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4x4 Highland Adventure in the South

(7 days / 6 nights)

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A Mix Of Classic Attractions & Highland Adventure

One of our 7-day tours, this self-drive adventure focuses your sights on South Iceland, a region of vast wilderness, glaciers, waterfalls, towering volcanoes and other natural wonders unique to the area. Equipped with a sturdy 4x4 vehicle, you will be able to venture off the beaten track to the exotic interior highlands, a region of Iceland that few tourists get to see. Keep in mind that booking a 4x4 highland tour requires a driver with the appropriate skill-set, including how to drive on rough, unpaved roads and cross un-bridged rivers. Please note that rental car insurance in Iceland does not cover water damage, so river-crossing knowledge is essential.

7 days / 6 nights

Price p.p. from

The amount will be charged in ISK

Approx 342985 ISK

See Book With Confidence terms

— Why book this tour

  • Free private transfer from airport on arrival
  • Handpicked hotels by local travel experts with breakfast included
  • Reliable rental cars from our trusted partners Enterprise & Hertz
  • Comprehensive itinerary, personalised map and travel guide
  • 24/7 helpline throughout tour
  • Local travel experts with firsthand experience

— Book With Confidence

  • Optional cancellation insurance
  • Affordable deposits from 10%

Terms and conditions apply

Tour Highlights

  • See the massive floating icebergs at the Glacier Lagoon
  • Walk the Diamond Beach, seeing the scattered, glistening ice
  • Drive the famous Golden Circle route
  • Explore the highlands in your rugged 4x4 vehicle
  • Tour the vast landscapes of Landmannalaugar
  • Photograph jagged basalt columns & sweeping black sand beaches
  • Enjoy the cascading waterfalls of Seljalandsfoss & Skógafoss
  • See the waterfalls and hot springs of west Iceland
  • Walk the quaint streets of the capital city, Reykjavik

Travel style

Self-Drive i

Interest

4x4 Highland Route i, Active i, Midnight sun i, Off the Beaten Path i

Season

Jul - Aug

Departure

Daily

Interest

4x4 Highland Route i, Active i, Midnight sun i, Off the Beaten Path i

Driving distance

1150/714 km/mi

Itinerary

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

Download PDF
  • Day 1:  Welcome to Iceland

    On arrival to Keflavik Airport, you will be greeted by a driver who will take you to your accommodation in Reykjavík. After settling in, the rest of the day is free for you to explore the vibrant city centre with its abundance of museums, restaurants and bars to suit all tastes.

    If you're interested in checking out Icelandic design or experiencing the city's thriving coffee culture, head to the main street, Laugavegur, and enjoy its various shops and cosy cafes.

    Spend the night in Reykjavik.

    Attractions Optional Extras
  • Day 2: Adventures Of The West Coast

    Start your highland adventure by collecting your rental vehicle and heading to the west coast of Iceland, Borgarfjörður. The region is well known for its exquisite nature and attractions such as the stunning Hraunfossar and Barnafoss waterfalls and Deildartunguhver, the largest hot spring in Europe. Have you ever dreamt of venturing inside a glacier? Well, this is your opportunity! From Húsafell you can take an optional tour to Langjökull, where a manmade ice cave is open to intrepid travellers. You can explore the cave's crevasses and bright blue hues, along with special chambers and informational guides about the geology of glaciers.

    After the excursion, drive along Langjökull glacier, following the mountain road Kaldidalur towards the Golden Circle area where you will be spending the night. This is where your 4x4 comes in handy, as this route is only open to 4x4 vehicles. Your first stop along the Golden Circle is Þingvellir National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, which is fascinating for its geology as well as historical relevance.

    Driving distance approx: 300 km/186 mi. 

    Spend the night in the Golden Circle area

    Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions Optional Extras
  • Day 3: Gullfoss, Geysir & The Highlands

    Start with a visit to the Geysir—the original “geyser”—and its more active neighbour, Strokkur, which erupts steam and water metres into the air every few minutes. Next up is the majestic Gullfoss waterfall, which is a two-tiered waterfall with roaring white water thundering and crashing below. There's a reason why this is such a popular attraction! Head to the Þjórsárdalur Valley, which is located close to the looming volcano Hekla, where you will find sights that include the Þjóðveldisbærinn Stöng, a reconstructed Viking area farmstead and Hjálparfoss waterfall before continuing the route to Landmannalaugar and the Highland Center.

    Driving distance approx: 100 km/62 mi. 

    Spend the night in the Hrauneyjar area (if available).

    Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions
  • Day 4: Landmannalaugar Highland Route

    Today it’s time to put your 4x4 vehicle to the test by exploring the southern highlands. Spend the first part of your day enjoying Landmannalaugar, a unique geothermal area surrounded by colourful rhyolite peaks. This is an ideal place to do some light hiking as there are numerous hiking trails in the region. You can even enjoy a dip in a natural geothermal pool in these beautiful surroundings. Next up is driving the Fjallabak mountain road, where you can enjoy this geologically diverse region with visits to the Eldgjá fissures and the Ófærufoss waterfall on your way to the cosy village of Kirkjubæjarklaustur.

    Driving distance approx: 130 km/81 mi. 

    Spend the night in the Kirkjubæjarklaustur area

    Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions
  • Day 5: Skaftafell & The Glorious Glacier Lagoon

    Kick off the day by exploring Skaftafell, a divine slice of Vatnajökull National Park and home of the spectacular Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon where you can take a boat ride among the floating icebergs that vary in colour, shape and size. You can spend time marveling at the area’s great beauty by trekking the many well-maintained hiking trails, including a short walk to the beautiful Svartifoss waterfall. In this region, you can choose to take part in a guided glacier walk or try your hand at ice-climbing with an optional guided tour.* Journey back to your accommodation along the South Coast for the evening. 

    Spend the night in the Kirkjubæjarklaustur area.

    Driving distance: 250 km/155 mi.

    *NOTE: Venturing onto a glacier or engaging in ice climbing should only ever be attempted with the assistance of a licensed and experienced guide. It is extremely dangerous to go on your own. If a guided tour is of interest to you, please contact Nordic Visitor.

    Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions Optional Extras
  • Day 6: Black Sand Beaches & Geological Wonders

    Drive along the beautiful south coast, an area full of postcard-perfect scenery. Notable sights on your route today include the dramatic black sand beaches and jagged rock formations near Vík. And of course, no visit to South Iceland is complete without seeing the stunning Skógafoss waterfall and the nearby Seljalandsfoss waterfall, where you can walk right behind the misty cascade. It is ideal today to join some of the optional activities available in the area such as glacier walking, snowmobiling or horse riding before continuing to Reykjavik, the capital of Iceland.

    Spend the night in the Reykjavik area.

    Driving distance: 370 km/230 miles

    * Caution should always be exercised when visiting Reynisfjara beach near Vík due to powerful rogue/sneaker waves and the strong undertow current. Always stay far back from the water’s edge and never turn your back to the sea.
    **The cliffs at Dyrhólaey are closed from mid-May until late June due to the puffin nesting season.

    Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions Attractions Optional Extras
  • Day 7: Departure

    On your day of departure, a shuttle bus will collect you from your accommodation in Reykjavík and deliver you to Keflavík International Airport ahead of your scheduled flight.

    Optional Extras

Map

Here’s a map of your travel route, to help put things in perspective.

Essential information

Everything you need to know about this tour before you book

We recommend that you read carefully through the following information before booking this summer self-drive tour in Iceland. We’ve answered the most frequently asked questions here so you know what to expect. You’ll also find more practical advice and attraction recommendations in our online Iceland Travel Guide.

During your self-drive tour, you’ll stay in accommodation hand-picked by our local Iceland travel experts. We’ve partnered with local businesses and selected hotels and guesthouses based on excellent ratings, comfort and our personal experience.

On our self-drive packages, you can choose from single, double and triple rooms. Please note that in Iceland room types are based on European standard sizes, which means they are smaller than in North America.

For example, a double bed often consists of 2 single beds pushed together. Twin rooms are 2 separate single beds. Triple rooms include a double bed along with an extra bed, rollaway or sofa bed. And single rooms are often smaller than the standard double.

If you have anything specific in mind, please contact us to discuss customising your accommodation options.

On a self-drive tour, Nordic Visitor supplies you with a quality rental car and a detailed personal itinerary. You act as your own tour guide and driver, and you get to pick the road trip music!

All your services will be pre-booked by your personal travel consultant at Nordic Visitor. This includes your rental car and accommodation in Iceland, along with airport transfers and planned activities, as specified in the itinerary.

And rest assured that we’re with you every step of the way. Upon your arrival, you’ll receive personalised information, including an itinerary, map, leaflets about driving in Iceland, and our very own Iceland Travel Guide. You’ll also have in-car Wi-Fi included in your car rental, meaning you’ll be able to stay connected and check things on the go.

Plus, you’ll have access to our 24/7 helpline during your trip should you need to contact us.

By booking with Nordic Visitor, you’ll have peace of mind knowing that there’s always someone there for you throughout your trip.

For support and advice during the day, you can call our office. And if anything unexpected happens outside working hours, you can reach us on our 24/7 helpline. 

During your tour, there will always be a Reykjavík-based travel expert on call to handle any unforeseen situations, such as unusual weather or events.

If you’re arriving from Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia or New Zealand, you won’t need a visa to visit Iceland. 

Visiting from another country? You can find the complete list of countries whose nationals require a visa to enter Iceland on the website of Iceland’s Directorate of Immigration. If you do require a visa, they maintain a list of local embassies that can assist you with the process. 

Your passport must also be valid for at least 3 months from your departure from Iceland. It’s good to check your passport expiry date early in case you need to renew it. 

Read more about visas, airports and airlines in the getting to Iceland section of our travel guide.

Travelling with your kids? No problem! You'll be able to enter your children's ages during the booking process. This lets us know whether to arrange either a baby cot or roll-away bed for your trip.

If you'd like us to arrange for a car seat to be provided for your trip, please let us know ahead of time. It's also possible to book this directly with the car rental agency. This will incur a small, extra cost.

Only you can pick the best time to visit Iceland for your trip. It’ll depend on how much time you have to explore, what you want to see in Iceland and any events you might like to attend.

In summer, June to August, you’ll have milder temperatures and longer daylight hours, compared to the winter. This is ideal for outdoor excursions and sightseeing. 

If you’d like to experience the top attractions with fewer visitors around then you could book your summer trip in May or September. These shoulder season months have more tour and attraction availability.

The winter months are also popular, but generally quieter, apart from the Christmas holiday season. This is the ideal time to try to spot the northern lights.

Find out what annual Icelandic events and festivals are on in our travel guide. Or read more about the best time to visit Iceland on our blog.

Driving in Iceland during the summer months might be slightly different than what you’re used to. For this reason, you’ll want to make yourself aware of local driving laws and potential road hazards, such as:

  • We drive on the right-hand side of the road
  • Sheep sometimes roam onto the roads
  • Most roads and motorways are single carriageways
  • The first car to arrive at a single-lane bridge has right of way
  • Iceland has quite a few tunnels, including one of the longest underwater road tunnels in the world
     

And finally, with all the beautiful scenery, you’ll want to take it slow and enjoy the drive!

For more information, we strongly recommend taking a few minutes to read through our guide to driving in Iceland. Additionally, when you arrive on your tour, you’ll receive a brochure telling you more about driving in Iceland.

Because of its northerly location close to the Arctic Circle, Iceland enjoys long days throughout the summer. 

Around the summer solstice, from early June until mid-July, you’ll experience almost 24 hours of daylight. This phenomenon, known as the midnight sun, occurs within the Arctic Circle and is when the sun doesn’t fully set below the horizon. 

These long daylight hours give you plenty of time to drive around and explore. That said, you may want to pack a sleeping mask if you are a light sleeper or tend to wake up at dawn. 

Find out what the daylight hours will be during the month of your visit in this guide to time and daylight in Iceland.

Summer in Iceland is mild and boasts the best weather and longest days of the year. You can expect temperatures of around 10–15°C (50–59°F), with potential lows of 5°C (41°F) and highs of 25°C (77°F). 

It’s good to know that weather conditions are changeable in Iceland, so you should come ready for sun, rain and wind. For more information on the local climate, read the page Iceland weather conditions

Please note that sightseeing is dependent on weather and road conditions. This means that your itinerary might need to be altered if these conditions are not favourable during your visit.

Even in summertime Iceland’s climate can feel cool. As you’ll probably spend a lot of time outdoors, you should be ready for a variety of weather conditions.

Here is a recommended summer packing list for your trip to Iceland:

  • Durable insulated jacket
  • Rain gear, including sturdy wind and waterproof layers, like a jacket and trousers
  • Robust walking shoes with a good grip
  • Mid-layers such as a fleece or woollen jumper
  • A few pairs of warm hiking socks
  • Hat, gloves and scarf
  • Swimwear for visiting geothermal pools or spas
  • Backpack for daily adventures
  • Electronic equipment such as smartphone, external powerpack, and travel adapters
  • Reusable water bottle
  • Sunglasses, sunscreen and eye mask for the summer sun
  • And don’t forget your camera!
     

For more information, check out this Iceland packing guide.

On your Iceland road trip, you should budget for petrol costs of around 300-400 ISK per litre.

As for meals, your breakfast is included at all your accommodation in Iceland. For the rest of your meals, your spending money will depend on the standard of restaurants you decide to go to. 

Budget between 2,000–3,000 ISK for lunch per person, each day. Dinners at casual restaurants might cost between 3,000–6,000 ISK. Meanwhile at upscale restaurants, you can expect to pay 7,000 ISK or more. This does not include the cost of alcoholic beverages.

Yes, you can customise this tour online. During the booking process, you can add extra nights to your itinerary as well as optional day trips, excursions and upgrades. 

If you have something specific in mind, get in touch with your travel consultant and they’ll create your dream trip.

It’s best to book as soon as you can to secure your preferred travel dates. Once you have picked your tour, check the availability calendar to see which months are open for booking. Then, select the date you want and complete your booking. 

Nordic Visitor offers 10–20% deposits so you can reserve your trip as early as it’s convenient for you. The remaining balance is due 30 days before you travel. 

Many tours are also open for the following year if you like to plan well ahead. And if you have any questions or need advice, you can always contact us

After booking your tour package online, you will be contacted within 2 business days by your own dedicated travel consultant. They will be your point of contact for all your travel needs before, during and even after your trip. 

At that time, they’ll confirm the availability of your tour. Then the booking process starts, which may take a few weeks. Once this is done, your travel consultant will provide you with all the details of your trip. You will also receive more information about what to expect during your trip.

You can get in touch with our Iceland travel experts ahead of your trip if you have any questions. The live chat option is useful for getting a quick reply as someone answers live every day during office opening hours.

Once you’ve booked, we’ll provide you with a travel guide packed full of local tips and top attractions for your visit. You can also check out our online Iceland Travel Guide where we’ve compiled useful information about topics, including:

After you have booked your tour, it will only take a few days to confirm its availability. But it may take a few weeks to create your itinerary and book everything. Once your trip details are finalised, we’ll email you copies of your travel documents.

When you arrive in Iceland, you’ll receive a welcome bag with hard copies of your itinerary, attraction and tour vouchers, the Nordic Visitor Iceland Travel Guide and more.

So when do you check in? And what can you expect upon landing in Keflavík?

After picking up your luggage, you will be greeted by a driver holding a sign with your name in the arrivals hall. The driver will hand over your welcome package with hard copies of your travel documents. You’ll then be driven to your hotel in Reykjavík.

Check-in times vary between hotels and guesthouses, but it normally starts between 2 PM and 4 PM. 

You are welcome to request an early check-in for an additional fee. Although this isn’t always available, you’ll be able to store your luggage at the hotel so you can start exploring before check-in. Please contact your travel consultant well in advance of your arrival if you’d like an early check-in.

When you depart may depend on the time of your return flight. Check out early if you’re heading to the airport for a morning flight. On the other hand, if you’re flying home later in the day, you might like to enjoy a leisurely day or visit one more attraction.

You will need to check out from your room, but will be able to store your luggage at the hotel reception. Simply return later to collect your bags before catching your transfer to the airport.

All bookings are billed 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. This means conversions from ISK to other currencies will fluctuate from day to day.

Reviews

We don’t like to brag, so we’ll let our happy customers do it for us.

Iceland Wonderland

My grown daughters and I set up a 12 day South Island Tour with Kristin of Nordic Visitor. She was very accommodating. We added a couple of days and requested specific hotels. The trip was very successful. Our expectations were more than met. Kristin worked with us continuously during the planning and execution phases. She answered emails immediately. Her knowledge about places to see during our journey was amazing, even where to find remote Hot Pots. She and her staff helped make our trip very enjoyable.

Thanks for a wonderful trip!

Iceland is a beautiful country. We loved the puffins, whale watching, museums, sheep everywhere, thermal areas, community pools, and continually changing landscape. Your tips on driving safely were helpful. Roads and tunnels were excellent. The road guide book was useful. The map with the places marked was ideal. Thanks for a wonderful trip!

Accommodation

Stay in well-located hotels and guesthouses that are highly rated by visitors and handpicked by local travel experts.

Look forward to getting a good night’s sleep after each day of driving in Iceland. All your accommodation will be conveniently located near your driving route, with ample parking. Rest assured that you’ll stay in the best possible properties, which have all received excellent reviews from previous customers.

Economy

Rooms with shared bathroom facilities in farmhouses, cosy guesthouses or well-appointed hostels.

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Comfort Plus

Standard rooms in good quality and comfortable three-star hotels in combination with well-appointed guesthouses or country hotels.

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Superior

Standard rooms in four-star hotels in combination with Deluxe or Superior rooms in premium three-star hotels.

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Rental car

Enjoy the journey in the rental car of your choice, with two authorised drivers and free in-car Wi-Fi.

Toyota Land Cruiser 4x4 (Automatic)
or similar

  • x5
  • x5
  • x5
  • A

Toyota Land Cruiser 4x4 (Automatic)
or similar

  • Description: Premium SUV, 4WD
  • Passengers: 5
  • Suitcases: 5
  • Doors: 5
  • Transmission: Automatic

Price per person from

The amount will be charged in ISK

Approx 342985 ISK

Book with confidence

Monthly price comparison

Our best price per person when booking for two.

2023

Optional extras

Customise your adventure with these Optional Extras.

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