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13 Day Road Trip Around Iceland I Ring Road & Westfjords - SD16

Take a Grand Tour Around Iceland and Find Peace in the Remote Westfjords

Dust off your road atlas and experience an epic road trip around Iceland! On this self-drive tour, circle the entire island at your own pace on the Ring Road. During the trip, spend five days in the Westfjords, where you’ll find peace and quiet. We’ve hand-picked your detailed itinerary to include the most beautiful places in Iceland. All you have to do is put your car in drive and hit the road!

Included in your 13-day self-drive package is a rental car, accommodation, and daily breakfast.
All at the best price guaranteed.


Duration: 13 days

Group maximum: 5

Available: Summer

Age limit: No age limit

Difficulty: Easy

Tour Highlights:
  • The Ring Road
  • West Fjords
  • The Golden Circle
  • The South Coast
  • East Fjords
  • Lake Myvatn Geothermal Area
  • Snaefellsnes Peninsula
  • Reykjanes Peninsula

Pick up your car at:

Keflavík International Airport

Drop off your car at:

Keflavík International Airport

Included:

  • 13-Day itinerary for an epic Iceland self-drive tour
  • 12 nights accommodation with private bathroom
  • 13 days car rental
  • Breakfast each morning at hotels

Bring with you:

Warm outdoor clothing, good hiking shoes, a driver's license, a bathing suit, sunglasses, and a camera. Lunch and dinner are not included but can be purchased on the road.

Accommodation:

Comfort accommodation is included in the package. 

Note: If you book for 2 or 4 persons you get twin / double rooms. If you book for 3 or 5 persons you get a combination of double/twin rooms and a single room.

Please Note:

This itinerary is perfect for morning arrivals. However, if you’re arriving to Iceland in the afternoon, we suggest a pre-night in Reykjavik before starting the regular itinerary.

from:
176 942 per adult

If 4 persons - May vary depending on group size, season and availability.


No Booking Fees
No Hidden Fees

Tour Details

See the best of Iceland on this exhilarating Ring Road and Westfjords tour! Start your road trip around Iceland at Keflavik Airport, where your rental car awaits. First, hit the highlights of the Golden Circle. Then head to the South Coast, graced with glaciers, waterfalls, and black sand beaches. Next, discover the jagged East Fjords and Iceland’s otherworldly North Coast.  

Then put distance between you and the rest of the world by exploring the Westfjords, the oldest and most remote area of Iceland. After five days in the Westfjords, reach the equally spectacular Snaefellsnes Peninsula. On the final day of your tour, explore the dreamy Reykjanes Peninsula. 

Along the way, add optional activities like glacier hiking, whale watching, and soaking in the world-famous Blue Lagoon. 

On this Iceland self-drive tour, disconnect from worldly worries and enjoy Iceland’s jaw-dropping landscapes!

Day 1 - Arrival & The Golden Circle

Velkominn! Your epic trip around Iceland begins! Pick up your rental car at Keflavik Airport and head towards Reykjavik, the capital of Iceland. From Reykjavik, head onwards to the Golden Circle, the most famous sightseeing route in the country. The celebrated route consists of Iceland’s three most popular attractions: Thingvellir National Park, Geysir Geothermal Area, and Gullfoss Waterfall. Be prepared for extraordinary views! Along the way, make a small detour to discover a few of Iceland’s hidden gems. Spend the night at your hotel in the Golden Circle/Hvolsvöllur area.

What to Do and See
  • Thingvellir National Park is a famous UNESCO World Heritage Site located at the meeting point of the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates. Walk between two continents and admire otherworldly rock formations. One of the world’s first parliaments, Althingi, was established here in 930 CE
  • Geysir Geothermal Area is home to Strokkur, Iceland’s most active geyser, which erupts once every ten minutes. Keep your camera ready — Strokkur shoots vast jets of boiling water up to 30 m (100 ft) high!
  • Gullfoss Waterfall is a powerful torrent of water that will take your breath away. The 32-m (105-ft) high cascade drops into the rugged canyon below with a tremendous force.
  • Faxi Waterfall is one of Iceland’s hidden gems where you’re guaranteed peace and quiet. Find the wide and serene falls about 12 km (8 m) from Gullfoss. There’s also a good restaurant nearby with superb views.
  • Kerid Crater (entrance fee not included) is a must-see for geology buffs. Explore the 6500-year-old volcanic crater filled with blue water. Björk once performed in the middle of the lake! Keep in mind that you’ll need to pay an admission fee to enter the site.

Day 2 - The South Coast

After an appetizing breakfast, hop in your car and head to the South Coast. En route, discover a series of thundering waterfalls. Then visit the ghostly Reynisfjara Beach, the most famous black sand beach in the world. Opt for a guided glacier hike on Sólheimajökull Glacier at 1:30 p.m. (13:30). Hike across crackling ice and get close-up views of blue ice structures. The tour is suitable for all skill levels and we provide you with all the necessary glacier walk gear. All you have to do is show up! Book the activity on our website. After an action-packed day, relax at your hotel in the picturesque village of Vik.

What to Do and See
  • Seljalandsfoss Waterfall is one of the most photographed cascades in Iceland and a popular stop on the Ring Road. The spectacular cascade drops down 60 m (197 ft) into a green pool. A path runs around Seljalandsfoss, allowing visitors to walk behind the waterfall. Bring a raincoat as there is always a lot of spray!
  • Gljúfrabúi Waterfall is Seljalandsfoss’ less-visited neighbor. The small but enchanting cascade tumbles into a hidden canyon. Hence the name Gljúfrabúi, which means “Canyon Dweller.” Find Gljúfrabúi just a few hundred meters north of Seljalandsfoss.
  • Skógafoss Waterfall is one of the largest and most impressive cascades in Iceland. Skógafoss plunges down 60 m (200 ft). On sunny days, the powerful cascade creates double rainbows across the water. Feel the refreshing mist on your face! 
  • Kvernufoss Waterfall is a true hidden gem, located just a short walk east from the famous Skógafoss. The chief reason to visit is the opportunity to enjoy nature in peace. The 30-m (98-ft) high waterfall is half-hidden in a beautiful gorge.
  • Dyrhólaey Arch is a massive rock arch and a paradise for bird lovers. Take in the stunning views from the top of the promontory and see puffins Iceland’s most beloved seabirds in their natural habitat. Don’t forget to pack your binoculars! 
  • Reynisfjara Beach is famed for its black volcanic sands and enormous basalt columns. The dramatic beach was voted one of the top 10 non-tropical beaches in the world by National Geographic. Stroll along the beach and gaze in wonder at the sea stacks that rise out of the ocean. These rock pillars are called Reynisdrangar.
  • Optional Glacier Hike Activity will take you to the top of Sólheimajökull, a glistening glacier tongue that stretches out from the mighty Mýrdalsjökull Glacier. Equipped with crampons, hike through a wonderland of blue ice formations, crevasses, and jagged ridges.

Day 3 - Skaftafell and Vatnajökull National Park

Leave the village of Vik behind and set out to explore the vast wilderness of Vatnajökull National Park. In 2019, the park was named a Unesco World Heritage Site. Here you’ll find Vatnajökull, Europe’s largest glacier, and landscapes unlike any others on Earth. Visit the world-famous Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon and photograph giant icebergs at the nearby Diamond Beach. Along the way, discover a few secret spots that you won’t find in your guidebook. Spend the night at your hotel in Skaftafell/Höfn.

What to Do and See
  • Hjörleifshöfði Hill is a must-see for Star Wars fans. The 221-m (725-ft) high hill rises above the black sands of Mýrdalssandur and is home to an impressive cave that resembles a huge Yoda.
  • Fjaðrárgljúfur Canyon is a serpentine-shaped gorge that formed during the last ice age. The 100-m (328-ft) deep Fjaðrárgljúfur became world-famous when it was featured in Justin Bieber’s music video for “I’ll Show You.” 
  • Kirkjugólfið (The Church Floor), located in the town of Kirkjubæarklaustur, is a 207-km² (80-mi²) stretch of hexagonal lava pavements. Once thought to be an old church floor rather than a natural phenomenon, Kirkjugólfið will leave you in awe of nature.
  • Stjórnafoss Waterfall is a secret spot that most tourists miss (but shouldn’t). Surrounded by cliffs and green slopes, the serene cascade is about 10 m (33 ft) high. Go there to enjoy the sounds of nature or have a lovely afternoon picnic.
  • Dverghamrar Cliffs is one of the most awe-inspiring rock formations in the land of fire and ice. According to a local legend, dwarves dwell in the gorge — hence the name “Dwarf Cliffs.” Find Dverghamrar close to the village of Kirkjubæjarklaustur. 
  • Lómagnúpur Mountain is one of the most recognizable peaks in Iceland. The mountain stands 767-m (2516-ft) tall. Photograph the imposing peak rising over a black desert! 
  • Svartifoss (Black Falls) is among Iceland’s most famous waterfalls. The captivating cascade is surrounded by dark hexagonal basalt columns and drops down 20 m (80 ft) into a calm pool. Svartifoss inspired the architecture of Reykjavík’s National Theatre. 
  • Fjallsárlón Lake, located next to Vatnajökull Glacier, is a lesser-known glacier lagoon. The serene, iceberg-filled lagoon reveals up-close views of the majestic glacier. 
  • Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon is one of Iceland’s most iconic destinations. The glacial lake is filled with giant floating icebergs. The magnificent views of the dramatic lagoon are guaranteed to leave you blissed out.
  • Diamond Beach is a stretch of black volcanic sand. Here, ice boulders from the nearby Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon wash up on black sands, resembling diamonds.

Day 4 - East Fjords

After a scrumptious breakfast, continue your Ring Road adventure to the serene East Fjords, one of the oldest regions in Iceland. Dotted with charming villages, the East Fjords are calming and beautiful. It’s the perfect place to escape the chaos of everyday life. Enjoy a relaxing drive packed with breathtaking stops. In the evening, arrive at your hotel in Egilsstadir.

What to Do and See
  • Eystrahorn Mountain is an extremely steep peak that’s impossible to climb. Considered one of Iceland’s most remote destinations, Eystrahorn is a fantastic spot for photographers. Keep your camera ready!
  • Stokksnesviti Lighthouse (Stokksnes Lighthouse), located about 10 km (6 mi) east from the town of Höfn, is perfect for lone travelers. The remote white tower with a red lantern protects the coastline. Enjoy the wild scenery in peace. 
  • Djúpivogur Town is a charming coastal village where you’ll find good restaurants, cafes, and shops. Take a slow stroll around the quiet town and forget all about home. 
  • Borgargardsvatn Lake, located close to Djúpivogur, is a serene lake where you can take a breath of crisp Icelandic air and enjoy refreshing views.
  • Saxa Cliff is an impressive rock formation where you can watch the waves of the Atlantic Ocean hurl high into the air. “Saxa” refers to the seaweed that are thrown into the air by the waves. 
  • Gufufoss Waterfall, located near Egilsstaðir (the capital of East Iceland), is a great stop to stretch your legs. The beautiful, rectangular-shaped waterfall plunges into a narrow canyon below. The power of crashing waters will leave you feeling energized. 
  • Seyðisfjarðarkirkja Church is famous for the rainbow road leading up to the brilliant blue building. Explore this wonderful treasure of wooden architecture and snap a great picture of the rainbow road!
  • Hengifoss and Litlanesfoss Waterfalls will make your jaw drop. Hengifoss is Iceland’s third-highest waterfall and plummets 128 m (420 ft) into a brown gorge. Litlanesfoss, halfway along the trail leading to Hengifoss, is no less spectacular, with incredible basalt formations. 

Day 5 - Mývatn Geothermal Region

Explore the best of North Iceland on today’s leg of the trip. Drive towards Myvatn, one of the most geologically active areas in Iceland. Enjoy volcanic attractions around Lake Myvatn. Be enchanted by hissing vents and surreal lava fields. En route, stop at Dettifoss, the most powerful waterfall in Europe. In the evening, arrive at your hotel in Akureyri, the capital of North Iceland.

What to Do and See
  • Dettifoss, also called “The Niagara of Europe,” is the most powerful waterfall in Europe. Glacial water thunders over 45 m (148 ft) cliff. Standing next to this fierce cascade is simply breathtaking.
  • Hverarönd, also known as Hverir, is a geothermal area of bubbling mud pools and steaming vents. Experience nature’s awesome powers firsthand as you wander among white clouds of steam.
  • Grjótagjá Cave harbors a serene hot spring within its walls. Bathing in the hot spring is forbidden, but the beautiful lava cave will steal your heart. Find Grjótagjá close to Lake Myvatn.
  • Dimmuborgir Lava Field, located in the Lake Myvatn area, is home to eerie rock formations and looks plucked straight out of a fantasy novel. No wonder it was featured on HBO’s Game of Thrones! Wander the marked trails to feel as if you’re entering a portal to another realm. 
  • Höfdi Peninsula is a recreational forested area with scenic hiking trails. The small peninsula is also known for its stunning lava pillars. Höfdi is another Game of Thrones filming location.
  • Lake Myvatn Geothermal Area is home to Lake Myvatn, Iceland's fourth-largest body of water. Covering 36 km² (14 mi²), Myvatn is famous for its rich birdlife. In the summer, you can see more species of ducks at Myvatn than at any other lake in the world.
  • Godafoss Waterfall (Waterfalls of the Gods), located about 50 km (30 m) east of Akureryi, is another spectacular cascade. According to local legend, the Icelandic lawspeaker threw his statues of Norse gods into the falls as a mark of Iceland’s conversion to Christianity in 1000 CE.
  • Ljósavatn Lake, located just a 20-minute drive from the famous Godafoss, is often called the “mirror lake.” On sunny days, Ljósavatn reflects the stunning surrounding scenery.

Day 6 - Akureyri and Whale Watching (Optional)

Today’s journey involves a lot of driving. Ride through rugged, unspoiled landscapes and explore the adorable fishing villages of North Iceland. Opt for a whale watching tour in Dalvik at 1:00 p.m. (13:00) and see mysterious ocean creatures up close! This tour is perfect for adventure and nature lovers. Book the activity on our website. Your hotel for the night is in Northwest Iceland.

What to Do and See
  • Akureyri, often called the capital of the North, is Iceland’s second-largest city. The town sits at the bottom of the Eyjafjörður, the longest fjord in Iceland. Akureyri bustles with art galleries, good restaurants, and stylish cafes. You’ll also find the world’s northernmost botanical gardens.
  • Dalvik Town is best known for whale watching tours and awe-inspiring mountain vistas. Book a whale watching tour and be wowed by gentle sea giants! Expect to see humpback whales, white-beaked dolphins, minke whales, and harbor porpoises. 
  • Hvitserkur Sea Stack, located on Route 711, is one of the main highlights of North Iceland. The eerie rock formation resembles a dragon drinking water. The rock rises 15 m (50 ft) out of the ocean.
  • Kolugljúfur Canyon is a picturesque 1-km long gorge on the Víðidalsá river. You’ll find a few pretty waterfalls within the canyon. Kolugljúfur makes for a great picnic spot just off the Ring Road.

Day 7 - West Fjords

Today you finally reach the Westfjords, the oldest region in Iceland. Explore secluded landscapes that date back 16 million years. See rugged fjords and soaring mountain peaks. End your day relaxing at Krossneslaug Swimming Pool and soak in the awesome views of the ocean. Arrive at your hotel in Hólmavik in the evening.

What to Do and See
  • Drangsnes Village is a remote fishing village famous for the geothermal hot tubs along its shoreline. Windy walks along the coastline with blow your worries away. There is also a good restaurant called Malarkaffi that serves fresh fish.
  • Drangsnes hot tubs are the main highlight of the Drangsnes fishing village. Although the tubs are free, they’re a little tricky to find. Look for the small sign leading to the hot-pots. Once there, enjoy a relaxing soak in blissfully warm water.
  • Kaldbaks Horn Mountain is located on the way to the town of Djúpavik. It stands 508-m (1667-ft) high and is nothing short of spectacular. Spooky stories surround the towering peak. One tells of a man called Svanr who walked into the mountain and died. This story relates to the Norse belief that men die into mountains. 
  • Djúpavik is a sleepy rural town that once was a thriving herring center. The village now is the least populous municipality in the country. Many just come here to go off-grid and find solitude. You’ll also find several scenic hiking trails. 
  • Djúpavikurfoss Waterfall, located in the hauntingly beautiful town of Djúpavik, tumbles down a high mountain cliff and flows towards the abandoned herring factory. 
  • Krossneslaug Swimming Pool (optional) is a unique geothermal pools that you won’t want to miss. It’s called “Infinity Pool” because of its endless ocean vistas. Swimming in Iceland can’t get any better than this!
  • Gvendarlaug Natural Thermal Pool is another natural geothermal pool located about 20 km (12 mi) north of Drangsnes. 

Day 8 - Ìsafjordur

Enjoy your breakfast before continuing your journey into the Westfjords. Drive towards Ìsafjördur, the largest settlement in the Westfjords. Along the way, pass many deep fjords and take in awesome flat-topped mountain views. Visit the Arctic Fox Center in Sudavík and see these incredibly hardy animals for yourself! The arctic fox is Iceland’s only indigenous land animal and has many unique adaptations. For example, it changes its fur color to blend in with the arctic environment. Spend the night at your hotel in the lively town of Ìsafjördur.

What to Do and See
  • Stadará River flows into the Atlantic Ocean and is a perfect spot for fishing. The river is rich with salmon and arctic char. If you’re planning to go fishing, you’ll need designated fishing permits.
  • Súdavik Village, located east of Ìsafjördur, is a small fishing village that reveals fantastic views of the fjord. The main attraction of Súdavik is the Arctic Fox Center, which is definitely worth a visit.
  • The Arctic Fox Center (entrance fee not included) is an exhibition center that focuses on the arctic fox, an adorable local creature about the size of a large cat. Orphaned foxes are cared for at the rehabilitation center. You’ll also find a two-room cafe. 
  • Arnarnes Point has an elevation of 48 m (157 ft) and offers awesome views over Ísafjörður and the surrounding area.
  • Arnarnesviti Lighthouse, located halfway between Ísafjörður and Súðavík, is a favorite spot with photographers. The beautiful lighthouse is set against the backdrop of Iceland’s wilderness.
  • Naustahvilft Valley, also known as the “troll seat,” is a popular hiking spot. To enjoy the nature of Ìsafjördur to the fullest, embark on the short hike to Naustahvilft. The path is steep, but you’ll be rewarded with scenery worth a hundred postcards!
  • Tungudalur Waterfalls is a stunning cascade surrounded by lush vegetation. Be enchanted by long strips of purple wildflowers. Find Tungudalur close to the town of Ìsafjördur, where you’ll spend the night.
  • Vid Djúpid is a classical music festival that takes place in the bustling town of Ìsafjördur. The event celebrates the summer solstice and offers a series of concerts with national and international artists. Make sure to check the festival program!
  • Ìsafjördur Town is the capital of the Westfjords. After a day exploring the remote landscapes, Ìsafjördur might feel like a bustling metropolis. Find many top-notch restaurants and tempting cafes. Don’t forget to buy some “kringla,” a popular horseshoe-shaped bread.

Day 9 - West Fjords and Dynjandi Waterfall

Today you’ll visit Dynjandi Waterfall, the largest waterfall in the Westfjords. The thundering falls are one of the area’s most popular attractions. Dynjandi is as beautiful as it is big. Make sure to bring your camera! In the evening, arrive at your hotel in Patreksfjördur.

What to Do and See
  • Òshyrna Mountain is the outermost part of the mountain slope between Ísafjörður and Bolungarvík. Get awesome views of the majestic mountain from the harbor in Bolungarvík.
  • Òshólaviti Lighthouse, located at the town of Bolungarvik, is an old orange-hued tower surrounded by hulking mountains. The lighthouse was built in 1937 and looks straight out of a romantic painting. 
  • Bolungarvik Town is the second-largest town in the Westfjords — with only 950 residents. No wonder it’s said that waterfalls outnumber people in the Westfjords! Bolungarvik features one of the country’s oldest fishing stations. The most popular attraction is a mountain road leading to majestic Bolafjall Mountain.
  • Bolafjall Mountain towers above the town of Bolungarvik and stands 638-m (2093-ft) tall. The view from the top of the mountain is absolutely spectacular. Admire the stunning vistas of Ísafjarðardjúp Fjord. On a clear day, you can see all the way to Greenland! To reach Bolafjall, drive west of Bolungarvik and follow the signs to the radar station on the top of the mountain.
  • Flateyri Town is a small quiet settlement located on the coast of the stunning Önundarfjörður Fjord. The town is best known for its sublime scenery. It’s also home to several eccentric museums: the Nonsense Museum, the Old Bookstore, and the International Doll Museum.
  • Thingeyri Town sits on Dyrafjordur, one of the most beautiful fjords in the Westfjords. Find Kaldbakur — the highest mountain in Westfjords — located close to Thingeyri. While most mountains in the region are table-topped, Kaldbakur is steep and pointy. No wonder it’s often called the Westfjords Alps. 
  • Dynjandi Waterfall, the region’s largest waterfall, tumbles 100 m (328 ft) over terraces of stone. The name “Dynjandi” means “thunderous.” With a flow of eight cubic meters per second (282 cubic feet), Dynjandi is a truly powerful gusher. Hike up the cliffside to see the cascade from above.
  • Bildudalur Village is an adorable fishing village located on the majestic fjord of Arnarfjörður. In addition to awe-inspiring mountain vistas, find the Icelandic Sea Monster Museum there. Enjoy the multimedia exhibit about sea monster legends and their mysterious sightings in the country.

Day 10 - Puffin Watching in West Fjords

After breakfast, prepare for another unforgettable day in the Westfjords. Today’s main highlight is Látrabjarg, Iceland’s largest sea cliff and Europe’s westernmost point. Látrabjarg Cliff is one of the best places to see puffins in the country. Puffins are Iceland’s most famous and photogenic seabirds. They nest at Látrabjarg Cliff each summer. Spend the night at your hotel in Patreksfjördur.

What to Do and See
  • Örlygshöfn Cove, located on the southern shore of Patreksfjörður Fjord, is a heavenly strip of golden sand that’s worth your attention. Because most Icelandic beaches are black, Örlygshöfn is a true rarity. On sunny days, it looks tropical blue. Go off-grid and stroll along the sparkling shore.
  • Òlafsviti Lighthouse is a 6-m high (20-ft) stone tower. Active since 1937, the lighthouse guides ships into the grand Patreksfjörður Fjord. The wild scenery will make you feel as if you’re in a movie. 
  • Breiduvikurkirkja Church, located in Breiðavík, is one of the most westernmost churches in Europe. That said, it’s truly one of the most off-the-beaten-path churches in the world. 
  • Látrabjarg Bird Cliff is Iceland’s (and Europe’s) westernmost point. Supporting one of the largest seabird colonies in Europe, Látrabjarg is a paradise for bird lovers. Keep your camera ready — puffins, gulls, and guillemots are waiting to have their picture taken!
  • Hellulaug Natural Thermal Pool is a hidden hot-pot near the seashore. Bathe in the warm water and take in stunning views of Vatnsfjörður Fjord. There is no entrance fee and you’ll probably have the hot-pot all to yourself!

Day 11 - Golden Beaches of the West Fjords

Today is your last day in the Westfjords. Set out to explore Raudisandur, one of the most beautiful golden sand beaches in Iceland. Raudisandur is a tranquil place far from the tourist hustle. Seabirds and seals will be your only companions. Have a delightful picnic and enjoy leisurely walks. In the evening, arrive at your hotel in Reykhólar.

What to Do and See
  • Bjargtangaviti Lighthouse, located on the cliffs of Látrabjarg, marks the westernmost point of Iceland and in all of Europe. Built in 1913, it's a two-story, entirely white structure.
  • Raudisandur Beach, located east of Látrabjarg, is a golden red sand beach. Depending on the daylight and the weather, the sands take on various shades of red, orange, and yellow. The beach is 10-km (6-mi) long. On a clear day, you can see the majestic Snæfellsjökull Glacier made famous by Jules Verne. 
  • Saubaejarkirkja in Raudisandur Beach is a striking black and white church. If you want to capture an interesting photo, don't miss this remote but dramatic church.
  • Vatnsfjördur is a nature reserve found near the main highlights of the Westfjords like the Látrabjarg Cliffs and Dynjandi Waterfall. The area is rich in birdlife. Look out for the eider ducks, harlequin ducks, red-throated loons, and sea eagles. The adorable arctic fox also roams the area.
  • Skiptá River feeds the lesser-known Skiptárfoss Waterfall. The cascade is not very powerful but it is pretty high. The water plummets down 80 m (262 ft). Find Skiptá River west of Reykhólar along Route 60.

Day 12 - Snæfellsnes Peninsula

After breakfast, hop in your car and head towards the stunning Snæfellsnes Peninsula. Also known as "Iceland in Miniature," Snaefellsnes gathers the best of Iceland in one place to feature waterfalls, volcanoes, and black sand beaches. Snaefellsnes is also home to Sneafellsjökull Glacier, which was immortalized in Jules Verne’s Journey to the Center of the Earth. In the evening, arrive at your hotel in the Snaefellsnes area.

What to Do and See
  • Òlafsdalur is a small valley surrounded by high mountains. The first agricultural school in Iceland was established at the site in 1880. Find a coffee house at the beautiful school building. The picturesque area also features educational walking trails.
  • Krosshólaborg Hill is a rocky hill where you’ll find a majestic stone cross in memory of Auður Djúpúðga, the first settler in Dalir (The Valleys). Unlike other settlers, Auður was a Christian. Find the hill near the farm Hvammur.
  • Haukadalsvatn Lake covers an area of 3,28 km² (126,6 mi²) and is a lovely spot to stretch your legs. Take a deep breath of fresh Icelandic air and rest up before continuing your journey.
  • Erik the Red’s Homestead (Eiríksstaðir) is one of the most important historical sites in Iceland. Viking Erik the Red, who established the first European settlement in Greenland, made his home here. It's also believed that Leifur Eirkksson, the first European to set foot in North America, was born on the farm.
  • Hraunsfjardarvatn Lake is rich in brown trout and a great fishing spot. You don't need permits to fish at the lake. If fishing is not your cup of tea, enjoy the refreshing scenery before continuing your road trip.
  • Kirkjufell Mountain is one of the most photographed peaks in Iceland. The cone-shaped mountain or “Church Mountain” is named for its resemblance to a church steeple. Find Kirkjufell near the picturesque town of Grundarfjörður.
  • Kirkjufellsfoss Waterfall is a roaring cascade found near the famous Kirkjufell Mountain. The scenery can't be beat, with the iconic Kirkjufell looming above.
  • Snaefellsjökull National Park was established in 2001 and protects the majestic Sneafellsjökull Glacier. Enjoy many hiking trails that will lead you through volcanic craters, lava fields, and birdlife sanctuaries.
  • Djúpalónssandur Beach is a dramatic black pebble beach. Take a walk along the beach and gaze in wonder at huge rock formations.
  • Lóndrangar Cliffs are two lofty basalt towers that surge into the air. The dramatic cliffs were featured in Game of Thrones. Find Lóndrangar near the village of Hellnar.
  • Hellnar Village is a tiny fishing village that once was one of the largest fishing centers on the peninsula. Take a break from driving and explore the ancient village.
  • Arnarstapi Village is another small fishing village close to Hellnar. Natural wonders at Arnarstapi include Gatklettur, a striking stone arch that stands over in the sea, and Sönghellir (“Song Cave”) with its incredible acoustics.
  • Budakirkja Church is a popular location with photographers. The black wooden church is set against a background of surrounding mountains.
  • Ytri Tunga Beach is famed for its large seal colony. These marine mammals are best seen in June and July.  While most of Iceland’s beaches are black, Ytri Tunga has golden sand.

Day 13 - Reykjanes Peninsula & Departure

Today is the last day of your epic trip around Iceland. After breakfast, visit Hraunfossar and Barnafoss Waterfalls, the two most famous cascades in West Iceland. Then drive through the otherworldly landscapes of Reykjanes Peninsula before you return your car to Keflavik Airport. Reykjanes sits directly on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, where the Eurasian and American continental plates drift apart. Be wowed by black lava fields and high geothermal activity. If you wish, add a visit to the celebrated Blue Lagoon (entrance fee is not included).

What to Do and See
  • Hraunfossar and Barnafoss Waterfalls are true natural wonders. Hraunfossar features thousands of serene rivulets streaming out of a black lava field. Just a short walk from Hraunfossar, find the fierce cascade of Barnafoss. The waterfalls are located on Route 518.
  • Delidartunguhver Geothermal Area is Europe's largest hot spring. It gushes out 180 liters (48 gallons) of boiling water per second! Find Delidartunguhver just off Route 50, near Reykholt.
  • Kleifarvatn Lake is perhaps the spookiest lake in Iceland. According to legend, the lake houses an aquatic monster the size of a whale. With a depth of 97 m (318 ft), Kleifarvatn is also one of the deepest lakes in the country.
  • Hópsnesviti Lighthouse is a bright orange tower that stands in stark contrast to the surrounding black lava fields. On your way to the lighthouse, pass several shipwrecks. Each shipwreck has a plaque that tells you how the ships ended up here.
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