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Christmas & New Year's in Iceland

(11 days / 10 nights)

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PRISTINE ICELANDIC NATURE AND HOLIDAY FESTIVITIES!

This special package allows you to experience Iceland´s most spectacular gems in the south and west of Iceland. Travellers will enjoy a tailored self-drive tour chock full of breathtaking sites, charming town visits, a delicious Christmas Eve feast and an exclusive Nordic Visitor New Year´s Eve celebration that you will never forget. You will receive personalised service, a handmarked map outlining your route and where to stop, a provided mobile phone and a 24/7 helpline. Destinations include the wondrous waterfalls Gullfoss, Seljalandsfoss, and Skógafoss; as well as stops at Geysir, Þingvellir National Park, the floating icebergs at the Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon, and the spectacular Snæfellsnes peninsula. You may even spot the northern lights, if the conditions are right.

11 days / 10 nights

Price p.p. from

Approx 313300 ISK

The amount will be charged in ISK

Type

Self-Drive

Interest

Christmas, New Year´s, Northern Lights

Season

Christmas

Departure

22 DEC

Itinerary

A day-by-day plan to guide your journey.

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  • Day 1: DECEMBER 22 – ARRIVAL & EXPLORING REYKJAVÍK

    Welcome to Iceland! From the arrivals hall in Keflavik International Airport, a driver will meet you and take you to your accommodation in Reykjavík. After setting aside your luggage, the rest of the day is at your leisure. The colourful city centre is always full of life, offering a great variety of museums, shops and cosy cafes with free Wi-Fi and restaurants to suit all tastes. You can explore downtown easily on foot, and a walk along the old harbour is highly recommended.

    Spend the night in Reykjavik.

    Highlights Optional Activity
  • Day 2: DECEMBER 23 – CLASSIC GOLDEN CIRCLE & MAJESTIC NORTHERN LIGHTS

    Collect your rental car in the morning and begin your journey on the classic Golden Circle route, starting with the fascinating Þingvellir National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Here, you can walk on a path in the rift valley between the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates. Next, is the Haukadalur geothermal area, home of Geysir—the original “geyser”—and the more active Strokkur, which spouts water every few minutes. End the circle with visits to the majestic Gullfoss waterfall, the massive implosion crater of Kerið and the historical seat of Iceland’s early bishops at Skálholt. Also, being out in the countryside gives you a better opportunity to search for northern lights during the next few nights, if the skies are clear.*

    Spend the night in the Golden Circle area

    Driving distance approx. 220 km / 137 mi

    *The northern lights are a natural phenomenon, so sightings cannot be guaranteed

    Highlights Highlights Highlights Optional Activity
  • Day 3: DECEMBER 24 – MOUNTAINS, WATERFALLS & CHRISTMAS EVE DINNER

    Drive towards the picture-perfect south coast, and see some of Iceland’s most famous attractions as well as the towering Eyjafjöll mountain range. At Seljalandsfoss waterfall, you can follow a footpath behind its frosty cascade, a unique experience despite Iceland´s more than 10,000 waterfalls. But, be careful as it can be slippery. The next waterfall on the agenda is the mighty Skógafoss, which is just as impressive in its icy winter coat. Head to the village Kirkjubæjarklaustur where you will celebrate Christmas Eve with fellow travellers in a cosy gathering at the Icelandair Hotel Klaustur. At 18:00, there will be a complimentary aperitif followed by a delicious festive three course Icelandic dinner. Close to midnight you can choose to visit the local church for a midnight mass with the locals (the mass is held in Icelandic).

    Spend the night in the Kirkjubæjarklaustur area

    Driving distance: 200 km/124 mi

    Highlights Highlights Highlights Optional Activity
  • Day 4: DECEMBER 25 - CHRISTMAS AMONG CLIFFS, ICEBERGS, & NATIONAL PARKS

    Enjoy the day in the countryside where you can visit sites such as the Kirkjugolf basalt stones and the Dverghamrar cliffs. Or, if you‘re feeling more adventurous, get an early start to explore Skaftafell, part of Vatnajökull National Park, and the floating icebergs at the Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon. Then head back to your accommodation in Kirkjubæjarklaustur.

    Spend the night in the Kirkjubæjarklaustur area

    Driving distance: 210 km/130 mi

    Highlights Highlights Highlights Highlights Optional Activity
  • Day 5: DECEMBER 26 - THE DRAMATIC SOUTH COAST & HOT SPRINGS

    After a few days of taking in the frozen landscapes and glaciers of the south coast you will head back towards the west. Worthwhile stops along the way include the hauntingly beautiful volcanic black sand beach south of Vík, Dyrhólaey Island and the surroundings of the quaint hot springs village of Hveragerði

    Spend the night in Hveragerði area

    Driving distance: 200 km/124 mi

    Highlights Highlights Highlights Highlights Highlights Highlights Highlights Highlights Optional Activity
  • Day 6: DECEMBER 27 - HOT SPRINGS, LAVA WATERFALLS & GLACIER ADVENTURES

    Explore west Iceland today with a diverse array of activities. If you‘re interested in Iceland‘s early history, visit the Icelandic Settlement Centre exhibition in the town of Borgarnes to get a sense of Iceland´s rich literary history of the sagas as well as what life was like during the days of settlement. Meanwhile, for a close up look at the island‘s geothermal power, check out the largest hot spring in Europe, Deildartunguhver as it bubbles and emits steam. Nearby, you can pay a visit to the beautiful Barnafoss and Hraunfossar waterfalls, where water thrashes, churns and spills from the vast lava field. Or for a truly unique experience, go inside a glacier! You can take an optional guided tour to Langjökull glacier, where a manmade ice cave is open to travellers (tour not included).

    Spend the night in the Borgarfjörður area

    Driving distance: 210 km / 130 mi

    Highlights Highlights Highlights Highlights Optional Activity
  • Day 7: DECEMBER 28 - SNÆFELLSJÖKULL NATIONAL PARK

    Enjoy spectacular views of the ocean, lava fields and snowy peaks as you visit the Snæfellsnes Peninsula today. The main attraction here is undoubtedly the 1,446 m Snæfellsjökull glacier-topped volcano, believed by some to hold mysterious spiritual powers. So large that it’s visible from Reykjavik on clear days. It was also the setting in Jules Verne’s famous novel “Journey to the Centre of the Earth”. Your drive along the coast also offers such picture-perfect sights as the Dritvík Cove, the Lóndrangar cliffs, the Arnarstapi cliffs, the hamlet of Hellnar and various other small fishing villages. For a fun photo opportunity and to experience a blast from the past, you can also visit Djúpalónssandur, a pebble-filled beach with the four “lifting stones” that were used in old days to test men‘s strength for jobs on fishing boats.

    Spend the night in Borgarfjörður area

    Driving distance: 414 km / 257 mi

    Highlights Highlights Optional Activity
  • Day 8: DECEMBER 29 - VOLCANIC REYKJANES PENINSULA

    Continue to the volcanic, lunar-like landscapes of the Reykjanes Peninsula, at the very south-western corner of Iceland. This is where you landed on Day 1 and where you‘ll find the Blue Lagoon, an indoor/outdoor geothermal spa surrounded by dark lava formations—a unique experience in the winter (entrance not included). Here you can relax in the steam rooms and saunas and soak in the soothing, warm, radiant blue mineral waters with a complimentary mud mask. Other notable sights on the peninsula include Lake Kleifarvatn and the geothermal area of Krísuvík, where you can visit hot springs and bubbling mud pools at Seltún. End the day back in Reykjavik. After returning the rental car, make the most of your last evening with a fine dinner at one of the city’s gourmet restaurants.

    Spend the next three nights in Reykjavík.

    Highlights Highlights Optional Activity
  • Day 9: DECEMBER 30 - EXPLORE REYKJAVIK AT LEISURE

    Today, explore the Reykjavik area however you wish. Downtown Reykjavík offers a wide range of attractions, including Alþingi, the Icelandic Parliament, or the bird’s-eye views from the tower at Hallgrímskirkja church, the city’s most visible landmark, as well as art museums, quirky shops and cafes. Other activities include exploring Harpa Concert Hall and walking along the harbour, checking out the Christmas lights flickering around the city, or swimming at one of the many local swimming pools. For those after a little adventure, consider horse riding, taking an ATV tour or whale watching.

    Optional Activity
  • Day 10: DECEMBER 31 - ICELANDIC TRADITIONS & NEW YEARS EVE CELEBRATION

    Enjoy an easy morning after yesterday’s adventure. If you venture out, keep in mind that most businesses are generally open until 13:00 today.

    In the afternoon, your Icelandic New Year‘s Eve begins! Festivities kick off with a local guide showing you around the city, allowing you to take part in local traditions. After a stop at the fireworks sales—an essential Icelandic New Year’s ritual—you will walk through an old Reykjavik cemetery for an encounter with Icelandic spirits, of both the folklore and beverage variety. Then, after a visit to the “home of the elves” in neighbouring Hafnafjörður, the tour ends in the wooded area of Heiðmörk with a small bonfire, refreshments and fireworks.

    Tonight at 19:00, attend an exclusive New Year’s Eve party hosted by Nordic Visitor. This New Year's celebration takes place at Gamla Bíó, a beautiful venue in the heart of downtown Reykjavik. This party is more than just dinner and drinks. Guests will be able to attend a traditional bonfire where Icelanders gather to sing songs about the hidden people, and you will also enjoy entertainment at the venue, and have a delicious 3-course dinner, topped off with sparkling wine at midnight. You will be treated to a roof top view over Reykjavik harbour for the fireworks at midnight. It will be quite the show! Once the exclusive celebration finishes, you can continue the party, like the locals, in the city centre with music and dancing late into the night.

    The New Year´s Eve Party hosted by Nordic Visitor has an age limit of 12 years. If travelling with younger children, please contact us and we will be happy to offer you an alternative option for dinner on New Year’s Eve. 

    Highlights
  • Day 11: JANUARY 1 - DEPARTURE FROM ICELAND

    It’s time to head back home today and take care of your new set of New Year’s resolutions. From your accommodation, take the airport bus to Keflavik International Airport in time for your check-in.

    Highlights

Map

Here’s a map of Iceland, to help put things in perspective.

Accommodation

Sleep soundly, in the accommodation type of your choice, and wake up ready to enjoy another day of exploration.

Comfort

Rooms with private WC and shower (or bath) in a three-star hotel or well-appointed guesthouse. All provide breakfast (included in ..

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Rental car

Enjoy the journey, with authorization for two drivers and free GPS in the rental car of your choice.

Ford Kuga AWD (Automatic)
or similar

  • x5
  • x5
  • x4
  • A

Ford Kuga AWD (Automatic)
or similar

  • Type: E
  • Description: Compact SUV, all-wheel drive
  • Passengers: 5
  • Luggage: 4
  • Doors: 5
  • Transmission: Automatic

Ford Edge AWD (Automatic)
or similar

  • x5
  • x5
  • x4
  • A

Ford Edge AWD (Automatic)
or similar

  • Type: F
  • Description: Mid-size SUV, all-wheel drive
  • Passengers: 5
  • Suitcases: 5
  • Doors: 5
  • Operation: Automatic

Toyota Land Cruiser 4x4 (Automatic)
or similar

  • x5
  • x5
  • x5
  • A

Toyota Land Cruiser 4x4 (Automatic)
or similar

  • Type: G
  • Description: Full-size SUV, four-wheel drive
  • Passengers: 5
  • Suitcases: 5
  • Doors: 5
  • Operation: Automatic

Volvo XC90 AWD (Automatic)
limited availability

  • x6
  • x5
  • x6
  • A

Volvo XC90 AWD (Automatic)
limited availability

  • Type: H
  • Description: Full-size Premium SUV, all-wheel drive
  • Passengers: 5/6
  • Suitcases: 6/3
  • Doors: 5
  • Operation: Automatic

Land Rover Defender 4x4 (Manual)
limited availability

  • x6
  • x5
  • x2
  • M

Land Rover Defender 4x4 (Manual)
limited availability

  • Type: J
  • Description: Highland SUV, four-wheel drive
  • Passengers: 5/6
  • Luggage: 4/2
  • Doors: 2/4 to 6
  • Transmission: Manual

Price per person from

Approx 313300 ISK

The amount will be charged in ISK

Monthly price comparison Our best price per person when booking for two.

2017

Optional activities

This is your trip, what are you interested in doing?

Tour Information

 
  • The New Year´s Eve Party hosted by Nordic Visitor has an age limit of 12 years. If travelling with younger children, please contact us and we will be happy to offer you an alternative option for dinner on New Year’s Eve. 
  • The New Year’s Eve Party includes alcoholic beverages. In Iceland, the legal drinking age is 20 years old so you might need to present an ID at the event. For those younger and those who prefer not to drink alcoholic beverages, non-alcoholic beverages will be offered. 
 
 
Booking
  • We recommend booking at least three weeks prior to departure.
  • This package can be customised to meet your needs, and extra nights can be added on request. Contact us for details.
  • For added safety and comfort, we highly recommend selecting a 4x4 vehicle for winter.
Other
  • Although the winter climate in Iceland is generally mild compared to other northern European countries, the temperatures can drop below freezing at times. You should bring some windproof/waterproof outerwear and plenty of warm layers.
  • The best months to experience the northern lights are October through April, with peak visibility typically from December through February. Please note that the northern lights are a natural phenomenon, so we cannot guarantee sightings.
  • Please be advised that daylight is limited in Iceland during the winter months, with about 4-5 hours of daylight during the holidays, from December to January. Winter in Iceland is considered to be from October to April. 
 
Please note
A reservation is required for entrance to the Blue Lagoon and for spa treatments while there. Please ask your travel consultant for further information.
 
Currency rate
All bookings are charged in Icelandic Króna (ISK), the official currency of Iceland. Prices displayed in other currencies are indicative only and based on the daily exchange rate as issued by the Central bank of Iceland. Therefore, conversions from ISK to other currencies will fluctuate from day to day.
 
After booking with Nordic Visitor
After booking your package with Nordic Visitor, you will be contacted within two working days by one of our travel consultants, who will serve as your dedicated contact person for all of your travel needs before, during and even after your holiday. Your travel consultant will provide you with details about your booking and your remaining payment (if not paid in full). You will also receive more information about what to expect during your holiday.

 

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