This fascinating route will take us on a trip around Iceland including the visits to most of the major sights along the Ring Road. In addition we will have a cruise to the famous Westman Islands.
This fascinating tour combines beautiful landscapes, pure nature and unique Icelandic animals. The comprehensive route includes Iceland and the western peninsula Snæfellsnes and passes through most of the main sites along the Ring Road. The highlight of the trip is an option of a cruise to the Westman Islands by a ferry. Westman is an archipelago of volcanic islands in the south of Iceland. The visitors of the islands enjoy the breathtaking views of glaciers and volcanoes and the chain of islands that make up the archipelago. The Westman Islands are famous throughout the world as one of the world's largest nesting areas of the puffins - Iceland's national bird.
Route Length : 2120 km. (Nearly)
Season: May1st - Sep30th
In Reykjavik you will get the keys to the hotel room. Now it's time to go out and discover the charm of the city. The city with population of 130,000 residents (excluding the satellite towns) is the capital city of Iceland and the commercial and cultural center of Iceland. Reykjavik's old port has become lately a jewel of the city and many galleries, restaurants and the Maritime Museum have opened around its docks. Facing the sea you will see the extending Faxaflói Bay and the mountain ridge on the other side of the bay. Between them there is a Mount Esja with a walking trail, through which you can climb to the top of the mountain. The National Museum of Iceland is also located in Reykjavik, it tells the history of Iceland in every possible field and a tour there will give us an idea of the places and people you will meet later during the tour.
Today's main sites: Reykjavik.
You will depart from Reykjavík towards the northeast. The first stop is the Thingvellir Park. Besides the historical value of this place that was the home of the Althing - the oldest parliament in the world, it has also an important geological value as the tectonic plates of Eurasia and North America are revealed here above the ground. The island of Iceland is located on the connection of the two plates and in the Thingvellir Park it is possible to be simultaneously on two continents. The next stop for today is the geothermal field Geysir, the place after which the phenomenon of "geyser" got its name. There you will be able to see the field sizzling with boiling water springs and steam emitted from the bowels of the earth. Every 12 minutes the large geyser Strokkur will give a performance and burst for the viewer's enjoyment. To the east of Geysir flows the Gullfoss Waterfall, name of which means in Icelandic "the golden waterfall". Indeed, on sunny days, the water splashes around it are captured by the sunrays forming a golden halo above the waterfall and a colorful rainbow. A stone memorial depicting the profile of Sigriður Tómasdóttir is located above the falls. She was the one who started in 1908 the struggle against an attempt to set up a power station on the waterfall, and is considered the first environmental activist in Iceland. There are other sites in the area like a crater Kerid and Faxi Waterfall that you will visit too. Estimated driving distance: 210 km.
Today's main sites: Crater Kerið - Geysir - Gullfoss Waterfall - Thingvellir National Park - Reykjavik.
Accommodation: Hella area
Westman Islands archipelago (Vestmannaeyjar) is located at the southern coast of Iceland. You will take a ferry from Landeyjahöfn to the Westman Islands located at the southern coast of Iceland. Ferry leaves several times during the day from Landeyjahöfn to the port of Heimaey Island, the only inhabited island of the Westman Islands. The ferry is carrying both passengers and vehicles. The cruise itself takes about half an hour in total. Westman Islands are located on the seam between two tectonic plates and that's why they are in a very active volcanic area. There were two major eruptions in the 20th century - one of them an eruption of Eldfell in January 1973 created a 700 meters high mountain and forced 5000 Heimaey Island residents to evacuate temporarily. Today the site "Pompeii of the North" is excavated here to illustrate the extent of the eruption and its consequences. In 1963, another eruption created the island Surtsey - the youngest piece of land on earth. The islands are rich with birds and the largest colony of puffins in Iceland is nesting here. Many species of whales are also observed from the islands. Estimated driving distance: 100 km.
Today's main sites: Westman Islands.
Optional tour: day trip to Landmannalaugar Nature Reserve.
Accommodation: Hella area.
You will start the day with a visit to the two eye-catching waterfalls. The first waterfall is Seljalandsfoss falling from a height of 60 meters and a surrounding it walking path will allow us to see the back side of the waterfall. The second waterfall you will visit is Skógafoss also falling from a height of 60 meters and of an impressive width of 25 meters. Around the waterfall there is a walking trail that leads up the river to reveal other smaller falls. According to the local legend, a treasure is hidden at the bottom of the waterfall and maybe you're lucky enough to find it. You will continue to the village Vik, which despite its small size is a key milestone on the Route 1 road. In Vik's area we will be impressed by the Dyrhólaey cliff which is a promontory at an altitude of 120 meters sticking out from the land to the sea and serves as a nesting place for the local sea birds. From the bottom of the cliff stretches a coast considered one of the most beautiful beaches in Europe. This beach is made of black sands of grains of basalt and in front of it, out of the sea, the rocks Reynisdrangar are standing out into the sky. They are creating a beautiful sight and walking on the beach, which is the southernmost point of Iceland, is an unforgettable experience. Estimated driving distance: 170 km.
Today's main sites: the waterfalls Seljalandsfoss and Skógafoss - Glacier Sólheimajökull - Fjadrargljufur - Dyrhólaey - Kirkjubaejarklaustur.
Optional activities: walking tour on the glacier
You will continue our way along the most of the south coast, where on the sides of the road are flowing numerous streams of rivers on the land of erosion. You will reach the Skaftafell Park located on the edge of the giant Vatnajökull Glacier. The Park has many hiking trails leading to different viewpoints while the huge glacier can be seen from everywhere. Vatnajökull Glacier covers a chain of active volcanoes and every few years fractures are created and earthquakes in the soil crust, through which the lava is bursting. The eruption in 2014 lasted for five months and in the peak of it gas sulfur dioxide emitted by the eruption was felt all over Iceland. At the visitors center a movie is screened about the volcanic eruption that occurred there in 1996. You will continue east and reach one of the highlights of Iceland's landscapes - Glacier Lagoon Jökulsárlón, into which the overlying glacier ice breaks. It is a breathtaking sight to see white, blue and gray icebergs floating peacefully in the water. At the high tide, sea water penetrates into the lagoon and the local seals are revealed above the surface. Anyone who wants to see the icebergs closely can have a cruise in the amphibian boat or zodiac here. Estimated driving distance: 220 km.
Today's main sites: Park Skaftafell - Ice Lagoon - Höfn.
Optional activities: snow scooters tour – a cruise in Ice Lagoon.
Today you will discover the magic of the East Fjords. This region is different from the rest of Iceland as it is abundant greenery and wooded areas and the summers here are dry and warmer than in the other regions of Iceland. This is the reason why reindeer herds live only in this area since they were brought to Iceland from Norway in the 18th century. Each one of the villages in the area is known for its own character. For example, Faskrúdsfjordur - this settlement is considered Iceland's French village, because at the end of the 19th century, French fishermen arrived here and made out of the small village a French territory in Iceland, until today the signs in the village are written in both languages: French and Icelandic. To learn more about this period, you can visit the French sailors' museum in the village. From the village Djúpivogur you can sail to visit the Papey Island, which is not settled by humans, but by the sea birds and seals. You will end the day in the capital of the East - Egilsstaðir. But before that, you can walk through the footpaths of the biggest forest in Iceland – Hallormsstaður, where there are about 80 different kinds of trees - an impressive achievement considering the fact that there are almost no trees in Iceland. Estimated driving distance: 280 km.
Today's main sites: Egilsstaðir - East Fjords.
Optional activities: Cruise to Papey Island
You will leave the East Fjords behind and continue into the North Iceland. You will be driving on the Ring Road through one of its deserted sections, with almost no settlements along the way. You will reach Dettifoss Waterfall - the noise it makes is heard from afar, since it is the most powerful waterfall in Europe. As you get closer to the waterfall, the noise level will increase and when the view of the waterfall will be revealed in front of you, you will stay open-mouthed at the breathtaking sight. The width of the waterfall is 100 meters and the water is falling from a height of 45 meters. After watching the power of water, you will go to the Krafla, one of the most active volcanic areas in Iceland. In Namafjall you will see the puddles of bubbling and boiling mud with the clouds of steaming water over them. Along this flat area there is not even a shred of vegetation and the air has a strong smell of sulfur. At the Leirhnjúkur lava field you will walk among the furrows of solid lava that has flown here during the eruptions of the volcano Krafla in 1975-1984. Though many years passed, the earth is still extremely hot in this place and walking outside the trail can melt your shoe soles. The Lake Mývatn area is all surrounded by volcanic landscape formations and close to it there are geothermal baths where you can relax a bit and release your muscles. Estimated driving distance: 140 km.
Today's main sites: Dettifoss Waterfall - Lake Mývatn.
Optional activities: Mývatn nature baths.
Accommodation: Mývatn area.
You will start our way facing Akureyri with population of 20000 inhabitants, which is the largest settlement outside the Reykjavik area. Akureyri is the capital of North Iceland and lies in the depths of the fjord Eyjafjörður. You will be surprised to know that in spite of its northern location, the winter in Akureyri is mild and less windy and cold than in the rest of Iceland. A walking tour around the city is highly recommended, you will find beautiful streets, church building, local restaurants and ice cream parlors, the Botanical Garden and the picturesque port, from which you can take the whales and dolphins watching cruise. Local golf club holds an annual tournament on the longest day of the year (21st of June), when they play golf even at midnight, because the sun never sets at this time of the year. You will proceed west through the fertile valleys to the district Skagafjörður, where you can enjoy lots of activities like horseback riding on the Icelandic horses, river rafting and "traveling in a time machine to the past" in the form of visiting Glaumbær grass houses museum, that illustrates how Icelanders lived hundreds of years ago. Estimated driving distance: 230 km.
Today's main sites: Akureyri - Eyjafjörður area – Skagafjörður Bay.
Optional activities: horse-riding tour.
Accommodation area: Skagafjörður.
You'll change direction west to the Snæfellsnes peninsula, where on a relatively small area there are creations in many forms and varied landscape. In the village Stykkishólmur located in the northern part of the peninsula, there is a charming harbor, in front of which there are climbing cliffs, which can be relatively easy to walk on and observe the environment, like the fishing boats that bring their catch to the fish restaurants near the harbor. Snæfellsjökull National Park is the first announced national park in Iceland and its area includes the glacier, volcano and a beautiful beach bustling sea birds in the summer. Mount Snæfellsjökull rises to the height of 1446 meters and on a day with good visibility you can see from its peak Reykjavik on the horizon. In Jules Verne's book "Journey to the Center of the Earth" this mountain is the starting point of a journey through the mountain's volcanic crater, which is the gate to the depths of the Earth. Estimated driving distance: 320 km.
Today's main sites: Grundarfjörður – villages Rif and Hellissandur - Beach Djúpalónssandur - village Stykkishólmur - Hellnar and Arnarstapi - Snæfellsjökull National Park.
After me made almost a complete circle around the Snæfellsnes Peninsula, you will pass by Eldborg, the caldera of volcano that looks like a crown adorning the surrounding lava fields. If want to make a hike on it, its southern side Snorrastadir is the most suitable for walking. You will go down south to the town of Borgarnes with 1800 inhabitants. Due to its location on Route 1, it serves as a service center for the villages in the province Borgarbyggd. Settlement Centre in Borgarnes, displays exhibits related to the history of Iceland, with an emphasis on the tradition of the saga (Icelandic folk tales partially verified historically). There is a promenade in front of the center turning around the beach and leading to the Bjossarolo playground. This playground is named after Bjorn Guðmundsson, who was a recycling pioneer and built the first facilities of the park of the wooden pieces, metals and other substances emitted from the sea to the beach. This playground also allows us to see the daily life of children in Iceland. Later you will visit Reykholt, the village that was considered an intellectual center of medieval Iceland and waterfall Hraunfossar, where the water is coming out of the lava rocks creating a unique scenery of one of the longest and the most picturesque waterfalls in Iceland. Estimated driving distance: 220 km.
Today's main sites: Borgarnes - Eldborg Crater - Hraunfossar waterfall- Deildartunguhver - Reykholt.
Optional activities: Cruise among the islands of the Bay of Borgarfjörður.
You'll pass through a road that surrounds the bay Hvalfjörður, meaning Whales' fjord. In the past this road was the main road, but in 1998 was opened the underwater canal that crosses the bay and shortens the way between north and south of Iceland in forty minutes. Traffic around the fjord was significantly decreased, but the beautiful landscapes haven't lost their charm and you will choose to surround the impressive bay. On our way you will try to find a military facility from the Second World War that was used by the British Army as an anchorage of the Royal Navy ships. On our route you will also pass near a waterfall Glymur, which is the highest waterfall in Iceland falling from a height of 198 meters. At the end of the route you will get to the Reykjavik area and thus complete the full circle around Iceland, but you will delay the finish and turn to the Reykjanes Peninsula, where the landscapes are mainly lava fields, on which the soft moss grows and on sunny days it is the best sunbathing mattress in the world. Those who are interested can take a dip in the healing warm water of the spa resort "Blue Lagoon". Estimated driving distance: 210 km.
Today's main sites: Kaldidalur pass – Whale Bay - Reykjavik - Reykjanes Peninsula - Blue Lagoon.
Optional activities: Entrance to the Blue Lagoon.
Accommodation: Reykjavik area.
Before you finish our trip in Iceland, you will spend some time again in Reykjavik. Almost from every street in the city you can see the Hallgrímskirkja Church built on the top of the hill and from its balcony there is an excellent view of the city. Inside the church there is an organ built of hundreds of tubes and organ players visiting Iceland often play it making it pleasant to stay at the church. The car return is at the airport before the flight.
This fascinating tour combines beautiful landscapes, pure nature and unique Icelandic animals. The...
All of our tours include high quality accommodation! – Accommodation levels are divided into three categories: budget, comfort and quality. Great variety of suppliers who work with us all over Iceland allow us to find for you the best accommodation available in each category.
Rooms with private bathroom (shower and/or bathtub and toilet). This category includes the best hotels available in each area. All hotels provide breakfast which is included in the price,
Address: Silfurtorgi 2, 400 Ísafjörður
Address: Olnbogaás, 660 Mývatn
Address: SIGTÚN 38, 105 REYKJAVÍK
Address: 310 Borgarnes
Address: Ránarslóð, 780 Höfn í Hornafirði
Address: Icelandair Hotel Akureyri, Thingvallastraeti 23, 600 Akureyri
Address: Borgarbraut, Stykkishólmur
Rooms with private bathroom (shower and toilet). This category includes hotels, guest houses and farms with high tourist class. Breakfast is included.
Address: Sudurlandsbraut 12 108 Reykjavik
Address: Gullfoss, Iceland.
Address: 320 Reykholt
Address: Aðalstræti 100, 450 Patreksfjörður
Address: 531 Hvammstangi, Iceland
Address: Tjarnarbraut 25, 700 Egilsstadir
Address: Geislagata, 600 Akureyri
Rooms with shared bathroom, which are often in the corridor or on the same floor. This category includes hotels, guest houses and farmhouses. In some rooms there is a sink in the room. Breakfast is included. Outside Reykjavik, in more remote areas, most of the places in this category offer dinner for an additional fee.
Address: Skúlagata 21, 310 Borgarnes - Iceland
Address: Laugar in Saelingsdalur, 371 Búðardalur
Address: Þórsgata 26, 101 Reykjavík
Address: Breiðavík / Látrabjarg - 451 Patreksfjörður