On this 3-day tour, you don’t need to choose between the Golden Circle or South Coast. Discover it all!
Season: All year around Duration: 3 days
This small-group, 3-day tour is fabulous for those with limited time to enjoy the best of Iceland. We highlight the most popular adventures: spectacular waterfalls, glacier hikes, and an ice cave at Vatnajökull, Europe’s biggest glacier. Your nights are far away from towns and light pollution, giving you the best chance of seeing the glittering Northern Lights during winter time.
Day 1- The famous Golden circle route
Your 3-Day Golden Circle and South Coast tour begins with the famous Golden Circle: Þingvellir (Thingvellir), Geysir and Gullfoss. Thingvellir National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is the historic location of the Icelandic Parliament, the Alþingi. Established in 930 c.e., this is the oldest continuously operated Parliament in the world, situated in one of the most geologically fascinating places on the planet.
Thingvellir is home to a rift valley between the Eurasian and North American tectonic plates. Stand atop the Law Rock where the Law Speaker, the Parliament’s orator, would make speeches. The cliffs look out over Þingvallavatn, a very beautiful lake set within this incredible landscape.
Next, you’ll visit the geothermal wonder Geysir Geothermal Area. Geysir was once a magnificent geyser that lent its name to the English word geyser. Though now dormant, its neighbor Strokkur always delights. You won’t have to wait more than a few minutes to see Strokkur burst forth scalding water skywards, jumping up to 25 meters high.
Finally, we stop at Gullfoss (the Golden Falls), the most-visited waterfall in Iceland. Witness the powerful Hvita (“White”) River roar down the two-tiered cliffs into the rugged canyon below. The force of the falls and the beauty of the surrounding golden mist are a sight to behold.
After the Golden Circle, we drive southward. On a clear day, we’ll get great views of Mount Hekla on the way to Seljalandsfoss, one of the most unusual waterfalls in the world. You can walk behind these graceful falls to enjoy the view from both sides.
Your hotel for the night will be close to the small town of Kirkjubæjarklaustur, a fantastic base to catch the mesmerizing Northern Lights during September and April months if conditions are right. A little luck is very useful when it comes to auroras!
Day 2 Jökullsárlón Galacier Lagoon and ice caving
In the morning, we head east towards the magnificent Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon and nearby Diamond Beach. The lagoon is filled with icebergs of all shapes and sizes, as they glide in a dreamlike procession towards the salty waves of the Atlantic. The multifaceted colors are caused by a combination of factors, including ice compression.
Many of them are washed ashore at the Diamond Beach, where they glitter like diamonds on the black sand. There’s nothing quite like walking on the beach as sunlight illuminates the beach with bright blue tones of the icebergs. Ocean birds are abundant and, if you’re lucky, you might spot a playful seal. Your hotel for the night will be in the Skaftafell area, another great base to test your Northern Lights luck if you are traveling during September - April months!From Jokulsarlon, we head to Skaftafell Nature Reserve for a new adventure. During the winter, we join our certified glacier guide and step into the mesmerizing world of Vatnajokull Glacier.
After taking a beautiful glacier hike, we’ll enter a natural ice cave where you’ll have some time to explore and take photos. Photographers will get the rare chance to capture mysterious blue light passing through glacial ice. During your adventure, an expert guide will explain the process of how these glacial ice formations came to be. During the summer, we go to the only natural ice cave you can visit all year - the Katla Ice Cave tour near Vik.
The ice cave we visit will be chosen based on current conditions. Including both ice cave and glacier hike exploration, we’ll spend roughly 2 hours on the ice. This tour is suitable for people who are able to comfortably walk around 2 hours across easy outdoor terrain.
Ice cave temperatures hover well below freezing, so don’t forget to dress warmly.
Your accommodation for the night will be at the same hotel – Adventure Hotel Geirland.
After a nourishing breakfast, we’ll start our day slowly driving towards Reykjavik and making plenty of stops along the way. If the roads are clear, we’ll start the day off with a quick detour to Fjaðrárgljúfur Canyon.
Next, we’ll have the chance to visit the iconic Eldhraun lava field before heading to Reynisfjara black beach. The powerful waves of the Atlantic Ocean really show their force here. Watch as these roaring, white-tipped beauties crash onto the black beach. A word of warning – the waves here can be unpredictable! Always follow the advice of your tour guide.
You should pop into the black basalt cave before you leave the beach. Reynisfjara is famous for its basalt columns just off the shore, called the Reynisdrangar. Gazing up at these dramatic black pillars, you’ll get a good idea of where the legends of Icelandic troll folklore sprang from!
After Reynisfjara, our next stop will be a visit to Skógafoss, an impressive waterfall that drops 60 m into a tranquil pool below. There are 527 steps leading to the top, yet the steep climb is worth it for the panorama alone. The famous volcano, Eyjafjallajökull, lurks high above the waterfall, so if visibility is good you’ll get a glimpse of this magnificent mountain glacier.
After enjoying our final stop at Skógafoss, your 3-Day Iceland’s South Coast tour comes to an end. We’ll return to Reykjavík between 16:00 and 19:00, depending on the weather conditions.
Day Highlights :
Return time: We will return to Reykjavík between 16:00 – 19:00 (4:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.), depending on the conditions.
Pick-up Information: Pick up is at 9:00 a.m. from your hotel or a nearby meeting point in Reykjavík. Picking everyone up can take up to 30 minutes, your patience is much appreciated.
Remember to bring: Warm outdoor clothing including layers, thermal underwear (top and bottom), a waterproof jacket and pants, headwear, scarves, and gloves. Sturdy hiking boots are essential for glacier hiking since they are the only kind of footwear that fit ice crampons. Hiking boots for the glacier hike can be rented in the booking process or at the Glacier Guides Booking Center in Skaftafell. We recommend renting in advance.
What if I don’t own all of these clothing items? Don’t worry, you can always rent sturdy hiking shoes, waterproof jacket, and pants in the booking process. Hiking boots, waterproof jacket, and waterproof pants can be rented on location, at the Glacier Guides Booking Center, for the glacier hike. However, if you wish to rent extras for the whole duration of the tour then this must be added to your booking at least 48 hours before your tour starts.
Included in package:
What do I need to bring?
More than 14 days’ notice 90% refund
Less than 14 days’ notice 50% refund*
Less than 72 hours’ notice No refund
Cancellations or amendments with more than 14 days’ notice before trip departure:
You will be refunded 90% of the total tour price. 10% is non-refundable, as this represents our direct cost of booking and preparing your tour.
Cancellations or amendments with less than 14 days’ notice before trip departure:
You will be refunded 50% of your total tour price. 50% is non-refundable, as this represents our direct cost of canceling any arrangements made for your tour.
Cancellations or amendments with less than 72-hours’ notice before trip departure:
No refund will be given if tours are canceled with less than 72 hours’ notice, as Iceland Beyond will be charged for all costs such as guides, transport etc.
10% of the price of your trip is non-refundable, this percentage reflects our cost of booking and preparing your trip.
Prices may change without prior notice. If an incorrect price has been listed, we reserve the right to refuse, cancel or limit any order placed at the incorrect price. *Subject to availability - price is confirmed when payment has been made. Book in advance to get the best price!
Voucher: You will receive a secure voucher to either print out or present on your mobile phone.