Northern Lights 2 in 1 Winter Tours of Iceland with the Golden Circle, Ice Caving & Snaefellsnes
Visit many of Iceland’s highlights over four days and save money while doing so with this discounted tour bundle. Those who want to mix their wintertime in Iceland with sightseeing and adventure while cutting costs should not miss this opportunity.
This combo consists of two tours, which will bring you to many famous sites and all three of Iceland’s National Parks. On the 3-day south coast tour, you will get to explore the Golden Circle, South Coast, and the Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon; you also get to embark on a glacier hike and an ice caving adventure. On the day tour to the Snaefellsnes Peninsula, you will see majestic waterfalls, stretches of dark lava fields, and a mighty glacier.
During the 3-day tour to the south coast, you will stay in country hotels along the trip for two nights, which are included in the price. This will cut down on driving time and put you right in the middle of the sites. You will also be transported around in comfortable minibusses throughout both tours, led by experienced guides, making the experience as personal and enjoyable as possible.
Iceland, during winter, is one of its most beautiful times. Many of the sites you visit will be draped in snow and sparkling with frost; the glaciers will be clad in fresh, electric blue ice; and the ice caves are open. These caves only occur in Iceland’s coldest months, and only then under certain conditions, so the chance to explore one is something very few have.
Of course, winter is also the season of the Northern Lights. There will be many hours of darkness each day, and whenever there is no cloud cover, you have a chance of seeing them. This is only amplified when you stay out in the country, where there is little light pollution.
Make the most of your time in Iceland throughout winter without breaking the bank. Check availability by choosing a date.
Day 1 - The Golden Circle
For your first tour, you will be picked up from Reykjavík early and start the day with a sightseeing trip around the three famous locations of the Golden Circle.
The first is Þingvellir National Park, the only UNESCO World Heritage Site on the Icelandic mainland. Here, early settlers founded a parliament that would last over a millennium in the shadows of the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates. The Park is located directly in the valley between the two, and nowhere else in the world can you see them so clearly. As they pull against each other, they tear ravines in the lava fields, making the landscape here rugged and spectacular.
The next site of the Golden Circle is the geyser Strokkur, located in the Geysir Geothermal Area. This remarkable feature blasts water to heights that have before reached 130 feet (40 meters), and it goes off regularly: every five to ten minutes. In the intervals between the eruptions, you can explore the many hot springs that dot the area.
Finally, you will see ‘the Golden Waterfall’, Gullfoss. A jewel in the crown of Iceland’s nature, this massive, mighty fall pours into a dramatic canyon with incredible force; the sight of it is awe-inspiring.
You will then head to your first country hotel, located in the Hvolsvöllur area.
Day 2 - The South Coast with Glacier Hiking
You will start day two by visiting two of the country’s most loved and well-known waterfalls, Seljalandsfoss and Skógafoss. Both fall over 197 feet (60 meters) high from impressive cliffs and can be approached up close for spectacular views and photographs.
Next, you will reach Sólheimajökull glacier and strap on your crampons - it’s time for your glacier hike! After a safety briefing and putting on the right equipment, you will be led upon the surface of the ice cap to take in the otherworldly views. Your trek up here will introduce you to some incredible formations, such as dramatic ridges and plunging crevasses, and your guide will tell you all about the science of the glaciers.
Following this exhilarating adventure, you’ll return to the minibus and continue along the South Coast. The next stop will be at the black sand beach Reynisfjara, renowned for its haunting beauty and notorious sneaker waves. Don’t let the former make you forget the latter.
This beach has fascinating geology, most notably the Reynisdrangar sea stacks, which stand tall from the tumultuous ocean. You will also see the Dyrhólaey rock arch, a massive feature that reaches from the cliffs out into the sea.
After a brief visit to the village of Vík for refreshments, you will continue up to your final destinations of the day, Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon and the Diamond Beach.
The glacier lagoon is a place of unimaginable beauty. Icebergs, separating from a distant glacier tongue, cruise gently across the waters, some the size of multi-story buildings, as they make their way towards the ocean. As you walk along the lake’s shores, you will no doubt be mesmerized by their scale, coloration, and beauty. If you keep a keen enough eye out, you are also likely to spot some seals.
The Diamond Beach is just a short walk away. Its name comes from the fact that the icebergs wash up on the shore here, and glisten against the black sands like jewels. Seeing this stretch of coast, and the lagoon, under the Northern Lights is a spectacular experience, so as night falls, keep an eye on the sky.
It should be noted that Jökulsárlón is within Vatnajökull National Park, meaning you will have now seen two of the three National Parks of Iceland.
You will spend tonight at a hotel in the Jökulsárlón area.
Day 3 - Ice Caves and Return to Reykjavik
You will start day three in the most incredible way possible: by exploring an ice cave. You will be driven to wherever the caves have opened beneath Vatnajökull, Europe’s largest glacier, put on your safety equipment, and head inside.
The smooth, electric blue ice surrounding you is mesmerizing, as is the scale that some of these caves can reach. You will spend around an hour exploring, hearing all about how they form, and taking as many pictures as your camera can hold.
Once you have completed the ice cave, you will return to your minibus and head back to Reykjavík. The drive along the South Coast is long but beautiful, and you will stop for refreshments and any sites you missed the day before.
Once back in the capital, you will stay in the hotel of your choosing. Please note that accommodation is not included for this night.
Day 4 - The Snaefellsnes Peninsula
For your second tour, you will be picked up early from Reykjavík and whisked to ‘Iceland in Miniature’: the Snæfellsnes Peninsula. It has been named as such because a vast wealth of the landscapes and features found around Iceland are all packed onto this 56-mile (90-kilometer) stretch.
You will visit the fishing villages of Arnarstapi and Hellnar for some spectacular coastal scenery; nearby is the windswept settlement of Búðir, on the haunting Búðahraun lava field. The backdrop to all three of these locations will be the mighty Snæfellsjökull volcano and glacier; according to the novel ‘Journey to the Centre of the Earth’, it is said to have a cave that leads towards the deepest reaches of the world’s core. The Snæfellsnes National Park surrounds Snæfellsjökull, the third and final National Park you will travel through.
You will also get to see the standalone peak of Mount Kirkjufell, one of the most photographed mountains in the country. Djúpalónssandur beach is also on your schedule, where you can test your strength against the historic lifting stones to see how you would have fared as a fisherman of old. Finally, the Lóndrangar basalt stacks will awe you with their scale.
Once you have explored the peninsula, you will be driven back to Reykjavík, where you can spend the rest of your time in Iceland sightseeing around the city, visiting museums, or relaxing in geothermal pools. The choice is yours.
It is recommended you do not plan to fly home the same evening as your return to Reykjavík since bad weather and delays could affect your journey.
What to bring
Good to know
The Northern Lights are a natural phenomenon, and therefore cannot be guaranteed, but this itinerary is designed to maximize your chances to see them if the weather allows. Please be advised that there is no specific Northern Lights hunt on this tour, but your guide will notify you if the conditions are favorable and advise you on how to best spot them.
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.
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 the overnight tour. Additional suitcases can be taken on the overnight tour for a small fee.
You will arrive back in Reykjavík in the early evening. 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.