With so much to discover and explore, this comprehensive tour highlights natural wonders, majestic landscapes and unique character. The classic, circle route provides an ideal mix of culture and nature, with the opportunity to see the best that Iceland has to offer. For another Escorted, circle tour of Iceland see our Iceland Exploration tour.
Coach transfer from Keflavík Airport to your hotel in Reykjavik. Remainder of the day at leisure to explore this fascinating, far Northern city. The city centre is only small and is characterised by eclectic, colourful houses, good shopping and dining. Having recently established itself as a haven for food lovers, numerous restaurants take advantage of an abundance of local seafood, meat and game. There are also many wonderful museums including the National Museum, Reykjavik 871+2 Settlement Museum and National Gallery. Evening welcome meeting with your tour escort and fellow travellers (for Summer departures only).
Today, head through the greenhouse village of Hveragerdi to two of the Golden Circle's natural wonders. Explore Gullfoss, the beautiful Golden Falls and nearby Geysir hot spring area to watch the famous Strokkur Geysir, which erupts every 10 minutes or so, as well as numerous other hot springs and boiling mud pools. Continue along the South Shore and stop to admire Seljalandsfoss and Skogafoss waterfalls, before visiting Dyrholaey nature reserve*. We reach Vik village, where you can stroll along the black sand beach beneath bird cliffs. Dinner and overnight in the Vik area. *Please note Dyrhólaey is closed during nesting season approx mid-May to late June.
Today we continue our journey east. We cross Eldhraun, a barren area covered by the largest lava flow ever recorded and visit Kirkjubaejarklaustur; a small, pretty town and former site of a 12th century Catholic convent. Continue over Skeidararsandur sands to Skaftafell, a beautiful glacial area within huge Vatnajokull National Park, to stunning Jokulsarlon Glacial Lagoon, the birth place of icebergs. Throughout the day you will enjoy magnificent views of mighty Vatnajokull Glacier, which dominates south eastern Iceland. Overnight in the Höfn area.
Drive from Höfn through Almannaskard pass with a stop to admire Iceland's majestic coastline. Continue alongside towering mountains which plunge vertically into the sea and form the magnificent East Fjords. Also pass through coastal fjord villages en route to Egilsstaðir area. Here we stay overnight, dinner at the hotel.
Today we explore the empty vastness of Modrudalsoraefi highland desert plateau, then head towards Lake Mývatn area. After a stop at Europe's most powerful waterfall, Dettifoss, we continue onwards to Namaskard pass with its boiling mud pools and vibrant colours. We explore the natural beauty of Lake Mývatn area, with it's very diverse birdlife, pseudo-craters at Skutustadir and Laxá salmon river. Dinner and overnight in Mývatn area.
Start the day by exploring the peculiar lava forms at Dimmuborgir, then visit magnificent Godafoss Waterfall and the old turf farm, Laufas. Onwards to Akureyri, Capital of the North, with it's beautiful views along Eyjafjordur. After some time here, we continue along coastal roads to Troll Peninsula, a stunning place of black sand coastline with steep mountains and amazing views over the Arctic Sea. We reach Siglufjordur, set in a lovely fjord of the same name - the town has some of Iceland's best timber buildings, beautifully restored to their original glory, and is the perfect place for an evening stroll. Dinner and overnight in Siglufjordur.
Morning visit to Siglufjordur's award winning Herring-Era Museum which recreates the atmosphere of the early 20th century, when the town was transformed thanks to a large migration of herring. Afterwards we continue to historical, Hofsos town with it's beautiful ocean views. Then to Skagafjordur, considered one of the finest places in Iceland for historical preservation and horse breeding. Stop at Holar, the cultural centre of Iceland for over 700 years, with several fascinating buildings onsite. Today it is home to a world famous agricultural university. This afternoon, visit a local horse farm to learn about the unique Icelandic horse and it's unusual fifth gait, the tolt. Head for Blonduos village built on both sides of the salmon river, Blanda, with Hrutey Island protected nature reserve, located in the middle. Cross Holtavorduheidi plateau through Borgarfjordur to beautiful Borgarnes. Dinner and overnight in this area.
Drive to Deildartunguhver, the most powerful hot spring in the world, to stop and admire beautiful Hraunfossar Waterfall, before continuing via Hvalfjordur to Lake Thingvallavatn, Iceland's largest lake. At Thingvellir National Park, the ancient site of the world's first outdoor parliament (founded in the 10th century), we see where the North American and European tectonic plates meet in a stunning setting. Return to Reykjavík for a short city sightseeing tour before your hotel drop-off and overnight.
Coach transfer to Keflavik Airport where your tour arrangements end.
Minimum 3 persons
*Optional seating choice - only available on Regular Group Size Summer and Small Group Size Winter
Empty Seating – This is for passengers who would like to practise social distancing on the bus, and have a bit more space. Passengers get 2 x seats per person, meaning their seat PLUS an empty seat next to them, including a guaranteed Window Seat.