Join this winter trip full of stunning sights and activities! This package offers you both the very best highlights of Iceland as well as the lesser known beauties our incredible island has to offer.
You will visit all three national parks in Iceland, filled with natural wonders - Thingvellir National Park on the Golden Circle, Snæfellsjökull National Park in the west, and Vatnajokull National Park down south.
But this is no mere sightseeing trip - get moving with plenty of outdoor activities, including ice caving, where you will see a thousand shades of crystal blue. These caves are specially chosen each year for their beauty and safety so that you can enjoy the scenery and capture the moment in the most beautiful photographs possible.
Find full details of your daily activities below and don't forget to pack your warm layers of clothing!
You can add a little extra fun to your tour of the Golden Circle, by booking an additional horse riding tour around the geothermal landscape, get your feet wet on a snorkeling tour of Silfra gorge or take the wheel of a snowmobile and whoosh across a glacier!
All your accommodation is included in this package. But you also have the option to spend many nights hunting the Aurora Borealis at various stunning locations.
Join this trip to experience the magic of Iceland in winter! Check availability by choosing a date.
The Blue Lagoon is a geothermal spa and is the single most popular attraction in Iceland.
The water is rich in silica and sulphur that helps make your skin shine like a baby. The Blue Lagoon also operates a Research and Development facility that helps find cures for skin ailments using the mineral-rich water.
The temperature in the bathing and swimming area is very comfortable, and averages 37–39 °C (98–102 °F). There´s a restaurant there and it´s a truly romantic and beautiful place one should not miss while in Iceland.
The Golden Circle is a 300 km route to the 3 most popular natural attractions in Iceland. The Golden Circle consists of Geysir, Gullfoss and Thingvellir.
See this for Golden circle tours.
Geysir is a geyser that gives its name to hot springs all over the world. But although Geysir itself is not active anymore the area features spectacular hot springs such as the powerful Strokkur (spouting a vast amount of water every 10 minutes, regularly about 15-20 meters into the air), Smidur and Litli-Strokkur.
The 'Golden Waterfall', is the second part of the Golden Circle, and one of the most beautiful and powerful waterfalls in Iceland, plummeting 32 meters into the river gorge of the popular rafting river Hvita. It is Iocated about 10 km from Geysir.
The largest attraction of the Golden Circle is Thingvellir National Park. The Icelandic parliament was founded there in 930 and remained until the year 1798.
Today it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the most important places to visit in Iceland, not just for its historical and cultural values, but for also its magnificent landscape.
Thingvellir is surrounded by a beautiful mountain and volcano range and is the site of a rift valley, where the tectonic plates meet, marking the crest of the Mid-Atlantic ridge.
Of particular note at Thingvellir are the magnificent Almannagja gorge, and the beautiful lake Thingvallavatn, the largest lake in Iceland. The popular Gjabakkahellir lava cave is also in the area.
The fissure Silfra is located by Thingvallavatn, Iceland's largest lake, and is famous for its clear waters and popular for diving and snorkeling, as you can literally swim between continents.
Reykjavik is the capital of Iceland and the northernmost capital of a sovereign state in the world.
Despite a small population (120.000 and more than 200.000 in the Greater Reykjavik area), it is a vibrant city that draws an ever increasing number of visitors. It is the financial, cultural and governmental centre of Iceland. It also has a reputation of being one of the cleanest and safest cities in the world.
The city of Reykjavik is located in southwest Iceland by the creek of the same name. Throughout the ages, the landscape has been shaped by glaciers, earthquakes and volcanic eruptions and the area is geothermal. Much of the current city area area was subglacial during the Ice Age, with the glacier reaching as far as the Álftanes peninsula, while other areas lay under the sea. After the end of the ice age the land rose as the glaciers drifted away, and it began to take on its present form.
The coastline of Reykjavik is set with peninsulas, coves, straights and islands, most notably the island of Videy, and seabirds and whales frequent the shores. The mountain ring as seen from the shore is particularly beautiful. Mount Esja is the highest mountain in the vicinity of Reykjavik and lends its distinct feature to the whole area. This majestic mountain is also highly popular for climbing. Other notable mountains that can be seen from the seaside are Akrafjall and Skardsheidi and on clear days one may even see as far to the legendary Snaefellsjokull glacier, at the end of the Snafellsnes peninsula.
The largest river to run through the city is Ellidaa in Ellidaardalur valley, which is also one of Iceland‘s best rivers for salmon fishing.
There are no trains or trams in Iceland, but most people travel by car. The city also operates a bus system. There are two major harbours in town, the old harbour in the centre and Sundahofn in the east. The domestic Reykjavik Airport is located at Vatnsmyrin, not far from the city centre and close to Oskjuhlid and Perlan. The international Keflavik Airport at Midnesheidi heath then lies around 50 km from the city. Cars, jeeps and bicycles can be readily rented in the city and many organized tours are also being offered.
The local arts scene is strong in Iceland, with both annual events and single ones, many of whom have hit the international stage. For the annual ones please check our articles Best Annual Events in Iceland and the Top Ten Festivals in Iceland. Major events taking place in Reykjavik include the Iceland Airwaves, Gay Pride, RIFF (The Reykjavik International Film Festival), The Reykjavik Literature Festival, Cultural Night, the Reykjavik Arts Festival, Food & Fun, the Reykjavik Fashion Festival and the Sónar music festival.
Among famous people from Reykjavik are artists Bjork Gudmundsdottir, Sigur Ros, writers Halldor Laxness (born in Laugavegur) and Arnaldur Indridason and mayor Jon Gnarr. For more well-known and fairly-well known Icelanders, check our article on the subject.
You might also want to check our article on some of the many things to see and do in Reykjavik, such as visiting the city‘s many museums, exhibitions and galleries, checking out live music, visiting the Harpa music hall or the theatres, visiting the lighthouse at Grotta, the main shopping street of Laugavegur, visiting the old harbour and the flea market, going on a bird- and whale watching tour or visiting Videy island. We also have a top ten list of things to do.
Make sure to visit the public square of Austurvollur, one of the city‘s most popular gathering places, where you‘ll also find the national parliament, Althingi, the state church a statue of independence hero Jon Sigurdson, as well as cafés, bars and restaurants. Austurvollur was central in the 2008 protests, along with Laekjargata, home to the House of Government. You are also not likely to miss the great church of Hallgrimskirkja that towers over the city from the hill of Skolavorduholt, wherefrom you‘ll get a great view of the city.
Try a walk by the city pond, greet the many birds that frequent the area and visit the city hall, stationed by its banks. The Hljomaskalagardur is a beautiful park that lies by the pond, it ideal for a nice walk and sometimes concerts get held there. Further off is the campus of the university of Iceland, the Nordic house and the Vatnsmyri wetland, a particularly pleasant place, but be mindful of not disturbing the wildlife there and keep to the pathways.
For a nice swim on a warm day, we particularly recommend Nautholsvik beach.
Visit the Laugardalur valley, home to one of the city‘s best swimming pools, as well as the Asmundarsafn gallery, a beautiful botanical garden and a domestic zoo. A walk by the Aegissida beach, with it‘s old fishing sheds, in the west part of Reykjavik also holds a particular charm. The aforementioned Elllidaardalur valley is also a popular resort.
Another place that offers one of the city‘s best (and free) views is Perlan, up in Oskjuhlid hill. The hill itself is a popular resort, with over 176.000 trees and great opportunities for walking and cycling.
Travel to Alftanes to see the president‘s house at Bessastadir, which is also a historical site in it‘s own right, having been the educational centre of Iceland for centuries. Nearby is a beautiful lava field, Galgahraun, well worth a visit, though there is currently an environmental struggle going on as to it‘s future state.
The city is furthermore a short drive from many of Iceland‘s major attractions, most famously the Golden Circle and the Blue Lagoon. In close vicinity you‘ll also find the Heidmork preservation area, a favourite pastime resort of the people of Reykjavik, as well as the Blue Mountains, one of Iceland‘s most beloved skiing venues.
Check our Best of Reykjavik guide further for tips on the best cheap things to do in Reykjavik, some of the best restaurants in the city, happy hours, the top ten value places to eat and our two articles on the famous Reykjavik nightlife; Nightlife in Reykjavik and Nightlife and mating.
Finally, we‘d like to stress that these are only some suggestions of the many things you might check out in Reykjavik. Whatever you choose to do, we hope you‘ll be able to make the most of your visit and we wish you a pleasant stay in our capital.
Jokulsarlon is a glacier lagoon in the south of Vatnajokull national park that is easily reached by the Ring Road.
Covered in thick glacial ice until the 1930’s when the glacier started retreating, the lagoon today measures 7 square miles (20 km2). More than 300 feet of ice still breaks away each year, reshaping the lagoon and filling it with icebergs - causing an alarmingly beautiful sight.
The water is freezing cold and contains a mixture of salt and freshwater giving it a blue-green color. There is plenty of fish and birdlife by the lagoon and the vast sand area of Breiðamerkursandur, and hundreds of seals stay there in winter.
Vatnajökull is the largest glacier in Europe covering 8% of the island of Iceland. Vatnajökull National Park - which encompasses the earlier national parks of Skaftafell and Jökulsárgljúfur - is the largest protected area in Europe and believed by many to be the most beautiful place on earth.
In this area you'll find some of the most stunning and diverse sights in Iceland. Among those are Iceland's highest peak, Hvannadalshnjúkur, its most active volcano, Grímsvötn, beautiful waterfalls such as Svartifoss by Skaftafell and Dettifoss, Europe's most powerful waterfall, stunning canyons such as Jökulsargljúfur and Ásbyrgi, and the breathtaking Jökulsárlon, an ice-riddled glacier lagoon that is one of the most beautiful attractions in Iceland.
The glacier itself covers a surface area of about 100 km2. The thickness of the ice is generally around 400-600 meters, at its thickest around 950 meters. Under the glacier are valleys, mountains and plateuas as well as active volcanoes, most notably Grimsvotn and Bardarbunga, both the largest and most active of these. Then there are Esjufjoll, a glorious volcanic mountain island, surrounded by the glacier on all sides.
Vatnajokull has over 30 outlets, some of the major ones being Dyngjujokull and Bruarjokull to the north and Breidamerkurjokull, Oraefajokull, Skeidararjokull and Sidujokull towards the south. On the west side from the north are smaller glaciers Eyjabakkajokull, Hofsjokull, Flaajokull Heinabergsjokull and Skalafellsjokull.
The highest peak of Iceland then lies to the south, Hvannadalshnjukur in the Oraefajokull outlet, reaching 2109 m, according to latest measurements.
Many rivers have their sources at Vatnajokull, including some of the greatest glacier rivers in the country. To the North are Jokulsa a Fjollum and Skjalfandafljot, to the Northeast are Jokulsa a Bru, and Jokulsa i Fljotsdal and to the south are Jokulsa i Loni, Hornafjardarfljot, Jokulsa a Breidamerkursandi, Skeidara, Nupsvotn, Hverfisfljot and Skafta.
The area around the glacier is highly varied. The highland plateu to the north is divided by glacier rivers which see massive floods in the summer. This is a highly volcanic region, where the volcanoes Askja, Herdubreid, Kverkfjoll and Snaefell tower over the scene. In this area is also the Jokulsargljufur preservation area with its magnificent canyon and the mighty glacier ricer Jokulsa a Fjollum where you'll find stunning waterfalls such as Dettifoss, Europe's most powerful waterfall. Further north are the Hljodaklettar echoing caves and the horse shoe-shaped Asbyrgi canyon, among other incredible sights.
Broad wetlands lie near the glacier and in the vicinity of Snaefell, further east. Particularly notable is the Eyjabakkar oasis, one of the largest nesting places for pink feeted geese in the world and located north of the Eyjabakkajokull outlet. To the east is also the stunning Jokulsarlon.
South of Vatnajokull, majestic mountain ridges characterise the scene, with outlet glaciers lying between them and reaching onto the lowlands. The Skaftafell preservation area is located there, with its rich flora and home to the beautiful waterfalls Hundafoss and Skogafoss, the latter famed for its with its magnificent columnar basalt formations.
To the south lies the vast sand desert Skeidararsandur, reaching all the way to the sea. The glacier river Skeidara runs through it and the sand was indeed created by great glacier bursts from Skeidara, with its origins in volcanic activity at Grimsvotn.
To the west of Vatnajokull there is strong volcanic activity as well. Some of the world's greatest fissure and lava eruptions happened there, at the Eldgja volcanic chasm and the Lakagigar craters in the 18th century. Vonarskard pass, to the northwest is also worth checking out, a highly colourful geothermal area that connects the North and South of Iceland.
Fans of the James Bond films might recognize the glacier from A View to a Kill and the stunning Jokulsarlon from Die Another Day, though the events of the former were supposed to take place in Siberia.
Scenes by the Wall in the HBO fantasy series Game of Thrones were also shot by Vatnajokull and further scenes were shot at lake Myvatn, another Iceland's major attractions.
Skogafoss is one of the biggest and most beautiful waterfalls of the island with an astounding width of 25 meters and a drop of 60 meters.
This is one of the most popular waterfalls in Iceland for travellers to visit. It is located in South Iceland, not far from Skogar, which itself features a highly interesting regional museum. Due to the amount of spray the waterfall often produces a single or double rainbow on sunny days.
Geysir is a famous hot spring in Haukadalur valley in South Iceland. Part of the ‘Golden Circle', Geysir gives its name to hot springs all over the world.
Though Geysir itself is hardly active anymore, the area features spectacular hot springs such as the powerful Strokkur, which spouts a vast amount of water every 10 minutes, around 15-20 meters into the air, Smidur and Litli-Strokkur.
North of Geysir are fumaroles, i.e. unlike the hot springs that emit hot water, only steam and gas emanate from these. You may be able to observe bright yellow stains at the fumaroles, this is native sulphur, which crystallizes from the steam. At the southern part of the geothermal area, called Thykkuhverir, you‘ll find various mud pots. Such mud pots are actually fumaroles that boil up through surface water/groundwater and may become steaming fumaroles during dry spells, rather than the usual boiling mud pots.
About 2 km from Geysir is an old preserved natural pool called Kúalaug. One can bathe in it and it has room for 3-5 people at a time, but care should be taken, as the area around the pool is very delicate. The temperature is 39-43°C, depending on how you are positioned in the pool. The water is slightly muddy, as the pool is built on soil, and the bottom is slippery due to algae, so caution is advised.
In Haukadalur there has also been tree planting in recent times and today the forest Haukadalsskógur is one of the largest in South Iceland. Aspen, various types of pine, and other plants have been tried out there and experiments and research continue. We also recommend visiting the tree museum, built in the memory of forester Gunnar Freysteinsson. There are good paths and roads in the forest and the wood is specially designed to accommodate wheelchairs.
Haukadalur has been a church site since ancient time. The current wooden church was last rebuilt in 1938 but the variety and appearance of the church dates back to 1842, making it one of the oldest of its kind in Iceland.
Haukadalur is indeed a historical place. It was settled during the age of settlement and scholar Ari “The Wise“ Thorgilsson grew up there. The first pastoral school in Iceland was also built there.
For accommodation, Hotel Gullfoss is about 7 km from the Geysir area, and closer still is the Hotel Geysir.
Gullfoss (translated to ‘Golden Falls’) is one of Iceland’s most iconic and beloved waterfalls, found on the Hvítá river canyon in south Iceland. The water in Hvítá river travels from the glacier Langjökull, finally cascading 32m down Gullfoss’ two stages in a dramatic display of nature’s raw power.
Because of the waterfall’s two stages, Gullfoss should actually be thought of as two separate waterfalls. The first, shorter stage of the waterfall is 11m, whilst the second stage is 21m. The canyon walls on both sides of the waterfall reach heights of up to 70m, descending into the 2.5km long Gullfossgjúfur canyon (geologists indicate that this canyon was formed by glacial outbursts at the beginning of the last age.)
In the summer, approximately 140 cubic metres of water surges down the waterfall every second, whilst in winter that number drops to around 109 cubic metres. With such energy, visitor’s should not be surprised to find themselves drenched by the waterfall’s mighty spray-off.
In the early days of the last century, Gullfoss was at the centre of much controversy regarding foreign investors and their desire to profit off Iceland’s nature. In the year 1907, an English businessman known only as Howells sought to utilise the waterfall’s energy and harboured ambitions to use its energy to fuel a hydroelectric plant.
At the time, Gullfoss was owned by a farmer named Tómas Tómasson. Tómas declined Howell’s offer to purchase the land, stating famously “I will not sell my friend!” He would, however, go on to lease Howells the land, inadvertently beginning the first chapter of Icelandic environmentalism.
It was Tómas’ daughter, Sigríður Tómasdóttir, who would lead the charge. Having grown up on her father’s sheep farm, she sought to get the lease contract nullified, hurriedly saving her own money to hire a lawyer. The ensuing legal battle was an uphill struggle; the case continued for years, forcing Sigríður to travel many times by foot to Reykjavík if only to keep the trial moving. Circumstances became so difficult that Sigríður threatened to throw herself into the waterfall if any construction began.
Thankfully, in 1929, the waterfall fell back into the hands of the Icelandic people. Today, Sigríður is recognised for her perseverance in protecting Gullfoss and is often hailed as Iceland’s first environmentalist. Her contribution is forever marked in stone; a plaque detailing her plight sits at the top of Gullfoss.
Besides Gullfoss, visitors can enjoy the views from Gullfoss Cafe, a locally run delicatessen that serves a wide variety of refreshments and meals. The menu has options to tantalise everyone’s taste buds; hot soups, sandwiches, salads and cakes. There is also a shop on site where visitors’ can browse and purchase traditional Icelandic souvenirs.
Thingvellir is one of the most important sites to visit in Iceland for its landscape, history and cultural value.
The Icelandic parliament was founded in Thingvellir in 930 and remained there for centuries.Thingvellir is surrounded by a beautiful mountain range and is the site of a rift valley, marking the crest of the Mid-Atlantic range. Today it is a natural park, listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO and considered a vital part of the ‘Golden triangle’ (with Geysir and Gullfoss). Of particular note is the magnificent gorge Almannagja, which marks the eastern boundary of the north American plate and into which the beautiful waterfall Oxararfoss falls.
Other notable attractions within the park include the beautiful lake Thingvallavatn, the largest lake in Iceland, the Silfra fissure, one of the world's top dives, and Gjabakkahellir, one of Iceland's most interesting lava tubes.
Hraunfossar in Borgarfjordur district is a series of beautiful waterfalls formed by rivulets streaming from a short distance out of the Hallmundarhraun lava field.
The lava field flowed from an eruption of one of the volcanoes lying under the glacier Langjokull. The waterfalls pour into the Hvita river from ledges of less porous rock in the lava. These are some of the most magnificent falls found in Iceland and not to be missed.
Snaefellsnes is a large peninsula extending to the west from West Iceland ending with a national park, Snaefellsjokull National Park, where the glacier towers over the scenery, as can sometimes be seen from Reykjavik, lending its beauty to the area.
The peninsula stretches over 100 km to the west as a mountain ridge that includes active volcanoes and is unique in the variety of mountains found.
A few small and beautiful villages are located on the south side and a few fishing villages are on the north side: Rif, Hellissandur, Olafsvik, Grundarfjordur and Stykkisholmur. The last one is highly popular for travelers, featuring a volcano museum and a ferry that takes you across the fascinating Breidafjordur bay to Brjanslaekur on the south border of the Westfjords.
Other museums you might want to check out are the Maritime Museum at Hellissandur, the regional museum Pakkhusid at Olafsvik, and, last but not least, the shark museum at Bjarnarhofn, indeed listed as the nr. 1 Snafellsnes attraction by Lonely Planet Travelers. Also, many of the Icelandic sagas take place at Snaefellsnes.
Snaefellsnes has an abundance of interesting sights. At the national park, you can witness the impressive lava formations of Djupalonssandur creek and test your strength on its four stones, see the two massive lava formations that compries Londrangar, explore the Saxholl volcanic crater and enjoy the echo of 'The Singing Cave', Songhellir. You may also hike on the majestic Snaefellsjokull glacier. The glacier has strong ties with folklore and was the setting for Jules Verne's Journey to the Center of the Earth.
Other sights we can recommend at Snaefellsnes recommend include Raudfeldsgja canyon, east of the national park and the rugged and colourful Berserkjahraun lava field, near Bjarnarhofn, on the north side of the peninsula.
Last, but not least, Snaefellsnes is one of the main setting for Laxdaela saga. Chieftain Snorri godi, Gudrun Osvifursdottir, Bolli Thorlakssson all lived there as well as his namesake Bolli Bollason, the first West Norse member of the Varangian guard, an elite unit of the Byzantine army. Iceland's most famous mass murderer, Axlar-Bjorn, also lived at Snaefellsnes.
The world-famous Reynisfjara shore, near the village Vik in Myrdalur on Iceland's South Coast, is widely regarded as the most impressive black-sand beach in Iceland.
To reach Reynisfjara you can either drive there yourself. Here you will find the largest and cheapest car rentals in Iceland. Or you can join this summer tour to the South coast, or this winter tour to Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon.
Reynisfjara is a black pebble beach and features an amazing cliff of regular basalt columns resembling a rocky step pyramid, which is called Hálsanef. Out in the sea are the spectacularly shaped basalt sea stacks Reynisdrangar. The area has a rich birdlife, including puffins, fulmars and guillemots.
The waves at Reynisfjara are especially strong and unpredictable, and fatal accidents have occurred at this beach, so people are advised to take extra care when visiting the area.
According to folklore, two trolls attempted to drag a ship to land but were turned to stone as daylight broke, turning them into the Reynisdrangar stacks, clearly visible from the beach.
Hellnar is an old fishing village on the westernmost part of the Snaefellsnes peninsula. It used to be one of the largest fishing stations of the peninsula, the oldest record of seafaring there being from 1560.
At the shore are spectacular rock formations. Among them is a protruding cliff called Valasnos. Tunneling into the cliff is a cave renowned for its changing colourful hues, according to the light and sea movement. Large colonies of birds also nest in the area.
At Gvendarbrunnar a.k.a. Mariulind you can taste excellent spring water which is said to have healing powers.
Hellnar hosts the guesthouse for Snaefellsnes National Park and has a very interesting exhibition about the economy of former times and on the geology, flora and fauna of the national park.
Arnarstapi is a village in the southern part of the Snaefellsnes peninsula. The area has several old and charming houses with interesting stories to them and is furthermore renowned for its beautiful nature.
The beach holds a particular attraction. It has an eroded circular stone arch, called Gatklettur, and three rifts, Hundagja,Midgja and Musagja. The interplay of spectacular waves and the light of the sun creates a fascinating spectacle. Large colonies of the arctic tern also nest in the area.
An old horse trail through the lava field Hellnahraun is highly popular for hiking, due to the impressiveness of the surrounding landscape.
Vik in Myrdalur valley is the southernmost village on the Icelandic mainland, located 186 km from the capital Reykjavik.
Vik is important as a service centre for the inhabitants and visitors of the marvellous Reynisfjara beach.
Reynisfjara is widely considered one of the most beautiful beaches on earth (see for example Islands Magazine). This black pebble beach boasts an amazing cliff of regular basalt columns called Gardar, which resembles a rocky step pyramid and out in the sea are the spectaculary shaped basalt sea stacks Reynisdrangar. The area has rich birdlife, including puffins, fulmars and guillemots.
Starting time : Flexible
Airport transfer on arrival/departure
4 nights of accommodation in Reykjavik (different levels available; breakfast included for comfort and quality levels; more detailed info below)
Blue Lagoon standard entrance (upgrades available) and return transfer
Golden Circle sightseeing tour in a minibus (upgrades available with other activities)
South Coast 2-day minibus tour with ice caving
1 night of accommodation in a country hotel in Vatnajokull National Park during the 2-day south coast tour (breakfast included, private bathroom depending on availability)
Snaefellsnes 2-day minibus tour with lava caving
1 night of accommodation in a country hotel in Snaefellsnes during the 2-day Snaefellsnes tour (breakfast included, private bathroom depending on availability)
Northern Lights hunting
Detailed Itinerary with fun and practical information on the nature, history and culture of Iceland
Hands-on travel agent to oversee your itinerary
Entrance fee to the Vatnshellir lava cave
Good hiking shoes
Good waterproof outer layers
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. Please be aware that your itinerary may have to be rearranged to fit your arrival date and time better.
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.
Your amazing winter Iceland adventure starts with a surreal drive through moon-like lava landscapes to reach the northernmost capital of the world, Reykjavík. You'll be staying in a hotel in the city centre, making it easy to go out and explore.
If your flight arrives earlier than 4 PM, you can also choose to go to the Blue Lagoon geothermal spa on your way to Reykjavik. The Blue Lagoon is one of the most visited attractions in Iceland.
The milky blue waters are surrounded by black volcanic formations, making the experience even more unique. A great way to relax after your flight. You may also have an opportunity to take in the Northern Lights as you relax!
If you prefer, you can arrange to visit the Blue Lagoon visit on a different day, so you can settle down and enjoy the capital first, with its quirky cafés, shops, and cosmopolitan cuisine.
Today, you’ll spend the day exploring the beautiful Snæfellsnes peninsula in north-west Iceland. You’ll be picked up at your accommodation and make your first stop at Ytri-Tunga, a beach with a well-known seal colony where they like to sun themselves on the rocks during the warmer months.
Although today might be too cold for their liking, the beach is a thoughtful place where you can stand on rocky shores and contemplate the endless waves.
You’ll visit Rauðafellsgjá, which is a large fissure reaching deep into the roots of the mountain Botnsfjall.
After that, you’ll view two fishing villages, Arnarstapi and Hellnar. At Hellnar, you’ll have an hour or so to walk the cliffs along the sea and take as many charming photos of the coast as you like.
You’ll then visit Snæfellsjökull National Park, the first established national park in Iceland, where, for a small additional fee, you have the option of exploring another cave. This time, you can venture into the Vatnshellir lava cave. It was only opened to the public in 2011 but offers 200 m (656 ft) of darkness and interesting rock formations.
Next, you can breathe in the fresh sea air on Djúpalónssandur and Dritvík, two beachy areas which were important hubs in the fishing trade, once upon a time. Here, there are incredible rock formations, and the beach is known for its strangely shaped pebbles.
Finally, you will hike along the coast to Lóndrangar, a basalt formation which rises to a height of 70 m (230 ft).
You’ll spend the night in a seaside village on the northern side of the peninsula.
On your second day at Snæfellsnes, you’ll return for a tour of other photographic opportunities like the unusual Kirkjufell mountain. Kirkjufell is 463 m (1519 ft) high and is one of the most photographed mountains in Iceland due to the nearby lake which reflects it, waterfalls which enhance its beauty and nearby farmlands which provide a contrast to its stark facade. You’ll also visit Gerðuberg basalt column.
The Shark Museum at Bjarnarhöfn is a treat for the eyes (and tastebuds) as you can learn more about Iceland’s dependence on fishing in generations gone by. The museum is filled with historical artifacts and boat parts, and Bjarni, who runs the project, is happy to share his wealth of experience from a lifetime as a fisherman.
You may also get a taste of hákarl (fermented shark) and a drink of a traditional Icelandic drink, Brennivín! (The trick is not to breathe through your nose until you have swallowed.) No matter what you think of the taste, you’ll feel like a real Viking after you try it!
Next, you’ll visit the Borgarfjordur area to see two waterfalls, Hraunfossar and Barnafoss. Hraunfossar is a series of waterfalls formed by rivulets streaming over a lava field, created by an eruption of a volcano lying under the glacier Langjökull.
Barnafoss is the site of a sad folk tale about two children who crossed a crumbling land bridge over the river and fell to their deaths. Their distraught mother destroyed the bridge so that no one else would risk the same fate.
The final attraction for the day is Deildartunguhver, the highest-flow hot spring in Europe, and the only location in the country where you can find the deer fern - botany enthusiasts keep your eyes open for it!
Then, you’ll drive through the town of Borgarnes on your way back to your hotel in Reykjavík.
The Golden Circle is Iceland's most popular attraction and for a good reason!
The Golden Circle takes its name from Gullfoss, which means Golden Waterfall. Many consider this Iceland's most beautiful waterfall. In wintertime, it's even more stunning as the thundering white water is flows over icicles and breaks through blocks of ice and snow!
Its location is conveniently close to Geysir geothermal area. The English word 'geyser' comes from Geysir, which unfortunately no longer erupts. Luckily, the geyser Strokkur is right next to Geysir, and it spouts water as high as 40 m (131 ft) every 5-10 minutes.
In addition to seeing these two incredible natural attractions, you'll also visit Þingvellir National Park, a UNESCO heritage site that's rich both in beauty and history.
Your knowledgeable guide can tell you everything you'll need to know about the attractions, making the trip more fun and memorable. You will have ample time at each location to take in the beauty of the landscape and explore its fascinating features.
Your transport will be small and comfortable, so you will have an intimate experience instead of going with a big bus group.
After this extraordinary trip, you'll return to Reykjavík to unwind and spend another night in town before your next adventure.
The south coast of Iceland is filled with breathtaking wonders and today begins your two-day trip along it. You will be picked up early at your hotel, so be ready and wear clothing according to weather.
First, you will see Seljalandsfoss waterfall, a stunning high and narrow waterfall that tumbles from a cliff with a large cave behind it. You can actually walk behind the waterfall and enjoy the view, but mind your steps: the rocks can be slippery with ice in the winter! Next, another stunning waterfall: Skógafoss. This one is even bigger than Seljalandsfoss and is the last in a long row of impressive waterfalls that cascade down from the infamous Eyjafjallajökull volcano that looms over the south coast.
Eyjafjallajökull is a glacier with a volcano underneath the ice cap. In 2010, European air travel was shut down for several days because of its eruption. After you've had your waterfall fix, you'll head to Reynisfjara, a gorgeous black sand beach with stunning vistas of the rock formations and ocean waves. The rocks at Reynisdrangar, beyond the coast, stand strong against volatile Atlantic Ocean waves.
Finally, you'll arrive at the stunning Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon. The lagoon is particularly beautiful in low light, the floating ice sparkling in shades of gold. When an iceberg has just tumbled into the lagoon, you'll be able to see the gorgeous deep blue colour of the underside, caused by oxygen bubbles compressed into the ice for thousands of years. You'll then spend the night in the shadow of the great Vatnajökull glacier.
You will start the day with a natural glacier ice cave exploration!
You'll be driven to the cave on a modified super truck along with an expert local glacier guide, enjoying an adventurous trip over the harsh terrain. From where you'll park there's a short hike to the cave, so bring good hiking boots! You'll need to wear waterproof hiking boots that cover your ankles.
Glaciers are indeed spectacular, but they are also dangerous. They are full of cracks and crevasses and always changing as temperatures warm and cool throughout the season! It is not possible to visit glacier caves without the necessary equipment and a specialist guide that knows the area well.
Our local guide knows the glacier and its movements. The guide determines which cave is best to visit each time, taking in all factors, such as weather conditions. Glacier caves vary in size and shape and change daily. In the right light and conditions, they are exquisitely beautiful, with stunning blue ice revealing itself.
In springtime, the ice caves break, melt and fill with water, so in autumn our local guides set out in search of new ones to explore. This means that every cave is unique, you'll never see the same one twice, making the experience all the more magical.
You'll spend at least 45 minutes within the ice cave so make sure that you dress warmly! You'll get a helmet, so you should bring a winter hat that is not too bulky, as it needs to fit under the helmet.
After the breathtaking experience of the ice cave, it will be time to head back to Reykjavík. We'll make another stop at Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon as it looks different in the midday light and you might also be able to see seals sunbathing on the icebergs.
On our way back to Reykjavík, your guide will again be on the lookout for the Northern Lights, and we'll make a stop if we see them.
After an eventful trip, spend your last night in a hotel in the city centre of Reykjavík. If you still have energy left, why not check out Reykjavík's nightlife?
Make the most of your final hours in Iceland.
Use any extra time by exploring the multitude of street art, museums, cafés, designer shops and restaurants serving delicious Icelandic fare scattered around the city center.
If you are lucky enough to have a late flight, you may have time to visit the Blue Lagoon one last time, for a relaxing soak before your departure.
No matter how much time you spend in Iceland, there is always more to see. Enjoy your flight, and come back soon!
See our accommodation levels below. Single person bookings will be arranged in a single room, while bookings of 2 or more people will share twin/double room(s) or triple room(s). If you are traveling in a group, but prefer a single room, please make separate bookings. For multi-day guided tours, accommodation cannot be upgraded and the levels below do not apply. We always do our best to accommodate special requests, which may incur additional costs.
Rooms with a private bathroom at three-star hotels such as Fosshótel Barón, or quality guesthouses. Located in the city center or in close vicinity. Breakfast is included.
The tour was really awesome! We really had an amazing time. I would highly recommend Guide to Iceland. Everything was properly taken care of .
Because of the weather, some project was cancelled. We already lost all hope, then very pleasantly surprised saw the Northen Lights in the last two days of the trip (East of Iceland) , and took some amazing pictures, tour guide for the day was Thorsteinn, a very handsome man who was born in Northern Europe, with the accompanying when we hunting Aurora even attend the dinner, we were very, very happy. GUIDE TO ICELAND every journey will arrange different guides, Thorsteinn is our favorite tour guide in this journey! He can ignite the emotions of all vehicles, we had a great time because of him. Finally, I sum it up: firstly, all removed items are basically about 1-3 days received a GUIDE TO ICELAND refund, which is a fast refund credit company! Secondly, all message/email basically got a response within 24 hours, and super helpful. Thirdly, the accommodations are arranged very well. ——Anastasia Wong
The sights on this trip were amazing! The planning was well taken care of by Unnur and her team who ensured that our doubts were cleared. We were on the 2 day tours with Nice Travel and the Golden Circle tour with Adventure Vikings, both tours were professional. Kudos to the drivers who drove through the wind and ensured we were able to reach each sights before sunset. Unfortunately for us, on the first three days it was constantly raining and dark, hence we were unable to catch a few sights clearly. Nonetheless, the guides ensured that we were taken care of and were always insightful.
The whole trip was absolutely amazing, we had some different companies with different guides, but the most amazing guide we have ever had was Antonio from Nice travel company, he was so knowledgeable and so friendly, he helped us to take some great pictures with the northern lights and made our trip to the south cost unforgettable. Ice caving and in general south coat tour was great. The only problem we had was that our tours were not really punctual and it was a little bit annoying.
Iceland is the most mind blowingly beautiful place on earth- including the warmth of its people ! Such a wonderful experience:) A couple of tips regarding this package tour: - you will be travelling on different days with different companies, and staying at multiple locations even in Reyakvik ( potentially) . I had to double check a couple of times that my pick ups each day were booked from the correct hotels etc - the tour drivers / guides are generally great , but they do vary in experience ( I had one trainee for part of the trip who needs some coaching in managing a group - lovely person though!) , and another who had no experience as a guide but was brilliant as she is a born and bred local so shared loads of local information on culture and politics - you don't get a scheduled itinerary for each day which can be confusing and a bit inconvenient for planning meals and loo stops - sometimes lunch was at 3/4pm in the afternoon by which then you are starving! Some driving legs are 3-4 hours with no planned loo stops. Be prepared:) - driving culture is a bit different safety wise. Some drivers were texting/ googling/ taking calls while driving , which I personally found terrifying at times . Iceland clearly has different rules around this compared to rest of the world !! - hot tip - don't stay in a hotel near the nightclubbing strip in Reykavik on fri / sat night if you want to sleep - some of the tour days are late drop off (9pm) then early pickup (8am ). The tour booked me in above a club and I changed hotels in the middle of the night as was too exhausted to join the party downstairs;) Having said all that, the landscapes are breathtaking and the experience overall incredible. I will be back, but will probably 'self drive ' next time ! Kindest regards Michelle ( Australia)
Iceland has many spectacular natural sources which is unforgettable to see. My husband and I went on a trip on Saturday12th November 2016.The tour guide and driver were extremely knowledgeable and kept out spirits high throughout the cold weather. We are really enjoyed this trip. Thank you so much for an amazing experience. I will never forget.
My friends and I had a great time on this trip to Iceland! I have not stopped recommending it to my other friends and family back home. The ice cave was incredible and we saw the northern lights 4 times while we were in Iceland. You can book this tour without hesitation.
Great trip. The only problem we experienced was bad internet on the bus on the way to the glacier lagoon but that was fixed on the way back. The accommodation was good and all the pickups were on time and without hassle. Can highly recommend this tour package.
Everything about this package was perfect. The hotels were great, the tours were awesome and the people who helped us were the best. I highly recommend this trip and the services offered on this site. They really helped make our trip to Iceland perfect. Thank you Guide to Iceland!
My mom and I had the BEST time ever! Unnur was incredibly helpful and really went above and beyond to make sure our trip was perfect. I think the schedule for this trip is ideal, and really, we got to see so much I can't even believe it. I think it's also great that we got to experience a few different tour companies, and also that they were all small group experience, none of the big bus stuff. I couldn't recommend Guide to Iceland more. We are sooooo happy we found them! Thank you for everything!!!!
It‘s unforgettable holiday in Iceland, The scenery is beautiful. Everyone is nice. It's impressive. Especially our last day guide Matthias Bjarnason. Thanks to his drive, we finally returned Reykjavik in time against storm. In general, we all are satisfied for this trip and thanks to your hard work behind. We will recommend to our friend, It's a worthy trip.
one of my best experience ever! lucky me! I have seen northern light at the first two days nights, which the northernlights were the big ones according to our tour guard. Tour guards of the trip are the best. They are very professional and hard working. Thanks to them,I have very good impression for the iceland people,not only just the tour guards, many of others are very kind and helpful to the tourists.I would like to come back in summer time in future!
The booking was all done by Unnur and I can't say enough how expertly that was done! The tour itself I found a few issues with. My tour was mid December and I don't think this an ideal time for this trip. Winter was late coming and the weather was so wet it was very unpleasant and taking photographs was not possible in many places. I went straight to Blue Lagoon on my arrival day from the airport. If you are doing this also, they will store your bags for you. It is a very cold walk to the lagoon from the luggage storage so make sure you have access to enough clothes from your luggage before and after the water. Make sure you have a loose fitting, completely waterproof jacket and pants even though the tour info only stressed waterproof gear on one day. On my tour it rained and sleeted almost every day. Getting out of the minivans all day to sightsee things like waterfalls with huge sprays In rain or snow will make you very wet. I found days 2 and 3 the least interesting of this tour. It seemed to be a lot of stopping at fishing villages and little else. As the weather was so blustery you couldn't explore too much. The Golden Circle tour was more interesting but make sure you are wearing seat belts in the minivans. My tour ran into a bad snowstorm late in the afternoon, a gust of wind blew our minibus off the road and it tipped over. The driver was very professional and the accident was not his fault. We had no serious injuries because everyone but one was wearing seat belts. If you are unfortunate enough to be in an accident here in Iceland, rest assured their rescue teams are extremely capable and thorough. Day 4 and 5 was fun, especially Francois the tour driver was so helpful and caring. I became sick early on the tour and he was constantly checking on me. The black sand beaches were fantastic but beware of the water! They all warn you about the currents but I can't stress enough not to turn your back on the water. The ice caving tour was a little disappointing. I had expected to be able to take photos inside the cave, carrying a tripod for the purpose. We were only inside a tiny section of the cave due to the amount of water from the warm conditions. We were there a max of 10 mins and there was hardly anything to photograph and nowhere to set up a tripod. I have seen beautiful images of brilliant blue ice caves but this is not what we saw. A lot of the walls were exposed rock with only a couple of small blue ice sections and water flowing fast below the steps we were standing on. The hike up to the cave and back from the cave were so much more interesting than the 5-10 mins in the cave. My trip had so much cloud cover there were no Northern lights visible till the last two nights. Luckily Francois could stop on the way back to Reykjavik for us to take some photos. I think the drivers could have explained what would be happening a bit more before arriving at venues. When getting out at stops we usually had no idea exactly what was going on. eg. The lava cave, the specifics of the ice caving etc. The drivers were all very knowledgeable and happy to share there experiences and love of Iceland.