Fire and Ice - 4 days - Self Drive Tour
SELF02 - Iceland's basics: Jokulsarlon and the Golden Circle
Explore Iceland’s rich natural treasures, including national parks, beautiful waterfalls, striking glaciers, magnificent volcanoes and hot springs.
Following you have a description of a tour along the south coast of Iceland with a duration of 4 days and 3 nights. This tour gives you plenty of time to cover all the major stunning attractions that Iceland has to offer when you are traveling to the south coast and the Reykjanes peninsula. Everything already organized for your convenience.
We can also book transfers to and from KEF Int'l Airport
and accommodation before and after the tour if needed.
From Reykjavik you drive to Thingvellir National Park, site of the ancient Icelandic Parliament. The Althing (assembly) at Thingvellir (Þingvellir) was Iceland's supreme legislative and judicial authority. Over the early Middle Ages, people of Norse and Celtic origin settled in Iceland. Early on, district assemblies were formed, but as the population grew the need for a general assembly became obvious. And why was this location chosen? At about the same time, the farmer and owner of the area was convicted of murder. His sentence was to pay a fine and abandon his land. It is on these lands, which then became public property, that the Althing was established in 930 A.D.
From Thingvellir you drive to the hot spring village Laugarvatn where it is possible to visit a geothermal spa, Laugarvatn Fontana. Continue to the famous Geysir hot-spring area and don’t miss the mighty Gullfoss waterfall. Then, you drive to the hot spring village Fludir and then south to road nr. 1 again and towards the villages Hella and Hvolsvollur. From Hvolsvollur you drive into Fljotshlid where you accommodate.
Optional May-Aug: Snorkeling under the midnight sun
After breakfast you drive towards the central volcano Eyjafjallajokull. You stop at Seljalandsfoss waterfall. And Skogafoss waterfall and then you drive to Solheimajokull glacier and then to Dyrholaey and Vik and Reynisdrangar. If you like bird-watching, Dyrholaey is a good spot. There are lots of puffins in the summer season, as well as arctic terns, among other migratory birds.
From Vik you drive over Myrdalssandur where you will see up to the central volcano Katla which is under the ice-cap of Myrdalsjokull glacier.
East of Myrdalssandur you'll find Eldgjarhraun lava field, which happens to be the Earth’s largest amount of lava to flow from a single eruption in historic time. The lava field was formed in one massive eruption in the year 934 in the volcanic rift of Eldgja which is almost 60 kilometers long. The lava field’s size is somewhere between 18-19 cubic kilometers.
East of Eldgjahraun lava field and the glacier river of Kudafljot, you will find the historic lava field of Skaftareldahraun which was formed in a huge eruption in the Lakagigar crater-row. The eruption started June 8th 1783 and lasted until February 7th 1784. A lot of farms and their farming areas were destroyed in the aftermath of the eruption because of ash-fall and most of the livestock died subsequently. The lava field spreads over an area of 656 sq. kilometers and contains 14 cubic kilometers. You stop at the village Kirkjubaejarklaustur village where you will accommodate.
Optional: Adventure Snowmobile Tour from Myrdalsjokull glacier
You stop at Kirkjugolf (in Kirkjubaejarklaustur), Foss a Sidu (waterfall), Dverghamrar and Nupsstadur. You drive over Skeidararsandur to Skaftafell nature resort in Vatnajokull National Park where you can spend some time seeing the Svartifoss waterfall, Skaftafellsjokull glacier and Svinafellsjokull glacier. Then you drive to Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon see more photos here.
The icebergs in the Glacial Lagoon of Jokulsarlon are slowly cruising toward the ocean that awaits them just 1 km away. Due to climate changes and warmer temperatures this area has experienced quite some transformation after the 1920s. A 260 m deep glacial lagoon was formed, and the largest part of it took shape after 1950. The lagoon has been a setting for four Hollywood movies namely, 'A View to a Kill', 'Die Another Day', 'Tomb Raider' and 'Batman Begins', in addition to the reality-TV series 'Amazing Race'.
Don't forget to check the beach at the end of the lagoon. After the icebergs you drive back to Kirkjubaejarklaustur town for accommodation.
Optional in Feb-Oct: Blue Ice Experience, guided glacier hiking
Optional in Apr-Oct: Sailing Jokulsarlon glacial lagoon
You drive back towards Reykjavik with some stops here and there ... at some of the places you stopped before and at new locations. You drive to Selfoss and then south to the fishing villages Eyrarbakki and Thorlakshofn (Þorlákshöfn) and take the road along the the south coast of Reykjanes Peninsula over lava fields and craters.
The Reykjanes peninsula has a lot to offer. Lake Kleifarvatn is particularly picturesque, and there are also the hot springs of Krysuvik or Seltun which are definitely worth a photo stop. Check Grindavik, a cozy fishing village at the tip of the peninsula. You can also visit the Blue Lagoon geothermal spa and / or drive to Reykjaviknesta where you can see the Gunnuhver hot springs.
Continue to Reykjavik where you leave your car, or if it suits your traveling plans, leave it at the airport (you'd need to book this). Or if you need extra accommodations for this night, let us know about it.
Optional: Dining out in Reykjavik - Restaurants
Welcome to Iceland!
The teams of Extreme Iceland and Viking Car Rental
wish you a pleasant stay ...
For more information:
The route for this tour
Snorkeling in the National Park of Thingvellir
Thingvellir National Park
Gullfoss Waterfall, an Icelandic landmark
Seljalandsfoss Waterfall in South Iceland
Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon
In the winter, the isolated areas of Iceland are
ideal to fully enjoy a northern light show
Foss a Sidu Waterfall