- Trekking & Hiking
our UK team
Arrive at Keflavik International Airport and transfer to your accommodation in the city. Free time in the afternoon to explore Reykjavik.
We depart for Thingvellir, the valley of the parliament, a high place of Icelandic history. This is where the summer sessions of the ancient Parliament of Iceland (established in 930) were held. We continue with the discovery of Gullfoss, a gigantic two-level waterfall surging into a basalt ravine. Next stop, the Strokkur geyser which erupts every 5 to 10 minutes in a dramatic display of natural power. In the afternoon we drive to the south coast and the small port of Landeyjarhöfn where we board a boat to Heimaey Island, the only inhabited island of the Vestmann archipelago.
Today we explore the steep and rugged coastline of this tiny island which is home to Europe's largest puffin colony. We climb to the volcanic cone of Eldfell, a feature of the island created during the last eruption here in 1973. The flow of lava from this volcano destroyed over 400 homes and when it hit the ocean and began cooling, it increased the area of the island by more than two square kilometers. After a full day of hiking and exploring we return to our guesthouse to relax for the evening.
Returning by boat to the mainland, we take the road east pausing at the waterfalls of Seljalandfoss and Skogafoss. We then reach Vik, famous for its ink black beaches, tall cliffs, puffins and penguins. In the mists, often present on the south coast, the rocky pillars of Reynisdrangar rise from the frozen waters. Legend tells that these monoliths were once trolls that were caught out in the morning sun and turned to stone. In the afternoon we reach Skaftafell and settle in at our accommodation.
A full day of hiking in the Skaftafell Natural Park. We wake up this morning directly below the phenomenal Vatnajökull glacier, the largest glacier in Europe, roughly the size of Cyprus. We wander along narrow pathways in forests of dwarf birch trees before gaining height and following balcony trails that look down on glacial tongues descending towards the sea. We pass by the waterfall Svartifoss and enjoy spectacular views of the glaciers tumbling down from Iceland's highest peak, Hvannadalshnukur, 2119m.
We finish our day with a short drive takes us to Jökulsárlón, where icebergs are born and the seals come on the high tide to hunt in the lagoon.
This morning, we leave the south coast behind us and journey northward to reach the unknown fjords of the East. The road winds along the coast and the scenery is simply superb. A first stop in Djúpivogur allows us to stretch our legs and discover one of the oldest buildings in Iceland, a trading post situated at the port that dates back to 1790. Depending on the conditions we continue to Fàskrùðsfjörður, a village sitting alongside a fjord of the same name which was once the base for French fishermen in the early 20th century. Our road then leaves the coast and strikes north towards Seydisfjördur where we find our accommodation for the night.
Our journey continues through the Icelandic wilderness, skirting the lava fields of the Ódáðahraun desert before reaching one of the most powerful waterfalls in Europe, Dettifoss. After pausing for a while to admire this unbelievable force of nature, we continue to the town of Husavik. In the afternoon we have free time to explore the town or observe whales and other marine mammals in Skálfandi Bay (optional sea trip). We settle in at our accommodation in Husavik where we will stay for two nights.
Today we have a full day of hiking and exploration around Lake Myvatn, an area of fascinating volcanic activity. We visit the site of Namafjäll- Hverir with its noisy fumaroles and its bubbling solfataras (pools of boiling mud) and continue to the explosion crater of Hverfjall and the Krafla lava fields. In the afternoon we have the option of relaxing at the blue lagoon of Myvatn before returning to our accommodation in Husavik.
We say farewell to Husavik this morning and take the road toward Akureyri, pausing at Goðafoss, the dramatic "fall of the gods". Akureyri, the capital of the north, is a pretty Icelandic town and we will take some time to explore and walk around the port. We then continue our journey by road to the Vatnsnes Peninsula, famous for its seal population and interesting coastal rock formations. We spend the night in Hrutafjordur.
Our journey continues westward today as the road carves its way above the north shore of Iceland. Today is a longer drive than previous days as we push to reach Europe's most western point, the sea cliffs of Latrabjarg. We break our journey with a short hike along the dramatic coastline and keep our eyes open for Arctic Fox, common in this area.
Today begins with a drive up to the cliffs of Latrabjarg, the westernmost point of Europe. Latrabjarg is the largest cliff in Iceland, 12 km long and in places more than 1600ft high. This is great place to observe puffins (before mid August), Common and Thick-billed murres, northern gannets, guillemots and razorbills as well as little penguins (on average 33cm high). In good weather, the road along the southern coast of the peninsula offers stunning views of sandy beaches and the tip of the Snaefellsnes peninsula with it's prominent volcano.
We take to the water again today with a ferry crossing over the fjord of Breidafjordur via the small island of Flatey. We spend the day discovering the Snaefellsness peninsula, where the Snaefellsjökull stratovolcano sits, so characteristic with its cone shape, and immortalized by Jules Verne in his novel 'Journey to the Center of the Earth'. We may also have the opportunity to visit the iconic peak of Kirkjufell, a photogenic shark fin shaped mountain looming over a waterfall of the same name. In the afternoon we settle in at our accommodation.
We hike today from the village of Hellnar to Arnarstapi, our path winds alomng the basalt sea cliffs which are home to hundereds of nesting kittiwakes. We pass the remarkable Gatklettur lava arch and discover the black church of the old fishing village of Bùðir, standing in the middle of a lava field. At the end of the day we return to Reykjavik and complete our circuit of Iceland's amazing route No1.
There is lots of possibilities today as we have free time to explore Reykjavik and relax a little after our adventure. You may like to go whale watching, visit the blue lagoon or tour the museums. In the afternoon we visit the Reykjanes peninsula and the Fagradalsfjall volcano. The volcano began erupting in March 2021 following strong seismic activity on the peninsula. The lava flows have now stopped but this is still an impressive site to explore and see the recently cooled lava flows. This evening we enjoy a final meal together to celebrate the end of our adventure, depending on the weather it may be possible to eat on the peninsula or we may return to Reykjavik.
Morning transfer to Keflavik International Airport and return flight.
In Iceland, alcoholic drinks are sold only in state stores and alcohol is very expensive due to high levels of taxation. If you would like a drink in the evenings, it is a good idea to purchase something at duty free as you exit the airport.
Iceland isn't a cheap place to visit. Restaurants often have lunchtime special menus which are great value (around £20-30pp for a soup and fish of the day). A meal out for 2 will cost around £60-100 (fish) or £80-120 (meat). When getting around in Reykjavik an exciting and cheap option is to use the electric scooters parked up around town. Simply download the app and scoot away. If this feels too techy, a taxi starting price will cost roughly £4.30 or going on foot is more than appropriate as Reykjavik has a small city centre. Souvenirs can cost anything from ~£5 to £500. It is also worth knowing that as a tourist, you can claim back the value-added tax (VAT) on certain goods over the value of ISK 6,000 (£36) at Keflavik airport before your flight home. As long as this is all on one tax receipt, you can claim back the tax.
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