8 Day Winter Package | Ring Road of Iceland in a Small Group
Witness the marvels of Iceland in winter without worrying about planning or driving yourself. This immersive vacation package is perfect for anyone who is spending seven nights in Iceland. You will be guided in a comfortable minibus around Iceland's famous ring road to incredible locations like the Golden Circle, Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon, the Eastfjords, and Lake Myvatn.
This package should appeal to anyone eager to see the beautiful landscapes of Iceland and to include some adventure on their holiday. In addition to sightseeing across the South, East, and North of this amazing country, you will get to go whale-watching, glacier hiking, and ice caving to truly make the most of the opportunities that come with winter. You can also book an optional horseback ride and a geothermal spa visit.
Of course, as this tour is conducted in the winter, you will also have plenty of chances to see the Northern Lights. You will be traveling in the dark hours to reach your destinations around the ring road and often staying in rural hotels, giving you better odds of capturing the phenomenon than those just staying in the capital.
Your accommodation in Iceland, transfer to and from Keflavik International Airport, as well as a guided six-day tour, will all be sorted for you before arrival. You can also choose to add a trip to the Blue Lagoon for a bit of extra pampering.
Do not miss this chance to see Iceland's greatest sites in the winter. Check availability by choosing a date.
Day 1 - Arrival
On your first day, you will fly into Keflavik International Airport and use the voucher provided to pick up your bus ticket.
On your way to Iceland’s capital city, you could choose to make a stop at the Blue Lagoon. This world-renowned spa is known for its healing waters, vivid azure colors, and luxurious treatments. It is located in the middle of a moss-covered lava field, giving it an otherworldly atmosphere. If you add the Blue Lagoon, it 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. There is still plenty to see and do in Reykjavik if you have extra free time.
Once you reach Reykjavik, you can settle into your accommodations and explore the museums, shops, bars, and restaurants of Iceland’s vibrant capital.
Day 2 - Golden Circle
On day two, you will start your six-day guided tour. You will be picked up from your Reykjavik accommodation early and whisked away to Iceland's most popular tourist trail, the Golden Circle.
Three incredible sites make this route so popular. The first of these is Thingvellir National Park, one of three National Parks in Iceland and the only one on the UNESCO World Heritage List. Iceland's parliament, Althingi, was founded in the year 930 AD.
This beautiful place is located directly in the Mid Atlantic Rift, sheltered by two tectonic plates. The effects on the landscape as they pull apart have led to dramatic gorges and geological marvels.
After enjoying the sites here, you will continue to the next location, the Geysir geothermal area. This site is home to an active geyser, Strokkur, which regularly erupts to heights exceeding 66 feet (20 meters). The region is also surrounded by hot springs and fumaroles, giving you your first taste of the active forces just beneath the surface of the ground in Iceland.
Finally, you will reach Gullfoss waterfall, one of the most classic sites in Iceland. This feature cascades in two steps down into a dramatic, ancient canyon, and in winter, is framed by ice glistening on the rocks. After marveling at its power and beauty, you will head to your accommodations in southern Iceland. Remember to keep an eye out for the Northern Lights before you retire.
Day 3 - The South Coast
On your third day, you will start to cross the beautiful South Coast of Iceland, an area renowned for its diverse scenery and the wealth of landmarks that can be found right off the main road.
First up, you will see two waterfalls, Seljalandsfoss and Skogafoss. Both tumble from cliffs near the coast from heights of over 197 feet (60 meters) but are vastly different in all other ways. Seljalandsfoss is very unusual, as the cliff behind it is hollowed. If the ground is not too wet or icy, it is possible to encircle the falling water fully. Skogafoss, meanwhile, is very powerful and dramatic, measuring up to 66 feet (20 meters) wide.
Following your time at these features, you will continue onto Solheimajokull glacier. In winter, it becomes encased in vivid blue ice, making it as beautiful as spectacular. You will take a hike onto its otherworldly surface and marvel over the crevasses, ridges, formations, and incredible views.
Before reaching the Vik i Myrdal area, where you will spend the night, you will make a stop at the black-sand Reynisfjara beach to admire the unusual sea-stacks of Reynisdrangar and the massive Dyrholaey rock arch.
Day 4 - Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon
On day four, you will finish crossing the South Coast and visit one of Iceland's most beautiful, renowned locations as you do. While every day of this tour promises to be incredibly rewarding, this may be the most enjoyable one.
You will pass over the vast sands of Skeidararsandur glacier outwash planes before driving past the Skaftafell nature reserve and then passing under Iceland's highest peak, Mt. Hvannadalshnjukur. Then you will arrive at your next incredible destination, Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon.
For many travelers to Iceland, this is the country's crowning jewel; you will witness an enormous lake filled with gigantic icebergs, which are cruising from a glacier outlet above to the ocean. The area is also home to many seals, making it even more popular amongst lovers of wildlife.
You will also visit the coastline nearby, often called 'the Diamond Beach'. The icebergs wash on the shore and provide a beautiful contrast against the foaming surf and black sands on this stretch.
As if these destinations are not appealing enough, you will top off today by exploring an ice cave. Caves like these are only formed in very few places under specific conditions, so this truly is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. If you are visiting before November, you'll start the day with a caving expedition in Myrdalsjokull glacier. Otherwise, you'll have an afternoon visit to the great Vatnajokull glacier.
You will spend the night in the southeast of the country.
Day 5 - The Eastfjords
On day five, you will leave the South Coast and start to explore the remote and dramatic Eastfjords. Few get the chance to reach this part of the country, especially in winter, so you can expect the spectacular destinations to be relatively clear of the crowds.
You will regularly stop as you travel to marvel over and photograph the incredible fjords, giant mountains, beautiful seascapes, and quaint little villages. You will also keep your eyes peeled for the wildlife around this area, as it has a lot of diversity.
Your travel through this mountainous area will be dictated by your guide, who will make stops at hidden locations and less known gems according to what best suits the itinerary and the weather.
If you elect to while booking, you can arrange a beautiful horseback riding tour through the landscapes of the east.
You can also organize entry to the Vok Baths; this breathtaking geothermal spa is immersed in a lake near Egilsstadir, and the water flowing through it is so clean you can drink it.
You'll spend the night in one of the Eastfjord's charming towns.
Day 6 - Lake Myvatn and surrounding Area
On day six, you will head to the northern region of Lake Myvatn. This area is incredibly geothermally and geologically active, providing a great diversity of sites for you to enjoy.
Today, there is a wealth to see. For example, you will head to Dimmuborgir, often nicknamed 'the Dark Fortress' due to the lava rock's scale, color, and formation here.
You will also see the geothermal area of Namaskard pass, with its dramatic hot springs and fumaroles. Lake Myvatn itself is also beautiful and unique due to the unusual basalt formations that rise from the water.
You will then be driven to the town of Akureyri, and on your way there, you will make a stop at the beautiful Godafoss waterfall.
Godafoss translates to 'Waterfall of the Gods'. Its name came from 1000AD when Iceland was officially Christianized. In a show of fealty to the Church, the local law speaker cast pagan idols into the falls as a symbolic gesture. Godafoss is an impressive natural feature that cascades 39-foot (12-meter) into the frothing and swirling river below. There are several different vantage spots for you to take pictures of, and your guide will be on hand in case you need any advice.
You will spend the night in Akureyri.
Day 7 - Akureyri to Reykjavik
Today is sadly your final day on the road, but the tour isn't over just yet.
You will start in the peaceful village of Haugarnes. This quaint area provides a beautiful snapshot of idyllic seaside life. The tranquil setting is punctuated by Hauganes' black sand beach and harbor. The waters of Hauganes are also a hub of whale activity.
From here, you will take a whale-watching tour. You will board a boat and head into the harbor, searching for the gentle giants of the sea. Seals are also known to live in the area. You might even spot a few dancing in the water or lazing about on the shore.
The next stop is an iconic rock formation called Hvitserkur. Known as the 'Troll' of the Northwest, this 49-foot (15-meter) high basalt rock protrudes out of the bay. It's also home to native birdlife and a favorite stop for photographers.
You will then continue your journey back towards Iceland's capital, Reykjavík. Once here, you can take in more of the local culture. If you still have some energy, this would be a great chance to take a walk around the city and see the many shops, cafes, and bars.
You will spend the night at your accommodation in Reykjavik.
Day 8 - Departure
On day eight, you can enjoy the sites of Reykjavik until it is time to catch a bus back to the airport. For those who have a later flight and choose to visit the Blue Lagoon today, you will finish off your stay unwinding before you head to the airport. This is the perfect place to relax as you bathe in the warm, mineral-rich waters as you look back on the incredible adventure you have just taken in the land of fire and ice. If your flight is later, there are plenty of things to do in Reykjavik. If you have an early flight back home, we wish you a pleasant 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 aware that your itinerary may have to be rearranged to better fit your arrival date and time.
Some optional activities might need a valid driver's license, or you might need to send additional information to your travel planner. Please note that you need to know how to swim and present medical documents should you choose to go snorkeling or diving.
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.
Accommodation in Reykjavik
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. If you are travelling in a group, but prefer a single room, please make separate bookings. Teenagers and children will be arranged in the same room with parents. If additional room(s) is needed, additional costs will incur.
For multi-day guided tours, accommodation cannot be upgraded and the levels below do not apply. Guide to Iceland will provide you with the best available accommodation at the time of your booking from our preferred partners. If our preferred partners are fully booked at the time of your booking, we will find another suitable accommodation for you of similar level.
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, such as HI Hostels. Located in the capital region. Breakfast is not included.
Private rooms with shared bathroom in guesthouses or hostels such as Capital Inn Guesthouse. Located in the capital region. Breakfast is not included.
Rooms with a private bathroom at three-star hotels such as Hótel Klettur, or quality guesthouses. Located in the city center or in close vicinity. Breakfast is included.
Rooms at four-star design hotels in the city center with a private bathroom at the absolute best locations downtown such as Hotel Alda. Breakfast is included.