Grand Circle Tour of Iceland and the West Fjords

Grand Circle Tour of Iceland and the West Fjords

Waterfalls, glaciers, lava fields, sands of glacial rivers, black beaches, islands, and cliffs teeming with birdlife. You will be able to discover all this and much more as you drive around the fantastic Snæfellsnes peninsula, across the remote landscapes of the West Fjords and along the ring road around the country. A 4WD will not be necessary for this itinerary if you do not plan to make any of the detours which would involve driving on highland roads.

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OverviewDates and pricesItineraryTrip Info

Tour Duration: 15 days / 14 nights

Tour ID: ID74

Go West and once aroundHighlights:

  • Snæfellsnes peninsula
  • The Westfjords with towns of Ísafjörður and Hólmavík
  • Dynjandi waterfall
  • Hvammstangi and the Seal Centre
  • Glaumbær museum
  • Akureyri and Húsavík in North Iceland
  • Ásbyrgi, Dettifoss waterfall, and the Jökulsárgljúfur national park
  • Lake Mývatn
  • Jökulsárlón glacial lagoon
  • Skaftafell national park
  • Dyrhólaey
  • Skógarfoss, Seljalandsfoss, and numerous other waterfalls
  • The Geysir area
  • Þingvellir national park
  • Reykjavik

Departures: May – September 

Prices include:  
– 15 days car rental with unlimited mileage, CDW, “Theft Waiver” PAI and tax; pick up/drop off at Keflavík airport
– Roadmap
– 14 nights accommodation in double or twin rooms including breakfast
– Ferry transport Stykkishólmur – Brjánslækur for passengers and car
– Detailed itinerary;
– Reference guide about Iceland
– Service and VAT.

A) With accommodation in rooms with private facilities:

Car type group Price p.p. from: ISK Price p.p. from: ISK Price p.p. from: ISK Price p.p. from: ISK
  with 2 pax with 4 pax with 6 pax with 8 pax
A / EDMN 371.100      
B / CDMN 396.000 315.900    
N / IWMQ 427.600 331.700    
M / FVMQ   395.700 342.300  
FG / DFNN 491.100 363.500    
G / DFAN 507.400 371.600    
I / FFBD 650.100 442.900    
J / SVNQ *   476.200 396.700 371.500 *

B) With accommodation in rooms without private facilities:

Car type group Price p.p. from: ISK Price p.p. from: ISK Price p.p. from: ISK Price p.p. from: ISK
  with 2 pax with 4 pax with 6 pax with 8 pax
A / EDMN 339.800      
B / CDMN 364.700 284.600    
N / IWMQ 396.300 300.300    
M / FVMQ   364.300 311.000  
FG / DFNN 459.800 332.100    
G / DFAN 476.100 340.200    
I / FFBD 618.800 411.600    
J / SVNQ *   444.900 365.400 340.200 *

Car type groups

Not suitable for highland roads:
A /EDMN : VW POLO / TOYOTA YARIS / SUZUKI SWIFT
B /CDMN : VW GOLF /  KIA CEED / TOYOTA AURIS
N /IWMQ : SKODA OKTAVIA STW / KIA CEED STW
M /FVMQ : CHRYSLER TOWN & COUNTY (7-seater)

Suitable for highland roads:
FG /DFNN : SUZUKI GRAND VITARA / DACIA DUSTER
G /DFAN : VW TIGUAN / KIA SPORTAGE / TOYOTA RAV
I / FFBD : MITSUBISHI PAJERO / TOYOTA LANDCRUISER
J /SVNQ * : TOYOTA HIACE 9 SEATER 4WD BUS (* when rented with 8 pax, the price includes trailer for luggage!)

Ask for off-season price and itinerary. 

Day 1: (ca. 50 km)
Upon arrival at Keflavík international airport. Pick up the rental car at the airport and drive to Reykjavík where you stay the first night. If your arrival is late evening it is also possible to arrange accommodation in Keflavik.

Day 2: (ca. 280 km)
Today you will be driving north out of Reykjavik to Snæfellsnes peninsula with many sights of interest on the way. Among the many sights are, Eldborg, a volcanic crater that rises above the field, that is a great place for a short hike. Panoramic views of mountains and tiny waterfalls that drop of the hilltops as you get closer to the western point of the peninsula are a stunning sight along the way as well as white sand beaches and lava fields. At the end of Snæfellsnes, there is Snæfellsjökull volcano covered by a glacier. This is the volcano made famous in a book by Jules Verne about the journey to the center of the earth. By the foot of the mountain, there is Vatnshellir – a lava cave made accessible to visitors by a round staircase that descends deep down into the darkness underground. By the villages of Arnarstapi and Hellnar, there are interesting basalt rock formations and bird cliffs. Further along, there is the cliff of Londrangar and neer that there is Djúpalónssandur – once an important fishing harbor where one can also see the remains of an English trawler that stranded there in March 1948 and 4 men were rescued under challenging circumstances. *  Fishing villages of Hellisandur, Ríf, Ólafsvík, and Grundarfjörður.

Day 3:  (ca. 80 – 200 km + ferry)
In the town of Stykkishólmur, you will take a car ferry across Breiðafjörður with a possibility for a half-day stopover on Flatey where you can take a walk through the picturesque village before continuing further to the Westfjords. Or you continue directly to Brjánslækur with a chance to drive all the way to the westernmost point of Europe at Látrabjarg – the fascinating bird cliffs rising high above the ocean. No words can describe the feeling of a tranquil summer evening with puffins, guillemots, gulls and other seabirds preparing for the night as the sun is setting.

Day 4: (ca.  190 – 250 km)
Today you can visit, Látrabjarg, Paterksfjörður, and Arnarfjörður fjords and the majestic Dynjandi waterfall which cascades in a large vail deep down from the top of the hills. The fishing villages of the West fjords are charming places to visit, and the mountain passes with panoramic views of the deep fjords are sights worth seeing. Today you will also reach Ísafjörður, the administrative center of the Westfjords region.

Day 5:  (ca. 0 – 100 km)
Today you will explore Ísafjörður, Bolungarvík as well as have a chance to visit the Ósvör maritime museum. If the weather is permitting, drive up the Mt. Boli for a panoramic view.
A possibility for this day is an optional boat tour to Vígur Island. To visit the island is a must for anyone coming to the Westfjords. A walk on the island brings visitors close to the thousands of birds (puffins, eider ducks and other seabirds) that inhabit the island during the summer months.
Another option could be a boat tour to Hesteyri – a deserted village where the houses that are now mainly used a summer residence for the local people are well maintained and give a feeling for the times past.
Ísafjörður is also an ideal place for a short kayak tour.

Day 6: (ca. 500 km)
Drive along Ísafjarðarjúp to Hólmavík, a charming fishing village where you have a chance to visit the witchcraft museum. Along the way, there are panoramic views, and soon the road will take you back to the ring road. Drive along Vatnsnes peninsula where there are possibilities to spot seals resting on the rocks in the sea. On the way, you can visit Hvítserkur, a solitary basalt rock formation.

Day 7:  (ca. 260 km)
In Skagafjörður there is a possibility for river rafting. A visit to Glaumbær museum – the largest preserved turf farmhouse is also well worthwhile. Drive from there out onto Tröllaksagi visiting the towns of Hofsós and Siglufjörður where you have a chance to visit the awarded Herring Era museum. From there you head into Eyjafjörður, the longest Icelandic fjord with views of the islands of Drangey, Malmey, Hrisey and the alpine mountains of Tröllaskagi peninsula. The university town of Akureyri is the cultural, educational and administrative center of North Iceland and has many things to offer. The church of Akureyri with its two towers is one of the landmarks in the city. In the city, you find the northernmost botanical garden where you will find plants that one would not expect to see this far in the Arctic. There is some exciting museums located in the town and the surrounding countryside. There are also many cafés where one can enjoy a cup of coffee. There is also a possibility for an evening whale watching tour from Akureyri.

Day 8: (ca. 280 km)
Begin the day driving through Vikurskarð mountain pass towards Goðafoss – “The Waterfall of the Gods.” Today you will visit Húsavík – a delightful fishing town with interesting museums and one of the most beautiful wooden churches in the country. From there head to Tjörnes peninsula where you may spot puffins nesting on the cliffs and visit Ásbyrgi, a horseshoe-shaped canyon with lush vegetation. Drive on to the Jökulsárgljúr national park and visit, Dettifoss waterfall the most powerful waterfall in Iceland before heading to Lake Myvatn.

Day 9: (ca. 40 km)
Explore the various sights at Lake Mývatn with thousands of nesting birds and various volcanic phenomena. There are lava fields, volcanic craters, and mountains, pseudo craters, lava rock formations, solfatara field with boiling mud pits and roaring steam vents. There is also the Mývatn Nature Baths geothermal lagoon where you can have a relaxing bath in the pleasantly warm water while enjoying a great view of the area.

Day 10: (ca.  290 – 350 km)
Crossing the Möðrudalsöræfi desert land, you can visit Möðrudalur, an isolated farm with a little church built by a farmer who used to live on the farm. Along the way, there is a fantastic view of Mt Herðubreið, the queen of the Icelandic mountains. If you have decided on a 4WD type of car, then you have the option of a detour to Snænautasel. This is a turf house built in 1843 on the river bank in a green oasis in the middle of the desert land. It is now a museum where one can often try out the special Icelandic pastry called “lummur.”
From there you will go to Egilsstaðir and the Eastfjords where you have a chance to visit Petra’s stone museum with a colorful collection of Icelandic minerals. From there head to Djúpivogur fishing village.

Day 11: (ca. 240 -390 km)
Today you will drive coastal roads along the Eastfjords to the town of Höfn. During your drive, you will have views of Vatnajökull glacier and visit Jökulsárlón glacial lagoon where you have a chance to take a boat tour amongst the floating icebergs and possibly to spot seals. Today you have an option to join a tractor tour to Ingólfshöfði. You will visit Skaftafell national park, a green oasis surrounded by glaciers and sands of glacial rivers. There is a network of hiking trails through the park long or short, including a path to the stunning Svartifoss waterfall. There will also be views of Hvannadalshjúkur, the highest peak in Iceland.

Day 12: (ca. 100 – 190 km)
On today’s journey, you will be crossing sands of glacial rivers and lava fields covered by a soft layer of moss. Along the way, you will visit Kirkjubæjarklaustur and the village of Vik where the black sandy beach stretches as far as the eye can reach. Stopping by the Reynisdrangar cliffs or the Dyrhólaey promontory is well worthwhile.

Day 13: (ca. 220 km)
Today you will pass the Eyjafjallajökull glacier under which rests the infamous volcano of the same name. You will see the Skógarfoss waterfall and have the chance to visit the Skógar folk museum as well as visiting the beautiful Seljalandsfoss waterfall. Along the way, you will have views of the Vestmannaeyjar Islands and Mt. Hekla (weather permitting). You will also visit the Geysir hot spring area with one of the geysers, Strokkur regularly spouting every 5-10 minutes. Lastly, you will visit Gullfoss waterfall – the “Golden waterfall” on Hvítá glacial river.

Day 14: (ca.  100 – 140 km)
Before heading to Reykjavík, you will visit the Þingvellir national park, a site of historical, cultural and geological importance. In this rift valley by the Lake Þingvallavatn, the oldest parliament was established in 930 where it remained until 1789. The national park was established at the 1000th anniversary of Iceland’s settlement to protect the remains of the parliament site, later extended to protect also the natural sights of geological interest.

Day 15: Reykjavík – Keflavík:
Departure day.
Drive to Keflavík international airport, drop off the rental car and then check-in for your flight back home. If your plane leaves Keflavik in the afternoon, then you have a possibility for a visit to the Blue Lagoon before driving to the airport. 

Note:
The itinerary can also be tailor-made according to your preferences and interests. Optional activities we can be added to the programme, e.g., horseback riding, sea-kayaking, river rafting, whale watching, glacial hike, caving, sightseeing flights, etc.

Upon booking and confirming the package, a detailed itinerary will be provided.

 

 

 

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