Iceland offers spectacular waterfalls, boiling mud fields, steaming fissures, geysers and glaciers. Iceland is like no other place on earth. It is situated right above the geologic rift between the North American plate and the Eurasian plate, on the map, it seems that the rift cuts the island in two halves. It is believed that the rift is responsible for the formation of Iceland itself about 18 million years ago. With all this underlying tension, the country is a hot spot for volcanic and geothermal activity: 30 post-glacial volcanoes have erupted in the past two centuries, and natural hot water supplies much of the population with cheap, pollution-free heating. In addition, these geological marvels create spectacular drama and astonishing beauty in the countryside offering you a very unique experience. The "Blue Lagoon" and other hot spring bathing spas have become one of Iceland's signature experiences. Blue Lagoon is the most famous of Iceland's countless geothermal recreational pools and it's located in a lava field on the Reykjanes Peninsula, near the Keflavik International Airport. With its steaming, milky-blue waters and otherworldly setting amidst black volcanic rocks, this modern spa complex is a sight to behold. There are several pools of different sizes and with different water temperatures and even a natural sauna cave, all of them connected by wooden walkways and bridges. The blue color of the water comes from the skin-brightening silica. Spa treatments are also available here.
Day 1: July 29 - Depart for your overnight flight to arrive into Keflavik, Iceland (KEF) on July 30, 2022
Day 2: July 30 - Arrival into Keflavík airport (Reykjavic) – With early morning arrivals you will head to the "Blue Lagoon". It is one of Iceland’s most popular attractions, a natural geothermal pool
in the middle of a large and dramatic lava field and an oasis that owes its existence to a nearby geothermal power plant. You will stop for for a refreshing swim in the inviting, rejuvenating and pleasantly warm mineral rich waters (36°C-38°C/100-110°F), famed for its reputed healing properties. An indoor pool and geothermal sauna are also on the site as well as massages. Bathing in this surreal environment is a unique experience no one should miss. The Blue Lagoon’s warm water and natural active ingredients like mineral salts, silica and blue green algae help you relax and escape the stress and strain of daily life. You may book an optional massage (additional $)
After your "Blue Lagoon" Experience you will transfer to the Hotel in Reykjavík’s down town.
Enjoy a 1/2 day introductory tour of the cities main highlights. Lake Kleifarvatn, Krysuvik, Gunnuhver, Reykjanesviti Lighthouse, Bridge between two continents. Welcome dinner tonight in town. Hotel Pingholt for 1 night
Day 3: July 31 - Check out of the hotel and depart at 8:30 AM for the Golden Circle tour and Snorkeling
Main sights: Thingvellir National Park, Silfra Fissure Geysir, Gullfoss waterfall, Faxifoss waterfall, Kerið Crater
Our first stop will be Thingvellir National Park, which has been recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, for both its historical and geological importance. There you will see the historic site of Althingi, site of the world’s oldest operational parliament: Thingvellir also straddles two continents: with the Eurasian and North American tectonic plates lying at the center of it. These two plates continue to edge apart, with the gap widening by about 2cm a year. This creates some of the most awe inspiring geology that can be found anywhere on Earth and it is the perfect way to kick off the trip of a lifetime!
From there we will travel to the world-renowned Geyser hot springs area where you will see the incredible Geysers throw water and steam up to 25 meters into the air. Then we will move on to the majestic Gullfoss Waterfall (golden falls), so named because on a sunny day the water takes a golden brown hue as it cascades down to the Hvita (White River) below. If you are really lucky, a stunning rainbow will form over the canyon: providing an amazing photo opportunity. Gullfoss, Thingvellir and the Geyser hot spring area are all things that everyone who visits Iceland should see and on this tour you will cross each one off your bucket list in one incredible day! Accommodation at Hotel Stracta (B)
Day 4: August 1 - South Coast & Glacier Hiking
Main sights: Seljalandsfoss waterfall, Skogafoss waterfall, Reynisfjara Black Sand Beach, Vík, Dyrhólaey, Fjaðrárgljúfur Canyon
Our first stop will be the incredible Reynisfjara black sand beach, famous for being the best black sand beach in all of Iceland. Of particular interest are the two Reynisdrangar peaks, which local legend claims are two petrified trolls. We will also visit an amazing basalt column cave: the perfect start to your second day of fun!
We will then move on, from volcanic beaches to actual volcanoes, as we pass the legendary Mýrdalsjökull glacier, which contains one of the most notorious volcanoes in all of Iceland beneath its Ice: the mighty "Katla". If you are lucky to get a glimpse of Katla, you will truly begin to understand Iceland’s nickname: the land of ice and fire!
From there we will drive across the Eldhraun lava field to Skaftafell in the Vatnajökull National Park. Eldhraun is amazing and you will gain a new insight into how volcanic activity has crafted its stunning landscape.
Next we will take a magical glacier hike up Vatnajokull, the largest glacier in all of Europe. This hike will be guided by one of our specialist glacier guides, ensuring that you are safe throughout the climb: they will also be on hand to teach you more about this incredible outlet glacier and all the amazing things that you will see from it.
We will then go to our accommodation Fosshotel Glacier Lagoon (B)
Day 5: August 2 - Jökulsárlón & East Fjords, Zodiac Boat tour
Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon, Diamond Beach, Djúpivogur, Hengifoss waterfall, Litlanesfoss waterfall
Today you will marvel at the Eastern fjords of Iceland: as we thread our way along the coastline, we will see Hvalnes a remote and beautiful peninsula and the stretch of coast around the Þvottárskriður landslides between Lóns and Álftafjarðar. All of which is stunningly beautiful and we guarantee that your eyes will be glued to the incredible views all around you.
Our first stop of the day will be Djúpivogur, a traditional fishing village which is also home to a fine outdoor sculpture, Eggin í Gleðivík (meaning The Eggs of Merry Bay). The sculpture has become iconic within Icelandic culture and consists of 34 eggs.
We will finish by visiting the famous Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon: a truly mesmerizing sight and another great place for a photo or two. You will gaze in wonder at its jaw dropping beauty: crystal clear, sapphire water; lapping up against coal black sands, which are peppered with pearl white and ocean blue icebergs that have been washed ashore. It is a supernatural sight, which will send shivers down your spine. You may also recognize it from a couple of films: the most famous of which is the James Bond movie that was shot there.
Then we will take an invigorating hike to Hengifoss, Iceland’s second highest waterfall (standing an impressive 128m). Hengifoss is an amazing place and you will marvel at the water as it cascades down the giant steps. Then we will see the unique Litlanesfoss waterfall, whose cascade is framed by giant hexagonal basalt columns: imagine a mini Giant’s Causeway, with a waterfall in the middle. All of this is absolutely amazing and you will marvel at the beautiful gorge where the layers from volcanic eruptions across the millennia can be seen within the multi-colored rock face. Accommodation at Lake Hotel Egilsstaðir or similar. (B)
Day 6: August 3 -Mývatn - North Iceland.
We will head towards the north of Iceland, travelling to Möðrudalur: Iceland’s highest farm. Here you can relax and grab a quick bite to eat in Iceland’s highest restaurant: standing a mighty 469m off the ground and offering stunning panoramic views over the incredible wilderness below.
Then we will stop at Dettifoss, Europe’s most powerful waterfall, the violent cascading water is truly awesome and will give you a new perspective on the power of nature. We will make the short journey to the steaming lunar landscapes of the Námaskarð geothermal area. Námaskarð is like nothing else on this planet: an arctic desert replete with boiling hot springs, steaming fumaroles and technicolor bubbling mud pots. Following this alien world we will travel on to the Hverfjall crater and the unique Dimmuborgir formations, known as the Dark Castles: these strange lava formations are steeped in mythology and our tour guide will tell you all about them.
By now all your senses will have been titillated, meaning it is time to take a break from sightseeing in an incredible natural bath: the Myvatn Nature Baths. They are known as Jarðbóðin in Icelandic because the hot water comes straight up out of the earth and their mineral rich alkaline water (36-40 C) is the perfect way to relax. Those who do not fancy bathing can take a relaxing stroll around Myvatn and enjoy the amazing views; or grab a bite to eat in the café there.
Our final stop of the day will be the Goðafoss waterfall, a crescent shaped fall, famous for being the place where the pagan idols were destroyed when Iceland converted to Christianity. Then we will travel to Eyjafjörður, an outstandingly beautiful fjord with high mountains, which is close to our accommodation in a country hotel near Akureyri. This day of the tour is a photographer’s dream and you will see more genuinely unique natural sights than you can count. Accommodation at Hotel KEA (B)
Day 7: August 4 - Whale watching in Dalvík - Siglufjörður -Tröllaskagi - Bifröst.
Today is dominated by Iceland’s incredible wildlife and is an animal lover’s dream! In the morning you will get the chance to explore Akureyri, the Capital of the North. This picturesque town is located right in the heart of Eyjafjörður (the Island Fjord) and offers spectacular views in every direction.
Then we will travel to Dalvik, to see one of nature’s most incredible marine animals: the whale!
This whale watching trip will give you the chance to see the power and majesty of the whale in person. You can usually see minke whales, white-beaked dolphins, harbor porpoises, and humpback whales, with some lucky travelers managing to see the biggest animal to ever live: the Blue Whale! Seeing these magnificent creatures in their natural habitat is an experience that will last you a lifetime. They often swim close to the boat: frolicking around you and guaranteeing you get a new perspective on the natural world. We may also see some amazing avian species, including puffins and many more. Then our guide will teach you a lesson on how to do some sea angling, allowing you to fully immerse yourself in Icelandic culture.
Once we reach the shore, we will travel on to Siglufjörður, a quaint fishing village steeped in history before continuing around Tröllaskagi (the Troll Peninsula): rich in local legend and folklore. The charming villages on this peninsula will really give you a great insight into how people live in remote Icelandic villages. Our scenic drive will take us through some thriving agricultural areas on our way to Bifröst, a small university community, where you will spend the evening. Accommodation at Hotel Laugarbakki (B)
Day 8: August 5-Snæfellsnes Peninsula & Reykjavik Return
Main sights: Djúpalónssandur, Mount Kirkjufell, Arnarstapi, Berserkjahraun, Miðgjá stone bridge, Gerðuberg, Hraunfoss waterfall, Barnafoss
Once awake and spoiled with a generous breakfast, we’ll head towards Djúpalónssandur Beach. On the way there, you’ll be able to soak in the beautiful alpine and coastal scenery of western Snæfellsnes. Djúpalónssandur used to be a flourishing fishing village with around 60 fishing boats. You might notice a handful of huge stones on the shoreline. At the top of the beach, we’ll come across a picturesque view of Iceland’s most photogenic mountain, Kirkjufell. Snæfellsnes is known for its diverse and artistic landscapes, and is often referred to as “Iceland in a nutshell.” We’ll cap the day off with spectacular views of Snæfellsjökull, the monumental glacier, made famous by Jules Verne’s book “Journey to the Center of the Earth.” Next on to the legendary waterfall, Barnafoss, then it’s on to the Hraunfoss cascade, a low and wide falls where the water pours directly out of a lava field. We arrive back in Reykjavík for our farewell dinner. Accommodation in Reykjavi at Pingholt Hotel(B)
Day 9: August 6 - Departure Day
Private pick up from your hotel and transfer to the Keflavík airport in Reykjavík for your return flight home. Please note One transfer will be offered for flights departing between 10 am and 11:30 AM. Earlier or later flights will require a private transfer at an additional cost. (B)
Cost: $4281.00 based on Double Occupancy. (Roommates can be provided)
Single Supplement: $375.00
Booking/final payment deadline is 60 days prior to departure.
SAVE 3% OFF Tour cost if paying by check or ACH transfer
7 nights hotel with taxes
Whale Watching tour
Entrance fees to the Blue Lagoon
Local Tour Guide and driver
Private transfers to all included sites and cities visited
R/T airport arrival/departure transfers if traveling on scheduled days. Please note 1 arrival transfer is offered in the morning of July 30 for flights arriving between 7:00 AM and 8:00 AM. One flight departure transfer is offered for Flights departing between 11:00 AM and 12:00 PM earlier or later will incur a separate transfer cost.
Entrance Fees to all sites visited
Meals not listed in itinerary
Room charges such as calls, mini bar, laundry, room service
All personal expenses
Gratuities for driver and guide
Additional tours or activities not included in program
Passport, Visa fees, departure tax if any
Entry Requirements: Visitors from the US, Canada and Australia need a valid passport, Visas are not required for Americans, Canadians or Australians visiting for less than 3 months. If you are a citizen of another E.U. country, you do not need a passport, only an identity card. Your passport must be valid for at least 6 months after the date you intend to leave the European Union. Make sure you check your passport expiry date at least 2 months prior to travel. Before traveling abroad it's a good idea to make two photocopies of your passport, driver's license and credit cards. Leave one copy at home with a friend or family member and another bring with you. Time Zone: Iceland is 5 hours ahead of Eastern Standard Time (NYC) 8 hours ahead of Central Standard Time, 9 hours ahead of Mountain Standard Time (DEN), and 10 hours ahead of Pacific Standard Time (LAX). Iceland does observe daylight saving time, in The Summer time the time difference is 4 hours. Weather: Icelandic weather is unpredictable at times, with bright, sunny days quickly changing to cold and wet conditions within a matter of hours. Rainfall in Iceland is fairly consistent throughout the year. The south and west coasts are usually the wettest parts of the country, with the north and east enjoying generally drier but colder conditions. Areas with geothermal activity are often noticeably warmer than surrounding areas. Temperatures drop considerably as you go up into the mountains, particularly around the ice caps. Summer temperatures range from 45 to 65 degrees. Currency: The local currency in Iceland is the Kronur. The best way to get cash in the local currency is from an ATM. Keep in mind that most banks impose a fee every time a card is used at another bank's ATM, and that fee can be higher for international transactions ($1 - $3) so try and withdraw as few times as possible. Credit cards are accepted by most shops and restaurants however check with your credit card company regarding foreign exchange fees. You will also have a better chance making deals at local shops if paying with cash. Electricity: Voltage in Iceland uses 220 Volts, 50 Hz AC, the European standard, and it uses type C plugs with two round prongs. Taxes/Vat:Health:Activity Level: This trip has a fairly Good to Moderate activity level however at each stop we will be walking quite a bit. Some streets are uneven pavement or on cobble stone paths. To be able to fully enjoy the tour and participate in scheduled activities, you need to be able to walk, at a leisurely pace, up to 3 or 4 or so miles on some days. You should be able to stand unassisted for up to 30 minutes at times during the tours. You will need be able to keep up with the group without any assistance. At times you will need manage your own luggage. This trip is pretty easy for the average person however if you can't or choose not to participate in certain activities this is at your own discretion. However it cannot affect the groups participation nor can any tours or activities or refunds be offered or changed due to an individual not being able or not wanting to participate.
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