Small Group 6-Day Iceland Winter Tour with Glacier Hiking, Ice Caving, and More From Reykjavik

Winter wonderland at Godafoss waterfall, where the cascading water transforms into a frozen masterpiece.
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Description

Summary

Tour starts
Reykjavík, Iceland
Duration:
6 days
Difficulty:
Easy
Languages:
English
Available:
July - Apr.
Minimum age:
8 years old

Description

Discover the heart of Iceland's natural wonders on a captivating six-day adventure that starts right in Reykjavik. If you're a passionate explorer with a keen interest in immersing yourself in the breathtaking landscapes of the Golden Circle, South Coast, and the hidden gems of the North, then this meticulously crafted small-group tour is tailor-made for you.

Your exhilarating expedition kicks off with a convenient pick-up in Reykjavik, setting the tone for the awe-inspiring journey ahead. The first leg of your adventure leads you to the renowned Golden Circle, where three iconic sites await. 

At Thingvellir National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, you'll walk in the footsteps of history as you traverse the dramatic Almannagja fault. The Geysir geothermal area, with its bubbling hot springs and explosive geysers, showcases the earth's incredible forces at play. Gullfoss waterfall stands as a testament to nature's power, with beautiful cascading waters.

You’ll be swept away to the enchanting landscapes of the South Coast, where you'll find Reynisfjara, a black sand beach kissed by frothy Atlantic waves. Marvel at the colossal basalt columns rising from the ocean, a sight that evokes both wonder and respect for the raw power of nature.

The Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon presents a mesmerizing spectacle as icebergs gently drift, their shimmering blue hues contrasting against the dark volcanic sands.

In the Eastfjords, you'll encounter breathtaking fjords, rare wildlife, charming fishing villages, and steep mountains. These remote landscapes offer a sense of serenity and untouched beauty that will leave an indelible mark on your soul. As you journey to the North, the captivating Lake Myvatn region unveils its surreal Dimmuborgir lava formations, an otherworldly landscape that ignites the imagination.

Your expedition then leads to Akureyri, the capital of the North, where a vibrant cultural scene meets the tranquility of the fjords. The route back to Reykjavik reveals Iceland's diverse facets, from dramatic mountains to expansive valleys, all contributing to the island's undeniable allure.

As twilight blankets the Icelandic skies, your nights become a canvas for chasing the elusive northern lights. Weather permitting, this celestial dance of colors adds an extra layer of enchantment to your journey, a memory to be cherished for years to come.

Additionally, you'll have the chance to book additional activities. Along your path, you're invited to enhance your experience with optional tours, such as exhilarating horseback rides that connect you more intimately with the landscapes you're traversing.

Seize the opportunity to be part of this immersive six-day journey encircling Iceland's Ring Road. Your gateway to captivating landscapes, thrilling tours, and potential encounters with the northern lights awaits. 

Secure your place in this unforgettable adventure. Check availability now by choosing a date.

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Included

6 day guided tour to the South Coast, East and North of Iceland, travelling via the Ring Route
5 nights of accommodation in various country hotels with breakfast and a private bathroom
Breakfast
Northern lights hunting
Taxes  
English speaking guide
Wi-Fi on board
Pick-up from & drop-off to Reykjavik
Glacier hike with glacier equipment: harness, ice axe, crampons, helmet
Ice cave on a super jeep
Boat tour

Activities

Caving
Whale Watching
Sight Seeing
Boat Trip
Northern Lights

Daily itinerary

Day 1
Nature's Fireworks: The mesmerizing eruption of Strokkur geyser paints the Icelandic sky with a burst of natural beauty.

Day 1 - The Golden Circle

Your journey begins with a visit to the famous Golden Circle, Iceland's most known route. Starting at Thingvellir National Park, you'll explore this enchanting site nestled in the southwest of Iceland, a place rich in history and natural beauty.

Here, you'll encounter a unique geological wonder as the colossal North American and Eurasian tectonic plates meet and clash. The ongoing movements of these immense plates create a landscape of seismic activity and volcanic eruptions, shaping Iceland's dynamic geology. Amidst this, active geysers and hot springs emerge due to the friction between the plates, making Iceland one of Earth's most geologically animated places.

Step into Viking history at Thingvellir National Park, designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Dating back to 1930, this stunning site showcases archaeological marvels, immersive natural panoramas, and glimpses into Iceland's heritage. Amidst stunning landscapes and remarkable wildlife, uncover the stories of the Icelandic people.

Moving on, your journey takes you to the Haukadalur geothermal area. Witness the star of the show, Strokkur Hot Spring, erupting every few minutes in a mesmerizing display, perfect for capturing photos. While the renowned Great Geysir has been dormant since the early 2000s, its legacy lives on as the term "geyser" originates from its name.

Your journey culminates at Gullfoss, an iconic Icelandic waterfall gracing the Hvita river canyon. Plummeting 32 meters (105 feet) in a double-tiered cascade, Gullfoss mesmerizes with its beauty. It spans around 20 meters (65 feet) in width, creating a breathtaking sight.

Gullfoss waterfall, an essential stop for travelers, draws awe from its immense power fueled by waters from Langjokull glacier. Survey the falls from the canyon's peak or venture to its base for an intimate encounter. With numerous trails, each twist and turn reveals picturesque landscapes waiting to be explored.

Catch a glimpse of the northern lights, visible from September to March. Your remote hotel stay, nestled far from light pollution, enhances your chances of witnessing this mystical phenomenon. Should the lights remain elusive tonight, don't worry—more days await, each filled with opportunities.

Rest for the night in a nearby hotel, offering a haven for exploration and rejuvenation.

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Day 2
Embark on a glacier hike to explore the enchanting world of Solheimajokull's icy landscapes.

Day 2 - South Coast & Glacier Hike

Your second day is a journey to the captivating South of Iceland.

Starting off the day, you'll visit Seljalandsfoss, a stunning waterfall in the south. It's famous for allowing you to walk behind the cascade, creating a magical experience. 

This 197-foot (60-meter) high waterfall is nestled in the Seljalands river, a feeder of the mighty Markarfljot river. Protected as a nature reserve since 1987, this area hosts a diverse range of plant and animal life.

Next on the itinerary is Skogafoss, a powerful waterfall with a 197-foot (60-meter) height and up to 82-foot (25-meter) width. It's considered Iceland's largest waterfall and is a highly visited attraction. 

Surrounding the falls, you'll find lush green fields and a magnificent mountain view. A well-marked hiking trail leads to the waterfall's summit, offering a breathtaking bird's-eye perspective.

Continuing east, you'll head towards Iceland's glaciers, which cover 11% of the country. The largest glacier in Europe, Vatnajokull, is a standout here. It's home to several popular attractions like the Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon and the Svinafellsjokull glacier. 

Glaciers, formed over thousands of years, shape Iceland's landscapes with deep valleys and awe-inspiring vistas. Beyond their beauty, glaciers play a crucial role in Iceland's environment by providing fresh water and helping regulate the climate.

Now, prepare for a unique adventure—a glacier hike on Solheimajokull! Certified glacier guides will equip you with all the necessary gear and ensure a safe and enjoyable hike. Remember to dress in layers and wear sturdy, grippy footwear, as glacier terrain can be unpredictable.

Please note that the glacier hike might occur on day three at Vatnajokull glacier, depending on the conditions.

Next, you'll explore the famous Reynisfjara, a black sand beach along Iceland's southern coast. This popular beach is known for its unique black sand, a product of past volcanic activity. 

Dramatic basalt columns, formed by erosion, punctuate the landscape. Over a million years ago, volcanic eruptions gave birth to these columns, which have since been sculpted by the sea into their current awe-inspiring forms.

Reynisfjara is also home to diverse wildlife, including seabirds, seals, and occasionally whales, offering a rich natural experience.

Your final stop is the village of Vik i Myrdal, Iceland's southernmost village. Notable for its black sand beaches and dramatic coastal cliffs, it resides in one of Iceland's most volcanic areas. 

You'll spend the night in Vik, concluding your adventurous day along Iceland's South Coast. Look out for the northern lights before retiring.

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Day 3
Glittering ice jewels adorn Diamond Beach, creating a surreal and breathtaking coastal wonder.

Day 3 - Glacier Lagoon & Ice Caving

Your exciting journey kicks off as you depart from your hotel, ready to delve into the wonders of eastern Iceland. This region boasts an assortment of glaciers, towering mountains, and spectacular vistas.

Your first destination is Skaftafell. Here, you'll have a chance to capture the grandeur of Europe's largest glacier, Vatnajokull. Nearby stands the remains of the Skeidarara Bridge, erected in the early 20th century, this bridge spanned the Skeidarara River, linking its eastern and western banks.

Moving on, you'll reach the mesmerizing Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon, where massive icebergs drift serenely toward the ocean. This glacial lake is nestled in southeastern Iceland and stands as the country's deepest lake and one of Europe's largest. 

Its waters are fed by the Breidamerkurjokull glacier, a part of the immense Vatnajokull glacier, Europe's largest glacier. The lagoon's allure draws visitors to witness the graceful dance of floating icebergs, observe seals, and marvel at the breathtaking mountain scenery. 

Formed in the early 1920s due to the retreat of the Breidamerkurjokull glacier. Photographers and filmmakers frequent this location, capturing its stunning vistas for the big screen.

A mere 2-minute journey from Jokulsarlon leads you to the captivating Diamond Beach. Glittering blue ice fragments grace the ebony sands, a result of the nearby Breidamerkurjokull glacier, an extension of the huge Vatnajokull glacier. 

This beach is a favorite destination for tourists and photographers alike, with its distinctive ice chunks providing a splendid backdrop for snapshots. Local wildlife, including seals, seabirds, and even reindeer, call this beach home.

Today's featured activity takes you on an adventure like no other. 

Prepare to explore the crystal blue ice cave, a marvel nestled deep within the Vatnajokull National Park. This wonder forms from the melting glacier and boasts stunning blue ice, illuminated by sunlight filtering through its entrance. 

A super jeep, guided by a glacier expert, carries you to this remote site, ensuring your safety throughout the journey. This natural spectacle captivates visitors, offering a unique photographic canvas. Please note that the ice cave is ever-changing, with an alternate ice cave potentially visited depending on weather and season.

Your night's rest awaits in a nearby hotel, bringing the adventurous day to a comfortable close. Again, you can look out for the northern lights before retiring.

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Day 4
Lake Lagarfljot's tranquil waters hold the secrets of Iceland's captivating folklore and stunning natural beauty.

Day 4 - Exploring The East Fjords

Day four of your exploration is all about the East Fjords.

This day is about embracing the beauty of nature, relaxing in hot springs, encountering rare wildlife, and discovering the majesty of fjords and mountain ridges.

Starting off, you'll venture through charming fishing villages that echo the rich history of Iceland, where fishing has long been a cornerstone of the local culture. If time permits, you'll have the chance to glimpse some of these picturesque villages.

Continuing on, you'll notice that Iceland's landscape is notably devoid of extensive woodlands due to its unique geographical position. To experience a surprising departure from this trend, you'll visit Hallormsstadaskogur forest, the largest of its kind in Iceland.

The reasons behind Iceland's scarcity of trees are linked to its remote North Atlantic location, resulting in a cold and windy climate with rocky and unfertile soil. These challenging conditions hinder tree growth, with short growing seasons and limited sunlight for photosynthesis. 

Lake Lagarfljot, a stone's throw from the forest, marks the next stop on your journey. This third-largest Icelandic lake is an attraction filled with mystery, rumored to harbor the Lagarfljotsormur, a legendary serpent-like creature. The creature, said to inhabit the lake's depths, has been a subject of sightings and accounts dating back to the 13th century, contributing to the region's mystifying aura.

Your day's activity holds the promise of adventure and excitement. You can choose between two exceptional options to elevate your experience.

Option 1: Horseback Riding in the East

Prepare for an unforgettable journey through the wilderness on your own trusty horse. An experienced riding instructor will guide you through the basics of horse riding. These unique horses possess five distinct gaits.  

Renowned for their resilience and sure-footedness, Icelandic horses conquer challenging terrain and extreme climates, all while offering friendly companionship. No prior riding experience is necessary, although weight and physical condition limitations apply.

Option 2: Entrance to VOK Baths

For those seeking relaxation, the VOK Baths present a luxurious escape nestled within a geothermal wonderland. This remarkable geothermal area is a haven of natural hot springs, believed to hold therapeutic properties. 

Abundant wildlife, including geese, ducks, and swans, call this area home, providing a picturesque backdrop for bird enthusiasts. Beyond its rejuvenating waters, the VOK Baths offer breathtaking vistas of the surrounding landscape and unique geothermal activity.

Concluding the day's adventures, you'll retire to a nearby hotel to unwind and rest for the night, eagerly anticipating the experiences that await the following days of your journey.

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Day 5
Namaskard Pass reveals a surreal landscape of bubbling geothermal wonders and striking hues.

Day 5 - Exploring North-East Iceland

Embark on the fifth day of your exploration you'l travel through Northeast Iceland, where you'll delve into the wild wonders of this breathtaking region.

Starting your journey, you'll arrive at Lake Myvatn, surrounded by stunning volcanic formations and lava fields. This picturesque lake is a hotspot for nature lovers and photographers. 

It's not just about the landscape, though. Lake Myvatn is also a haven for birdwatchers and offers natural hot springs for those who fancy a swim or soak.

Just a short drive away lies Namaskard Pass, a high-temperature geothermal area where the earth bubbles and boils. Nestled between Hofsjokull and Vatnajokull glaciers, this pass boasts vibrant orange and red landscapes due to the presence of sulfur. During your hike here, you'll witness colorful hills, hot springs, fumaroles, and mud pools. 

Dimmuborgir greets you with an otherworldly landscape of lava pillars reminiscent of trolls and mythical creatures. This volcanic area, formed over two millennia ago, is home to captivating rock formations, including the Hall of the Mountain King. Keep an eye out for Arctic foxes, reindeer, and ptarmigans as you explore this unique Icelandic terrain.

Now, you’ll make your way to Godafoss, an astounding waterfall in Northern Iceland. Named "waterfall of the gods," it's one of the country's most remarkable natural wonders. 

Measuring around 12 meters in height and 30 meters in width, Godafoss earned its name during Iceland's conversion to Christianity in the year 1000. The horseshoe shape of the waterfall was carved by a colossal glacial flood in 934, triggered by a volcanic eruption in the region.

To cap off this adventurous day, you'll visit Akureyri, the Capital of the North. As the second-largest urban area in Iceland, Akureyri is a hub of culture and natural beauty. Surrounded by majestic mountains, glaciers, and fjords, it's a prime location for outdoor activities like hiking and skiing. 

Additionally, Akureyri boasts a vibrant nightlife, with numerous restaurants, bars, and clubs. Explore the town's museums, galleries, and other cultural sites to delve deeper into Icelandic heritage.

And don't forget to gaze at the enchanting northern lights if the skies are clear before retiring for the night in Akureyri.

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Day 6
Whale watching in Hauganes offers a thrilling encounter with majestic marine residents amidst Iceland's stunning fjord scenery.

Day 6 - Exploring North Iceland

On Day 6 of your North Iceland adventure, get ready for an exhilarating experience that will undoubtedly be the highlight of your journey - whale watching! This thrilling activity promises an unforgettable encounter with the majestic creatures of the North Atlantic Ocean.

Your day begins with a hearty breakfast, filling you with energy for the exciting adventure ahead. After breakfast, it's time to pack your bags and prepare for an incredible outing to the picturesque village of Hauganes, nestled along Iceland's northern coast. Hauganes is renowned for its whale-watching opportunities, and today, you'll get to witness these magnificent giants of the sea up close.

Upon arriving in Hauganes, you'll board a comfortable boat specially designed for whale watching. As you set sail into the vast North Atlantic Ocean, you'll soon discover why this region is celebrated for its rich marine life. 

The star attractions of the day are the awe-inspiring humpback whales, known for their acrobatic displays and massive size. But that's not all - keep your eyes peeled, as you might also encounter other fascinating marine creatures gracefully swimming beneath the surface.

To ensure your comfort during the voyage, the operator provide warm extra clothing. However, it's a good idea to come prepared with your own warm and waterproof attire to stay cozy and dry as you witness these incredible creatures in their natural habitat.

After your thrilling whale-watching adventure, it's time to head back towards Reykjavik, marking the end of your remarkable six-day journey through Iceland. The return journey offers another chance to soak in the stunning Icelandic landscapes that have accompanied you throughout your trip. The scenery along the way is nothing short of spectacular, with breathtaking vistas at every turn.

If you have any specific places you'd like to explore or revisit on the way back, don't hesitate to inform your guide. Depending on the time available, additional stops can be arranged to make your journey even more memorable.

It's been an incredible adventure through the wild and beautiful landscapes of North Iceland, and now it's time to relish the memories you've created as you head back to the bustling heart of Reykjavik.

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What to bring

Warm and waterproof clothing
Camera
A sense of adventure
Winter hiking shoes
Swimsuit and a towel 

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