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South Iceland at Leisure - Winter

(7 days / 6 nights)

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See Iceland’s south coast at your own pace

Take your time and enjoy the stunning winter landscapes along Iceland’s south coast with this self-drive journey from Reykjavik. Diverse sights like icy waterfalls, hot springs bursting from the frosty ground and possible northern lights sightings make this a holiday to remember. Driving distances per day are moderate and a range of exciting optional activities are available along the route.

Looking for the summer version of this tour?

Type

Self-Drive

Interest

Best Seller, Classic, Northern Lights

Season

1 Oct - 30 Apr

Departure

Daily

Driving distance

950/590 km/mi

Price p. p. from

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Tour Request

Itinerary

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

  • Day 1: Welcome to Reykjavík

    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 and its many museums, restaurants and bars for 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, to enjoy its various shops and cosy cafes.

    Spend the night in Reykjavík.

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  • Day 2: Wonders of the Golden Circle

    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 where 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 implosion crater of Kerið and the historical seat of Iceland’s early bishops at Skálholt.  

    Spend the night in the Golden Circle area.

    Driving distance approx. 220 km / 137 mi.  

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  • Day 3: The South Coast & Icy Waterfalls

    Start the day with a visit to the beautiful Seljalandsfoss waterfall, where you can follow a path behind its misty cascade. The next waterfall you will see, Skógafoss, is just as impressive in its winter coat and also has a trail running alongside it up a hill. Nearby is the Skógar Folk Museum, where we recommend exploring the old turf farm or checking out the exhibits inside for a taste of Iceland´s rich history. For a truly unique experience, you can take part in a guided glacier hike (optional) at Sólheimajökull.

    Spend the night in the Kirkjubæjarklaustur area

    Driving distance approx. 191 km / 122 mi.   

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  • Day 4: Cascading Waterfalls, Hiking & Floating Icebergs

    Spend some time exploring Skaftafell, part of the vast Vatnajökull National Park and a place of great natural beauty. Here you will find many interesting hiking trails, including one that leads to the Svartifoss waterfall and its unique basalt columns that resemble organ pipes. Or if you’re feeling more adventurous, join a guided glacier hike (optional). Then head to the famous Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon and enjoy the surreal scene of icebergs floating by. Later in the evening, if the skies are clear, you may even see another natural wonder—the northern lights.*

    Spend the night in the Kirkjubæjarklaustur/Skaftafell area.

    Driving distance approx. 250 km / 155 mi. 

    *Please note that the northern lights are a natural phenomenon, so sightings cannot be guaranteed.

    Highlights Highlights Optional Activity Optional Activity
  • Day 5: South Coast Hidden Gems & Black Sand Beaches

    Your journey today takes you back along the south coast towards Vík, giving you an opportunity to spend some more time exploring the attractions you may have passed or visiting some of the lesser-known gems like the “elf cliffs” at Dverghamrar or the Landbrotshólar pseudo-craters. We also recommend checking out the volcanic black sand beach south of Vík, where you can see the dramatic rock formations of Reynisdrangar and Dyrhólaey—a stunning sight by the light of the setting sun. 

    Spend the night in the Vík area.

    Driving distance approx. 140 km / 87 mi.  

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  • Day 6: Reykjanes Peninsula & Blue Lagoon

    Head to the volcanic Reykjanes Peninsula for a visit to the Blue Lagoon*, a geothermal spa surrounded by lava formations—an especially unique experience in the winter! Here you can relax in the steam rooms and saunas or soak in the warm, bright blue mineral waters, which are to have therapeutic effects. Relaxing in-water massages are also available (optional; advanced pre-booking recommended). 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 centre’s gourmet restaurants.

    *Due to renovations the Blue Lagoon is closed from the 24th through the 27th of April 2017 (both days included).

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  • Day 7: Departure

    Transfer by shuttle bus to Keflavík Airport in time for your departure flight. If you leave in the afternoon, you can do some last minute shopping at some of Reykjavik´s charming boutiques or visit one of the city’s many interesting museums.

    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.

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Map

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

Reviews

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

Ian, United Kingdom

South Iceland at Leisure - Winter, October 2016

Definitely coming back

We had a fantastic time. The route was great. The suggested visits were brilliant. Hotels lovely and interesting. Car was fine. From being picked up at the airport to being dropped off again, the whole trip was fantastic. Definitely coming back.

Lisa, United States

South Iceland at Leisure - Winter, October 2016

Above and beyond expectations

The level of customer service provided by Kristin and Nordic Visitor was above what we had anticipated. The electronic documents provided ahead of time were helpful to help us prepare and learn about the culture and what to expect. Receive the added documents (maps, city guides, bound Iceland guide, road book, etc) were all an added bonus but became incredibly helpful in guiding us to locations we hadn't originally considered. Receiving an email during our tour mentioning weather hazards was a nice touch, but to receive further emails and phone calls when one of our tours was cancelled was super helpful. Kristin then went on to suggest added tours we could take advantage of as well as potential stops and sights to see on the way to our newly scheduled tour. I had a fantastic experience with Nordic Visitor, and it really allowed us to enjoy our time in Iceland without any worries. Overall, I would absolutely recommend Nordic Visitor to others since we had an experience above and beyond what we were expecting.

John, United Kingdom

South Iceland at Leisure - Winter, October 2016

Amazing time

We had an amazing time in Iceland visiting some incredible places. The tour was well put together, with each day full of interest. We visited many of your recommended places along our route, all of which we enjoyed greatly.

Nick, United Kingdom

South Iceland at Leisure - Winter, April 2016

Relaxed atmosphere

Appreciated the organisation of the whole trip.  This helped to give a relaxed atmosphere to my stay and at no stage was I left concerned about where I was going to be next or whether I would be where I needed to be in time for checking in to the hotel etc...  The itinerary each day allowed me to stop off at the hotel, check in and then continue with my site seeing with freedom to stay out as late as I wanted.

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Accommodation

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

Budget

Rooms with shared WC and shower (or bath) in farmhouses, guesthouses or well-appointed hostels. All provide breakfast (i..

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Comfort

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

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Quality

Rooms with private WC and shower (or bath) in a three- or four-star hotel or the best accommodation available in the are..

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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 Focus
or similar

  • x5
  • x5
  • x3
  • M

Ford Focus
or similar

  • Type: B
  • Description: Compact hatchback
  • Passengers: 5
  • Luggage: 3
  • Doors: 5
  • Transmission: Manual*
  • *upgrade to automatic available upon request

Ford Focus Wagon
or similar

  • x5
  • x5
  • x4
  • M

Ford Focus Wagon
or similar

  • Type: C
  • Description: Compact wagon
  • Passengers: 5
  • Luggage: 4
  • Doors: 5
  • Transmission: Manual*
  • *upgrade to automatic available upon request

Ford Mondeo
or similar

  • x5
  • x4
  • x4
  • A

Ford Mondeo
or similar

  • Type: D
  • Description: Mid-size sedan
  • Passengers: 5
  • Luggage: 4
  • Doors: 4
  • Transmission: Automatic

Ford Kuga 4x4
or similar

  • x5
  • x5
  • x4
  • A

Ford Kuga 4x4
or similar

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

Ford Edge 4x4
or similar

  • x5
  • x5
  • x4
  • A

Ford Edge 4x4
or similar

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

Toyota Land Cruiser 4x4
or similar

  • x5
  • x5
  • x5
  • A

Toyota Land Cruiser 4x4
or similar

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

Volvo XC90 4x4
limited availability

  • x6
  • x5
  • x6
  • A

Volvo XC90 4x4
limited availability

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

Land Rover Defender 4x4
limited availability

  • x6
  • x5
  • x2
  • M

Land Rover Defender 4x4
limited availability

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

Citroen C4 Grand Picasso
or similar

  • x6
  • x5
  • x2
  • A

Citroen C4 Grand Picasso
or similar

  • Type: K
  • Description: Compact MPV Family Vehicle
  • Passengers: 6
  • Luggage: 1/2
  • Doors: 5
  • Transmission: Manual

Optional activities

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

Everything about this tour

Booking 
  • We recommend booking at least three weeks prior to departure.
  • This package can be customized 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 type for winter.
  • Day 6 option: Spend a night near the Blue Lagoon instead of Reykjavik and return the rental car at Keflavik Airport on your departure day (arranged by request and at an additional cost; contact us for details). 
Other
  • Best months to experience the Northern Lights are October through April, with peak visibility from December through February. Please note, as the Northern Lights are natural phenomena, we cannot guarantee sightings even if the tour is operated.
  • 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 along with a hat, scarf and gloves.
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. 
 
For the Blue Lagoon:
A reservation is required in advance for entrance to the Blue Lagoon and for spa treatments. The Blue Lagoon can be sold out for your desired time slot, so be sure to book well in advance for your top choice. 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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