Arrival & Blue Lagoon
Our Mountain Taxi guides will greet you at Keflavik International Airport with the super-jeeps ready. From here we’ll drive through the impressive lava fields of the Reykjanes peninsula to the Blue Lagoon geothermal seawater spa to rejuvenate after a night of travel. From here we’ll travel to our hotel in Reykjavik for the night.
Once rested we jump into the jeeps to make our way just over 100km east towards Hotel Hekla, past the waterfalls and farmlands that dominate South Iceland. With a stunning view of the famous volcano that our hotel shares its name with, tonight we’ll dine tonight at Hótel Hekla
Today marks our first big day of adventure. We will make many stops throughout South Iceland and the fringes of the Highlands as we travel from Hotel Hekla to Hotel Höfðabrekka, both in the south.
Named after the Norse god Thor, the Thorsmörk mountain area is among the most beautiful places in Iceland, wrapped in mountains, ice-caps and glacial rivers. Unique in that it’s rather lush compared to many other parts of the country, Thorsmörk is a popular destination for Icelanders as they frequently travel into the country’s interior.
This is where the main road ends and the jeep tracks begin. Here our super-jeeps easily cross fast-flowing rivers – often an impossible task for a typical 4X4. You may here us tell you that if a tourist rents a 4×4, they’ve more or less bought it. You’ll learn exactly what that means as you experience first hand what it is to navigate these waters!
What was once a glacier lagoon is now the site of a major volcanic eruption. Now the glacier and surrounding hillside is covered in a fine-layer of ash – a true showcase of fire and ice.
We’ll walk in the magnificent glacial scenery of this huge gorge, framed with massive, moss covered rock faces.
Skógarfoss and Lava beach
As we head further east we’ll take the super-jeeps onto the black sand beaches with the pounding surf coming down right near us. We’ll also visit the museum at Skógar which displays traditional turf houses and gain an understanding of what life in Iceland was life for many years. If you’re keen, there’s also an incredible display of vehicles used in Iceland for search and rescue, mail delivery and getting into the highlands! Nestled under a mountain ridge topped by a glacier, Skogar is also home to the powerful Skógafoss waterfall, which, on sunny days, is often circled by beautiful rainbows and surrounded by stunning rock formations covered in rich green mosses.
We’ll head eastward along Mýrdalsjökull — Iceland’s fourth largest glacier and home of the active volcano Katla. There’s been much debate over the years as many say this sub-glacier caldera is due to erupt soon.
Tonight we will enjoy a hearty meal and stay the night at Hotel Höfðabrekka.
Vatnajökull National Park
Today we spend the day exploring Vatnajökull National Park, which covers more than 13% of Iceland. The landscape is incredibly diverse thanks to the interplay of volcanic activity and glaciers, with a view of the sea to the south and the Icelandic interior to the north.
We’ll have ample time to hike up to Svartifoss and Svínafellsjökull glaciers, and even use crampons and ice axes for a more adventurous experience.
Tonight we will dine and overnight at Hótel Skaftafell.
Skaftafell National Park
Huge icebergs constantly break off Breidamerkurjokull glacier and into the 250 metre deep glacier lagoon below. We’ll take a boat ride through the lagoon, to see the massive blocks of ice up close.
Kirkjubæjarklaustur is a tiny town with a rich, sometimes haunting history dating back to the 1100s. The surrounded area is the site of history’s largest lava flows from the Lakagígar eruption in 1783.
Dinner and accommodation will be at Hotel Laki.
The Fjallabak Route
This is a famous but difficult to access trail, which winds though the colourful mars-like landscape and volcanic highlands of the south coast. We will assure you, it’ll be like nothing you’ve seen in Iceland so far!
A great hiking area, with amazing pink, red, blue, brown, green, purple and black earth. After exploring the area by foot, we will bath in the warm natural pools of Landmannalaugar – a natural wonder that most visitors don´t get to see.
Tonight we will dine and overnight at Hotel Haland.
Sprengisandur Mountain Road across Iceland
This will be a long day of travel from Hrauneyjar into the Sprengisandur interior wilderness en route to Iceland’s north. The interior is desolate and barren, with virtually no inhabitants for 250 km. In the past few would dare make this journey for fear of exhausting their horses, which is where the route gets its name. Sprengja is “exhaust” in Icelandic. However, it is an easy journey for our super-jeeps.
We’ll stop at the Laugarfell huts for a picnic lunch and a swim in the natural hot pools.
After a day of travel through the interior we’ll reach the town of Akureyri.
Dinner and accommodation at Hotel Nordurland.
Considered the capital of the North, the vibrant town of Akureyri has unique architecture, heavily influenced by its Danish history and past as an important port. We’ll relax in this charming village, do some shopping and visit the botanical gardens, all at your leisure.
We’ll spend the night at Hotel Nordurland.
Day 8 and Day 9
We’ll spend the next two days near Mývatn lake where there are heaps of unique adventure opportunities.
We’ll visit the 10 km Krafla caldera, the 100 metre wide Dettifoss waterfall in Vatnajökull National Park and then hike the 417 metre Húsavíkurfjall trail for exquisite views of the blue-green bay to the mountains and sheer cliffs to the south.
Outside the lovely village of Husavik we’ll board a beautifully restored Icelandic fishing vessel for a morning of whale watching. Keep an eye out for minke, humpback and blue whales. That afternoon we’ll visit the *Mývatn Nature Baths, Iceland´s newest geothermal spa.
Both nights we’ll spend at a local hotel.
Today we’ll make our way back to Reykjavík, travelling through Iceland’s beautiful western edge, stopping at various points along the way.
This is an agricultural region with widespread dairy and sheep farms, and close-knit communities known for choir-singing and horsemanship. From Skagafjörður we head back inland, crossing Iceland via Kjölur mountain track, often belived to be haunted with ghosts, elves and outlaws in the old days.
The Great Geyser and Gullfoss
The geothermal area of Haukadalur is home to The Great Geyser – one of the most famous geysers on earth which can gush boiling water 70 metres into the air. Further up the road is the magnificent Gullfoss waterfall cascading down the two tiered drop of the glacial run-off Hvítá river.
Thingvellir National Park
This park is home to the remains of the worlds oldest known parliament, Alþingi, which was established in 930 and remained until 1789. The combined historical and geological significance of the site is palpable.
Once we arrive in Reykjavík we’ll settle in at Hotel Thingholt for the next two nights.
This is a day to spend at your leisure, exploring Iceland’s capital city of Reykjavík, not without some expert recommendations, of course!
Our Mountain Taxi guides will be take you to the airport and say goodbye after our circumnavigation of the beautiful island of Iceland.