Visit Iceland and see glaciers, geysers and geothermal hot springs

Travel to Iceland and delve into the ancient land of Vikings and volcanoes on this 10-day Icelandic adventure. Marvel at geothermal hot springs, witness the steamy eruptions of a giant geyser, touch the tongue of Europe's biggest glacier, see lava that's still warm after 20 years and scale giant waterfalls. Travel through Iceland's desolate lands, so mysterious and ethereal that they have inspired artists, poets and musicians for centuries. The ancient, untamed beauty of Iceland will stay with you forever.

Start
Reykjavik, Iceland
Finish
Reykjavik, Iceland
Countries
Iceland
Themes
Explorer
Code
BMSI
Physical rating
Cultural rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1 Max 12
Carbon offset
142kg pp per trip


Highlights

  • Discover Iceland's history in Reykjavik
  • Witness the steamy eruptions of a giant geyser
  • Hike to the tongue of Europe's biggest glacier
  • Travel to Iceland's 'Waterfall of the Gods'
  • Marvel at lava flows in Leirhnjukur that are still hot after 20 years

Itinerary

Hallo! Welcome to Iceland.

Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6 pm today. Please look for a note in the hotel lobby or ask reception where it will take place. If you can't arrange a flight that will arrive in time, you may wish to arrive a day early so you're able to attend. We'll be happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability). If you're going to be late, please inform the hotel reception. We'll be collecting your insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting, so please ensure you have all these details to provide to your leader.

You can check in at the joining point hotel anytime after 2 pm. While early check-in is not guaranteed, feel free to store your luggage until needed. Please note that the guest rooms may be spread across a number of buildings all situated along a quiet street in central Reykjavik, a 5 minute walk from each other.

The world's northernmost capital of Reykjavik lies just below the Arctic circle. The city sees around four hours of sunlight a day in winter and 22 hours or more in summer. Surrounded by volcanic peaks and crystalline ocean, and boasting a vibrant arts and nightlife scene, Reykjavik's contrasts are utterly beguiling. Why not arrive early and head to the National Museum, which depicts the history of Iceland from the 9th century when the first Vikings from mainland Scandinavia arrived and settled, to the present day.
Today take a one-hour guided city tour of Reykjavik, followed by a trip to Þingvellir National Park, home to the Parliament Plains. Þingvellir was the location of Iceland's first parliament, founded in 930, and is the location of the Silfra fissure, where the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates slowly pull apart. The resulting gap is partly filled with fresh water and is clearly visible.

From here head to the Geysir geothermal area, checking out the Strokkur Geyser. Finally, visit the impressive Gullfoss Waterfall (Golden Waterfall) on the Hvita river, before proceeding to your overnight stay in the Hvolsvöllur region.
Begin the day with a visit to two breathtaking waterfalls, Seljalandsfoss and Skógafoss. Afterwards, there is time to see the Skógasafn Museum, which houses a large collection of cultural folk artefacts and period buildings.

From here, continue along Iceland's beautiful South Shore, checking out the promotory of Dyrhólaey, which is rich in birdlife and Iceland's southernmost point, the rocks of Reynisdrangar and its beach Reynisfjara, and the dramatic Solheimajokull glacier along the way. Today's journey ends in the seaside township of Vík, Iceland's most southerly village located on a black sand beach, where you'll spend the night.
Today your journey continues over the lava and black sands formed by the eight-month long Laki eruption of 1783-1784. Head to Skaftafell National Park, where you'll take a short walk (approx 1,5 hours return) to the beautiful Svartifoss (the Black Waterfall), surrounded by basalt columns. Another walk will take you to Svínafellsjökull, one of the tongues of Vatnajökull, Europe's largest glacier.

Continue to the one of Iceland's undisputed highlights, the glacier lagoon of Jökulsárlón, where you will board an amphibian vehicle to cruise the lagoon and see the icebergs floating all around you. From here it is not far to our overnight stay, picturesquely located on another lagoon sheltered by a black sandbar.
After breakfast drive through the coastal region of the East Fjords, enjoying spectacular views of high mountains, deep fjords, spectacular waterfalls, glaciers, and quaint fishing villages.

See the memorial to the lost fishermen in the village of Höfn and stop at the wooded village of Egilsstadir, before continuing along mountain roads into the Icelandic interior and the highland village of Möðrudalur. At 469 metres (1,539 feet) above sea level, Möðrudalur Valley is the highest inhabited place in Iceland, and snow can be seen almost year round.
From Möðrudalur you will drive to the magnificent Dettifoss waterfall, Europe's mightiest waterfall. You'll also pay a visit to the nearby natural phenomenon of the Ásbyrgi canyon, a gorge formed by a glacial flood after the last ice age, some 8,000 years ago. Legend has it that the gorge was formed when Sleipnir, Odin's eight-legged horse, stamped one of its feet to the ground here.

Continue on towards the town of Husavik before driving to Lake Myvatn. Recent and old volcanic activity has shaped the landscapes of the area, making it one of the most interesting geological regions in the northern hemisphere. See boiling and bubbling mud pools, the lava labyrinth of Dimmuborgir and the pseudo crater group at Skutustadir. If you like, you can even take a soak in the hot blue waters of the Myvatn Nature Baths.
This morning, drive to the impressive Goðafoss waterfall (the Waterfall of the Gods). From Goðafoss continue on to Akureyri. Situated at the head of Iceland's longest fjord, Akureyri is the nation's second largest city. Embark on a short guided tour of the town before enjoying some free time to explore.

In the afternoon, journey on to the town of Siglufjordur and then around the Trollaskagi Peninsula to Gauksmýri, where you'll spend the night.
Continue your journey into Snæfellsnes National Park, home to the magnificent Snæfellsjokull Glacier. The glacier played a starring role in Jules Verne's 1864 novel 'Journey to the Centre of the Earth'.

Visit a rural church and the white beach at Búðir, and Arnarstapi, where a short stroll along the coastal cliffs exposes you to rich bird life and other wonders of nature.

At Djúpalónssandur check out the basaltic pebble beach, which is set to a backdrop of glaciers and strange lava formations.
Today head back towards Reykjavík to complete your circuit of Iceland.

Your first stop is at the old Grábrók volcano, where you'll take a hike to the crater summit. Continuing on your journey, check out the waterfalls of Hraunfossar (Lava Waterfall) and Barnafossar (Children's Waterfall). Next stop is a visit to steamy Deildartunguhver, Europe's hottest and highest flow thermal spring. 180 litres of 97 degree hot water emerges here per second. The water is used for heating in villages as far as 60 kilometres away.

From here, you will head back to Reykjavík, passing beautiful Hvalfjörður (Whale Fjord) along the way.
Today is departure day and time to say 'sjáumst'. As there are no activities planned, you are able to depart the hotel at any time. Check out time is at midday. If you are departing later, you can arrange to store your luggage at the hotel.
View trip notes to read full itinerary

Inclusions

Meals
9 breakfasts3 dinners
Transport
Minibus
Accommodation
Guesthouse (7 nights), Hotel (2 nights)

Dates

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Trip notes

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Your trip notes provide a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what’s included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

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Reviews

Our Iceland Discovery trips score an average of 4.59 out of 5 based on 59 reviews in the last year.

Iceland Discovery , September 2015

Iceland Discovery , August 2015