Map of Iceland's Golden Circle in Depth including Iceland

Discover glaciers, geysers and geothermal pools in Iceland’s Golden Circle

Visit the highlights and hotspots of Iceland’s Golden Circle on a five-day loop from Reykjavik. And when we say hotspots, we really mean it. Whether you’re soaking in the warm waters of the Blue Lagoon, marvelling at the bursts of the Strokkur Geysir or standing at the foot of the erupting Fagradalsfjall volcano, this adventure is sure to be off the scale. But it wouldn’t be the land of fire and ice without visits to the Solheimajokull Glacier and a series of chillingly beautiful waterfalls. To see another side of life in Iceland, you’ll stay on a sustainable working farm and travel with an expert local leader who’ll show you what makes their country one of the world’s most inviting.

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Start
Reykjavik, Iceland
Finish
Reykjavik, Iceland
Destination
Iceland
Style
Comfort
Code
BIKH
Physical rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 12

Why you'll love this trip

  • See all the sights that make Iceland’s famous Golden Circle so celebrated, from Gulfoss Waterfall to Strokkur Geysir and Thingvellir National Park, and take a detour to the erupting Fagradalsfjall volcano.

  • Come face to face with one of Europe’s largest ice caps during an adventurous walk over the Solheimajokull Glacier, allowing you to really appreciate its mighty size.

  • Visit a sustainably run working farm and enjoy a farm-to-table meal, and do your bit by planting a tree on the farm to contribute to your hosts’ carbon offsetting efforts.

  • There are few things more quintessentially Icelandic than soaking in a geothermal pool – experience it for yourself during a visit to the iconic Blue Lagoon hot springs.

  • Visit a geothermal bakery for a food experience like no other. Discover how rye bread is cooked beneath the ground by hot black sand and sample a delicious piece yourself.

Is this trip right for you?

  • Please ensure you consult your local government’s advice regarding travel prior to booking this trip.

  • A remote location and high-performing currency are just two reasons Iceland can be an expensive destination. This affects things like museum entrance fees and outdoor activities, but is especially noticeable when eating out. Your leader will be able to advise on how to save money, but in remote areas the only option for dinner will be at the guesthouse we are staying at.

  • The extremity of the weather makes for incredible scenery, but it also means Iceland can be very cold, especially at the start and end of the summer season, at night and of course in winter. Please bring appropriate clothing for adverse weather conditions. On the rare occasion where your leader must alter the itinerary due to the weather, an alternative will be offered.

  • As accommodation on this trip is twin-share, solo travellers will share a room with other travellers of the same gender. This trip is a great opportunity to get to know other like-minded people, so embrace it while you can. Please note that a single supplement can be booked on this trip, subject to availability. For those travelling as a duo, hotels in Iceland often don't have double beds, but rather two single beds that can be pushed together. In some cases, bathroom facilities will be shared rather than ensuite.

  • This trip is new to our range this year. And while we have thoroughly researched every detail of the logistics, new destinations and working with new partners can sometimes throw us some unexpected surprises. More often than not, it’ll be a great surprise. But every now and again there might be a hiccup. We like to think that’s what puts the ‘adventure’ in ‘adventure travel’.

Itinerary

Welcome to Iceland! Your adventure begins in Reykjavik, the world’s most northernmost capital and an eclectic place full of charm. A welcome meeting will take place at 6pm tonight at your hotel where you’ll meet your local leader and travel companions. If you arrive in Reykjavik with time to spare, why not hit the streets and explore the collection of quirky boutiques and interesting eateries. After your welcome meeting, you may like to head into town with the group and get to know each other over dinner.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
It’s very important that you attend the welcome meeting as we will be collecting insurance and emergency contact details at this time. Please take this into consideration when booking your flights to and from Iceland. We are happy to book additional accommodation before or after the trip for you in Reykjavik, subject to availability. If you are going to be late please let your booking agent or hotel reception know.
Wake up and take a moment to breath in the fresh Icelandic air before heading out towards the Reykjanes Peninsula to take part in one of the country’s most beloved activities. Pay a visit to the famous Blue Lagoon, a geothermal spa surrounded by a black lava field. Its warm waters are rich in minerals and silica mud, said to cleanse and soften the skin. Sit back and enjoy a relaxing soak against a remarkable mountain backdrop, then it’s time for a special experience – a visit to the currently erupting Fagradalsfjall volcano. Here you’ll see basaltic lava bubbling from the central vent just a few metres away, making its way down the flank of the cone. After some time to appreciate the wonder of this spectacle, continue to your accommodation for the night, located in a quiet location in quintessential Icelandic countryside - a simple barn like building turned into hotel rooms with private bathrooms. Enjoy dinner onsite tonight.
Accommodation
  • Farmstay Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Reykjanes Peninsula - Fagradalsfjall Active Volcano
  • Reykjanes Peninsula - Blue Lagoon
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
Special Information
Today's total driving distance is about 200km / 3 hours. Please note that the visit to the active volcano is dependent on a variety of factors, as authorities sporadically restrict access due to gas emissions or bad weather. To get to the volcano involves a walk of 2 hours or more across uneven surface with loose rocks and gravel, and some steep sections. Please also keep in mind that volcanic activity is impossible to predict, and lava flows may have subsided by the time of your visit to Iceland.
Today is all about exploring Iceland’s famous Golden Circle. Head to the Geysir geothermal area to check out Strokkur and watch as the geyser swells with blue water before erupting and shooting some 20-30 metres in the air. Marvel at the immense beauty and sheer power of the Gullfoss double waterfall on the Hvita River. Pay a visit to a geothermal bakery and discover how rye bread is cooked beneath the ground by hot black sand, then sample some of this special bread for yourself with a pat of Icelandic butter with lava salt, accompanied by a selection of other Icelandic delicacies of the region. Think hakarl (shark), lamb’s head, liver sausage and dried fish. Wash it all down with the local brennivin. Afterwards, head to a sustainable working farm that doubles as a hotel. This farm is the leader in responsible tourism and sustainability in Iceland. Since the arrival of the first settlers to Iceland, deforestation has taken place to make space for pastures, and overgrazing has then led to soil erosion. The owners started a tree planting project on their land to combat this, and this afternoon you’ll head out into the countryside to plant a tree to help support your host’s commitment to sustainability and carbon offsetting efforts. Stay on to enjoy a wonderful farm-to-table dinner made using ingredients grown on the farm.
Accommodation
  • Farmstay Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Golden Circle - Strokkur Geysir
  • Golden Circle - Gullfoss Waterfall
  • Golden Circle - Icelandic Specialties Tasting
  • Golden Circle - Rye Bread Bakery Experience
  • Hvolsvollur Valley - Tree Planting Project (summer only)
  • Hvolsvollur Valley - Farm to Table Dinner
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Special Information
Today's total driving distance is about 220km / 3 hours.
Start the day by visiting the magical Seljalandsfoss waterfall and take a walk behind its cascade for a different perspective, followed by the powerful Skogafoss waterfall, one of Iceland's biggest at a width of 25 metres and a drop of 60 metres. From here embark on a short hike to another breathtaking waterfall, Kvernufoos, hidden in a nearby valley, and unbeknownst to most. The waterfall is framed by moss-coated cliffs of lava rock, adding to it's otherworldly appearance. After you’ve had your fill of gorgeous waterfalls, prepare to take a walk on one of Europe's biggest ice caps – Solheimajokull Glacier. No experience is necessary to partake in the hike as you’ll be briefed on all you need to know. It’s sobering to think that the glacier is retreating due to rising world temperatures, and in some years the glacier may be gone. If you’d prefer to sit this one out, you’ll have the chance to hike to the glacier's tongue instead.
Accommodation
  • Farmstay Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • South Coast - Solheimajokull Glacier Hike
  • South Coast - Skogafoss Waterfall
  • South Coast - Seljalandsfoss Waterfall
  • South Coast - Kvernufoss Waterfall Hike
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
Total driving distance approximately 130 kilometres / 2 hours. Please note that today's glacier walk is dependent on weather conditions. In order to be able to fit the ice crampons you will need to wear ankle high shoes.
Say goodbye to your hosts this morning and begin the journey back to Reykjavik. Stop en route in Thingvellir National Park to see the Parliament Plains, the site of Iceland’s first parliament. Thingvellir also contains the Silfra fissure, where the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates are slowly pulling apart, and the resulting gap is partly filled with fresh water and is clearly visible. Once you get back to Reykjavik, your leader will take you out on a walking tour to discover more of the history and culture of this fascinating city. Once this concludes, you will say your goodbyes and your adventure will come to an end.
Included Activities
  • Reykjavik - Walking Tour
  • Golden Circle - Thingvellir National Park
Optional Activities
  • Reykjavik - Tales of Iceland Exhibition - ISK2200
  • Reykjavik - Silfra Fissure Snorkelling Day Trip - ISK21900
  • Reykjavik - Lava Tunnel Tour - ISK11400
  • Reykjavik - Volcano House - ISK1790
  • Reykjavik - Settlement Exhibition - ISK1700
  • Reykjavik - Whales of Iceland Museum - ISK2900
  • Reykjavik - Saga Museum - ISK2500
  • Reykjavik - Harpa Concert Hall - Free
  • Reykjavik - Maritime Museum - ISK1800
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
Today's total driving distance is about 150km / 2 hours. Please note that today will have an early start, and the tour comes to an end after the walking tour of Reykjavik at around 1 pm, subject to delays due to weather and road conditions. Please take this into consideration when booking your flights leaving Iceland. We are happy to book additional accommodation before or after the trip for you in Reykjavik, subject to availability. Please enquire with your booking agent.

Meals

4 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 2 dinners

Transport

Private minibus with free Wi-Fi

Accommodation

Hotel (1 night), Remote farmstay hotel (3 nights)

Included activities

  • Reykjanes Peninsula - Fagradalsfjall Active Volcano
  • Reykjanes Peninsula - Blue Lagoon
  • Golden Circle - Strokkur Geysir
  • Golden Circle - Gullfoss Waterfall
  • Golden Circle - Icelandic Specialties Tasting
  • Golden Circle - Rye Bread Bakery Experience
  • Hvolsvollur Valley - Tree Planting Project (summer only)
  • Hvolsvollur Valley - Farm to Table Dinner
  • South Coast - Solheimajokull Glacier Hike
  • South Coast - Skogafoss Waterfall
  • South Coast - Seljalandsfoss Waterfall
  • South Coast - Kvernufoss Waterfall Hike
  • Reykjavik - Walking Tour
  • Golden Circle - Thingvellir National Park

Dates & availability

Trip departures are unavailable.

There are currently no scheduled departures on our Iceland's Golden Circle in Depth trip. If you are interested in other trips in the region visit one of the links below.

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Important notes

START & END OF TOUR
This trip starts with a group meeting at 6 pm on day 1, and ends after the walking tour around Reykjavik at around 2 pm on the final day (subject to delays due to weather and road conditions). Please take this into consideration when booking your flights to and from Iceland. We are happy to book additional accommodation before or after the trip for you in Reykjavik, subject to availability.

SINGLE SUPPLEMENT
A single supplement is bookable on this trip, subject to availability at the time of booking. If you would like to book a single supplement and enquire about availability please speak to your booking agent.

COSTS & PRICES
Iceland can be an expensive destination in many ways, from museum entrance fees to outdoor activities, but especially in terms of eating out. Your leader will be able to advise on how to save money. In remote areas the only option for dinner will be at the guesthouse we are staying at. Stock up on food at a supermarket prior to arrival if you would like to opt out eating at the guesthouse's restaurant. Please make sure you read the itinerary carefully in order to know what is and what isn't included in the trip price.

Essential trip information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides 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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