Explore the hauntingly beautiful landscape of the north east of Iceland, with its snow-streaked mountains, deep fjords, numerous waterfalls and heaths, where herds of wild reindeer roam. Travel north across the empty vastness of the Modrudalsoraefi highland desert plateau to experience the pseudo craters, dramatic rock formations and vibrant colours of Lake Myvatn area, witness Dettifoss and Asbyrgi canyon in Vatnajokull National Park, and get acquainted with the local culture in the small fishing villages of the Troll Peninsula.
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Maximum group size: 20 persons
Day 1 Arrive Reykjavik
On arrival in Reykjavík, transfer by coach to your hotel and remainder of day at leisure to explore this fascinating far northern city. 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.
Day 2 Egilsstadir, East Iceland: Wilderness Centre & Gateway to the Highlands
In the early morning, transfer from your hotel to the domestic airport in Reykjavik. Catch the one-hour flight to Egilsstadir, the capital of the East. If the skies are clear, you‘ll have amazing views over the dramatic mountains and glaciers of the highland interior. Upon arrival at Egilsstadir, drive to Fljotsdalur Valley, with rich green forests bordering the legendary Lagarfljót lake. According to local folklore, the lake is home to a sea monster similar to the one in Loch Ness, but with its own unique story. Then visit Hengifoss, a little-glimpsed silvery waterfall dropping down a multicoloured cliff. Next discover local heritage at Skriduklaustur, the turf-roofed black-and-brown stone mansion of renowned Icelandic poet Gunnar Gunnarsson. This area was also the site of a medieval monastery where much Old Norse history and lore have been preserved.
Then it´s time to head to edge of the eastern highland wilderness, a stunning area of vast green heaths, black mountains and rushing glacial rivers. This is Northern Europe‘s largest wilderness area. Walk over the wooden bridge at the Wilderness Centre and into the past to discover beautifully-restored farm buildings from various periods in Iceland‘s highland history, including a turf-roofed smoke house. An interactive exhibit tells you the story of highland nature and the independent people who settled here. Enjoy coffee and home-baked Icelandic refreshments in an old farmhouse kitchen. You may catch a glimpse of reindeer, the symbol of East Iceland, wandering in the mountains surrounding the Wilderness Centre. Dinner and overnight in the Egilsstadir area.
Day 3 Lake Myvatn Area: Lava Formations – Pseudo Craters – Nature Baths
Explore the empty vastness of the highland desert plateau Modrudalsoraefi, before heading to the Lake Myvatn area. See the peculiar lava formations at Dimmuborgir, the pseudo craters at Skutustadir, Laxa salmon river and Namaskard Pass, with its boiling mud pools and vibrant colours. With a very diverse birdlife, this area is thought to be home to more species of ducks than any other place in the world. 2 overnights with dinner in the Myvatn area.
Day 4 The Diamond Circle: Dettifoss – Asbyrgi - Husavik
Today start by crossing the bridge over the powerful glacial river that flows through Jokulsargljufur, Iceland’s longest river canyon (25 kilometres), then stop to admire the imposing milky-white glacial waterfall Dettifoss, Europe‘s largest waterfall. Visit the brilliant foliage and dark rocks of Asbyrgi, a remarkable horseshoe shaped canyon that Viking settlers believed to be created by the legendary 8-legged horse, Sleipnir. Then on to Husavik, Iceland´s main whale watching town. Enjoy a walk through the busy harbour area in town, admiring the brightly hued and charming buildings.
Day 5 The Troll Peninsula: Akureyri – Siglufjordur
Travel west towards the bustling northern port of Akureyri, making a stop at the magnificent Godafoss, the waterfall of the gods. Akureyri has some of the finest timber buildings in the country, beautifully restored to their original glory, and sits in a magnificent setting of glacier-capped mountains and the blue waters of Eyafjordur. Continue along Eyjafjordur with its magnificent views. Take a tour of Ektafiskur, a family-owned fish processing company that makes gourmet quality bacalao. Continue through magnificent fjords where black, steep mountains drop into the vast blue seas. Pass through the small fishing villages Dalvik and Olafsfjordur and onwards to Siglufjordur, a very pretty town in a haunting fjord setting, and visit Segull 67, a family-owned microbrewery. Overnight in Siglufjordur.
Day 6 Siglufjordur – Deildartunguhver – Hraunfossar - Reykjavik
In the morning explore Siglufjordur and visit the award-winning Herring Era Museum, where a 1950s harbour atmosphere has been brought to life. Sample some of the produce as a part of the visit. In the afternoon, drive through Skagafjordur, an area central to Icelandic history and culture and the main horse breeding region, past fields with horses and foals of many colours grazing. Cross Holtavorduheidi plateau, the gateway between North and South, on your way to the West of Iceland, which is characterized by fjords, valleys, volcanoes and craters. Here water flows from the earth in every form, from rivers of sparkling cool mineral water to Europe’s most voluminous hot spring, Deildartunguhver. Stop to admire the beautiful Hraunfossar waterfalls seeping through black lava rock, before the last stop of the day in Borgarnes at the Farmers Market, Ljómalind. The non-profit market offers seasonal and regional produce and is run on a volunteer’s basis by locals.
Continue via Hvalfjordur tunnel back to Reykjavik for overnight.
Day 7 Departure
Arrangements end with your return coach transfer to the airport.
Departures: 23 May; 18 July; 15 August (on request) and 05 September 2017
Maximum group size 20 / Minimum group size: 2
Includes: return airport transfers, accommodation 2 nights with breakfast and private facilities in Reykjavik and 4 nights with breakfast and private facilities in countryside, 3 dinners in the countryside (Days 2, 3 and 4), domestic flight to Egilsstadir (including airport tax), entrance to Wilderness Centre and light refreshment (day 2), visit to fish processing company (Day 5), visit to brewery (Day 5), entrance to Herring Era Museum (Day 6); coach transport, services of English speaking guide Days 2-6. Accommodation is in 3 star standard hotels all with private facilities.
Excludes: optional tours booked via your guide at the start of the tour: Day 3 Myvatn Nature Baths 2hrs; Day 3 Sigurgeir bird collection 30 mins; Day 4 Húsavík Whale Museum 1 hr; Day 4 Whale watching from Húsavík 3 hrs
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:|
Includes: return airport transfers, accommodation 2 nights with breakfast and private facilities in Reykjavik and 4 nights with breakfast and private facilities in countryside, 3 dinners in the countryside (Days 2, 3 and 4), domestic flight to Egilsstadir (including airport tax), entrance to Wilderness Centre and light refreshment (day 2), visit to fish processing company (Day 5), visit to brewery (Day 5), entrance to Herring Era Museum (Day 6), coach transport, services of English speaking guide Days 2-6.
|Kingdom of Volcanoes & Glaciers||6 days||Explore nature's forces||May - Sep|