Day 1: Arrival:
Arrival in the Land of Fire and Ice
Approximate distance: ca100km / 62miles
Once you have landed at Keflavik Airport, please pick up your luggage and head through customs. Collect your rental car at the airport and proceed to your hotel.
Drive along with mystical lava landscapes to the charming village of Hveragerdi for your overnight. Hveragerdi is one of the few sites in the world located directly on top of a geothermal area and, because of its many greenhouses heated by hot water from nearby springs, it is often called the “flower village.”
Overnight in Hveragerdi
Please note check-in for most hotels begins at 14:00 – 16:00 (2:00pm-4:00pm)
Note: It‘s also possible to stay the first night in Reykjavik or in Keflavik (near the international airport) at an additional surcharge.
Day 2: Hveragerdi – Golden Circle area – South Shore - Kirkjubaejarklaustur:
Highlights: Thingvellir National Park Gullfoss Geysir Hekla Eyjafjallajokull Seljalandsfoss Skogafoss Eldhraun Lava Field
National Park – Famous Golden Falls – Bubbling Geysers – Impressive Lava Field
Approximate distance: ca385km / 239 miles
Breakfast at your hotel. Today is open for you to explore the wonders of the Golden Circle region. Visit Thingvellir National Park, site of the ancient Icelandic Viking parliament and a jewel of nature. Here you can see the meeting point between the North American and European continents. Several walking trails and hiking trails take visitors to historical points of interest. Continue to the amazing sites of Gullfoss waterfall and the Geysir hot spring area. Gullfoss is considered by many visitors to be Iceland’s most beautiful waterfall. Geysir is an active geothermal field with many bubbling steam vents and spouting hot springs, including the famous Strokkur geyser.
Drive along the scenic south shore, one of Iceland‘s best areas for farming. If the skies are clear you‘ll get a great view of two famous volcanoes. Hekla is Iceland‘s most frequently erupting volcano. Eyjafjallajokull is the (in)famous volcano whose 2010 eruption impacted air traffic around the world.
The path takes you over vast lava fields and black sand plains created by glacial floods and on to the town of Kirkjubaejarklaustur.
Overnight in Kirkjubaejarklaustur area
Day 3: Kirkjubaejarklaustur- Vatnajokull National Park - Hofn:
Highlights: Vatnajokull National Park Vatnajokull Skaftafell National Park Svartifoss Waterfall Jokulsarlon Glacial Lagoon Hofn
Massive Lava Field- Glacier National Park – Europe‘s Largest Glacier – Iceberg filled Lagoon
Approximate distance: ca 210km / 130 miles
Breakfast at your hotel. You will soon be in the vicinity of Vatnajokull National Park, named after the largest glacier in Europe, and you‘ll see amazing views of Vatnajokull through the day.
We highly recommend visiting the Skaftafell area of Vatnajokull National Park. There are some excellent hiking trails with views of glaciers. Another popular hiking trail leads to Svartifoss (the Black Falls), waterfalls framed in dark basalt columns. You can also take a hiking tour with an expert glacier guide. Near the park is the Glacier Lagoon (Jokulsarlon), where icebergs drift and collide with each other in a lake formed by Vatnajokull glacier.
Some icebergs have drifted up onto a nearby black sand beach that provides a dramatic setting for photos. Known as the Diamond Beach, this is a beautiful place to linger, catching views of icebergs and seals.
Head eastward to the village of Hofn, which lies in the shadow of Vatnajokull glacier.
Overnight in Hofn.
Day 4: Hofn - Vik:
Highlights: Vík Reynisdrangar Cliffs Dyrholaey
Glacial views- Lava Landscapes – Powerful Waves and Black Sand Beaches
Approximate distance: ca. 289 km/ 180 miles
Breakfast at your hotel. Take your time and enjoy a leisurely drive back along the South Coast.
Start with a visit to Vestrahorn, the mountain outside of Hofn. This is a wonderful place of steep cliffs and seacoast, ideal for photographs.
Now head back along Road 1, getting a completely different view of Vatnajokull and Southeast Iceland. You should definitely stop again at the Glacier Lagoon and Iceberg Lagoon.
The road leads to Vik, the southernmost community in Iceland. Vik is a pretty town set against the dramatic seacoast. Admire the black sand beach, basalt columns and powerful Atlantic waves of Reynisfjara beach near Vik. Far out to sea are huge sea stacks that local tales say were once trolls. Dyrholaey* is a rocky headland famous in photos for its black lava arch. During the summer, thousands of sea birds and puffins nest here (puffins are generally in Iceland between mid-May and early August)
*Important: Please note that Dyrholaey is closed during nesting season, from about the middle of May until late June.
Overnight in Vik
Day 5: Vik - Reykjanes - Blue Lagoon - Reykjavik:
Highlights: Krysuvik Grindavík The Blue Lagoon Reykjavik Seljalandsfoss Skogafoss
Dramatic Coastline – UNESCO Geopark – Geothermal Lagoon
Approximate distance: ca290km / 180miles
Breakfast at your hotel. Today you‘ll continue west along the South Shore.
The route leads by two beautiful waterfalls. Seljalandsfoss is a ribbon-like waterfall that you can walk behind if trail conditions are good. Skogafoss is believed to contain hidden treasure from the Middle Ages.
This is a great day to get acquainted with Iceland‘s famous volcanic and tectonic forces with an optional visit to the interactive Lava Centre in Hvollsvollur village.
You’ll then take a turn onto a coastal road known for its breath-taking views of powerful sea waves slamming against the shoreline.
to the Reykjanes peninsula, a UNESCO Geopark with many intriguing geological wonders, including the bubbling and colorful Krysuvik geothermal area. You can also opt to enjoy a relaxing soak in the famous Blue Lagoon, a unique wonder of nature with pleasantly warm and mineral-rich geothermal water located in the middle of a black lava field. (Please note that admission to the Blue Lagoon must be booked in advance. We would be happy to help you with booking admission). If you’re interested in culture and history, we definitely recommend a visit to the Viking World exhibit where you can discover facts about Viking life and see Islendingurinn, a replica of a Viking ship that sailed from Iceland to North America in the year 2000.
Return to Reykjavik for overnight stay.
Day 6: Departure from Iceland:
Return to Keflavik International Airport. **
Approximate distance: ca 50km / 30miles
Breakfast at your hotel. Drive back to Keflavik International Airport.
** We recommend departing your hotel in Reykjavik no later than at least 3 hours before your flight departure. It takes approximately 1 hour to drive to the airport, and check-in will start 2 hours before your departure.
If you did not visit the Blue Lagoon earlier but have some free time today, you might want to use the opportunity en route to the airport. For this detour, please be sure to allow for at least 2-2,5 hours extra so you’ll have ample time at the lagoon. Your rental car should be returned to the airport service area, which is located only 2 minutes from the airport building. A shuttle will then transport you to the departure hall.