Drive Iceland's most remote and rural areas on this incredible eight-day tour. You'll see a wealth of the country, gain a true insight into its culture, and have the opportunity to see less explored regions such as the Westfjords and the Snæfellsnes peninsula.
As a self-drive tour, you can choose which attractions you would like to see and how much time you want to spend at each one. There are no tour guides, departure times or other group members to worry about; the freedom is all yours.
To help you enjoy both the most famous places you've heard about and the lesser known sights where you can avoid the crowds, Guide to Iceland has created a unique itinerary with suggestions on and off the beaten path, chosen by local experts. You won't miss any famous spots, such as Kirkjufell mountain on the Snæfellsnes Peninsula, but you will also be able to immerse yourself, totally alone, in the untouched nature; it's a perfect balance.
This tour, therefore, is perfect for outdoor enthusiasts. There are an almost never-ending array of natural wonders en route, and the wealth of birdlife at many of the locations is incredible. To top it off, the tour is also perfect for those wanting to see the wilder part if Iceland. You can, during the booking process, add adventure activities to your holiday, which come at a special discounted rate for those attending this nature-oriented self-drive.
To have the holiday you've always dreamt of, you can pick extra activities to partake in while you book. There is time to fit these in without missing out on any of the sightseeing you want to do. This allows you to build the holiday you have always dreamt of, and experience all of the excitement that Iceland has to offer.
Don't miss on this incredible adventure. Check booking availability now, by choosing a date.
Your car will be waiting for you at the airport in Keflavík so you can start your road trip straight away. You may want to start by checking out some of the scenic areas of the Reykjanes Peninsula. It has beautiful fishing villages, many geothermal features, and an incredible rugged coastline. It's also possible to visit the Blue Lagoon on your first day if you have the time; it's a short drive from the airport on the way to Reykjavík, and very refreshing after a flight.
After checking in at your hotel in Reykjavík, make the most of your central location in one of Europe's most exciting cities. Explore its museums, shopping streets, restaurants, and cafés. You can even partake in an activity from the capital, such as horse-riding or whale-watching.
Day two is reserved for exploring West Iceland and its diverse attractions, including the Icelandic settlement exhibition in Borgarnes, and the largest hot springs in Europe, Deildartunguhver. Don't miss the captivating Hraunfossar and Barnafoss waterfalls either, both stunning in their own right and located right next to each other.
History fans may also enjoy a visit to Snorrastofa, the medieval research institute in Reykholt, where the early settler Snorri Sturluson wrote Saga Heimskringla in the 13th century. On the road from the capital, you can also take a short break at Fossatún, a waterfall said to be guarded by a troll woman named Drífa.
On this day you can opt to go lava tubing in Viðgelmir cave, or else explore the incredible inside of the glacier Langjökull through man-made channels.
Head towards the Westfjords and spend the night in the village of Hólmavík.
On your third day, explore Hómavík, and be sure to visit the fascinating Museum of Icelandic Sorcery and Witchcraft there.
Drive onwards to the tiny village of Djúpavik. Locked in the mountains, the village and its herring station has been abandoned many times in history but you'll find 8 houses, a hotel, and an airport there now. If you carry on for another 45 minutes, then you'll hit the end of the road but find a hot pool by the seaside called Krossneslaug, which is recommended for those seeking to relax and unwind.
Explore the surrounding mountains a little more and hike in the area, before heading back to Hólmavík where you will spend another night.
You'll pass staggering, dramatic fjords on the journey today on your route to the town Ísafjörður. There, you will find some of the oldest houses in Iceland, dating back to the mid-18th century. It is worth making a stop at Tjöruhúsið restaurant. It is reported to have the best seafood in Iceland.
You may also wish to drive to nearby Bolungarvík and visit the Ósvör Maritime Museum, which provides a great way to see what life was like for Iceland’s fishermen in years gone by. It is also recommended that you go to Tjöruhúsið restaurant in Ísafjörður for dinner (or lunch) to try of the day's catch; it's possibly the best fish you'll ever taste.
Spend the night in the Ísafjarðardjúp area
At the start of day five, after a hearty breakfast, it is time to head to the southern part of the Westfjords. Take the road to Dýrafjörður, where you will find the trail of the Viking Saga hero Gisli Súrsson, as well as the beautiful Skrúður Botanical Garden.
Continue to Hrafnseyri, where you can visit a museum dedicated to another hero, Jón Sigurðsson, who was instrumental in Iceland’s battle for independence from Denmark in the 1940s.
From there, head to Dynjandi waterfall. The thunderous Dynjandi actually a series of waterfalls that are over 100 metres tall. After taking in the beauty and magnitude of this cascade, make your way to the towering 444 m (1,456 ft) high cliff of Látrabjarg, the westernmost point of Europe. Here, you can get a close look at some of Iceland’s many species of nesting seabirds, including puffins and razorbills.
Spend the night in the Vesturbyggð area.
Start the day with a visit to the golden red sands of Rauðisandur, or a relaxing dip in the natural hot pool in the Vatnsfjörður nature reserve.
You can then take the ferry Baldur from Brjánslækur in the Westfjords across Breiðafjörður Bay to the village of Stykkishólmur on the Snæfellsnes Peninsula. The price of the ferry is included in this tour!
From there, you can explore the area’s unique sights, including the Snæfellsjökull glacier in Snæfellsjökull National Park, Djúpalónssandur black beach, the Dritvík cove and the small, charming hamlets of Arnarstapi, Hellnar, and Búðir.
As an added extra you can even choose to take a snowcat to the top of Snæfellsjökull. This additional activity starts in the town of Grundarfjörður, where a guide will take you to the foot of the mountain a vehicle that has been specially built to handle the rough glacial landscapes of Iceland. Once you are there you will switch to a snowcat and ascend to the glacier. This magnificent ice cap sits on top of a 7000-year-old volcano and was featured in the Jules Verne novel 'Journey to the centre of the earth.'
Spend the night in the Snæfellsnes area.
Today, you can spend extra time exploring the sights of the Snæfellsnes Peninsula. You could go on a Viking sushi boat trip, where you get to sample seafood caught right before your eyes; explore the lava tube cave Vatnshellir; go hiking between Hellnar and the fishing village of Arnarstapi, or simply indulge in some photography along the cliffs.
The cliffs of Malarrif are the heritage of volcanic eruptions from the famous volcano Snæfellsjökull, and there you can also find the impressive sea stacks, Lóndrangar.
Once you have fully enjoyed the peninsula, head back south toward Reykjavik and spend a little more time exploring Iceland's capital. Spend the night in Reykjavík or on the Reykjanes peninsula.
Depart from Keflavík on your final day, having experienced a huge amount that Iceland has to offer. If your flight schedule allows, you may have time for a dip in the healing waters of the Blue Lagoon spa. If you've already been, simply explore Reykjavík and do some last-minute shopping, or have a better look along the Reykjanes Peninsula.
We hope you enjoyed your stay and will come back soon!
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.
If you book the extra activities alongside this tour, you will get them at a lower price.
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 other 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). 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.
Dormitory beds with shared bathrooms in guesthouses or hostels. Located in the region of the best attractions. Breakfast is not included.
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.
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), and Super Collision Damage Waiver (SCDW) insurances. Please note that off-road driving is illegal for all types of cars. All levels come equipped with a GPS and 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.
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.
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.
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.
A medium sized 4WD (4x4) jeep or SUV such as a Toyota Rav4, or similar. Comfortably fit up to 4 travellers 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.
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.
A large 9-seater van such as a Renault Trafic (2WD manual), Mercedes Benz Vito (4WD automatic, has highland capabilities and better suited for winter driving), or similar. Comfortable for 5 to 7 travellers. If seated full, luggage space is limited. The driver must be of 23 years of age or above.
You can now add meals to your booking. Select to include dinner on every night as an optional extra, and we will provide you with vouchers as part of your booking confirmation. We will choose from top-rated restaurants that fit with your vacation itinerary and make your reservations for you. At the restaurant, you will be offered a set menu, from which you can choose from meat, fish or vegetarian options. If you would prefer something else, the voucher will act as a credit that you can redeem at the restaurant against menu items that are not part of the set menu. Please notify the restaurant on arrival about any dietary requirements. Vouchers are non-refundable.
This insurance guarantees that you can cancel tour and package bookings and receive a full refund, minus the insurance cost. The cost of your cancellation insurance depends on the duration of your tour or package. A base cost of 5,000 ISK per person is applied to all tours and packages with a duration of 5 days or less. An additional 1,000 ISK per person will be added to the insurance cost for each day after. 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 firstname.lastname@example.org and declare full cancellation. COVID-19 Related Cancellations If you need to cancel your booking due to COVID-19 related reasons, the cancellation insurance provides further protection for your booking. If you purchase a self-drive tour or guided tour package along with the cancellation insurance, you will also get a full refund. If you test positive on arrival, to get the full refund after arrival, please email us at email@example.com with your booking details and your test result within 4 hours after you receive the test result. If your flight gets cancelled due to COVID, to get the full refund, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with your booking details and your flight cancellation confirmation prior to your scheduled flight departure time. 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.