Black Sand - 4 day package tour - EI111
Travel south Iceland and explore the inside of a glacier
On this 4 day package tour, you will experience the stark contrast of Icelandic nature. The tour starts with a tour around Snaefellsness penisula, an area of great beauty and mysterious guile. The second day gives you the chance to travel in style in our super jeeps up to the highlands and visit the famous Landmannalaugar pool. On the third day a specialized monster truck transports you to the top of a glacier for an incredible visit inside a glacier. The final day offers the opportunity to explore the sensational South Coast. Truly an amazing combo tour that offers many once in a lifetime experiences.
Duration: 4 days
~8-12 hours per day
Pick up on first day: 09:00-09:30
Drop off on last day: ~20:00-21:00
Available: Mid June - Mid Sep
Monday-Thursday or Saturday-Tuesday
Included: Hotel pick up & drop off in Reykjavik each day, guided tours for four days, all relevant equipment.
Bring with you: Warm clothes, sturdy shoes.
For further information:
Day 1: Journey to the Centre of the Earth
Pick up: 09:00-09:30
Snaefellsnes Peninsula is a world of diversity, comprising many of Iceland's unique features on one peninsula. It is a legendary area of magic and beauty, immortalized in Jules Verne's “Journey to the Centre of the Earth”. We will also visit a cave on the way.
Complete Program for Day 1 ...
The tour begins with collection from your hotel in Reykjavik and progress west towards Snaefellsness peninsula, following a scenic route of dramatic landscapes. We will make a short stop for refreshments, allowing you to pick up supplies for the day ahead.
The peninsula is home to varied wildflife, including many types of bird and even a seal colony. We stop at a black sand beach near Ytri-Tunga farm, offering an opportunity to spot some of these playful residents.
Next up is a visit to the idyllic Arnarstapi village where you‘ll take a walk through extraordinary landscape along the precipitous shoreline toward the small village of Hellnar. Here we will break for lunch.
Lava Cave Vatnshellir
After lunch the tour continues to Vatnshellir lava cave located in the Snæfellsjökull National Park, close to the glacier which is the setting Jules Verne chose for the start of his famous adventure.
Exploring Vatnshellir you‘ll descend into a subterranean world of stalactites, stalagmites, and strange lava formations. The glow of your headlight may form eerie shapes and shadows, which dance across the walls of the cave. The caving is short, very easy, and suitable for everyone.Black Beach Djúpalónssandur
From the curious underworld of Vatnshellir, we continue to Djúpalónssandur, a black-pebbled beach that offers stark views out to the sea and fascinating histories of shipwrecks and adventure.
Departing Djúpalónssandur beach we travel past impressive landscapes, towards the northern side of Snæfellsnes peninsula. Grundarfjörður fishing village is the next stop. Surrounded by particularly beautiful mountains. The area is home to one of the peninsula‘s most photographed iconic landmarks Kirkjufell. This symmetrical mountain towers 463 m (1519 ft) up from the shoreline, “church mount” is it's name translated to English and you can see why.
Out of Grundarfjörður the route lies across a lava field named Berserkjahraun. According to Viking legends this is the place where two Swedish "berserkers“ forged Iceland‘s first road and over to the south side of the peninsula through a highland pass.
On the way a short stop is made at a viewpoint where you can take a short walk down to a small and beautiful waterfall.
Heading back to Reykjavik, we have time to take in the Natural Heritage Site of Gerðuberg, home to a beautiful belt of basalt columns in impossibly geometric shapes. Finally, we drop-off to your hotel, allowing the day's magic to sink in deep.
Day 2: Super Jeep Tour to Landmannalaugar
Pick up: 09:00-09:30
The highlands of Landmannalaugar is one example of how mind-blowing the landscapes of Iceland can get. The super jeep you will be sitting in provides a very comfortable and luxurious trip and a very private, relaxed atmosphere. The Landmannalaugar super jeep tour one of our top selling tours and for a good reason.
Complete Program for Day 2 ...
We start the day by departing from Reykjavík and head on towards Þjórsárdalur Valley, where we make a stop at Hjálparfoss, meaning “Helping falls”. It is believed the name comes from historical times, when travellers used to make stops there to rest themselves and their horses before they continued.
After this stop we leave the lowlands of the and head up to the highlands, where more amazing landscapes of the wilderness await us.
On arrival the super jeeps will start showing what they‘re made of. We will cross rivers and drive on coarse gravel roads, which will finally lead us to Landmannalaugar. The landscapes we will encounter will most definitely make for a trip to remember. We will stop at Ljótipollur, a crater lake formed in an eruption in 1477, which is now filled with beautiful cobalt-blue water. We will also make a stop at Lake Frostastaðavatn before we reach Landmannalaugar.
The area around Landmannalaugar is a combination of extremely diverse geological elements. There you can find extensive lava fields and the multicolored rhyolite mountains which span almost every color imaginable, fading from pink to brown and green, intermixed with yellow, blue, black and even purple in between.
At Landmannalaugar you have freedom to do various activities but you might want to start by having a quick snack break. The group will then go on a short hike around the area. Or if you feel like it you could even jump straight in the geothermal pool for a relaxation. Another option is to explore the territory on your own before we make our way back down to the lowlands. Remember to bring a swimsuit if you want to bathe in the pool.
The route back will be via Dómadalur, which takes us through lava fields and beautiful mountains, truly a unique scenery. The highlight of this part of the tour is without a doubt Þjófafoss waterfall (meaning Waterfall of the thieves), where vikings would drown those who were accused of thievery there. They would bind their hands and feet and throw them down into the waterfall from the top of a cliff. We will also stop by the volcano Hekla, and take a short walk in the lava fields. Through the ages, Hekla was nicknamed “The Gateway to Hell”. The nickname is not surprising given the fact that Hekla is one of Iceland’s most active volcanoes, last erupting as recently as 2000.
Day 3: South Coast by Minibus (Glacier Hike Optional)
Pick up: 09:00-09:30
This day tour around south Iceland shows you a good cross-section of the area. We will take a scenic tour of the south coast and stop at some of the most beautiful places it has to offer, like waterfalls, volcanoes, black sand beaches and many other wonders of nature that you can find in the south. We also offer you a slightly different tour, where you can take a walk on the icy surface of a glacier.
Complete Program for Day 3 ...
We depart from Reykjavík and make our way over Hellisheidi mountain pass. We will encounter many great photo opportunities on our way, going through Iceland‘s largest agricultural area.
When we approach Eyjafjöll, we have a great view of Vestmannaeyjar (Westman Islands), that lie off the south coast in the distance. Close by is the volcano Eyjafjallajokull, which erupted in 2010, leaving many travellers stranded across Europe due to flight restrictions.
We will also take you to two beautiful waterfalls, Seljalandsfoss and Skogafoss, which cascade down the sides of Eyjafjoll.
Seljalandsfoss and Skogafoss
At Seljalandsfoss waterfall, you get the chance to walk behind it, which is a rarty for waterfalls. There you can get an inside out view of the scenery. The waterfall falls from the cliff with immense power, forming a deep pool at the bottom.
Continuing east, the next stop is the picturesque waterfall Skogafoss. We offer you an opportunity to take a hike to the top, providing you with an incredible view. Skogafoss is one of the largest in Iceland, and due to the amount of spray, a rainbow can often be seen on sunny days.
The deep black shores of Reynisfjara
After viewing the lush green surroundings of the waterfalls, we contrast it with the dramatic black sand beach of Reynisfjara. The waves have forged the shore and basalt cliffs over time, forming many of the famous natural gems in the area. The Reynisdrangar sea stacks are just off the shore, flanked by the amazing 120m (400ft) high Dyrholaey promontory, which is the southernmost tip of Iceland.
The small town of Vik lies a stonesthrow away from Reynisfjara. There we will stop at the local wool and gift shop. Vik is the southernmost village of Iceland, with a population of about 300. This quaint little village is surrounded by beautiful beaches, cliffs and mountains.
On the way back to Reykjavík, we will stop at Solheimajokull, which is an outlet glacier from Myrdalsjokull, the fourth largest glacier in Iceland. There we take a small detour to the edge of the glacier, where you get the opportunity to take a short hike and experience the glacier‘s unique landscape. After the hike we continue our trip back to Reykjavik.
South Iceland With Glacier Hike
We also offer a variant of this tour which includes a glacier hike on Solheimajokull, for those who are feeling extra adventurous. The hike takes place after visiting Seljalandsfoss. We gear you up with crampons and brief you on safety while hiking on the glacier. The hike takes about one hour and is relatively easy, if you are comfortable walking on uneven surfaces. Children over the age of 10 are allowed on the glacier hike.
The glacier hiking tour has all the same stops except it does not include Vík.
Day 4: Glacier Wonderland
Pick up: 09:00-09:30
This tour is a great opportunity to get a rare view of the the majestic world found inside the Langjokull glacier, where the ice has been sculpted by nature for 2500 years. When the minibus arrives, the monster truck will transport us up to the entrance of the ice tunnel, 1200 meters above sea level. Along the way, we will also stop at many beautiful sites, such as hot springs and vast lava fields.
Note: The route of this tour varies from one season to another due to road conditions in the highlands. Every season has its own points of interest and your guide will inform you of the route we will take on the day of your tour.
Complete Program for Day 4 ...
The tour begins when we exit Reykjavík, driving towards Hvalfjordur (Whale Fjord). The fjord, 30km long and 5km wide, takes its name from the many whales that have been sighted there.
On our way to the glacier we’ll also stop at various interesting and beautiful locations. Places like Sturlureykir farm, the historical Reykholt Village and Hraunfossar, which is one of the highlights on this tour. Hraunfossar (meaning Lava Falls) is a searies of waterfalls that were formed by rivulets streaming over almost a kilometre out of the Hallmundarhraun, which was part of an eruption in 930. The eruption occurred around the same time as the first settlers came to Iceland, so it is highly likely that they witnessed the lava flow that now makes up the waterfall.
After a lunch in Húsafell, we will visit one of the collapsed lavapits of Hallmundarhraun. The area is interesting because the lava there has more numerous and sizable shatter rings than any other lava field on earth. One of them that we will visit on the tour was once used as a place for gathering sheep.The Monster Truck Trip to The Ice Tunnel
We leave Hallmundarhraun and continue up to Langjokull glacier. When we reach the glacier fringes, you will board a huge specialized monster truck which will take you up to the ice cave, which is located almost at the peak of the glacier. There you will experience the astounding environment inside the depths of the glacier.
Inside the ice tunnel, you get a rare opportunity to see how the glacier has formed over time. Normal snow forms into layers of ice, which slowly amalgamate into glacial ice, giving you a freeze frame (no pun intended) of nature’s work.
We will spend approximately 50 minutes exploring the tunnels, crevasses, moulins and ice layers of the glaciers, which spans an area of 953 square kilometres.
After the ice tunnel tour, the monster truck will take you back down, and we head back towards Reykjavik. But the return trip also offers interesting places to see. We will travel along the highland track of Kaldidalur, which is a typical Icelandic barren highland, comprised of black deserts and summers so short that only the strongest vegetation survives. Closer to Thingvellir we’ll also be able to see Skjaldbreidur, a magnificent shield volcano. It was formed in a huge eruption about 9000 years ago and gets its name due to it’s resemblance to a Viking shield laying on the ground.