Iceland has the ability to mesmerize travelers all year long. Still, during winter, the country really lives up to its name, especially if you're traveling to Iceland's northern and western parts. Already interested in what awaits you there? Keep reading to find out what you can discover here in less than a week.
DAY 1: SEE THE NORTHWEST OF ICELAND AND NORTHERN LIGHTS
The most common way to begin exploring Iceland is by choosing its capital as a starting point. And while Reykjavik has many exciting places to visit, sightseeing in Iceland's northwest promises some inspiring views. For example, you can see a 15-meter height basalt column rock formation known as Hvitserkur or a spectacular Grábrók volcanic crater on your way to Dalvik. Dalvik is a well-known fishing village where you can spend time whale-watching, skiing, visiting museums, tasting fresh fish, and participating in various events. In the evening, don't rush to bed yet but finish your night chasing the Northern Lights.
The tricky part with Aurora Borealis is that it needs certain conditions to be clearly visible. If you don’t want to miss an opportunity to witness them, book one of many Northern Lights tours to get the best experience.
DAY 2: DISCOVER GEOTHERMAL AREAS OF NORTH ICELAND
One of the many great things that Iceland is recognized for is its geothermal activity. So, one of the ways to start your second day in this land is by first seeing one the most beautiful waterfalls in Iceland – Goðafoss. Next on the list is the great Lake Mývatn. This volcanic lake, with a size of 37 km² and its stunning surrounding area filled with pseudocraters, hot springs, and waterfalls, is a part of Diamond Circle. And it would be a great loss for you not to stop at Mývatn Nature Baths, also nicknamed "the Blue Lagoon of the North." There's probably no better way to treat yourself after a day spent traveling.
DAY 3: EXPLORE TRADITIONAL TURF FARM
One more thing you cannot miss while touring in Iceland's north, especially if you're an architecture enthusiast, is walking inside a turf house. For those who hear about such houses for the first time and wonder why they're so special, these authentic, ancient buildings are made only of stones and turf. These homes are quite eye-catching, reminding of something you could see in fairytale books. But no, actual people used to live here up until the 20th century. Now you can visit one at Glaumbær turf farm. Actually, not one, but 13 constructions that show how Icelanders lived way in the past and find out what each building was for. It's a perfect way to learn more about Iceland's culture, understand its people's habits, and how it was then and now.
DAY 4: ENJOY SNAEFELLSNES PENINSULA
If you dream of seeing all of Iceland but don't have that much time, then you should spend a day at Snaefellsnes Peninsula, often nicknamed "Iceland in Miniature." This part of west Iceland is home to Snæfellsjökull National Park and its nature gems. Here you can see everything Iceland is known for: black sand beaches, volcano craters, various rock formations, waterfalls, and old villages. Among these beautiful sights is Vatnshellir Cave. Put on a helmet, grab a headlamp, and get into the spirit of the literary classic of Jules Verne's "A Journey to the Center of Earth." Once you're out of the depths of the earth, take a walk on the stunning black sand beach called – Djúpalónssandur or get a picture of the most photogenic mountain in the country – Kirkjufell.
Looking for more ideas on what to do in Snaefellsnes Peninsula? Check out this one-day itinerary on the peninsula.
DAY 5: LEARN ABOUT ICELANDIC FOLKLORE IN WEST ICELAND
Many places in Iceland are admired for their breathtaking appearance, but you should also know that many of them carry a strong backstory. In the west of Iceland, there's a historical village called Reykholt. What makes this place so unique is that this is where an Icelandic historian, poet, and political figure, Snorri Sturluson, lived. Now, the village is recognized as a historical hub, attracting many scholars and curious visitors. Close to it are the Hraunfossar and Barnafoss waterfalls. The latter carries a painful story about two kids who fell into the waterfall, explaining why the attraction was named "Children's Falls."
In Iceland, the possibilities for unforgettable adventures are limitless, which might make your head spin. If that happens, know that you're covered – just check out our multi-day tours.