A travers cette excursion de 3 jours vous découvrez des lieux uniques en Islande. Le Cercle d‘Or, la côte Sud, le Parc National de Thingvellir ainsi que Jökulsárlón. Vous débutez votre aventure par la visite du Cercle d‘Or, qui regroupe quelques-uns des lieux les plus connus de la Terre de Glace. Il regroupe le Parc National de Thingvellir, Geysir ainsi que la Cascade de Gullfoss. Les deux jours suivants sont consacrés à la visite de la surprenante côte Sud de l’Islande, entre glaciers, volcans, champs de lave, rivières glaciaires et cascades puissantes. Votre visite la plus à l’Est n’est autre que le lagon d’icebergs de Jökulsárlón, ainsi que la plage de sable noir où s’échouent des blocs de glace millénaires : un environnement aussi surnaturel que contrasté.
L’un des moments forts de cette excursion est la randonnée glacier dans le Parc National de Skaftafell, sur une langue glaciaire de la plus grande calotte d’Europe : le Vatnajökull. Nos guides professionnels vous fournissent l’équipement et l’encadrement nécessaire à la marche sur glacier.
L’environnement sur un glacier offre un point de vue différent. Vous évoluez au cœur de crevasses, moulins et autres formations de glace.
Si votre objectif est de vous immerger au cœur des phénomènes uniques d’Islande, alors cette excursion est faite pour vous. Les disponibilités pour cette sortie sont limitées.
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.
Seljalandsfoss in the river Seljalandsa in South Iceland is one of the most sought waterfalls in the country.
Seljalandsfoss has a narrow cascade but is one of Iceland's highest waterfalls, at 63 meters. The waterfall is highly picturesque and has the rare distinction that one can actually walk behind it.
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.
Skaftafell is a nature preserve in Oraefasveit. It used to be a national park of its own but joined the larger Vatnajokull National Park in 2008.
Skaftafell is notable for its rich flora, growing between sands and glaciers, and overall for its amazing and contrasting scenery. You can take short and easy trails to the waterfalls Svartifoss and Hundafoss, as well as Skaftafell glacier, with the mountain Kristinartindar and Morsardalur valley further off.
Skaftafell is also the perfect base camp for those seeking to climb Iceland’s highest peak, Hvannadalshnukur.
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.
Kerid is a volcanic crater lake in Grimsnes in South Iceland. It is a popular stop when traveling the Golden Circle.
It is believed that Kerid was originally a cone volcano that erupted and and emptied its magma reserve. Once the magma was depleted, the weight of the cone collapsed into an empty magma chamber, later to be filled with water.
The Kerid caldera is composed of red volcanic rock and is around 55 m deep, 170 m wide and 270 m across. There is little vegetation in the steep-walled crater, save for one wall with a gentler slope which is covered with deep moss. This wall is fairly easy to descend.
The lake itself is fairly shallow and is striking in its beauty. Opaque and aquamarine, surrounded by the red crater walls, Kerid offers a great contrast of colours and a highly impressive scenery.
Heure du transfert : 09:00
Guide professionnel anglophone
Excursion en minibus, maximum de 15 personnes
Randonnée glacier guidée avec l'équipement nécessaire
2 nuits en hébergement en chambre double, avec salle de bain partagée et petit-déjeuner
Tour en bateau à Jökulsárlón
Wi-fi disponible dans le minibus
Frais d'entrée pour le cratère de Kerid
Déjeuner et dîner
Vêtement chauds et bonnes chaussures de randonnée, essayez d'apporter avec vous un baggage léger si possible
Bonnes chaussures de randonnée pour la rando sur glacier. Vous pouvez en louer en option
Meals other than breakfast are not included but we do make lunch and dinner stops where guests can buy meals. The maximum number of passengers are 15 which gives a better atmosphere while travelling A Single Room supplement of 15.000 ISK is mandatory for single travleres. IMPORTANT: It can happen that the glacier hike is cancelled because of weather and/or safety reasons. Then we will find other activities when possible or make a partial refund.
Le Cercle d’Or regroupe les sites les plus populaires d’Islande. Gullfoss, Geysir et le Parc National de Thingvellir sont des classiques à visiter pour tout voyageur sur notre île.
Afin d’ajouter quelque chose d’unique à votre expérience, vous découvrez aujourd’hui le grand cratère de Kerid. Large de 270 mètres et profond de 55 mètres, ce cratère est en partie comblé par un lac profond de 14 mètres offrant une pointe de magie à ce lieu.
Le Parc National de Thingvellir est un haut-lieu pour les islandais. Il se trouve à cheval entre les plaques tectoniques américaine et eurasienne, au cœur de la ceinture volcanique et de fissures qui parcourent l’Islande. Le sentiment de se trouver entre deux continents est une expérience unique.
Geysir est situé dans le champ géothermique d’Haukadalur où vous pouvez admirer les geysers de Strokkur et de Geysir lui-même, qui a donné son nom au terme international « geyser ». Strokkur entre en éruption toutes les 5 à 10 minutes environ, faisant jaillir une colonne d’eau et de vapeur à une hauteur variant entre 20 et 30 mètres.
La « Cascade d’or » Gullfoss, est une chute très impressionnante en Islande.
Vous passez la nuit dans une charmante guesthouse proche de la grande cascade de Seljalandsfoss.
Aujourd’hui vous découvrez 5 cascades de la côte Sud de l’Islande, qui sont Gljufrabui, Seljalandsfoss, Skógafoss, Irafoss et la cascade secrète de Kvernufoss.
Dans l'après-midi, vous rejoignez une randonnée sur glacier au Solheimajokull durant 1h30. Vous découvrez ensuite la plage de sable noir Reynisfjara et ses colonnes de basalte. Vous passez la nuit à Nicehostel Seljalandsfoss, tout près de la chute du même nom.
Aujourd’hui est la journée de la glace et des lagons. Après un arrêt au village de Vik, cap vers l'Est où vous découvrez la cascade Foss á Sidu et le parc national Skaftafell. Pause déjeuner au parc.
Vous découvrez ensuite la lagune glaciaire de Jökulsárlón et réalisez un tour en bateau au milieu des icebergs et des phoques, avec comme toile de fond les imposants glaciers.
Retour vers Reykjavik avec quelques arrêts sur votre route de retour vers Reykjavik. Arrivée vers 21h15 à la capitale.