Scenic 5-Day Self Drive Tour of Iceland with Reykjavik, Blue Lagoon & Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon

Icebergs glistening in the low sunlight at the Diamond beach near Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon.
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Description

Summary

Tour starts
Keflavík Airport
Starting time
Flexible
Duration
5 days
Ending place
Keflavík Airport
Difficulty
Easy
Available
Apr. - Aug.
Ending time
Flexible
Minimum age
None

Description

Explore some of Iceland's most famous attractions on this five-day self-drive tour. Those eager to discover some natural sights that make Iceland unique should book this tour now.

You'll visit incredible places, including the Blue Lagoon geothermal spa, the Golden Circle sightseeing route, Reynisfjara black sand beach, the Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon, and many of Iceland's most famous waterfalls. 

Self-drive tours are perfect if you want to take complete control of your journey without worrying about tour groups and guides. However, you don't need to spend weeks planning the perfect Iceland itinerary. All the planning has been done for you with this tour.

You'll travel in total comfort throughout your trip. All lodgings will have an en-suite bathroom, and breakfast is always included, so you can rest comfortably between your days of adventure.

You'll also get a personal travel agent with this package who is available at any time of the day, seven days a week. If your plans change, you can cancel this tour for free, and you'll receive a full refund up to 24 hours before departure.

On the first day, collect your car and head to Reykjavik. You'll have the evening to unwind after your flight and settle in. If you like, you can relax at the world-famous Blue Lagoon geothermal spa before exploring the city. 

Bathing in the tranquil azure waters amid a volcanic landscape is the perfect start to your trip and a great introduction to Iceland.

You'll begin the proper adventure on the second day by driving around the world-famous Golden Circle sightseeing route. You're in the driver's seat, so spend the day doing what you like. 

Visit the foundation of Icelandic history, Thingvellir National Park, see the geysers at Geysir geothermal area, and enjoy the famous Gullfoss waterfall. Take your time at each destination to experience the true wonders of the Golden Circle in the best way.

Further along on your trip, you will travel alongside the infamous glacier and volcano Eyjafjallajokull and past the stunning Seljalandsfoss and Skogafoss waterfalls.

The highlight of the South Coast is the otherworldly Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon, where you can sail among enormous icebergs and walk along the rugged black sand shores of Diamond Beach. 

Often referred to as the crown jewel of Iceland, the Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon will leave you amazed by the genuinely awe-inspiring moving icebergs. You may spot some seals resting in the lagoon if you're lucky.

A boat trip around the glacier lagoon is just one option to add to your itinerary. You can also go horse riding, glacier hiking, snowmobiling, and even explore the ice caves. All these adventures are at your fingertips and promise lasting memories of your arctic holiday.

You are visiting Iceland to experience nature at its best and escape the city and its crowds, so some hidden gems and spectacular attractions not known to many others are included on this tour. People love this tour, and it is very highly rated. 

You'll be provided with a detailed itinerary when you book. This guide helps ensure you don't miss anything during your trip, which can be a risk when planning alone. 

Take advantage of this opportunity to see some of Iceland's best attractions in five days. Check availability now by choosing a date.

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Included

4 nights of accommodation (different levels available)
New vehicle rental for five days (Toyota Aygo or similar. Upgrades available)
CDW insurance for super budget level vehicle, other levels include gravel protection insurance
Free Wi-Fi in vehicle
Detailed itinerary
Personal travel agent
Taxes
Breakfast at your accommodation

Activities

Glacier Hiking
Snorkelling
Snowmobile
Horse Riding
Sightseeing
Boat Trip
Hot Spring Bathing
Bird watching
Ice Caving
Self drive

Daily itinerary

Day 1
Reykjavik's Hallgrimskirkja church, one of the most recognizable sights in the city, in the midnight sun.

Day 1 - Arrival in Iceland

The first day of your summer self-drive tour in Iceland starts when you arrive. Pick up your car from the friendly staff at the Keflavik International Airport after landing, and begin your excitement-packed vacation in Iceland. 

To reach Reykjavik, you will drive through the charred and blackened lava fields of the Reykjanes Peninsula. This area was used to train American astronauts before the moon landing. As you pursue the nearly an hour of drive, on your left, you will see rugged coasts framed by the North Atlantic Ocean.

You could stop at the Blue Lagoon geothermal spa on your way to Iceland's capital city. This world-renowned spa is known for its healing waters, vivid azure colors, and luxurious treatments. 

It is in the middle of a moss-covered lava field, giving it an otherworldly atmosphere. If you add the Blue Lagoon geothermal spa to your itinerary, the trip will be arranged according to your flights. 

If there is no time to visit the spa today, it can be added to another day. Your travel agent will be able to arrange this for you. If you have extra free time, there is still plenty to see and do in Reykjavik and the Reykjanes Peninsula.

When you are ready, head for your accommodation in the city. Even though it is small, Reykjavik is a vibrant and busy place. You can visit the unique boutiques, dine at one of the fresh seafood restaurants, or enjoy a hot drink at a gourmet coffee shop or a craft beer at a local bar. 

Since you're in Iceland during summertime, make the most of the midnight sun and stroll around the streets of Reykjavik late into the night.

Tonight, you'll stay at your comfortable accommodation in the city. All rooms have an en-suite bathroom.

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Day 2
The Strokkur geyser erupts into the air in the Geysir geothermal area, one of the stops on the Golden Circle sightseeing route.

Day 2 - Golden Circle Sightseeing

On the second day of your self-drive tour in Iceland, you'll see the sights of the Golden Circle and have the option to take a snorkeling, horse-riding, or snowmobile tour.

On the ever-popular Golden Circle sightseeing route, your first stop is the Thingvellir National Park, a UNESCO heritage site where the parliament of Iceland was founded in 930 AD. 

The area stands atop the tectonic rift, where the Eurasian and North American tectonic plates meet. They constantly push and pull at each other, forming a landscape of torn clefts and fissures surrounded by lava fields. Thingvallavatn, the largest lake in Iceland, was also made this way. 

There, you can visit the Silfra fissure and go for an optional snorkeling tour or walk along the Almannagja gorge and stand at the same place as the lawmakers of old. Participants in the snorkeling excursion need to be comfortable in the water and be able to swim.

Your next stop is the Haukadalur valley. Home of the Haukdaelir clan in the historical era of the Sagas, this valley is now best known for its massive hot springs. The largest one, Geysir, lends its name to all geysers in the English language.

The powerful nearby geyser, Strokkur, erupts every few minutes and can explode up to 60 feet (20 meters) high. All around, geysers of all sizes spew mineral-rich water over the clay, turning the terrain into shades of brown and red.

Your last stop of the Golden Circle is the magnificent waterfall, Gullfoss. This beautiful feature lies in the glacial river Hvita and has a drop of more than 105 feet (32 meters).

Gullfoss, "The Golden Waterfall," is much loved by the locals as one of Iceland's most impressive waterfalls. From here, you can choose to opt for a snowmobiling tour.

If neither snowmobiling nor snorkeling appeals to you, you can opt for a horse-riding tour to meet the charming Icelandic horse.

Your accommodation for the night will be in the nearby Southwest Iceland region.

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Day 3
The ice of Solheimajokull glacier, where you can go glacier hiking in Iceland.

Day 3 - Black Sands and White Glaciers

On the third day of your self-drive tour in Iceland, you'll visit some of Iceland's most spectacular sights. These include the Solheimajokull glacier, Reynisfjara black sand beach, and Skaftafell Nature Reserve, amongst other stops.

Today, you will head east. You will pass over the black sands of Solheimajokull glacier, where you can go either snowmobiling or glacier hiking before reaching the small but famous fishing village of Vik. 

There, you can opt for an exciting tour to Myrdalsjokull glacier, where you visit a stunning ice cave, the only one of its kind accessible during summer. If you join the tour, experienced guides will lead you through the glacier and into the chambers of the ice cave.

Near Vik is the awe-inspiring black sand beach Reynisfjara, where the tall rock stacks stand in the North Atlantic Ocean. The beach also has a cliff face of distinctive hexagonal basalt columns. 

The next highlight is the Skaftafell Nature Reserve, nestled under the largest glacier in Iceland, Vatnajokull. Skaftafell, part of Vatnajokull National Park, has a wide array of walking paths and hikes of various mobility and difficulty levels. 

Among them is a brilliant 3.1 mile (5 kilometers) walk to Svartifoss waterfall, hidden in a canyon above the Visitor Centre.

Driving away from the impressive glacier tongues of Skaftafell, you will reach the crown jewel of Iceland's natural wonders, the Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon. 

This lagoon is well known for the massive icebergs that break away from the Breidamerkurjokull glacier above and now float in it. Home to seals and fish, the lagoon is teeming with life.

The black sand beach across the bridge has earned the nickname Diamond Beach due to the broken chunks of ice that rest on the dark sand, like precious stones sparkling in the sunlight.

You will spend the night at a comfortable accommodation in Southeast Iceland, near the Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon.

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Day 4
The beautiful Jokulsarlon glacier lagoonwhere icebergs float peacefully on the freezing water.

Day 4 - Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon and Fjadrargljufur canyon

On the fourth day of your self-drive tour in Iceland, you can explore Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon or Skaftafell Nature Reserve further before you head back to Reykjavik for your last night in the city.

Start the day by exploring more of the Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon. The lagoon and nearby Diamond Beach constantly change, so it looks different daily.

In the summertime, a highly recommended option is to take a boat ride on the lagoon before returning to the capital. You can choose between a zodiac or a larger amphibious vessel. Glacier hiking back in the Skaftafell National Park is also a possibility.

On your way back to Reykjavik, you can stop anywhere that you perhaps missed on the previous day.

One recommended stop is the Fjadrargljufur canyon near the village of Klaustur, which offers a short hike to a green oasis straight from a fairytale. 

Near the black sand beach Reynisfjara, head for the "door-hole" mountain, Dyrholaey, where you might spot an adorable puffin or two. Dyrholaey is a popular nesting site for them. The small lighthouse at the top of Dyrholaey is no less charming from a distance. 

Another worthy stop is the Seljavallalaug pool. Hidden in a mountain crevasse, this is one of the oldest swimming pools in the country. There's no admission fee to swim here.

When you've finished your adventures for the day, you can head back to Reykjavik.

When you return to the city, you will have the chance to spend your last evening basking in Nordic culture. You can visit the Harpa Concert Hall and enjoy the view, check out the 3D large map of Iceland inside City Hall, see some of the late-open museums, or relax at one of the local jazz hotspots or in a local hot tub.

You'll spend the last night of your tour in comfortable accommodation in Reykjavik.

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Day 5
The warm, azure waters of the Blue Lagoon geothermal spa.

Day 5 - Departure Day

On the last day of your tour, you may be able to do some more sightseeing, depending on the time of your flight home.

For those who have a later flight, you can visit the Blue Lagoon geothermal spa today. The Blue Lagoon geothermal spa is just a 15-minute drive from Keflavik International Airport, so it’s the perfect stop before you head home. 

The Blue Lagoon geothermal spa is the perfect place to relax as you bathe in the warm, mineral-rich waters and reflect on the incredible adventure you have just taken in the land of fire and ice. 

The waters at the Blue Lagoon geothermal spa are rich in silica and sulfur and are thought to have healing properties. You can take silica mud from the sides of the pools and apply it as a face mask.

As well as the geothermal pools, the Blue Lagoon has a restaurant and café where you can enjoy refreshments. If you’re looking for an additional treat, you can book a massage in the spa.

If you’d prefer, you can explore more of Reykjavik on your final day in Iceland. Enjoy a wander around the city, pop into one of the many museums and galleries, or pick up souvenirs from the Laugavegur shopping street. 

When ready, you can head to the Keflavik International Airport and drop your rental vehicle off here. Be sure to leave plenty of time to check in for your flight home.

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What to bring

Warm, waterproof clothing
Good hiking shoes
Swimsuit and towel
Camera
Reusable water bottle
Snacks

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.

Some optional activities might require you to have a valid driver's license, or you might need to send additional information to your travel planner. Please note that you might need to present medical documents should you choose to go snorkeling, and participants need to be comfortable in the water and be able to swim.

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

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Accommodation

See our accommodation levels below and our preferred accommodation partners under each day in the daily itinerary.

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).

Teenagers and children will be arranged in the same room with parents. If additional room(s) is needed, additional costs will incur.

Guide to Iceland will provide you with the best available accommodation 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. If our preferred partners are fully booked at the time of your booking, we will find another suitable accommodation for you of similar level.

Please note that not all locations offer quality level accommodation. Comfort level accommodation will be arranged at those particular locations, which is reflected in the quality level upgrade price.

We always do our best to accommodate special requests, which may incur additional costs. Press choose a date 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, of maximum 2 years of age. Super Budget levels come with standard CDW insurance, while all other levels also include Gravel Protection (GP) insurance. Please note that off-road driving is illegal for all types of cars.

All levels come equipped with free Wi-fi. You can enjoy unlimited data with the Wi-Fi device, which can be connected to up to 10 devices at once. The car rental will provide 24-hour roadside emergency services.

Age requirement for each level can be found below. For all levels, the driver must possess a valid driving license for at least one year before the date of the rental.

We recommend Budget 4X4 level for summer driving and Comfort 4X4 for winter driving.

Super Budget 2WD

A small 2WD vehicle such as Toyota Aygo or similar, fit for basic travelling in everyday conditions. Compact and comfortable for up to 2 travellers with very little luggage. No highland capabilities. The driver must be of 20 years of age or above.

Budget 2WD

A basic 2WD vehicle, such as a Toyota Yaris or similar, suitable for travelling in everyday conditions. Comfortable for 3 travellers with light luggage. This vehicle does not have highland capabilities. The driver must be of 20 years of age or above.

Budget 4x4

A basic 4WD (4X4) jeep or SUV such as a Dacia Duster or similar. Comfortably fit up to 3 travellers with 2 large pieces of luggage. Fit for most travel and decent for snow and off-asphalt driving. Has basic highland capabilities. The driver must be of 20 years of age or above.

Comfort 4x4

A medium-sized 4WD (4x4) jeep or SUV such as a Toyota Rav4 (automatic) and Suzuki Vitara (manual), or similar. Comfortably fit up to 4 travelers with 3 large pieces of luggage. Fit for most travel and good for snow and off-asphalt driving. Has basic highland capabilities. The driver must be of 21 years of age or above.

Luxury 4x4

A large 4WD jeep such as a Toyota Land Cruiser or similar. Comfortable for up to 4 travellers with 4 large pieces of luggage. Fit for nearly all travelling. Has full highland capabilities to drive on accessible mountain roads. The driver must be of 21 years of age or above.

Van

A large 9-seater van such as a Mercedes Benz Vito or similar. Comfortable for 5 to 7 travelers. If seated full, luggage space is limited. The driver must be of 23 years of age or above.

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