

Day 3 - The South Coast

On the final day of your three-day adventure around the best sites of Iceland, you’ll enjoy breakfast and then traverse the South Coast back to Reykjavik. As you’ll be driving in the opposite direction of travelers from the capital, you’ll avoid the significant crowds and enjoy the sites more peacefully.

If conditions allow, you’ll start by heading to the canyon of Fjadrargljufur. Photographers will particularly enjoy this gorgeous spot with its sheer cliffs, beautiful rivers, and flourishing moss. Next, you’ll head to the incredible lava field of Eldhraun, created by the eruption of the volcano fissure Laki in the 18th century, one of the largest volcanic events ever recorded.

The results of this eruption were catastrophic for Iceland and Europe due to the ash cloud blocking ports, poisoning crops and livestock, and denying the continent a whole summer. However, the lava field that was created is as beautiful as it was destructive.

You’ll then continue to the haunting black sand beach of Reynisfjara. This place is well known for its powerful waves, which build up from Antarctica due to the lack of landmasses in the way. It is also renowned for its geology. The cliffs of Reynisfjall have stacks of hexagonal basalt columns, and out to sea, you will marvel over the towering sea stack of Reynisdrangar, which early Icelanders believed to be two frozen trolls.

After refreshments at the village of Vik, you will continue to Skogafoss waterfall, a 200 foot (61 meters) tall feature that cascades with enormous power. You can approach it right up to its blossoming spray, although you should be cautious not to get wet! Your guide can tell you about the folklore of lost treasure associated with this spectacular feature.

Finally, you’ll reach Seljalandsfoss, a waterfall of a similar height but more unusual formation. Its gentle stream falls before a vast cavern, allowing guests to enjoy some unique perspectives. If the conditions are favorable, Seljandsfoss can even be fully encircled.

Your guide will then drive you back to Reykjavik. If the sky is still light, look out for the Westman Islands out to sea and the glaciers of Eyjafjallajokull and Myrdalsjokull inland. If it has turned dark, keep an eye out for another viewing of the aurora borealis.

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What to bring

Warm, waterproof clothing
Good hiking shoes
Camera

Good to know

Due to the unpredictability of Iceland's weather in winter, the itinerary may be adjusted by your guide for safety reasons.

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