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Essential Iceland

8 days
 / 7 nights

Experience the rugged beauty of Iceland’s magnificent glaciers, black sandy beaches, and immense waterfalls with this 8-day self-drive package that takes you to all the major attractions in Iceland.

On this adventurous self-drive tour, you will experience incredible sights in each region like Þingvellir National Park, Gulfoss and Geysir, Seljalandsfoss and Skógafoss waterfalls, Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon, Borgarfjordur, the magical Snæfellsnes peninsula, and the Reykjanes Peninsula. If you are looking for the ideal Iceland vacation, this package has everything needed to make a dream trip to remember. If you are interested in a few day-long vacation and explore the very best Iceland has to offer, this is the perfect holiday package for you.

If you are interested in receiving a price calculation or additional information about a personalized travel package, please click on the “Enquire now” button.

Any element of this itinerary can be adjusted to suit your needs and travel preferences. If a self-drive tour is not what you prefer, this travel package can also be offered as a privately guided trip.

Feel confident and safe on your trip

Book now for travel with Activity Iceland in 2021 without worry. Activity Iceland has received the Clean & Safe World Travel and Tourism Council’s Safe Travels stamp, which provides travelers with assurance that our company and our partners have adopted health and hygiene global standardized protocols.

8 days
 / 7 nights

Estimated price per person from:

178,800 ISK
Estimated high-season price per person based on bookings for a family of 4 ( 2 children under 12 years old)

We will tailor this vacation package to you. Change anything – from activities to accommodation to places visited.

Got question? We can help.

Call us to plan your trip! We’ll find you the best option. We’re available Mon – Fri: 9:00 am to 5:00  pm UTC

(+354) 533 6003

You can request a call back from our travel expert team at anytime within our standard working hours.

What's Included

Included

Accommodation for 7 nights
Rental car of your choice with unlimited mileage
Family entry to the Lavacenter
Amphibian boat tour in Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon
Detailed personal itinerary
Expert trip manager and local guides
Customer care service and 0-24h emergency line assistance while you are in Iceland
Taxes and service fees

Not included

Flights and connections to and from Iceland
Personal travel insurance
Tunnel and road tolls unless specified
Petrol / gasoline
Beverages, snacks, lunches, dinners unless otherwise noted in your itinerary
Any service, admission or activity not specifically listed under “Included”

Highlights

Discover Reykjavík, the Northernmost capital in the world
Enjoy the unique beauty of the Icelandic nature when exploring the Whale Fjord and Glymur, the second -tallest waterfall in Iceland
Visit Deildartunguhver, Iceland's and Europe's most powerful hot spring
Marvel at the exceptional beauty of Hraunfossar Lava Waterfalls, a series of beautiful subterranean springs flowing out of the Hallmundarhraun lava field
Enjoy the wonders of Snæfellsnes Peninsula, one of the most geographically diverse region in the country that is often referred to as “Iceland in Miniature”
Explore Vatnshellir, a truly amazing lava tube created by a volcanic eruption 8000 year ago
Visit Thingvellir National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage site sits in a rift valley caused by the separation of 2 tectonic plates
Visit and hear the thundering roar of the famous and historical Gullfoss, Europe's most powerful waterfall.
Marvel as Strokkur geyser spouts steaming water up to 40 meters into the air
Walk behind the cascading water of Seljalandsfoss and take in the magnificent views from the top of the powerful Skógafoss waterfall
Take a scenic walk on the world-famous black sand beach at Reynisfjara and take some cool photos when climbing on the basalt columns
Discover the magnificent Vatnajokull National Park that boasts incredible ice caves, magical lagoons of floating ice, and crawling outlet glaciers
Sail among the huge icebergs in the wonderful scenery of Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon
Wander amongst glistening ice chunks which sparkle like diamonds at Diamond Beach
Get once-in-a-lifetime experience to see an active volcanic eruption at Reykjanes Peninsula

Itinerary

Welcome to Iceland

Your Iceland self-drive vacation is about to begin. Once you arrive at Keflavik International Airport and clear customs, you’ll pick up your car at the rental service area. You only need a short ride with a shuttle bus located outside the arrival hall to get to your preferred rental vehicle. The shuttle bus departs every 10-15 minutes, so you won't be wasting your time waiting for the transfer. The first night will be spent in the heart of Reykjavik, the world's northernmost capital.

Reykjavik city center offers many great sights, and the city is unique in so many ways. You will not find the towering skyscrapers of America or the age-old narrow streets, which time has seemingly forgotten and seemingly unchanged since Roman times, as in Europe. Reykjavik is somewhere in between and yet miles away. With its small quirky houses and both tiny and open spaces, it’s colorful, modern, charming, and old all the same time. So, don’t forget to bring your camera along, and get ready for photo ops at every turn.

Day 1
Exploring West Iceland

After a good breakfast, it's time to explore some of the most beautiful wonders of West Iceland. Hvalfjörður gives an excellent opportunity to enjoy the unique beauty of Icelandic fjords, with its sloops, shores, canyons, and waterfalls and its somewhat controversial history of whaling. The area is especially quiet and tranquil. Don’t miss Glymur, Iceland’s second-tallest waterfall, and the tallest that is easily accessible by foot. It is close to the settlements of Borgarnes, which is a commerce center of the region and a perfect place to refresh at. Not far from these sites, you find Deildartunghver, the most powerful hot spring in Iceland, which sits near the historical settlement of Reykholt. Hraunfossar and Barnafoss waterfalls are also very much worth visiting. The nearby Krauma natural geothermal spa is a great place for relaxation.

Day 2
Snæfellsnes Peninsula

Today you will have a full day to explore the wonders of the Snæfellsnes peninsula. Snaefellsnes is truly a magical place, with its volcanoes, glacier, basalt columns, and waterfalls. The peninsula is rich in wildlife, including dozens of species of birds and bays teeming with whales. Snaefellsjokull glacier is a 1446 m high dormant strata-volcano in the middle of Snaefellsnes National Park. It is the main tourist attraction towering over the national park at the far end of the 90 km long stretch of land. There are plenty of things to do and if you are interested in exploring a lava cave you should visit Vatnshellir cave, one of the most easily accessible lava tubes in Iceland. The lava tube was naturally created nearly 8000 years ago in a volcanic eruption from a nearby crater.

Day 3
The famous Golden Circle route

During your holiday in Iceland, you cannot miss the famous Golden Circle. You have the whole day to enjoy the sights of this area. The main highlights are Thingvellir National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage site, the great Geysir geothermal area with bubbling mud pools and spouting geyser, and the milky waterfall Gullfoss. Friðheimar geothermal greenhouse is a wonderful add-on to the day along with green and lush farmlands before you reach your hotel for the night. There are a couple of geothermal areas in the Golden Circle. We highly recommend the Secret Lagoon in Flúðir, the oldest geothermal pool in Iceland, and the Fontana Spa in Laugarvatn.

Day 4
South Coast & waterfalls

Start your day early and travel along the stunning South Coast of Iceland. You surely have an eventful day ahead starting with exploring Seljalandsfoss waterfall, where you can walk behind the misty cascade, the picture-perfect Skogafoss, the stunning black beach of Reynisfjara, and the charming village of Vík. At Hvolsvollur, the Lava Center offers you a superb interactive exhibition where you will learn about the birth and growth of Iceland as one of the world’s largest volcanic islands.

Day 5
Exploring Skaftafell and Vatnajökull National Park

Start your day early and continue your journey along the stunning coastline. You head out in the direction to Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon. On your way there, make a stop at Skaftafell Nature Reserve, a part of the Vatnajökull National Park. You can spend time marveling at the area’s great beauty by trekking the many well-maintained hiking trails, including a short walk to the beautiful Svartifoss waterfall, which features pitch-black hexagonal basalt columns and a rugged canyon.

Continue your journey to the spectacular Jökulsárlón glacial lagoon which has been setting for many Hollywood movies. You can witness the slow breakdown of the Breiðamerkurjökull glacier as huge blocks of ice constantly break off the glacier and float on the lagoon. You get to take a safe boat ride and cruise between magnificent towering icebergs that fill the lagoon as they move their way slowly out to the ocean. On Diamond Beach, you can find small icebergs (crystals) that have washed ashore and look like glittering diamonds. Many seals call this beach home, and it is one of the best places in the country to see Orcas from the shore.

Day 6
From the South Coast to Reykjavík

Today you will be driving back towards Reykjavík, but you still have plenty to see along the South Coast. Make sure not to miss the rugged and moss-covered Eldhraun lava field and Dyrholaey, a naturally formed arch right before the black sand beach of Reynisfjara. In summer, hundreds of thousands of birds make their nests in the grassy hills of Dyrholaey, so don’t forget to bring your camera. We recommend you add the Reykjanes peninsula to the day where you could see Iceland’s newest volcano near Fagradalsfjall.

Day 7
Departure

Sadly, your Iceland vacation has come to an end. Return your rental car in good time to check in for your flight at the same location as you picked it up from. It is recommended that passengers check-in for their flights 2,5 hours prior to departure time.

Day 8

Rental Car Type Examples

When we design our travel packages we include the most reliable rental cars available, in order to make your trip as comfortable and enjoyable as possible.
Below you’ll find some examples of the type of rental cars we recommend for this trip.

Compact

KIA Ceed or similar
Passengers: 5
Luggage: 2
Doors: 5
Transmission: Manual

Standard 4x4 SUV

KIA Sportage AWD or similar
Passengers: 5
Luggage: 4
Doors: 5
Transmission: Automatic

Premium 4x4 SUV

ToyotaLand Cruiser or similar
Passengers: 5
Luggage: 5
Doors: 5
Transmission: Automatic

Book with confidence

Essential Iceland
8 days
 / 7 nights

Estimated price per person from:

178,800 ISK
Estimated high-season price per person based on bookings for a family of 4 ( 2 children under 12 years old)

Request a call-back

Whether you would like a quote or have a general question, we’re happy to call you back free of charge, at a time to suit you. Simply fill in the form below and a member of our travel specialist team will be in touch.

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for a limited time on selected Super Jeep tours

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