Stunning 8-Day Self-Drive Camping Tour of the Ring Road

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Description

Summary

Starts from
Keflavík Airport
Ends in
Keflavík Airport (KEF), Iceland
Duration
8 days & 7 nights
Difficulty
Easy
Available
July - Oct.
Car rental
8 days included

Description

Uncover the best spots in Iceland while you camp each night, surrounded by beautiful nature, when you book this eight-day camping trip. Outdoor and nature lovers who want to explore and travel the country on a budget should book this self-drive tour now.

During this tour, you'll travel around Iceland's Ring Road, the main route around the island, and explore the whole country. You don't have to spend weeks planning your perfect Iceland itinerary because all the hard work has been done for you, and the tour is available at a great price.

If you organize your trip yourself, there's always the risk of missing out on some of the beautiful sights Iceland offers. With this self-drive itinerary, there's no risk of that. People love this tour, and it is very highly rated.

As the driver, you can go where you like and ignore a set schedule without worrying about tour guides or other group members. 

Across your journey, you'll travel through an array of stunning terrains, including rolling hills, lava fields, past mountains, glaciers, volcanoes, incredible fjords, and the best natural geothermal hotspots.

There are quality camping facilities with plenty of amenities across the country, and you'll be surrounded by spectacular nature no matter where you pitch up your tent. 

Along the way, you can explore popular spots, including the world-renowned Blue Lagoon, the famous Golden Circle, the stunning wildlife and glaciers of Skaftafell Nature Reserve, the geothermal hotspot of the Lake Myvatn Area, and the magnificent waterfalls of West Iceland. 

To guarantee that you have a selection of the most popular locations with more private areas to enjoy, Guide to Iceland has chosen a few unique attractions worth visiting on your travels across the country. 

These sites are listed in a personal itinerary you will receive after you book, allowing you to revel in the natural landscapes Iceland is famous for without the crowds. The route also sends you to explore many of Iceland's fantastic geothermal hot springs.

You have access to a personal travel agent with this tour, and they are available to be contacted 24 hours a day, seven days a week. If your plans change, you can cancel free of charge up to 24 hours before departure.

This tour can be enhanced further by adding various activities along the way. These include snorkeling between two continents, snowmobiling on top of some of Iceland's mighty glaciers, challenging yourself with a glacier hike, delving into the natural phenomenons of Iceland's ice caves, dazzling whale-watching tours, and a boat tour on the spectacular glacier lagoon. 

Add a once-in-a-lifetime experience to your trip by selecting these extras during the booking process.

Take advantage of this immersive eight-day experience encircling the Ring Road of Iceland and enjoying exciting excursions. Check availability now by choosing a date.

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Included

Camper of your choice for 8 days
CDW car rental insurance
Gravel protection car insurance
Unlimited mileage
Unlimited in-car Wi-Fi
Detailed itinerary & travel plan
Personal travel agent
24/7 helpline
VAT & all taxes

Destinations

Reykjavík CampsiteReykjavík Campsite / 1 night
Vik CampingVik Camping / 2 nights
Egilsstadir Camping site and EgilsstaðastofaEgilsstadir Camping site and Egilsstaðastofa / 1 night
Camping MyvatnCamping Myvatn / 1 night
Akureyri is the second largest city in IcelandAkureyri / 1 night
VarmalandVarmaland / 1 night
Deildartunguhver geothermal hot spring in West IcelandDeildartunguhver
Reykholt was home to Snorri Sturluson, a medieval writer.Reykholt

Map

Attractions

Þingvellir National Park is Iceland's only UNESCO World Heritage site and one of the major stops along the world famous Golden Circle sightseeing route.Thingvellir
Geysir is a dormant hot spring in the geothermal area, Haukadalur Valley, found in South Iceland.Geysir
Long-exposure photo of Gullfoss waterfall on a cloudy dayGullfoss
Þingvellir National Park, the only UNESCO World Heritage Site on Iceland’s mainland, is birthplace of the country’s parliament.Kerið
Seljalandsfoss on the South Coast of Iceland bathed in the otherworldly light of the midnight sun.Seljalandsfoss
The mighty Skógafoss waterfallSkógafoss
Reynisfjara beach and Reynisdrangar cliffs in winterReynisfjara Black Sand Beach
Arial view of Reynisdrangar and Mt. ReynisfjallReynisdrangar
Skaftafell Nature Preserve can be found in Öræfasveit, the western region of Austur-Skaftafellssýsla in Iceland.Skaftafell
Svartifoss in Skaftafell Nature Reserve in summer.Svartifoss
Jökulsárlón is one of Iceland's most popular and unique attractionsJökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon
The icy diamonds of Diamond BeachDiamond Beach
Vestrahorn is a spectacular mountain, especially under the Northern Lights.Vestrahorn
Lagarfljot, in east Iceland, has a terrible monster in its depths, according to legend.Lagarfljót
Hallormstadaskogar surrounds lake Lagarfjlot.Hallormsstaðaskógur
Dettifoss waterfall in IcelandDettifoss
Asbyrgi Canyon in north Iceland is a centre of folklore and beauty.Ásbyrgi
Lake Myvatn is surrounded by stunning natural beautyMývatn
Mt. Namafjall (Namaskard)Mt. Namafjall (Namaskard)
A hot spring and a lava cave: Grjótagjá hits two birds with one stone.Grjótagjá
Dimmuborgir, said in Nordic folklore to lead to the catacombs of hell.Dimmuborgir
Godafoss is a beautiful waterfall with ties to Iceland's religious history.Godafoss Waterfall
Beautiful flowers can be found in the Kjarnaskogur forest in Iceland.Kjarnaskogur
Borgarvirki (Citadel) is both natural and man-made.Borgarvirki
Hvítserkur, aka; “The Troll of North-West Iceland”, is a 15-metre (49ft) high basalt rock stack protruding from Húnaflói Bay.Hvítserkur
Hraunfossar is one of the most beautiful waterfalls in West Iceland.Hraunfossar
Borg á Mýrum is a church estate in Iceland.Borg á Mýrum
Kleifarvatn is the third largest lake in Iceland.Kleifarvatn
KrýsuvíkKrýsuvík
Gunnuhver is one of the geothermal areas on the Reykjanes Peninsula.Gunnuhver

Activities

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

Travel details

Travel dates

Travelers

Car

Car

Small car

Small car

Category
Small
Transmission
People
Large bags
Medium car

Medium car

Category
Medium
Transmission
People
Large bags
Premium car

Premium car

Category
Premium
Transmission
People
Large bags
large car

large car

Category
Large
Transmission
People
Large bags
SUV

SUV

Category
JEEPSUV
Transmission
People
Large bags

Personalize your itinerary

Day 1

Day 1 – Reykjavík Campsite

  • Reykjavík Campsite - Arrival day
  • More

You'll arrive in the country on the first day of your self-drive tour of Iceland's Ring Road.

After landing at the Keflavik International Airport, collect your bags and car and head to Reykjavik across the lunar-like lava field of the Reykjanes Peninsula.

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. Adding the Blue Lagoon geothermal spa to your itinerary will be arranged according to your flights. 

If there is no time to visit the lagoon today, it can be added to another day. Your travel consultant 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.

If you wish, you can explore Reykjavik city. Reykjavik offers a multitude of exciting activities and attractions to explore. Start by wandering through the charming streets of the city center, admiring the colorful buildings and unique architectural designs. 

Visit iconic landmarks like Hallgrimskirkja Church and Harpa Concert Hall for stunning views and cultural experiences. Dive into Icelandic history and culture at the National Museum of Iceland or the Settlement Exhibition. 

Indulge in the city's thriving food scene, savoring local delicacies like fresh seafood and Icelandic lamb. Relax in Reykjavik's geothermal swimming pool or enjoy a scenic walk along the coastline. If you head to the Old Harbor of Reykjavik, you can get an uninterrupted view of the picturesque Faxafloi bay and the surrounding mountains.

When you're ready, make your way over to the Reykjavik Campsite, where you'll sleep and rest for the night.

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Experiences

Accommodation

Day 2

Day 2 – Vik Camping

  • Vik Camping
  • More
  • Thingvellir National Park
  • Geysir geothermal area
  • Gullfoss waterfall
  • Kerid Crater
  • Seljalandsfoss Waterfall
  • Skogafoss waterfall
  • Reynisfjara black sand beach
  • Reynisdrangar Sea Stacks
  • More

On day two of your self-drive camping tour, you embark on the famous Golden Circle sightseeing route before reaching the South Coast. 

Begin with a visit to the Thingvellir National Park. The Eurasian and North American tectonic plates meet here, and you can walk over the symbolic Bridge Between Continents. 

You can discover the original site of the world's longest-running representative parliament, established here in 930 AD.

You can also opt for a snorkeling tour here, in the crystal clear waters of the Silfra ravine, one of the best snorkeling spots in the world.

Next is the Haukadalur geothermal valley, home to the great Geysir—the original "geyser." 

Although the geyser is now dormant, its more active neighbor, Strokkur, erupts every ten minutes or so, sending boiling water up to 66 feet (20 meters) high, and the area is dotted with bubbling hot springs and steaming fumaroles.

End your Golden Circle sightseeing tour with a visit to the mighty Gullfoss waterfall. You can walk to its edge to observe its incredible scale and power. 

From here, you can go on a snowmobiling tour of Langjokull glacier. 

If that does not appeal, look into booking a horse-riding tour. Icelandic horses are known for their friendly nature and unique gait called the tolt, which helps them move across Iceland's rugged terrain.

Following this, head to the South Coast and visit one of Iceland's most beautiful waterfalls, Seljalandsfoss, which you can walk all the way around. 

The towering Skogafoss waterfall is also nearby and is well worth a visit. 

Further, along the coast, stop to admire the black volcanic beach at Reynisfjara and the dramatic Dyrholaey rock formations and cliffs where Atlantic puffins nest. Other sights along the route include the Myrdalsjokull glacier, which will be on your left-hand side.

Spend the night at a campsite on the South Coast of Iceland.

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Experiences

Accommodation

Day 3

Day 3 – Vik Camping

  • Vik Camping
  • More
  • Skaftafell Nature Reserve
  • Svartifoss
  • More

Day three of your self-drive tour of Iceland's Ring Road should be spent traveling to and marveling over the many sights of the beautiful Skaftafell Nature Reserve in Vatnajokull National Park. 

Before you depart in the morning, however, you can opt for an ice cave tour to explore a dazzling cave in Myrdalsjokull glacier. 

Myrdalsjokull glacier, located in South Iceland, is a captivating natural wonder that leaves visitors in awe of its icy grandeur. It is Iceland's fourth-largest glacier, covering an area of approximately 370 square miles (596 square kilometers). 

Myrdalsjokull glacier is nestled atop the active Katla volcano, adding an element of excitement and intrigue to its already impressive presence. 

Adventurers can embark on glacier hiking tours to explore the icy terrain, marvel at ice caves, and witness breathtaking panoramic views of the surrounding landscapes.

At Skaftafell Nature Reserve, hiking enthusiasts will indeed be in their element. There are plenty of challenging tracks and trails, including one that leads to the beautiful Svartifoss waterfall. 

Translating to "Black Falls," Svartifoss Waterfall is renowned for its striking basalt column formations surrounding the cascading water. 

These hexagonal black basalt columns create an otherworldly and dramatic backdrop, resembling a natural organ or cathedral, and are said to have inspired the design of Reykjavik's Hallgrimskirkja church. The contrast between the dark columns and the white water creates a visually stunning scene. 

Hiking through the scenic park to reach Svartifoss waterfall allows visitors to immerse themselves in the enchanting Icelandic wilderness and witness nature's awe-inspiring power and elegance.

Skaftafell Nature Reserve is also an ideal place to go glacier hiking, allowing you to see incredible views. It's an unforgettable experience, which comes highly recommended.

Backtrack to a campsite near the town of Kirkjubaejarklaustur on the South Coast, where you will spend the night.

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Experiences

Accommodation

Day 4

Day 4 – Egilsstadir Camping site and Egilsstaðastofa

  • Egilsstadir Camping site and Egilsstaðastofa
  • More
  • Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon
  • Diamond Beach
  • Vestrahorn
  • Lake Lagarfljot
  • Hallormsstadaskogur Forest
  • More

On the fourth day of your camping tour in Iceland, you'll explore one of Iceland's most beautiful attractions, the Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon. 

After breakfast at the campsite, drive eastward to one of Iceland's most famous photo spots, the Jokulsarlon Glacier lagoon. 

The lagoon stretches over 11 square miles (18 square kilometers) and is situated at the edge of Vatnajokull National Park, Europe's largest glacier. This mesmerizing lagoon is formed by the melting icebergs from the Breidamerkurjokull glacier, which break off and float peacefully in the serene turquoise waters. 

The sight is magical, with massive ice sculptures floating along the water and shimmering under the sunlight. 

Here, you can choose to take a boat trip on the lagoon. There are zodiac and amphibious boats to choose from. Even if you decide not to take either, you'll still have incredible views from the shore.

A trip in a zodiac boat will offer a high-speed adrenaline ride as these boats are used for water sports. They are perfect for lagoons as they can navigate shallow waters with ease.

Choose an amphibious boat if you prefer to take it slightly slower. These boats can operate on both land and water and have unique features which allow them to switch between the two easily.

Take advantage of its proximity to take a walk down to Diamond Beach. Diamond Beach is a stunning coastal destination that gets its name from the glistening icebergs that wash ashore, resembling diamonds scattered on a black sand beach. 

The juxtaposition of ice against the volcanic landscape creates a surreal and captivating sight. Also, keep a keen eye out for the seals that call the lagoon and beach home.

After exploring this beautiful area, continue your journey to the Eastfjords. The Eastfjords is a gorgeous area of jagged mountains, tranquil villages, and a stunning coastline. Spend the night at a campsite in one of those charming towns of the Eastfjords.

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Experiences

Accommodation

Day 5

Day 5 – Camping Myvatn

  • Camping Myvatn
  • More
  • Dettifoss waterfall
  • Asbyrgi canyon
  • Lake Myvatn Area
  • Namaskard Pass
  • Grjotagja Cave
  • Dimmuborgir Lava Formations
  • More

On the fifth day of your eight-day camping tour of Iceland, you'll explore the Lake Myvatn area and the incredible natural attractions here.

Start the day early and drive to the Lake Myvatn area. Lake Myvatn, in North Iceland, is a captivating natural wonder renowned for its breathtaking beauty and diverse ecosystems. 

Spanning an area of approximately 23 square miles (37 square kilometers), it is the fourth-largest lake in Iceland. Volcanic activity, geothermal features, and a wide variety of birdlife characterize the region surrounding Lake Myvatn. 

Visitors can witness surreal landscapes with pseudocraters, lava formations, and bubbling mud pots. The lake is a haven for birdwatching enthusiasts, hosting many bird species, including ducks, geese, and waders. 

Nature lovers can explore the numerous hiking trails, relax in the geothermal baths, or marvel at the unique geological formations that make Lake Myvatn a truly enchanting destination.

Take a trip across Namaskard Pass. The pass is situated between Lake Myvatn and the town of Reykjahlid, offering a unique experience for visitors. 

As you venture through the Namaskard Pass, you'll see steaming fumaroles, bubbling mud pots, and rich mineral deposits, creating a landscape reminiscent of an alien planet. 

The area's high levels of geothermal activity result in the release of sulfuric gases, infusing the air with a distinct odor.

Stop at Dimmuborgir, a lava field known for its unique rock formations. It is sometimes called the 'Dark Fortress' because the lava in the area twists into strange and unreal shapes that resemble a crumbling castle, complete with towers, pillars, arches, and turrets.

After a long day on the road, dip in the soothing geothermal waters of the Myvatn Nature Baths, where you can relax in the milky blue waters while enjoying the surrounding scenery.

You'll spend the night at a campsite in North Iceland.

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Experiences

Accommodation

Day 6

Day 6 – Akureyri

  • Akureyri
  • More
  • Godafoss Waterfall
  • Kjarnaskogur
  • More

On day six of your summer road trip around Iceland, you can explore more of the Lake Myvatn area and its unique surroundings. 

A drive through the Jokulsargljufur region of the Vatnajokull National Park is highly recommended. The Jokulsarglifur region is known for its breathtaking landscapes and geological wonders. 

With its name translating to "glacial river canyon," Jokulsargljufur encompasses a vast area of diverse natural beauty. Towering cliffs, cascading waterfalls, and deep canyons carved by the mighty Jokulsa a Fjollum River define this awe-inspiring region.

Be sure to stop at the Asbyrgi canyon. Shaped like a massive horseshoe, it is a geological wonder that spans approximately 2.2 miles (3.5 kilometers) in length and 0.6 miles (1 kilometer) in width. 

Legend has it that Asbyrgi canyon was formed by the mighty hoofprint of Sleipnir, Odin's mythical eight-legged horse. Towering cliffs, lush greenery, and a tranquil pond at its center create a serene and enchanting atmosphere. 

The canyon offers awe-inspiring hiking trails, allowing visitors to explore its unique rock formations, diverse flora, and occasional wildlife sightings. 

Next, visit Dettifoss, the most powerful waterfall in Europe. Another great way to spend some time is to see Husavik, renowned as the whale-watching capital of Europe. You can opt for an incredible whale-watching boat tour here and upgrade it to include puffins.

After making the most of these sights, head towards Akureyri. Just be sure to stop and appreciate the mighty Godafoss waterfall on the way. Known as 'the capital of the north,' Akureyri is a charming town with plenty of shops and museums and one of the world's northernmost botanical gardens. 

Enjoy the area before returning to your campsite just outside town or heading to a new one in one of the pleasant villages on the Trollaskagi Peninsula in North Iceland.

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Experiences

Accommodation

Day 7

Day 7 – Varmaland

  • Varmaland
  • More
  • Borgarvirki basalt strata and ruins
  • Hvitserkur Rock Stack
  • Deildartunguhver hot spring
  • Reykholt historical site
  • Hraunfossar & Barnafoss waterfalls
  • Borg a Myrum church and farm
  • More

You should spend the seventh day of your multi-day camping trip in Iceland exploring the best that West Iceland offers. It is a relatively long drive from Northwest Iceland to Reykjavik, but there is much to see. 

Be sure to visit the Icelandic stone citadel at Borgarviki. Borgarviki is a beautiful coastal area in West Iceland, renowned for its picturesque landscapes and historical significance. 

Situated along the shores of Hunafloi bay, Borgarviki offers sweeping views of the ocean, rugged cliffs, and expansive lava fields. 

The area is rich in Viking history, with the remains of an ancient settlement and a burial site dating back to the ninth century. Explorers can wander through the ruins, imagining the lives of the Viking settlers who once called this place home. 

Borgarviki is a place of tranquility and natural beauty where visitors can immerse themselves in Iceland's fascinating past, surrounded by stunning coastal vistas.

You could also stop at Deildartunguhver, a geothermal wonder known for being the largest hot spring in Europe. 

Located near Reykholt, Deildartunguhver hot spring releases a staggering 317 pints (180 liters) of boiling water per second, making it an awe-inspiring natural phenomenon. 

The steaming water emerges from the depths of the Earth, is heated by volcanic activity, and is harnessed for various purposes, such as heating nearby towns and greenhouses. 

Deildartunguhver's visitors can witness the hot spring's incredible force and intensity, surrounded by a geothermal area with bubbling mud pools and steam vents. 

Along the coast, stop to admire the mesmerizing Hraunfossar and Barnafoss waterfalls or visit the Settlement Centre in Borganes.

There are two very different caving tours you can opt for on this day. You can enter the artificial tunnels carved into the side of Langjokull Glacier or the natural lava tubes of Vidgelmir.

At the end of the day, make your way to the town of Akranes or a nearby settlement in West Iceland, where you'll find your last campsite on this tour.

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Experiences

Accommodation

Day 8

Day 8 – Varmaland

  • Varmaland - Departure day
  • More
  • Kleifarvatn
  • Krysuvik
  • Gunnuhver
  • More

On the eighth and final day of your camping tour of Iceland, it’s time to head home.

If you have an early flight, you can go straight to the airport when ready. For those who have a later flight and choose to visit the Blue Lagoon geothermal spa today, you will finish your stay unwinding before heading to the airport. 

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. 

If you have a later flight, there are plenty of things to do in Reykjavik. Visit Laugavegur, the main shopping street in the city. Here, you’ll find shops, restaurants, and bars.

It is one of the oldest streets in Reykjavik, and its name roughly translates to ‘the water road’ as this was where people used to bring their laundry to be washed in hot pools.

Now, it is home to boutiques filled with high-end products. Lots of items found here are designed and produced in Iceland. You’ll also be able to pick up any last-minute souvenirs you need here.

When it’s time to head to the airport, be sure to drop your car back at the airport in plenty of time to check your bags and catch your flight home.

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Experiences

What to bring

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

Good to know

Off-road driving is illegal in Iceland. It is a highly fineable offence. Avoid legal problems and make sure to stay on marked highland roads and paths. Also note that highland roads are closed during wintertime, which normally open in mid-June and close in September.

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.

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

Gravel protection is not included if you choose a Toyota Aygo or similar.

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