Absolute Iceland

Extensive south, west & westfjords travels
12 days
June and July
Itinerary
Prices

Discover the magic of volcanoes and glaciers, and the magnificent natural landscape that surrounds them. This tour starts with the spectacular major attractions of south Iceland, including the infamous Eyjafjallajokull volcano, glaciers, geysers and waterfalls as well as the beautiful Westman islands. Then continue to the west, to Iceland's remote Westfjords, which offer the most unusual and untouched nature imaginable. Here you'll hike along red sands, sail the fjords to deserted villages teeming in wildlife, see puffins on Latrabjarg cliffs, and soak in hot springs under the Midnight Sun.

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Day 1: Arrival Reykjavik
On arrival on Reykjavik take the airport coach to your hotel.  The city centre is a small area characterised by eclectic and colourful houses, good shopping, dining and drinking. Reykjavík has recently established itself as a haven for food lovers, with numerous restaurants taking advantage of the abundance of local seafood, meat and game. Reykjavik has many wonderful museums including the National Museum displaying artefacts from the first settlement to the modern age, giving an excellent overview of Iceland’s history and culture, the Reykjavik 871+2 Settlement Museum, an archaeological museum based around a 10th-century Viking longhouse unearthed in 2001, the Reykjavik Art Museum and the National Gallery. Overnight stay in Reykjavík.

Day 2: Westman Islands
The first stop today is at the stunning Seljalandsfoss waterfall, where you can walk behind the waterfall. Then continue along the farmlands of the south coast to Landeyjahofn harbor. After arriving at the Bakkafjara pier, take a 30 minute ferry ride to the Westman Islands. The destination is Heimaey Island, the largest of the islands and the only inhabited one.  Visit the island´s Storhofdi Point with its fantastic views over the area.  During mid-May through the beginning of August it is also possible to see charming puffins here! Take a walk up to the crater of a volcano that erupted only three decades ago, visit Eldheimar Museum and explore the flora growing in the new lava field. Afternoon at leisure to further explore the island on your own. Overnight in the Westman Islands. 

Day 3: South Shore - Skogar - Vik
This morning take the ferry back from the Westman Islands and travel further on along the south shore.  Pass numerous glacial rivers en route to Skogafoss waterfall. A famous folk museum is nearby, showcasing the buildings and daily life of Icelanders over the past centuries.  Next travel to Thorvaldseyri Farm, located at the foot of the world famous Eyjafjallajokull volcano that last erupted in the spring of 2010. A visitor's centre/family-run exhibit tells the story of the eruption with a 20 minute film and displays about the spectacular natural disaster. Continue on to the black sands of Reynisfjara beach, where you can witness the powerful waves and amazing basalt columnur features carved by the power of the sea. Dinner and overnight in the Vik area for the next 2 nights.

Day 4: Vik - Skaftafell - Jokulsarlon 
We cross Eldhraun, the largest mass of lava ever to flow on the face of the Earth before reaching the small town Kirkjubaejarklaustur, a former site of a 12th-century Catholic convent. Onwards to Skaftafell National Park, one of Iceland's most outstanding areas of natural beauty. We continue to the stunning Jokulsarlon Glacial Lagoon to see floating icebergs and possibly curious seals. A boat trip takes you between the floating icebergs. Throughout the day we are afforded magnificent views of the mighty Vatnajökull Glacier. Back to Vík area for dinner and your second overnight.

Day 5: Gullfoss - Geysir - Þingvellir - Reykjavík
We head for the Geysir hot spring area to see the famous great Geysir as well as Strokkur, a hot spring that spouts every few minutes. Onwards we travel to Gullfoss, one of Iceland’s most powerful and impressive waterfalls. Our next stop is Thingvellir National Park, where the ancient parliament met for centuries on the shores of Iceland’s largest lake. This is also where the European and North American tectonic plates meet and you can walk through this geological marvel.  Here you will have some time to explore on your own before heading back to Reykjavik for the night. 

Day 6: Borgarfjordur – Stykkisholmur – Flokalundur: Unique Waterfalls – Europe's Most Powerful Hot Spring – Ferry Ride among 3,000 Islands
Start with a drive along the scenic coastline of Hvalfjordur Fjord (Whale Fjord), one of the longest and deepest fjords in Iceland. In West Iceland, explore Hraunfoss (Lava Falls) and Barnafoss (Children's Falls), known for their exceptional and intriguing beauty. Afterwards, stop at Deildartunguhver hot springs, which rushes out of algae-covered boulders at a steamy 97°C. In the afternoon, arrive in Stykkisholmur village for a lovely ferry ride across the spectacular Breidafjordur Bay dotted with 3,000 tiny islands. Encircled by mountains and the Snaefellsjökull volcano, the dramatic bay is home to 50 bird species, the rare white-tailed eagle, and grey seals who enjoy lounging about on the small islets. Dinner and overnight stay in the Flokalundur area.

Day 7: Raudisandur – Latrabjarg - Breidavik/Patreksfjordur: Remote Westfjords – Stunning Bird Cliffs - Red Sand Beach – Quirky Folk Museum
Today discover unique sights in one of the least visited places in Iceland, the Westfjords. Stroll along Raudisandur beach, which shifts in colour from golden to orange and red depending on the daylight. In a setting of black cliffs, Raudisandur shelters a large lagoon where curious seals and Arctic skuas are regular visitors. Afterwards, switch your focus from natural wonders to unusual local treasures at a quirky folk museum in Hnjotur. Upon reaching Latrabjarg, Europe’s largest bird cliff and westernmost point, you may encounter an amazing wildlife spectacle, as the stunning cliffs host a mind-boggling number of sea birds. Protected from Arctic foxes, the birds are fearless, providing plenty of close-up photo opportunities.  Keep an eye out for playful puffins.Dinner and overnight stay in Patreksfjordur area.

Day 8: Bildudalur – Isafjordur: Capital of the Westfjords – Thundering Waterfall – Outdoor Nature Spa
Traveling along the winding coastline of magnificent fjords, you will reach the vibrant fishing village of Isafjordur, honorary capital of the Westfjords. Settled in the 1580s, Isafjordur boasts a charming old town centre with some of the finest and most beautifully restored timber buildings in the country. The lively harbour is the town´s bustling centre of commerce and provides a glimpse into the daily rural life in this northerly capital. En route to Isafjordur, enjoy a stop at the spectacular Dynjandi Waterfall, which is a collection of seven cascades resembling a tiered wedding cake. You will also have the opportunity to take a dip in an outdoor thermal hot spring with gorgeous vistas, along with a stop to enjoy some Icelandic specialities at the historical farm of Hrafnseyri. Overnight stay in Isafjordur.

Day 9: Isafjordur - Hesteyri:  Fjord Sailing - Abandoned Settlement - Arctic Foxes
This morning travel to the fjord village of Bolungarvík where you will board a boat.  Sail across Isafjardardjup, the largest fjord in the Westfjords, where steep mountains descend directly into the sea. Step ashore onto one of the most remote corners of Europe.  Situated on a beautiful sandy beach, Hesteyri Island is an abandoned settlement where the elusive Arctic Fox roams among colourful wildflowers that grow knee-high. Spend a few hours here, enjoying the breathtakingly lush nature.  The afternoon sail back to Bolungarvik reveals panoramic views of Drangjokull glacier.Overnight in Isafjordur.  

Day 10: Holmavik – Laugar Saelingsdal: Arctic Fox Centre – Saga Folklore – Thermal Bathing
Start the day with a visit to the Arctic Fox Centre in Sudavik. From Isafjordur town the route provides coastal views of the scenic fjords that were cut into the earth by glaciers during the last Ice Age. En route to Holmavik village, stop at a quaint cafe where you can purchase a local favourite, freshly baked waffles. The journey continues through green valleys to Laugar in Saelingsdalur Valley, an area rich in ancient Saga folklore and history. Here you have the opportunity to soak outside in one of the many thermal pools hidden in nature. Dinner and overnight stay in the Saelingsdalur area.

Day 11: Budardalur – Borgarfjordur – Reykjavik: Birthplace of Leif Eiriksson – Volcano Hike – Dairy Farm
Drive along Iceland's West Coast to the Viking Age house at Eiriksstadir, the original homestead of Erik the Red and birthplace of his son Leif Eiriksson, who discovered North America. In a turf-covered longhouse replica, meet modern day Vikings who will demonstrate the lifestyle of 1,000 years ago. Later, make a stop at the local Erpsstadir dairy for an introduction to Icelandic farming life and to sample freshly made ice cream. In Borgarfjordur, hike along moss-covered lava to the 3,500 year-old Grabrok volcano cone. From here you will have incredible views of the Glanni waterfall, a reputed home to elves and trolls. Return to Reykjavik in the late afternoon for overnight.

Day 12: Reykjavík Departure
Arrangements end with the coach transfer from your hotel to Keflavik airport.

Departures 2017:

June 11 and July 02

Includes: Accommodation in 3 star hotels with private facilities and daily breakfast, 3 nights in Reykjavik and 8 nights in the countryside; 6 dinners in the countryside (except dinner in Westman Islands on day 2 and Isafjordur on day 10 which are NOT included); lunchbox on day 9; roundtrip ferry to Westman Islands (day 2); Entrance to  the Eldheimar Museum (day 2); Entrance to  the Skogar folk Museum (day 3); Entrance to the Eyjafjallajokull Visitor Centre (day 3); Jokulsarlon boat tour (day 4); Ferry from Stykkisholmur to Brjanslaekur (day 6); Entrance to Hnjotur museum (day 7); Boat tour to Hesteyri (day 9); Entrance to the Arctic Fox Centre (day 10); Entrance to Eiríksstaðir Museum (day 11); Tasting of Icelandic specialities (day 8, 10, 11); 10 day guided tour as per itinerary from/to Reykjavik; return Keflavik /Reykjavik hotel coach transfers.

Excludes:  Optional excursions: RIB Safari or Viking Boat Tour (Day 2): these tours can be purchased from your tour guide, dinners in Reykjavik, dinners in Westman Islands on day 2 and Isafjordur on day 10.

Minimum group size 2 persons / Maximum group size 36 persons 

Your time in Reykjavik can be extended, or you can add the following 2 night stays (May to September). Please enquire for further details.

Westman Islands (Vestmannaeyjar): includes return flights Reykjavik- Westman Islands, 2 nights accommodation with breakfast.   

Hofn: includes return flights Reykjavik- Hofn, 2 nights accommodation with breakfast.

Egilsstadir: includes return flights Reykjavik- Egilsstadir, 2 nights accommodation with breakfast.

Akureyri: includes return flights Reykjavik- Akureyri, 2 nights accommodation with breakfast, guided coach tour to Lake Myvatn 8-9hrs.

Husavik: includes return flights Reykjavik- Husavik, 2 nights accommodation with breakfast, whale watching excursion 2-3hrs.

Isafjordur: includes return flights Reykjavik- Isafjordur, 2 nights accommodation with breakfast

                                        Nordic Travel is 100% Australian owned and operated

Price per person FROM:
Double AUD$ 6628.00
Single AUD$ 8121.00

Includes: Accommodation with private  and daily breakfast facilities 3 nights in Reykjavik and 8 nights in countryside; 6 dinners in the countryside (except dinner in Westman Islands on day 2 and Isafjordur on day 10 which are NOT included); lunchbox on day 9; roundtrip ferry to Westman Islands (day 2); Entrance to  the Eldheimar Museum (day 2); Entrance to  the Skogar folk Museum (day 3); Entrance to the Eyjafjallajokull Visitor Centre (day 3); Jokulsarlon boat tour (day 4); Ferry from Stykkisholmur to Brjanslaekur (day 6); Entrance to Hnjotur museum (day 7); Boat tour to Hesteyri (day 9); Entrance to the Arctic Fox Centre (day 10); Entrance to Eiríksstaðir Museum (day 11); Tasting of Icelandic specialities (day 8, 10, 11); 10 day guided tour as per itinerary from/to Reykjavik; return Keflavik/ Reykjavik hotel airport coach transfers.

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