Nowhere else on earth measures up to Iceland’s plethora of natural wonders. This stark, pristine landscape is characterized by towering glaciers, tumbling waterfalls, bubbling geysers, and thermal lagoons. Not to mention the the famous natural phenomenon – northern lights, which attract numerous visitors each year.
We are giving you the opportunity to explore all of this at your own pace, and leaving it to you to decide at which places you want to chill longer and which ones you want to speed through. This is a self-guided walking tour that will help you relish in many of the country’s crowd-pleasers. While staying outside the capital, you’ll be able to chase down the Northern Lights, electrically charged particles colliding to produce nature’s answer to fireworks. Watch as the sky gets painted in surreal colors only seen in the high latitude Arctic. It’s as astonishing as it sounds. Back in Reykjavik, soak those weary muscles in the steamy Blue Lagoon, a pool feed by natural hot springs warmed by extreme Icelandic geothermal activity.
If it’s your first time in Iceland, this 5-day plan for exploring Northern Lights & Thermal Lagoons makes for a wildly good introduction to the magical Land of Fire and Ice. The trip maximizes your chances of watching the Northern Lights phenomenon by staying outside the capital, while most other itineraries take day trips.
Day 1 – Arrive in the Reykjavik
When you arrive into the capital Reykjavik, someone will be waiting to greet you and transfer you down into the city for your first night. The rest of the day is free to explore at your own pace. If time permits, we recommend a visit to the National and Sage Museums which chronicle the country’s Viking history.
Day 2 – The Golden Circle
After breakfast at the hotel, make sure you visit the famous Golden Circle. Watch bubbling geysers spew hot water meters into the air at the Great Geysir hot spring area, be inspired by the stark landscape in the Thingvellir National Park and hear the roar of the Gullfoss Falls as you watch thousands of liters of water tumble over the edge every second. After a long yet exciting day, walk on to the Hotel Selfoss – your home for the next two nights.
After you’ve had some time to settle in, head downstairs to enjoy a welcome drink and maybe watch a film which will help you understand the natural phenomenon of the Northern Lights. It’s not just about the film though. Later in the evening, you can go out into the wilderness to chase down the fascinating natural light show.
Day 3 – Waterfalls and Volcanoes
This morning, hop into your 4×4 to race along the southern coast stopping at some of Iceland’s most impressive natural wonders. Like a scene from Game of Thrones, there is nothing quite as impressive as the Seljalandsfoss and Skógafoss Falls which sees water crashing down over the side of a cliff into the lagoons below. Afterwards, you can go see the mighty Eyjafjallajökull volcano and glacier. While you’re there, make sure you don’t miss the Lava Centre, an interactive exhibition which will give you a deeper understanding of the volcanoes activity over the last few million years. Return back to spend another night at the Hotel Selfoss.
Day 4 – The Blue Lagoon
After all that touring, it’s time to have a little pampering. If it’s your first time in Iceland, you simply can’t miss a visit to the Blue Lagoon. Fed by hot thermal water, the lagoon stay’s a wonderful bath-like temperature year-round. Particularly beautiful in the winter months when the steamy rises off the water’s surface. After spending the morning soaking those weary muscles in the mineral-rich waters, you should consider visiting the capital Reykjavik and taking in all the major sights including the striking Hallgrímskirkja cathedral, the Harpa concert hall and the glass-domed Perlan building. Spend another night in your Reykjavik Hotel.
Day 5 – Return home
All good things must come to an end, and today someone will take you to the airport for your return flight back home. Take back memories that will last a lifetime and begin planning your next adventure in Iceland.
Includes: accommodation throughout, some meals.
Excludes: personal expenses, entrance fees.
DURATION: 5 days
STARTS / ENDS: Reykjavik
AGE RANGE: 10 – 99
TRANSPORT: Private 4×4
Located just 40 minutes or so from the capital, the Hotel Selfoss lies in the heart of the Golden Circle offering guests easy access to many of Iceland’s natural wonders. The hotel features 139 comfortable rooms with all the facilities and amenities that you would expect from a modern property. When you return back from a day’s excursion, relax in the hotel’s Riverside Spa. This oasis features everything from steam room to saunas, and hot pools to relaxation rooms. There is simply no better place to stay.