(3 days/2 nights**)
Tour code SH7
May and September: £631 (double/twin/triple) £756 (single)
June, July and August: £726 (double/twin/triple) £908 (single)
Prices are per person excluding flights
This exciting 3 day holiday includes the must see highlights of South Iceland plus the very beautiful western Snaefellsness area and the rugged Reykjavik Peninsula. This means that in just 3 days, you can see a great variety of landscapes and geological features including coasts, lava fields, waterfalls, volcanoes, glaciers, fjords and rivers, and get a taste of Iceland’s rural life when you visit a family at their horse farm. This trip works well particularly well as a stop over between the USA/Canada and Europe or as part of a longer or 2 centre holiday as the early departure and evening finish for this trip do mean that you’d need to be in Iceland the day before and/or the night afterwards. Please contact us for help with this to ensure that your plans run smoothly.
Day 1: REYKJANES PENINSULA & SOUTH COAST (350 km)
In the morning, meet your tour guide and fellow group members and travel to the Reykjanes Peninsula with its hot springs, lava fields, mountains and moon-like landscapes. The first stop is at Kleifarvatn, the largest lake on the Reykjanes Peninsula situated on the fissure zone of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. It’s picturesque and epic with black sandy beaches and steep rocks, cliffs and small caves. The soft green moss in between gives the lunar landscape some softness and color. According to legend, the lake is said to be inhabited by a monster, last seen in 1984. Nearby are the Krýsuvík geothermal fields with solfataras, fumaroles, mud pots and hot springs. You will smell the area long before arrival, and once you are there, it’s like landing on a different planet. The soil is bright yellow, red and green, steamy and burning hot. Next stop is at Grænavatn, a small lake in an explosion crater with a distinctive green colour caused by sulfur and the extreme depth of the lake. The journey continues towards the south through extensive lava fields, along with mountains and the Atlantic ocean, with a short stop at the charming village of Eyrarbakki with a large number of preserved houses from the period 1890-1920, and feels like a journey 100 years back in time. After a lunch break, we reach Seljalandsfoss waterfall, where you can follow a narrow and wet trail to walk right behind the falls. Come prepared and bring a rain coat and good boots, as you will get wet. The southern-most point during our Iceland this holiday is the village of Vík, surrounded by green mountains, black lava beaches, and impressive bird cliffs. There’s time for a short walk along beautiful Reynisfjara black beach with amazing basalt rocks, caves, and crashing waves. Maybe you will see puffins from May to the beginning of August. Our journey also takes us past two glaciers, Mýrdalsjokull and Eyjafjallajökulland on to the next stop, the gorgeous Skógafoss waterfall, another must-see location in South Iceland. The crashing water creates a mist that results in frequent and magical rainbows in sunny conditions, just adding some more memorable experiences to the sheer beauty of this stunning scenery and place. Overnight, you stay in or near the village of Hella, where there is a welcome drink and we also recommend visiting the local geothermal swimming pool and hot tubs. Icelanders love hot tubs, the same as the Finns love their sauna!
Day 2: GOLDEN CIRCLE, BORGARFJÖRÐUR VALLEY & SELFIE WITH AN ICELANDIC HORSE (350 km)
A day to visit three of Iceland’s most famous spots: Gullfoss waterfall, Geyser hot springs, and Þingvellir National Park. Gullfoss, “the golden falls”, is a double waterfall that tumbles 34 meters into the Hvítá river and attracts tourists and travellers all year. You see the steam from the Geysir geothermal fields as you arrive, and here there are a variety of hot springs and bubbling pools. The original geyser is now dormant and has been replaced by Strokkur, “the Churn”, which erupts at 5-10 minute intervals. The next stop is at the ancient Viking Parliament area of Þingvellir National Park, a UNESCO world heritage site. The Þingvellir area is part of a fissure zone running through Iceland, situated on the tectonic plate boundaries of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. Here you see the rift valley area and beautiful lake that lies in between the American and Eurasian plates. Amazing! After this, the route turns north bringing you to the bottom of the picturesque Hvalfjörður fjord travelling on a gravel road over a small mountain ridge, passing farms and summer cottages. We continue to West Iceland, reaching the Borgarfjörður area, known as Iceland’s Saga Valley because of its many important historical events. It not just history here, the Hraunfossar or “lava” waterfallsare exceptionally beautifulas the water seems to magically appear from underneath the lava cascading over a long and moss covered lava wall, falling into a bright turquoise-colored river originated from the glacier Langjökull. The next stop is at Deildartungahver, Europe’s most powerful hot spring concerning the volume of water produced. The water that flows here is boiling and sizzling. Before we reach our overnight location in Borgarnes, West Iceland, we visit a local family and their horse farm, where you will be able to hug an Icelandic horse or take a selfie with your new friend. The family members tell us about living and farming in rural Iceland.
Day 3: SNÆFELLSNES PENINSULA (400 km/248 miles)
Today, travel north to the picturesque fishing town of Stykkishólmur on the north shore of the Snæfellsnes Peninsula, where you have three hours leisure time for your own explorations and sightseeing. We recommend visiting the local geothermal swimming pool, the Volcano Museum, and the museum about eider ducks. Another optional is the fjord & bird watching cruise which takes you around the small islands of Breiðafjörður Bay for just over two hours where you can observe seabirds and taste freshly caught scallops. Stykkishólmur is beautifully situated where you find charming and well-preserved old houses in the centre of town, also known as the gateway to the innumerable island and skerries of Breiðafjörður Bay, which is renowned for its natural beauty and remarkable wildlife. The church in Stykkishólmur is impressive architecturally and makes a beautiful landmark both from land and sea. The view from the church over Breiðafjörður Bay is spectacular. In the afternoon, travel through friendly towns and villages, explore a region where volcanic craters, lava flows, an ice cap, mountains, fjords, sandy beaches and high cliffs shape its landscapes and stop at Kirkjufell, one of Iceland’s most photographed mountains. The Snæfellsnes National Park is the westernmost part of the peninsula, including the mystical glacier Snæfellsjökull, and the route goes around the roots of this beautiful stratovolcano made famous by Jules Verne in his book “Journey to the Centre of the Earth”. From there, visit some of the nearby bird cliffs, basalt rocks, and strange lava formations before we reach Búðir, the setting of one of Iceland’s most photographed churches. The tiny pitch-black wooden church from the 17th century, surrounded by ancient lava fields, is just a stone’s throw from the pink beach decorated with black lava. With the circular Snaefellsness journey now almost complete, the route returns to the town of Borgarnes and from there, back to Reykjavík, Iceland’s capital city.
- Total mileage in 3 days is about 1,100 km (682 miles), which is an average of 367 km (228 miles) per day. You spend about 5 hours per day on the bus, depending on road conditions, traffic, and daily distances. On some days, the driving might be longer than on some other days.
- The accommodations used on this tour are simple tourist class hotels, and all rooms offer private facilities.
- On September departures, there is a chance to see the Northern Lights.
- When you visit Iceland between May and August, the sun barely sets – and even when it does go down, the sky remains eerily bright.
- Maximum group size is 18
- Triple rooms are suitable for 2 adults and 1 child
- ** Extra nights (1 before and 1 after the holiday) need to be arranged separately (we will arrange this, or help with advice)
- Airport transfers are not included (we can arrange these)
- The holiday starts and ends at the main bus terminal (we can help with this)
- 3-day escorted coach tour with an English speaking guide or driver-guide
- 2 nights accommodation in rooms with shower/wc
- 2x breakfast
- Welcome drink at the hotel in South Iceland
- Visit to two national parks
- Visit to a local family and horse farm
NOT INCLUDED: Optional activities in Stykkishómur (these need to be paid on location)
Departures with an English speaking guide
- 17,31 May 2018
- 8,14,29 June 2018
- 9,19,24,29 July 2018
- 3,15,17,25,29 August 2018
- 1,3,5,6,9,13,21,29 September 2018
For details about booking or for more information please contact us using the green button or here