Unique 7-Day Northern Lights Winter Vacation to Iceland
Take a week-long winter vacation to the natural wonderland of Iceland and fill it with unique opportunities you can't experience anywhere else, like ice caving, relaxing in the Blue Lagoon, and exploring the sights of the Golden Circle. Those who wish to explore magnificent snow-covered landscapes and admire the northern lights will love this holiday of a lifetime.
Instead of spending weeks planning your own trip around Iceland, book this top-rated package and let us do the hard work for you. We'll organize all your accommodation and transportation, meaning you don't need to worry about driving in wintery conditions on Iceland's bumpy roads.
You'll receive a detailed travel itinerary with your booking, with fascinating information about each destination on your route. You'll take part in organized tours and excursions, meaning expert local guides will be on hand to answer your questions and give you an insider's look at Iceland's history, geography, and culture.
This vacation package also includes 24/7 access to a personal travel agent who can help you with any aspect of your trip. If your plans change at the last minute, you can cancel for free up to 24 hours before your scheduled departure and get a full refund.
On this fantastic journey, you'll explore the iconic attractions along the country's most breathtaking sightseeing routes: the Golden Circle, the South Coast, and the Snaefellsnes Peninsula. Each area boasts one of Iceland's three National Parks. Traveling between them, you'll discover various natural attractions, including hot springs, waterfalls, glaciers, and volcanoes.
Each night, you'll have a great shot at seeing the aurora borealis, a spectacular natural display you'll never forget. To maximize your chances of experiencing this marvel, you will embark on a guided northern lights hunt on the day of your arrival by taking a bus tour into the dark nature around the capital or a boat tour out to sea.
In addition to four nights in Reykjavik, you'll spend two nights in cozy countryside hotels nestled deep in the Icelandic landscapes, away from light pollution, significantly increasing your chances of spotting the northern lights.
You'll spend one night on the Snaefellsnes Peninsula, a region so packed with destinations and so diverse that it has been nicknamed "Iceland in Miniature." Your other countryside hotel is on the South Coast, allowing you to make the most of a second uniquely Icelandic winter phenomenon — the sapphire-blue ice caves.
In addition to this fantastic route, you'll have the option to participate in exciting optional excursions. Snorkel between two tectonic plates, zoom across an ice cap on a snowmobile, or meet a friendly Icelandic horse with a riding tour through the countryside.
You can also add an entry ticket to the world-famous Blue Lagoon spa. Relax in the geothermal waters and feel your troubles melt away.
Take advantage of this immersive trip to the world's most beautiful frozen wilderness with this week-long winter holiday in Iceland. Check availability now by choosing a date.
Day 1 - Arrival Day & Blue Lagoon
Welcome to Iceland! It's time to start your adventure.
When your plane lands at Keflavik International Airport, you'll collect your luggage and take a pre-arranged shuttle bus through the Reykjanes Peninsula to Reykjavik, the world's northernmost capital.
If your flight arrives early in the day, you can ask your travel consultant to book your Blue Lagoon entry ticket for today. This world-famous attraction has vividly blue, geothermally heated waters that are said to boast an array of healing properties. You'll also find a range of spa facilities, such as saunas and steam rooms.
With a comfort-level entrance, you'll get a silica-rich face mask and full use of the facilities. If you upgrade to a Premium-level ticket when booking, you'll get even more luxuries, including a bonus face pack and a complimentary glass of wine at the Lava Restaurant.
If your flight arrives later in the day, your travel agent will book your Blue Lagoon entry for another day of your trip. It's one of the country's most famous attractions, and you won't want to rush. Instead, you can spend your arrival day exploring Reykjavik.
After checking into your hotel and dropping off your luggage, you might have time to walk the city's picturesque streets and get to know the downtown area. You can enjoy a delicious Icelandic dinner in one of the city's excellent restaurants in the evening.
As night falls, you'll start a northern lights hunting tour. You have two options when booking — traveling by bus or boat.
If you choose a bus tour, a friendly guide will pick you up and escort you to the beautiful landscapes around the city, away from any light pollution. Surrounded by breathtaking nature, you'll have an uninterrupted view of the incredible phenomenon.
If you elect to marvel over the auroras by boat, you'll instead board a whale-watching vessel at the Old Harbor and sail into Faxafloi Bay. Watching the northern lights from the water is a unique experience, and the city skyline and the silhouettes of the surrounding mountains form a fantastic backdrop.
After a magnificent show, you'll retire in a comfortable hotel in the capital for the night.
Day 2 - Snaefellsnes Peninsula
Spend your first full day in Iceland exploring the Snaefellsnes Peninsula with an expert guide.
The adventure begins when your guide collects you from your accommodation in Reykjavik. You'll meet the other members of your travel group and take a minibus out of the city toward the Snaefellsnes Peninsula.
Locals often refer to this region as "Iceland in miniature," thanks to its massive variety of natural attractions here. You'll spend the day visiting volcanic cliffs, waterfalls, mountains, coastal villages, black-sand beaches, and a glacier-capped volcano.
Your first stop will be the Gerduberg cliffs. These basalt cliffs consist of columns in perfect hexagons — they look hand-carved, but they were actually formed naturally due to volcanic activity. Your guide will explain their formation as you enjoy the view.
Next, you'll continue along the peninsula's southern coast until you reach the Ytri-Tunga beach. The beach has golden sands, which is unusual for Iceland — most have volcanic black sands instead. It's also worth visiting to see the seals that reside here.
Other beautiful sights today include the black church at Budir and the picturesque fishing villages of Hellnar and Arnarstapi. Before your journey continues, you'll have a little time to explore the cliff-top coastal path linking these settlements. Gaze down at the dramatic ocean waves below and admire the views.
You'll also visit the Djupalonssandur black sand beach. To reach it, you'll have to walk through a bizarre maze of volcanic pillars and structures — it's like something from another planet.
The main attraction of the Snaefellsnes Peninsula is the Snaefellsjokull National Park, home to the glacier-capped stratovolcano Snaefellsjokull. The enormous volcano is visible from miles around and dominates the peninsula's skyline. It's no wonder that it's inspired so many works of literature — your guide will tell you more about it, and you'll have time to explore the park.
After a busy day, you'll retire at a hotel on or near the peninsula in Western Iceland. You'll be ideally placed to watch for the northern lights if they appear, so keep your eyes peeled.
Day 3 - Snaefellsnes Peninsula Continued
Discover more of the Snaefellsnes Peninsula's best natural attractions on the third day of your week-long Icelandic vacation.
The abundance of attractions on the peninsula will make you glad for an extra day of exploring. Today, you'll spend more time on the northern coastline, visiting mountains, picturesque coastal towns, and more.
If the weather is clear, you'll enjoy a truly stunning drive along the coastline. You'll enjoy gorgeous views of the Breidafjordur Bay — if you're lucky, you'll be able to see over to the remote Westfjords region.
The waters of this bay boast countless islands, thousands of birds (even in winter), and resident seals.
The fishing villages of the southern shores are mostly abandoned, but many on today's route are still thriving. The settlements provide excellent examples of traditional Icelandic culture. Bjarnahofn, for instance, is home to a shark museum — a great place to learn more about Iceland's most notorious delicacy, fermented shark.
Stykkisholmur is the peninsula's biggest town in terms of size and population. Around 1,100 people live here. It has a busy port with ferries carrying passengers into the Westfjords throughout the summer. The town also has a wealth of folklore, and your guide will be happy to tell you more about the settlement and culture here.
One of the most impressive natural attractions you'll visit is Mount Kirkjufell, whose name means "the church mountain" in English. Game of Thrones fans will recognize it as "the mountain shaped like an arrowhead" featured in season seven of the hit show. A standalone peak, it's magnificent to admire from all angles, but a favorite viewing spot is the nearby Kirkjufellsfoss waterfall.
If you have time today, you can also visit some of the sights of West Iceland, such as the Hraunfossar waterfall and the historic village of Reykholt.
Your driver will now take you back to Reykjavik, where you'll return to your accommodation from the first night. You can spend the evening making the most of the city's excellent nightlife — there are world-class restaurants and fantastic bars filled with friendly locals.
Day 4 - The Golden Circle
Explore the highlights of the Golden Circle sightseeing route with a day trip to Thingvellir National Park, the Geysir geothermal area, and the Gullfoss waterfall.
After a good night's rest in Reykjavik, you'll meet the local guide leading you on today's small-group tour. You'll board the minibus and drive out of the city toward Thingvellir National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the first stop of the day's adventures.
Thingvellir National Park is between two tectonic plates that are drifting apart. You'll have a chance to explore the area and admire the lava fields, waterfalls, valleys, and mountains that fill the park. Thingvellir is also where the world's oldest parliament was first formed over 1,000 years ago.
If you want to add more excitement to your day, you can go snorkeling between the Eurasian and North American tectonic plates by adding a Silfra Fissure excursion. You'll receive a drysuit to keep you warm, then head into the crystal-clear waters. Visibility extends as far as 330 feet (about 100 meters). Swimming here is a truly unforgettable experience.
Next, you'll continue around the Golden Circle by heading into the Haukadalur Valley, home to the Geysir geothermal area. Geysir gave its name to all other geysers worldwide, but it's not very active today. Luckily, the nearby Strokkur geyser erupts every few minutes so that you can witness the explosive geothermal activity in person.
Finally, you'll come to the Gullfoss waterfall, whose name means "Golden Falls" — this is where the Golden Circle gets its name. Formed by a milky glacier river flowing out of the Langjokull glacier, this waterfall is majestic in its power. Admire the scene from a viewing platform and take photos.
Choose a snowmobiling tour on top of the Langjokull glacier to add even more fun to your day. Feel the wind on your face as you zoom across the ice cap in a thrilling ride.
Alternatively, enjoy a relaxing horseback ride through the rural landscapes of Southwest Iceland. Icelandic horses are small but notoriously friendly. This tour is suitable for beginners and experienced riders.
After an exciting day traveling the Golden Circle, you'll return to Reykjavik for the night.
Day 5 - South Coast Exploration
Today, you'll start a two-day journey along the South Coast, visiting waterfalls, beaches, and the crown jewel of Iceland, the Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon.
You'll board a minibus in Reykjavik and meet the guide leading your small-group excursion. They'll drive you out of the city and along the South Coast stretch of the Ring Road, stopping at various landmarks along the way.
Your first stop will be the Seljalandsfoss and Skogafoss waterfalls.
Both are about 197 feet (roughly 60 meters) tall, but that's where the similarities end. Seljalandsfoss is narrow and gentle, while Skogafoss is broad and powerful. Visiting both waterfalls on the same day gives you an excellent point of comparison and lets you see how diverse Iceland's cascades can be.
Driving along the coast, you'll enjoy ocean views on your right and dramatic glacier views on your left. You'll pass the Myrdalsjokull glacier, covering the Katla volcano, and the Eyjafjallajokull volcano, which halted European air travel when it erupted in 2010.
Next, you'll visit the Reynisfjara black-sand beach, one of Iceland's best-known beaches. It's appeared in various TV shows and films, including Game of Thrones and Star Wars: Rogue One, so you might recognize it. The volcanic sands contrast beautifully with the white snow and ice of winter.
Walk along the shore and enjoy the views of the Reynisdrangar sea stacks and the Dyrholaey rock arch. Your guide will ensure you don't stray too close to the water's edge — dangerous sneaker waves can appear from nowhere, so be careful.
Your group will stop for refreshments in the picturesque fishing village of Vik, one of the southernmost settlements in mainland Iceland.
Your final destination for the day is undeniably the best. You'll head into the Skaftafell Nature Reserve in Vatnajokull National Park to see the stunning Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon.
Enormous chunks of ice break off a glacier's tongue to float in the lake's waters. The icebergs drift slowly out to sea and often wash ashore on the Diamond Beach, a volcanic beach dotted with vast icy structures.
You'll have time to take photos and enjoy the marvelous view here. Watching the icebergs rotate, break apart, and cruise through the lagoon is unforgettable. If you're lucky, you'll get the chance to see the aurora borealis dancing in the skies above the lagoon before you retire for the night.
Your accommodation today is in a country hotel in Southeast Iceland.
Day 6 - Ice Caving in Vatnajokull Glacier
On the penultimate day of your week in Iceland, you'll explore a crystal-blue ice cave beneath the Vatnajokull glacier.
After breakfast at your accommodation, you'll meet the experienced glacier guide leading your morning's adventure. Iceland's ice caves appear every winter as the glaciers melt and refreeze — they're constantly changing, so every visit to the caves is unique. The guides choose caves carefully to ensure your group's safety.
Your guide will take you onto the Vatnajokull glacier in a Super Jeep, a specially modified vehicle perfect for off-roading. You'll receive all the safety gear and any preliminary information you need before taking a short walk across the ice cap to reach the selected cave.
As you descend into the cave, you'll be blown away by the mesmerizing beauty before you. Visiting an ice cave is a once-in-a-lifetime experience for most people and will surely be a highlight of your trip.
The caves' interiors are bright blue and white, with bizarre shapes and structures formed by the ice as it melts and freezes. They feel like something from a fantasy novel. You'll have plenty of time to marvel over the colors, formations, and textures, and you can ask your guide questions about the processes that create these frozen shapes.
After creating memories that will last a lifetime, you'll begin your journey back to Reykjavik, stopping first at Jokulsarlon once more to see it in a new light. If you didn't have time yesterday, you can also visit the nearby Diamond Beach.
The sun will set as you travel along the South Coast. If the northern lights appear in the sky, your driver will stop to ensure everyone gets a good look at the incredible natural phenomenon.
You'll arrive in Reykjavik ready for a final evening in the city. We recommend making the most of your last night by visiting the bars and pubs that comprise much of the city center. Grab a drink with the locals before saying goodbye to Iceland tomorrow.
Day 7 - Departure from Reykjavik
Say goodbye to Iceland with a final few hours of sightseeing in Reykjavik.
Depending on your flight's departure time, you might have time to visit a few museums or take a walking tour today. Alternatively, if you haven't been to the Blue Lagoon yet, this is a perfect opportunity to do so.
Relaxing in the milky-blue waters and enjoying the view of the mossy lava field around you is a perfect way to say goodbye to Iceland. You can reflect on your adventure in the land of fire and ice before heading to the airport to board your plane.
We hope you enjoyed your week in Iceland and hope you come back soon!
What to bring
Good to know
Some optional activities might require that you have a valid driver's license, and some might require you to send additional information to your personal travel agent.
The northern lights are a natural phenomenon and, therefore, cannot be guaranteed. This itinerary is designed to maximize your chances to see them if the weather allows.
In the event of extreme weather, certain activities may be canceled at short notice. If your chosen activity is canceled, you can contact your personal travel agent to help you with rearranging your activity or booking another. Any potential price difference will be refunded to you.
Icelandic roads and pavements can be slippery in the winter. We recommend bringing shoes with slip-resistant soles or ice-grip shoe covers, which you can purchase in many supermarkets and gas stations around Iceland.
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.