8 Day Winter Self Drive | Ring Road & Golden Circle with Northern Lights Hunting

8 Day Winter Self Drive | Ring Road & Golden Circle with Northern Lights Hunting
The itinerary for the 8 Day Winter Self Drive Tour of the  Ring Road and Golden Circle with Northern Lights Hunting
Part of the Diamond Circle, between Lake Mývatn and the town of Akureyri, is a historic and naturally beautiful waterfall, captured here in midwinter.
Fortunate travellers will get the experience of seeing the aurora borealis materialise above south-east Iceland's glacier lagoon.
Waves crash upon the shrinking icebergs of Diamond Beach, a stretch of coast by the Jökulsárlón lagoon in South Iceland.
Gullfoss waterfall in winter releasing glacial spray that freezes on the rocks and moss around it, creating a dramatic winter image.
Driving through the dark Icelandic landscapes outside of the short hours of sunlight provides guests with ample opportunities to see the northern lights.
Based on 5 traveller reviews

Make the most of your time in Iceland with this 8-day winter self-drive. Circle the entire country and travel to mesmerising places such as the famous Golden Circle sightseeing route, the spectacular South Coast, the quiet Eastfjords, and the dramatic North.

Visit stunning locations such as the Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon and Lake Mývatn on a self-drive tour that is suited for anyone wanting to travel on their own terms during the Northern Lights season.

You are behind the wheel so you can create your own adventure. There are no bus schedules or impatient tour guides to worry about, so you’ll be free to spend as much time in each spot as you like. Upon booking, you’ll receive a personal itinerary guiding you to your accommodation each night, to the most popular attractions as well as some hidden gems.

You’ll circle the entire ring road on this tour, seeing geysers erupt, waves crashing on Reynisfjara black sand beach, and icebergs drift on the Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon. Furthermore, you will also receive a ticket to the Blue Lagoon where you can relax in the healing silica waters of this famous spa.

During the booking process, you can add on an array of extra adventures to spice up your journey. As this is a winter tour, you’ll have the rare opportunity of visiting an ice cave which is only accessible for a few months each year. You can also opt for tours where you get to know glaciers better with either a hike or by racing across the ice cap on a snowmobile.

Get to know the country with this extensive 8-day winter self-drive tour. Enjoy the scenic Icelandic nature while the elusive Northern Lights dance in the Arctic sky above you. Check availability by choosing a date.

Quick facts

Tour information:
  • Available: Oct. - Apr.
  • Duration: 8 days
  • Activities: Glacier Hiking, Snorkelling, Snowmobile, Sightseeing, Northern lights hunting, Cultural Activity, Ice Caving, Self drive
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Highlights: Blue Lagoon, Golden Circle, East Iceland, West Iceland , Reykjavík, Akureyri, Jökulsárlón, Hvítá River, Vatnajökull, Mývatn, Dimmuborgir, Húsavík, Goðafoss, Skógafoss, Seljalandsfoss, Geysir, Gullfoss, Eyjafjallajökull, Þingvellir, Hraunfossar, Deildartunguhver, Katla, Strokkur, Sólheimajökull, Mýrdalsjökull, Skaftafell, Hveravellir, Silfra, Reynisfjara Black Sand Beach, Barnafoss, Vík í Mýrdal, Egilsstaðir, Hvolsvöllur, Reynisdrangar, Hvítserkur, Öxarárfoss, Haukadalur, Mývatn Nature Baths, Námaskarð, Lagarfljót, Hallormsstaðaskógur, South Coast, Diamond Beach, Ring Road
Pickup information:
  • Pickup time : Flexible.

Please consult your itinerary for further information.
  • 7 nights of accommodation (different levels available; breakfast included for Comfort and Quality levels; more detailed info below)

  • Vehicle for 8 days (Toyota Rav4 4x4 or similar. Upgrades available)

  • CDW and SCDW insurance along gravel protection for car rental

  • GPS System

  • Detailed Itinerary with fun and practical information on the nature, history and culture of Iceland

  • Hands-on travel agent to oversee your itinerary

  • Taxes

  • Fuel

  • Flights

  • Lunch and dinner

  • Optional excursions

What to bring:
  • Warm and waterproof clothes

  • Winter hiking shoes

  • Driver's Licence

  • Swimsuit and towel

  • Camera

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 need either 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 snorkelling or diving.

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. Please note that though the tour is available to book from October to April, the ice caves are only accessible from November to March each year.

This self-drive is set to take place at wintertime. Conditions in Iceland can vary greatly during that season; snow and ice are commonplace, and Iceland has limited daylight hours. Please consider your ability to drive in winter conditions before booking this tour. If you feel insecure about driving in these conditions, we recommend a package tour instead.

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.

Daily itinerary

Day 1 - Welcome to Iceland

The Blue Lagoon is a pool, spa and treatment centre on the Reykjanes Peninsula, open to visitors throughout the year.

After arriving in Iceland, find your vehicle at Keflavík International Airport and drive through the moss-covered lava fields of the Reykjanes Peninsula.

Located on this barren terrain is the famous Blue Lagoon. You can start your Icelandic adventure right away by taking a relaxing soak in the healing waters of the spa; it is a sure way to cure all jet-lag.

Feeling refreshed after your dip in the Blue Lagoon, you will then head on out to Iceland’s capital, Reykjavík, where you will find your accommodations for the night.

Preferred accommodation in Reykjavík

Reykjavík Budget

Capital Inn is a 2 star hotel 3 km out of the city centre, with a short walk to Kringlan shopping mall and Nauthólsvík geothermal beach. Private bedrooms with a washbasin but shared bathrooms. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is not included.

Reykjavík Comfort

The Fosshótel chain has four 3-4 star Hotels located in and around the city center of Reykjavík. There is a short walk from all of the hotels to attractions, cafés, restaurants, museums and the nightlife. All offer private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.

Reykjavík Quality

Alda Hotel is a 4 star hotel situated on Laugavegur, Reykjavík's main shopping street in the city centre. Private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Free access to a fitness room with a sauna and a hot tub. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.

Day 2 - The Golden Circle

In a valley in south Iceland, which cuts through a beautiful rural landscape, is the Golden Circle's famous waterfall Gullfoss.

Today your adventure on the road begins. You’ll start the day by visiting the country's most famous area, and home to three of its most celebrated sites; the Golden Circle.

The first stop on this trio of attractions is the UNESCO world heritage site Þingvellir National Park. This is where Viking settlers founded the nation’s parliament, Alþingi, in the year 930 AD. The park is also located in a rift valley where two tectonic plates are drifting apart, causing cracks and fissures in the terrain as they tear up the landscape around.

One of those fissures, Silfra, is located on the boundary of the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates. It is filled with crystal clear meltwater from Langjökull, Iceland’s second largest glacier. The fissure is a popular snorkelling site, and during the booking process, you can opt for a tour where you can enjoy the unparalleled visibility of the blue waters of Silfra.

Next up is the Geysir geothermal area which is home to Iceland’s most famous water feature, the erupting hot springs. The geyser Strokkur spouts boiling geothermal water 15-20 metres high in the air every 5-10 minutes, showing you the full power of the Icelandic nature.

From there you’ll move on to Gullfoss waterfall where you will witness glacial water from the river Hvítá plunge down 32-metres into a dramatic gorge. You’ll be dazzled over this iconic attraction as the rumbling sounds of Gulfoss' cascading water echoes in your ears.

If you elected to do so during the booking process, you could join a super jeep excursion at Gullfoss which will take you to Langjökull, the glacier that feeds the river Hvítá. Once there, you will mount a snowmobile and race across the whiteness of the ice cap.

After a day of sightseeing and adventures, you will head to the quiet village of Hvolsvöllur where you will find your accommodations for the evening.

Preferred accommodation by Hvolsvöllur

Hvolsvöllur Budget

Hellishólar Guesthouse is a 2 star hotel located a few kilometres east of Hvolsvöllur, heading towards Þórsmörk. Private bedrooms with shared bathrooms. Free access to outdoor hot tubs. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast not included.

Hvolsvöllur Comfort

Hotel Hvolsvöllur is a 3 star hotel centrally located in Hvolsvöllur. Private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Free access to outdoor hot tubs. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.

Hvolsvöllur Quality

Hotel Rangá is a 4 star hotel situated between the towns of Hella and Hvolsvöllur. Private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Views towards Rangá river or Hekla volcano. Free access to outdoor hot tubs. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.

Day 3 - A Day of Glaciers

Reynisfjara beach is a notorious location, particularly in the winter months, due to its violent sneaker waves which can crash upon the shore even on still days.

Today you’ll explore the myriad of wonders on Iceland’s South Coast, where you’ll see picturesque waterfalls, stretches of black sand beaches, and magnificent glaciers.

Start the day by driving towards Seljalandsfoss waterfall, a high and narrow cascade that plunges down 62-metres over a concaved cliff. Seljalandsfoss is easily spotted from the road long before you reach it, so you can feel the excitement grow as you get closer and closer.

You’ll then make your way to another, yet equally impressive waterfall, Skógafoss. This cascade is much wider than Seljalandsfoss and has a more classic look. You can walk right up to the falling water and feel the spray on your face.

As you drive this stretch of road, towering over you will be the infamous Eyjafjallajökull glacier volcano and its big brother, Mýrdalsjökull glacier. If you'd like to get up close and personal with glaciers, today is the day to do so.

You can opt for a glacier hike on one of Mýrdalsjökull outlet glaciers, Sólheimajökull, where you get to walk the millennia-old ice cap, past deep blue crevasses and high peaks which are blackened from volcanic eruptions.

Near Mýrdalsjökull lies the small village of Vík. This coastal town lies near Reynisfjara, a gorgeous black sand beach which is edged in by massive cliffs of basalt rock columns. Out in the ocean rise the 66-metre high Reynisdrangar sea stalks.

From Vík you’ll continue your journey east, in the direction of Europe’s largest glacier, Vatnajökull. In the realm of the ice cap lies Skaftafell Nature Reserve. Skaftafell is renowned for various hiking trails and tracks, and if you are not too tired after a day of sightseeing, you can walk around the beautiful landscape before finding your accommodations in the area.

Preferred accommodation by Skaftafell

Skaftafell Budget

Klausturhof Guesthouse is centrally located within Kirkjubæjarklaustur. Private bedrooms with shared bathroom. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast not included.

Skaftafell Comfort

Hotel Geirland is a 3 star hotel located in the countryside 2 kilometres away from Kirkjubæjarklaustur. Private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.

Skaftafell Quality

Fosshotel Glacier Lagoon is a 4 star hotel located right between Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon and Skaftafell Nature Reserve. Private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Ocean or mountain views. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.

Day 4 - Ice Cave and the Eastern Fjords

One of the three awesome attractions of Vatnajökull National Park in winter is its ice caves; the others are Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon and Skaftafell Nature Reserve.

A short drive from Skaftafell is the beautiful Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon, where enormous icebergs that have broken off Vatnajökull glacier drift towards the open ocean.

Spend some time at Jökulsárlón and take in the serenity of the area. Watch the icebergs move with the waves and listen to the crackling sound they make when they break. In the winter, a large number of seals gather at the mouth of the lagoon to catch fish or laze on the bergs.

A short walk away is the Diamond Beach where ice chunks, polished by the ocean, wash up on shore and glisten in the sunlight, resembling the precious stones that give the beach its name.

If you are travelling between November and March, you will have the rare opportunity to visit an authentic ice cave in Vatnajökull glacier. These caves are only accessible in the winter as they flood during summertime. You can plan a visit during the booking process and descend into one of these caves and immerse yourself in the crystalline beauty of the glacier.

Then you head out to the eastern fjords of Iceland, a large area of vast, untouched beauty. You’ll zigzag your way through the fjords, past jagged mountains, deserted inlets, and sleeping fishing villages while the mighty Vatnajökull watches over you in the West.

The road will take you past the picturesque Vestrahorn and Eystrahorn mountains, a popular photography destination as it is possible to get a shot of the peaks mirrored in the surrounding seawater.

The largest settlement in the East, Egilsstaðir, will be your destination for the day. If the sky is clear, you might be able to enjoy the enigmatic Northern Lights.

Preferred accommodation by Egilsstaðir

Egilsstaðir Budget

Grái Hundurinn Guesthouse is located in a forested area 25km south of Egilsstaðir, and a 15 minute walk from Atlavík bay. Private bedrooms with shared bathrooms. Free Wi-Fi available in nearby sister hotel. Breakfast not included.

Egilsstaðir Comfort

Lake Hotel Egilsstaðir is a 3 star hotel located in a short walking distance from the centre of Egilsstaðir but also right by the lake. Private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Spa on site for additional price. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.

Egilsstaðir Quality

Icelandair Hotel Hérað is a 3 star hotel centrally located within Egilsstaðir town. Bright, private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included, with focus on local ingredients.

Day 5 - The Eastfjords and Lake Myvatn

Mud-pools, vents and hot springs at north Iceland's Hveravellir geothermal area fill the air with sulphuric smoke.

Today you’ll get to explore the vast wilderness of the Eastfjords further. The area is known for its wealth of diverse wildlife. On your travels of this part of the country, keep an eye out for herds of reindeer, as this is the only region in Iceland where you can find them wild.

Close to Egilsstaðir are the most popular attraction of the East; the forest Hallormsstaðaskógur and the great lake Lagarfljót.

The forest is Iceland’s largest wooded area. There you’ll find numerous hiking trails leading to waterfalls, streams, cliffs, moors and coves. You could also hike to the serene lake Lagarfljót to try to catch a glimpse of its famous resident; the great wyrm-monster Lagarfljótsormurinn.

After exploring the East to your heart’s content, you’ll move on to the North. Make your way towards the diverse sites of Lake Mývatn, situated in an area of active volcanism.

Free standing lava pillars and pseudocraters dominate Lake Mývatn’s landscape. The surrounding region is no less spectacular, as the whole area was formed by an eruption some 2,000 years ago.

You can also visit Dimmuborgir, a vast lava field of cliffs and pillars which create a strange and beautiful labyrinth of oddly shaped rock formations. Close by is Hveravellir, a high-temperature geothermal area of bubbling mud pools and steaming fumaroles.

An excellent way to unwind after a day of travelling is with a soak in the mineral-rich waters of Mývatn Nature Baths. Enjoy your time there, surrounded by nothing but the unspoilt nature of the Mývatn area. If the sky is clear of clouds, the dancing Northern Lights might pay you a visit as you soothe aching muscles in the geothermal waters of the Baths.

You’ll be spending the night in this otherworldly area of Mývatn.

Preferred accommodation by Mývatn

Mývatn Budget

Eldá Guesthouse is situated in Reykjahlíð village right by Lake Mývatn. Private bedrooms with shared bathrooms and shared kitchen. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast not included.

Mývatn Comfort

Hotel Gigur is a 2 star hotel on the southern side of Lake Mývatn, right next to Skútustaðagígar pseudo craters. Private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.

Mývatn Quality

Hotel Laxá is a 3 star hotel on the southern side of Lake Mývatn, with great views over the lake. Modern private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.

Day 6 - The Diversity of Northern Iceland

Cast in the pink light of a low winter sun, Goðafoss waterfall fights the freezing elements and continues to flow through the snowy landscapes of north Iceland.

Today you’ll travel through North Iceland, visiting divine waterfalls, quirky museums and bustling towns.

Start your day in the town of Húsavík on Skjálfandi Bay. The ocean around the town is home to around 23 species of whales and dolphins, and so a trip to Húsavík Whale Museum is highly recommended.

Make your way west from Húsavík, in the direction of the town of Akureyri. Along the way, you can stop at the Transport Museum of Ystafell. This unusual museum is every auto enthusiast dream as it has an extensive collection of restored classic cars as well as a ‘graveyard’ for derelict cars and trucks.

Make another detour just as you reach Akureyri and find Iceland’s Christmas House. It doesn’t matter if you are travelling in December or April, it is always Yuletide at the Christmas House. Learn about Icelandic traditions such as the Yule Lads and the giantess Grýla, or get some presents and decorations for the next festival.

After getting into the Christmas spirit, you can head to the town of Akureyri, the largest settlement in the North. Find your accommodation, and if you are not too tired after a day of diverse attractions, you can go sightseeing or hunt for the beautiful Aurora Borealis.

Preferred accommodation by Akureyri

Akureyri Budget

Acco Akureyri is centrally located in Akureyri. Private bedrooms with shared bathrooms and a shared kitchen. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast not included.

Akureyri Comfort

Hotel Norðurland is a 3 star hotel centrally located in Akureyri. Spacious and bright private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.

Akureyri Quality

Icelandair Hotel Akureyri (Deluxe room) is a 3 star hotel centrally located in Akureyri, right next to the swimming pool. Private bedroom with a living room area and a private bathroom. Great views from the 5th floor. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.

Day 7 - Heading Back to Reykjavik

The Vatnsnes Peninsula is north Iceland is home to the impressive, standalone monolith Hvítserkur.

Today you’ll complete the circle around the country by heading back to Reykjavík city. Get ready to spend a good amount of time on the road, but don’t worry, along the way are some great sights worth seeing.

Start the day in Akureyri and get to know this town a little better. When you are good and ready, hop in your car and hit the road. 

When you cross over Holtavörðuheiði heights, take some time to explore the Borgarfjörður area. There you can visit two stunning but completely different waterfalls. Barnafoss waterfall cascades down a narrow, twisting ravine while the shorter and wider Hraunfossar trickles down from the edges of a dark lava field.

Europe’s most powerful hot spring, Deildartunguhver, is just a short drive away. This dynamic hot spring is surrounded by bright red rocks and a copious amount of steam, as it pumps over 180 litres of near boiling water every second.

The hot spring covers an area of 50 m2, but most of it is underground. Its powers are harnessed and used to heat up houses in the nearby towns of Akranes and Borgarnes. The steam coming from the ground serves as a great reminder of the energy that lies underneath the earth's crust.

Make your way back to Reykjavík where you will spend the night.

Preferred accommodation in Reykjavík

Reykjavík Budget

Capital Inn is a 2 star hotel 3 km out of the city centre, with a short walk to Kringlan shopping mall and Nauthólsvík geothermal beach. Private bedrooms with a washbasin but shared bathrooms. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is not included.

Reykjavík Comfort

The Fosshótel chain has four 3-4 star Hotels located in and around the city center of Reykjavík. There is a short walk from all of the hotels to attractions, cafés, restaurants, museums and the nightlife. All offer private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.

Reykjavík Quality

Alda Hotel is a 4 star hotel situated on Laugavegur, Reykjavík's main shopping street in the city centre. Private bedrooms with private bathrooms. Free access to a fitness room with a sauna and a hot tub. Free Wi-Fi. Breakfast is included.

Day 8 - Farewell to Iceland

Reykjavík has several parks within easy walk of the centre, such as Laugardalur, that become oases of pristine snowy landscapes in winter.

Today is your last day in Iceland. Depending on your flight, you can start the day and do as the locals by heading to the nearest bakery for a breakfast treat. Try ‘snúður’, a rolled-up cinnamon-filled bread bun slathered with chocolate.

If you’d rather start the day doing something more healthy, make your way to one of Reykjavík’s swimming pools for a soak in the geothermal waters. Your visit to the Blue Lagoon can also be arranged on this day. 

Head back out to the black lava fields of the Reykjanes Peninsula to Keflavík International Airport. If you have time, you can visit the gems of Reykjanes such as Kleifarvatn lake or the Viking World Museum.

Make sure to give yourself plenty of time to return your vehicle at the airport before you catch your departing flight.


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.

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.


Rooms with shared bathrooms in farmhouses, guesthouses or hostels, with good locations near the best attractions. Breakfast is not included.


Rooms with a private bathroom in three star hotels or quality guesthouses. Very close to the best attractions at each location. Breakfast is included.


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.


The vehicles offered for our winter self drive tours are 4WD jeeps or SUVs to counter Icelandic winter conditions. They are new or current models, maximum two years of age, and come equipped with a GPS, CDW, SCDW, and GP insurances. You can upgrade to an automatic model. All cars have winter tyres.

Comfort 4X4

A medium sized jeep or SUV with 4WD (4x4) fit for most travel, and good for snow and off-asphalt travel, such as Toyota Rav4 or similar.

Luxury 4x4

A large sized jeep with 4WD (4x4) such as Toyota Land Cruiser or similar, fit for nearly all traveling.

Cancellation Insurance

This insurance guarantees that you can cancel tour and package bookings and receive a full refund, minus the insurance cost of 5,000 ISK per person.

The cancellation must be made more than 48 hours before the listed starting time on your voucher. To cancel your booking and claim your refund, simply contact info@guidetoiceland.is and declare full cancellation.

Please note that this insurance covers the cancellation of the whole tour or package. Individual services cannot be cancelled and refunded separately, but are all covered and refunded in case of a full cancellation.



Verified reviews

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Iceland was the best holiday ever. We went during the first week of April which is right around the end of the Winter Season for all tours, and the start of the Summer season. This was ideal as we had the best of both worlds - go into the Ice Caves, Snorkeling at Silfra and most importantly got to see the Northern Lights :). The trip was amazingly well planned and well worth the money. One can think of booking all the excursions and hotels oneself to save some $$, but there's no way to get it all right the way Guide to Iceland team provides. Also the car rental had a 4G WiFi router in it, which saved us some $$$ and made the trip a lot more fun. Surely an A++++ recommendation.
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The 8-day Driving Tour was terrific in March. Some wild winds, some sunshine, some snowfall. Driving was an adventure but very safe. Good directions to very nice hotels. Unbelievable scenery- a postcard wherever we looked. Snorkeling in 35 degree water in the Rift was unforgettable. Walking in ice caves, feeling the spray from half-frozen HUGE waterfalls, and photographing the black sand beaches washed on one side with white waves and on the the other with white snow was spectacular. So pleasant to be on our own and able to explore at our own pace. The locals were very friendly and we never had to change money. Everything is credit card and very convenient. We would certainly repeat this trip.
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I can honestly say that this was the best holiday I have ever taken. Stunning scenery and magnificent views. Photos do not show how vast and beautiful this place is. The trip was well planned with manageable driving chunks and enough time to see the sights and do the excursions we booked as well. Can't wait to go back, for snorkelling at Silfra. Ice Cave tour is not be missed, helpful entertaining guide. I was sorry to come home and it definitely felt longer than 8 days!
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We had an absolutely phenomenal time. 2 adults travelling with grown up kids (19 and 21). Its such a breathtaking beautiful country ...8 days was enough to give us a taste of the diversity but we will have to go back to explore in more depth! 10 days to 2 weeks would have been more spacious. Self drive gives you flexibility.It's super helpful to have an itinerary although we didn't manage to visit everything that was suggested and on occasion (especially towards the end when we were getting used to things) added a couple of ideas of our own. Driving in winter is definitely not for the faint-hearted and experience of handling a 4WD on sheet ice and blizzardy white-outs is essential. We got excellent weather updates from the hotels and from the car company and were very happy with the Rav 4 rented thru on our behalf through My Car. We opted for the "comfort" level accommodation which mostly exceeded rather than met our expectations.Icelanders are also very service -oriented...so nothing ever seemed problematic or complicated.Sites are very geared up for tourists. The food was amazing although it is very pricey compared to UK standards. A tip: take plenty of snack foods and a flask or two so you can picnic en route at lunch time. And if travelling at a busy time of year...phone ahead to your hotel to book your evening meal as on occasion we couldn't get bookings at a time of our preference. Iceland is magical...it was very uplifting to know that there are still some parts of the world that are pristine and untouched - 83 percent of energy coming from renewable resources.Really inspiring. It was a geographers dream...volcanoes,craters, glaciers, geysers, geothermal baths, lava caves. And on the wildlife front - arctic foxes and reindeer and humpbacked whales...we are keen to return for the bird watching season. All in all a magnificent experience. Guide to Iceland supports you all the way...a big thank you to Melkorka for shepherding us through the booking process etc
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I would recommend this to anyone who is an independent traveler that is good with flexibility and planning. This was an incredibly fun way to experience the country and have agency over my trip. I loved that the itinerary provided a good mix of "touristy" and less-popular destinations and activities. We used the itinerary more as a guide than a schedule, as it is hard to follow completely in 8 days. Regardless, the things we saw and experienced were absolutely incredible and we have Guide to Iceland to thank for that. If anyone were to book the 8-day trip, I would highly recommend to check the weather. Guide to Iceland does not provide a lot of information on typical road conditions or safety, so be sure to check road.is every morning before your drive. Do NOT book this trip in the winter/spring months if you are not used to winter driving!! We encountered a lot of dangerous roads and conditions during our trip in March and saw many cars stuck in the snow or in minor accidents as a result.
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