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Find the Best Tours for Your Next Trip to Iceland

|July 18, 2023
Konstancija is a writer who enjoys long walks and hikes in nature, "hunts" for second-hand goods, and is a frequent guest in public libraries where she loves to read and roam around stacks of books.

When exploring a new country one often thinks what should I do there? Icelanders might be a small nation but the county is not.. Here is a helpful guide on which things to try in Iceland and the best value tours to take to tick off your Iceland bucket list!


For travelers planning a trip to Iceland this question often comes to mind: Which tours are the most popular in Iceland and which tours give me the best experiences for the least amount of money?

This is the right place to be reading if you are looking for the best information on which nature and adventure activities you should join whilst in Iceland.
I am going to make the answer to this frequent question as simple as possible. This I will do by making a list (don’t you just love lists?), a list of 12 tours in Iceland that are the most popular and best value for money activities.

The list will provide all the info you might need like when the tours are operated, age limit, approx. cost and an approx time frame. Some tours in Iceland are seasonal, the Northern lights for example only appear in winter, River Rafting is only done in the summer but others like the Golden Circle or Glacier Hiking can be done all year around. I will be sure to provide you with all that info and so much more on each activity.

Feel free to leave comments below if there is any information you feel is missing from this blog. I will get right on it!

1. SNORKELING BETWEEN THE TECTONIC PLATES IN SILFRA

Silfra Fissure in Thingvellir National Park is the meeting point of the North American and Eurasian continental plates. Here the plates slow pull apart from each other, forming an epic underwater valley. You can literally swim between the continents!

When you hear about Iceland the first thing you think about is probably NOT snorkeling. Snorkeling is usually thought about when someone mentioned Fiji or the Maldives BUT my friend you are in for a surprise, a huge, wet, otherworldly surprise. In Iceland, we go snorkeling and it’s even done in glacier water to add to the craziness but even though this might be starting to sound like all Icelanders must be insane I can assure you we are not! We simply wear dry suits and then you can’t feel the cold and you can enjoy the magical underwater vistas that await you in between the abnormal setting at Silfra fissure.

Small group of people snorkeling at Silfra Fissure in Iceland between two tectonic plates

Silfra is where the tectonic plates not only meet but drift apart and when they do the crack gets filled by glacier water. The clarity is without comparison about 150 m! So the feeling is like flying. You can’t really hear a thing so it’s also a meditation of some sort, a liquid meditation, and even better no digital exposure. FULL DIGITAL DETOX + Amazing landscapes + One-time experience + glacier water + in between tectonic plates = The best tour ever!

Snorkeling excursions to Silfra Fissure are available all year round — yes, even in the dead of winter. This is because the water stays at a steady 2-4°C (35-39°F) throughout the year. That’s not exactly balmy, but your guide will set you up with an insulated dry suit to keep you warm. Even if you’ve never been snorkeling before, this expedition is an awesome way to dive headfirst into Iceland’s outdoor adventures!

THE BEST VALUE VERSION OF A SNORKELING TOUR IN SILFRA

Snorkeling at Silfra Fissure in South Coast of Iceland

The Black and Blue tour is the ultimate lava exploring tour here in Iceland. Iceland is one of the youngest countries in the world and volcanic activity is present in the lives of the locals. The volcanic activity has shaped the country and there are endless caves and other exciting things found in Iceland where you can dig deep into the true natural source.

First, you visit a lava tunnel, going deep underground to explore the lava formations on foot. You can see how the magma ran through and the history is vivid. Next up there is the extraordinary Silfra fissure. Silfra is the only place in the world where you can go snorkeling or diving in between the tectonic plates and not no one’s surprise it’s awesome!

Guided tour at Raufarhólshellir cave in Iceland

The water originates in Langjökull glacier about 50 km away and has been filtering underground through lava for 100-200 years before getting to Silfra. Silfra is where the Eurasian and North American tectonic plates meet but also drift apart and fill up with water. This feeling is unbelievable and the clarity is to intense that it feels like you are flying!

Don’t let this one slip away!

2. INTO THE GLACIER

Exploring the ins of a glacier is among the most popular and memorable activities in Iceland. While many of us might think that ice caves in Iceland are a natural occurrence, they can also be a man-made development. At least this is how “Into The Glacier” was born and soon appeared among one of the must-do tours in Iceland.

 

Into The Glacier Video

 

If you have ever wondered how ice caves are made, the way they’re formed when meltwater runs through a glacier, creating “corridors” or passageways. This happens during warmer seasons when the ice starts to melt because of higher temperatures. So while it created ways for people to explore, it also posed them risks as the melting ice could collapse and hurt them. This is why it’s actually dangerous to go ice caving alone. The safest and best way to explore an ice cave is by doing so with an experienced guide. But even in this case, you can’t go to an ice cave all year round. This was when a group of highly skilled and intelligent scientists, architects, geologists, and other specialists took their time to create a man-made ice cave in the second-largest glacier in Iceland, Langjökull.

Man-made ice cave on Langjokull glacier

To understand the greatness of this ice cave, the best tours in Iceland include a trip to “Into the Glacier.” Here, you’ll have a rare opportunity to be surrounded by nothing but ice, appreciating what extreme weather conditions and people’s minds can create by “collaborating” together. Spend an hour going through mesmerizing tunnels and stop at a built-in chapel. Oh, and you also get to ride a monster truck on your way here!

3. WESTMAN ISLANDS

The Westman Islands, also known as Vestmannaeyjar, are worth visiting for several reasons. The archipelago consists of 15 islands, of which only one, Heimaey, is inhabited. It greets its visitors with a fascinating volcanic history, the largest Puffin colony in the world, and its golf courses that are located in unusual places.

Puffin resting on the rock in Westman Islands

So no wonder Westman Islands are among the best tours to take in Iceland. One of these is the Vestmannaeyjar Volcanoes and Puffins tour, which provides you with a marvelous opportunity to see the best that this place has to offer, from its fascinating volcanic history that includes the not-so-old eruption in Heimaey to the watch of the adorable puffins.

What makes it one of the best excursions in Iceland is the fact that you’ll get to visit numerous attractions, such as the Eldheimar Museum, Elephant Rock, and Stafkirkjan church, in just one day. This trip also includes activities such as puffin watching at Stórhöfði cape and a hike to the famous Mt. Eldfell Volcano.

THE BEST VALUE VERSION OF A WESTMAN ISLANDS TOUR

If you have more time on your hands or you're a determined traveler who wants to explore and experience more, what if we told you, you could have it all in a 3-day trip to Icelandic Highlands and Westman Islands? This tour includes Iceland excursions through some of the most well-known places in Iceland.

Road leading to the Icelandic highlands

You'll start your trip by going to Vestmannaeyjar, where a puffin-watching activity will await you at Stórhöfði Cape. The whole day will consist of visiting the main highlights of the Westman Islands, following a next day trip to Fjaðrárgljúfur Canyon. Here you'll spend your day hiking and continuing to learn Iceland's rich volcanic history by hiking to Mount Laki, from which you'll see the craters of Lakagígar. The tour will proceed with some places that are located off the beaten path, one of them being Fjallabaksleið nyrðri road. It will lead you to Eldgjá Canyon, where you'll reach the spectacular Ófærufoss waterfall. The canyon won't be the only highlight of the day. Your next Icelandic surprise will be Landmannalaugar – an area of unbelievable beauty. 

 

4. NATURAL ICE CAVES

Crystal Ice cave in Iceland

Just when you think the Icelandic glaciers couldn’t possibly get more gorgeous they create ice caves, alluring blue crystal-looking ice nooks that you can visit! There are a few different types of Ice caving tours going to different ice caves, which only makes choosing which one to visit more difficult. To name them there is first the man-made ice cave at Langjökull, it is amazingly beautiful but personally, I prefer natural ones and Langjökull actually has a natural one as well!

The natural Ice cave on Langjökull glacier can be visited on an exciting snowmobiling tour. As you glide over the snow, you’ll pass by the Kerlingafjöll Mountain Range, dome-shaped Hofsjökull Glacier, and Eiríksjökull Glacier. Everywhere you look, you see dense layers of pure white snow. The pro to this tour is that it can be visited on a day tour straight from Reykjavík.

 

Snowmobiling across Langjökull glacier & visiting an natural Ice Cave

 

But if you are up for a little more traveling Skaftafell is the Ultimate Glacier Ice Cave paradise. In Skaftafell you have two fascinating options of tours.

The Crystal Ice cave is the one you might have seen photos of, it’s amazingly crystal blue and doesn’t require any real hiking. It’s at the bottom of the glacier and the roof is super thin making it easier for sunlight to shine through and light up the cave in magical blue colors. The only con is that because of this thin-ness and the low location of the cave its weather dependant. The colder it is the better the cave is so let’s all pray for COLD winter!

Guided tour inside the ice cave in Iceland

THE BEST VALUE VERSION OF A NATURAL ICE CAVE TOUR

This is a hard one, all of them are gorgeous but my first and runner-up would be Into the Glacier tour in Skaftafell and Snowmobiling and Ice cave exploring from Reykjavík on Langjökull glacier.

For a truly explosive excursion, check out the black-and-blue ice caves that stretch under Katla Volcano. This volcano ice cave excursion leaves from either Vik or Reykjavik. You’ll see every side of Iceland’s ice caps, with an exhilarating glacier hike and epic views of South Iceland. The excursion takes 3 hours from Vik or 11 hours from Reykjavik.

Woman inside the ice cave at Vatnajokull glacier

5. GLACIER HIKING AND/OR GLACIER CLIMBING

Small group of people glacier hiking in Iceland

Glacier hiking is an eye-opening experience, you connect with nature at a new and exciting level and if you ever want to try it Iceland is the perfect playfield to do it at!

Iceland has the largest glacier in Europe and numerous others spreading over the highlands, West and Westfjords. You can take a short tour, longer tours, tours with glacier climbing, tours with natural ice caves visits. You can go straight from Reykjavík on a day tour or you can meet up on a Ring Road or South Coast exploring trip. The world (Icelandic glaciers) is your oyster. Just promise me one thing, don’t visit Iceland without touching a glacier!

If you're still contemplating whether glacier hiking is something up your alley, then you should know that some of the best glacier hiking tours in Iceland have different levels of difficulty. This means that everyone can try out this fun and remarkable experience. Where can you test out your strengths?

Two main locations best suited for glacier hiking are Solheimajokull Glacier and the Skaftafell area. Solheimajokull glacier, the fourth largest glacier in Iceland, is easily reachable from the capital, Reykjavik. It's part of the giant Mýrdalsjökull ice cap and fascinates with its constantly changing appearance and the breathtaking view of the South Coast that it opens up to its visitors who climb it. 

Skaftafell area, or nature reserve, is first famous for its diverse nature and panoramic views that your camera will love. But Skaftafell also is known to be a great place for hiking; whether it's regular or ice climbing, the region is ready to provide you with an adventure. The reason some of the top tours in Iceland that include glacier climbing are in Skaftafell is because it's situated in Vatnajökull National Park, which also includes the largest glacier in Europe – Vatnajökull. 

Glacier guide hiking on Vatnajokull glacier

Among the top tours in Iceland that are suitable for beginners who want to have a full experience of being in the "land of fire and ice," then you'll be glad to know that there's an easy Solheimajokull glacier hike for beginners. During this trip, you'll have a chance to explore the glacier with an experienced guide who will ensure you're safe the whole walk and will tell you all about the alluring glacier. Don't be surprised to notice black volcanic ash and sand on your way, as this glacier tongue comes from Mýrdalsjökull and Katla volcano. 

Skaftafell is another convenient location that awaits all kinds of visitors with some of the best tours in Iceland. From easy glacier hike in Vatnajökull National Park to moderate glacier climbing in Falljökull glacier for hiking enthusiasts. Another enjoyable and interesting way to get to know glaciers is by going ice caving. That's right; you can explore the ins and outs of a glacier by first going on a hike in Falljökull and later "investigating" its insides. This is what awaits you in Skaftafell blue ice cave and glacier hike tour.

happy people on glacier hiking tour

Glacier hiking guided tour in Iceland

Wondering what is the one best tour in Iceland that’s considered great in its monetary and sentimental value? One of these could be a glacier hiking and ice climbing tour in Skaftafell, where just in one day, you’ll learn secrets about glaciers at Falljökull glacier. Your adventure will take approximately 6.5 hours and include thorough preparation, a wonderful hike to the glacier, tasting its meltwater, and learning some useful ice-climbing techniques. This is a perfect opportunity to get some true glacial extreme!

Ice climbing on Sólheimajökull Glacier in Iceland

THE BEST VALUE VERSION OF A GLACIER HIKING TOUR

Some top-rated Iceland tours also include multi-day trips. More time means more special activities and unforgettable memories. Especially in Iceland, where various experiences await you in every corner. Curious to know what you can do here in a couple of days? 

One of the best tours in Iceland that ensures you’ll see the finest of Iceland is a 4-day tour to Golden Circle with ice caving in Vatnajokull Glacier. During your trip, you’ll go along the famous Golden Circle route and see its jewels: Thingvellir National Park, Gullfoss waterfall, and Geysir geothermal area. Among many unforgettable views, you’ll also explore Vatnajokull Glacier by going on a hike and later entering the ice cave. You’ll close the tour with a bang by going on a chase for the Northern Lights.   

The best tours to do in Iceland also include the award-winning 5-day tour from Iceland’s West to East. During this trip, you’ll have plenty of time to see the most famous Icelandic places as well as wander through its unseen paths. One of the main attractions during this tour is Snæfellsnes Peninsula where you can find Snæfellsjökull – a glacier-caped volcano, basalt cliffs, and black sand beaches. Next on your agenda follows the exploration of the Golden Circle route and, of course, the hike to Vatnajökull Glacier and its ice cave. So prepare yourself and your camera for an unforgettable week in Iceland!   

6. THE FAMOUS GOLDEN CIRCLE: GULLFOSS, GEYSIR & THINGVELLIR NATIONAL PARK

Great Geysir geyser in Iceland

Once you start planning your trip to Iceland, one of the first things you learn about is the Golden Circle. This legendary route includes Thingvellir National Park, Gullfoss waterfall, and Geysir geothermal area. These three special attractions have an interesting history and are the perfect locations for your first encounter with Iceland. 

To first get familiar with Iceland’s past, go to Þingvellir National Park, where the first Parliament was founded. This place also mesmerizes with its diverse environment and the fact that this is where North American and Eurasian tectonic plates pass each other. 

Another attraction that you can’t miss on this route is the Gullfoss waterfall. This is one of the most famous waterfalls in Iceland, meeting you with two breathtaking cascades. And you can’t go off the Golden Circle without checking Geysir hot spring. Even though the Geysir is rarely active, its “neighbor” Strokkur puts on a show every five to 10 minutes. Curious to know what else awaits you here?

River at Þingvellir National Park, Iceland

The good news is that the best tours in Iceland also include several trips to the Golden Circle. One of the great ways to ensure you’ll get the most out of your trip to the area is by booking a day tour that includes all the main sights and a little bit of extra. At least this is what you can get on the Golden Circle tour with extra stops at Hveragerði geothermal town and Faxi waterfall. 

If you enjoy slow mornings and wish to explore the best of Iceland later in the day, then you can do so by going on a Golden Circle afternoon tour. This is a great choice in case you also wish to spend your night looking for Northern Lights, another must-do thing in the land of fire and ice.

Frozen Gullfoss waterfall during winter in Iceland

THE BEST VALUE VERSION OF A GOLDEN CIRCLE TOUR

Great Geysir eruption in Iceland

The ultimate best version of the Golden Circle for the best price is without a doubt the Golden Circle and Secret Lagoon. Doing stops at all the most amazing Golden Circle highlight and ending the day with a soak in Iceland’s oldest swimming pool in a 100% natural and geothermal filled setting. The smoky area and surrounding hot springs add to the charm of bathing in a natural hot bath and the feeling is amazing. 

7. THE RING ROAD OF ICELAND – HRINGVEGURINN

Goðafoss Waterfall in Iceland

The people who organize the roads in Iceland had this almost childlike idea (seems at first) to have a full circle road going over the country and call it Road 1. This is no joke although witty.

Here is a photo to prove it :

Ring road map in Iceland

When driving the famous Ring Road you will see the best Iceland. Many describe the feeling of driving Road 1 as entering new worlds every 10 minutes. You are driving through endless lava fields and then all of a sudden purple, lupin areas, then ashy glaciers, next moss land, and right after a steamy geothermal paradise. The fjords come in close so it feels like the mountains are hugging you and on the other side, you have the most magical ocean vista.

Landscape in Iceland

There is, it seems, no end to the diversity and everywhere you look exquisite waterfalls are gushing from the hills and animals are playing in the fields. The best way to do the Ring road is taking your time. Anything less than 4 days will make the experience unsatisfactory.

Skógafoss waterfall in South Coast of Iceland

There are so many stops to make along the Ring Road and so many great tours that you can meet on location for. There is an exceptional glacier hiking tour on the south coast, there are hiking tours going into the magical highlands, whale watching tours in charming little fishing villages, Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon, waterfalls exploring, hot springs to be visited, hot spring bathing and oh so much more!

THE BEST VALUE VERSION OF A RING ROAD TOUR

Reynisfjara black sand beach and basalt column cave in Iceland

The best value Ring Road tour will have to be the 6 Days around Iceland Adventure. This conclusion is due to a few factors:

  1. With a guide who knows the places inside out you will know what you are actually looking at, get insider tips and info and really get to know the place.
  2. Will does not miss out on anything – skipping that “aah maybe next time then”.
  3. The cost is only around 30,000 ISK a day with accommodation and breakfast included, all the driving, a guide the whole time, super cool sights, whale watching and glacier hiking with expert extra guides.
  4. You can look out the window the whole time, no need to stare at the road.
  5. No risk of getting lost, the guide knows the way. Precious time can be wasted while trying to find the right spots.

The more time you have in Iceland, the luckier you are to explore its fascinating paths and breathtaking attractions. During the 8-day Ring Road tour in Iceland, adjusted according to the season, you’ll get to see different parts of Iceland, starting from its capital, Reykjavik. Golden Circle, Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon, East Fjords, and cities like Dalvik and Reykholt are among the numerous places you’ll travel to on your trip. 

If you’re also curious to find out what are some of the impressive spots near Iceland, then on this 9-day tour around Iceland, you’ll first explore and learn the fascinating history of the Westman Islands and later continue your acquaintance with Iceland.

Starting from Reykjavik, you’ll head to South Iceland, continuing your way around the country, seeing the main attractions, and spending time in remote areas such as Westfjords. The choices of spectacular places to visit in Iceland are limitless, so whatever your preferences are, get ready for one of the best tours in Iceland!

Dalvik fishing village in Iceland

8. SOUTH COAST TOURS

There’s no surprise that the best tours in Iceland also include the grand South Coast. It’s recognized as one of the most beautiful and popular destinations on the land as it’s filled with stunning waterfalls such as Seljalandsfoss and Skógafoss, alluring Reynisfjara Black Sand Beach, breathtaking Reynisdrangar Basalt Sea Stacks that are found near the southernmost point in Iceland – the town of Vík in Mýrdalur.

And these are only a few attractions you’ll see on the South Coast. It’s also a great destination if you don’t have much time but want to feel the diversity of Icelandic nature. What makes it possible is the fact that on your way through the South Coast, you’ll find glaciers, mountains, volcanos, and waterfalls. If you're keen to experience the wonders of the South Coast at your own pace, why not explore our range of self-drive tours.

Tourist posing for a photo on Diamond beach

Every time we head out to look for a new adventure, especially in a foreign country, we want our outing to be special. To answer your question on the best tours in Iceland that are primarily focused on South Coast, check out the award-winning Iceland’s South Shore tour that’ll take you from Reykjavik to the South, where you’ll visit Sólheimajökull glacier, walk along the shores, of the black sand beach, make a stop at the beautiful town of Vík, and get to witness the greatness of Skógafoss waterfall. 

And in case you miss some more action, you can add a glacier hike to your agenda with a South Coast tour, including waterfalls and glacier hikes. During this trip, you’ll walk through a 700-year-old glacier Sólheimajökull, surrounded by spectacular views.

THE BEST VALUE VERSION OF SOUTH COAST TOUR

Basalt columns on Reynisfjara black sand beach

Wondering how much you can see off the South Coast in a couple of days? You’ll be pleasantly surprised to know that it’s possible not only to see the finest attractions of the South Coast but also to have time to see other important and impressive sights. 

On a  2-day South Coast and Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon tour, you’ll see the main South Coast attractions as well as spend a whole day finding out why Iceland is called the land of ice, by exploring Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon, the tongue of the famous Vatnajökull ice cap. 

And if you’re keen on having an ultimate Icelandic experience, then a 3-day South Coast and Golden Circle tour should be up your alley. During this journey, you’ll see the most important attractions, such as Thingvellir National Park, Gullfoss waterfall, and Geysir geothermal area. You’ll master glacier hiking at Vatnajokull Glacier and get to enter the ice cave.

9. NORTHERN LIGHTS EXPLORING IN WINTER TIME

A great wonder of the natural world, the Northern Lights draws visitors from all over the globe. Gaze in awe at this cosmic ballet in the night sky! This magical smorgasbord of light and color is only visible near the North Pole, making Iceland a prime location.

Northern Lights tour in Iceland

I have seen these bizarre exceptional lights like a million times BUT every time they get me. All my life I have lived under these dancing dream-like waves in the sky but still, I stop the car if they show up, still I run out of my house if I stop them but enough about me now it’s your turn! You simply must, at least once in your life stand under these breathtakingly beautiful lights that dance so magically in the dark winter sky. Joining a Northern lights tour will A) take you to a smart and well thought place to see them B) give you the chance to listen to experts explain everything about them C) leave the planning to someone else D) you won’t get lost driving to the middle of nowhere on a dark Icelandic winter night.

Bright Northern Lights in Iceland

Some of these tours have great add-ons and you can take so many different types of tours. You can go see the Northern Lights from Reykjavík by boat or join a Northern lights Minibus tour, where you will not only get the best shot at seeing them, but also get free photos! You can also explore the Northern Lights far away from the city light by joining one of our longer multi-day tours in winter, you can go on bus tours and you can do private Northern Light tours when budget allows. 

Your options are endless, don’t miss out!

THE BEST VALUE VERSION OF A NORTHERN LIGHTS TOUR

Amazing Northern Lights in Iceland - November 2017

 

For a day tour this question is easily answered, the best value one night tour will be the Northern Lights Super Jeep tour as it includes not only Northern Lights hunting but also a trip via Super Jeep which gives you such a bigger chance to see the lights as you can go where smaller cars can’t. Then, there is the added wow factor including hot cocoa, cookies, and a taste of the extraordinary Brennivín snaps.

In case you’re looking for a longer adventure, then spend your holidays exploring the South Coast of Iceland and find some of the coolest places to see the Northern Lights on this 5-day tour through the South Coast and Northern Lights.   

This is a tour I would recommend to my best friends as well as my grandma!

10. BLUE LAGOON

Blue Lagoon in Iceland

Now we really couldn’t talk about Iceland without mentioning the famous Blue lagoon, could we? The Blue Lagoon is for many the first thing they hear about in Iceland. This grand hot pool of magically blue water has become a symbol of Icelandic purity, energy, and beauty. Located in rugged mossy-covered lava it synchronizes beautifully with its white silica mud and sharp light blue colors.

Soaking in there gets your skin covered with silica and algae which doctors have proven works wonders on your skin. Bathing in the lagoon actually started as an experiment of a man with intense psoriasis and it healed him!

Man enjoying Blue Lagoon hot pool in Iceland

Whatever people might think about this super popular location, be it touristy or not, you simply can’t miss it. And the easiest way to make sure that you won’t is by booking one of the many Blue Lagoon tours. The Blue Lagoon is a great choice to get familiar with Iceland either by going there first, right after you land, as it’s located near Keflavík International Airport, or by keeping it as a treat after a long day filled with various activities and sightseeing. 

Imagine spending your day going through the famous Golden Circle and later soaking in a beautiful Blue Lagoon. By booking a tour that includes a trip to this geothermal spa, you’ll save yourself from having to think about how to reach it yourself and stand in lines to get in.

Blue Lagoon hot geothermal pool in Iceland

THE BEST VALUE VERSION OF A BLUE LAGOON TOUR

What are some crazy but best tours in Iceland that include a trip to Blue Lagoon? The famous Golden Circle and Blue Lagoon tour will ensure you get to see Iceland's legendary highlights, including Thingvellir National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage gem, Gullfoss Waterfall, and the Geysir geothermal area. After a fun and breathtaking afternoon, you'll finish your day at Blue Lagoon, getting a proper rest with some beauty procedures included. 

And in case you're looking for a more adventurous version of a day trip, then why not try a tour to Meradalir Volcano and Blue Lagoon? On this trip, you'll get to hike up to the Meradalir volcano eruption site, where you'll get to witness Icelandic seismic activity and discover why it's called the land of fire.  

11. HIKING AND TREKKING TOUR

While many of us are familiar with the concept of “hiking” and “trekking,” some of us still might feel confused about the differences between these two words. This all becomes quite tricky as, in everyday life, they’re both used as synonyms. While in a simple sense, both hiking and trekking mean going on a rather elaborate walk, there are quite a few differences between these two activities.

Landmannalaugar hiking trail

While hikes take place on established trails and can take up to one day (the usual distance from 4 to 50 kilometers), treks are done to reach some destination that takes a person through various off-road paths and can take up at least a few days, the distance starting from 50 kilometers. Because of this, the preparation for hiking and trekking also differs. If you’re curious to find out more about hiking and trekking, continue to read here

Curious to know what are some of the best trails for hiking and trekking in Iceland? Laugavegur hiking trail, located in Southern Iceland, is recognized as one of the most scenic and dramatic trails. This trail is also special because it links the Landmannalaugar area and Thórsmörk, a nature reserve. 

Now that you know the difference between hiking and trekking and feel that hiking interests you more, a one-day hiking tour at Landmannalaugar would be a great choice. It’s popular for its diverse and picturesque surroundings, unrolling in different colors: from black to green, red, or yellow. 

If you’re dreaming of wandering through an area that looks like no other, grab your backpack and join the Kerlingarfjöll hiking tour. This volcanic mountain range, which is situated practically in the middle of Iceland, is unforgettable because of the number of geothermal valleys and glacial rivers. And, of course, you’ll be mesmerized by vivid orange and brown colors that will lead you along the way.

Tourist enjoying a view on Laugevur trail

It’s quite easy to fall in love with Iceland when discovering it on foot. In case you’d like to challenge yourself and spend more time being outdoors with just the mere essentials, then keep in mind that the best tours in Iceland include a 4-day Laugavegur trekking tour. On this journey, you’ll get to find out why the Laugavegur trek made it to the list of National Geographics’ 20 Best Hikes in The World.

You can also discover the remote areas of Icelandic highlands in just a few days by going on a 3-day trekking tour in Landmannalaugar. During this trip, you’ll find yourself near Frostastaðavatn Lake, check out the Ljótipollur volcano crater and its waters, and see Mount Brennisteinsalda. And these are just a few of the many attractions you’ll get to witness on the trip. 

If that doesn’t sound enough, prepare yourself for a 4-day hut-to-hut trekking tour. This trip is perfect for those who have always wanted to see the array of different Icelandic landscapes with their own eyes, as during your trek, you’ll pass craters, hot springs, mountains, and many more spectacular attractions. Besides this, you’ll get to try Iceland’s authentic huts that will only strengthen the adventurous spirit!

THE BEST VALUE VERSION OF HIKING TOURS

Hiking is one of the greatest ways to explore and soak in the beauty of Iceland, as it has a number of hidden natural wonders. Many of these are in Vestmannaeyjar, which you can visit during a tour to Icelandic Highlands and Westman Islands. On this 3-day hike, you’ll have the opportunity to explore the fascinating sites of the Westman Islands and learn its volcanic history. After you’re back, you’ll continue your trip to Fjaðrárgljúfur Canyon, famous for its picturesque views. More great sites will await you once you reach Mount Laki.

People enjoying the scenery near Laki volcano

Iceland will keep you wanting more, so for those who already anticipate that, a 4-day tour through South Coast and Landmannalaugar awaits you. Get to see all the main Icelandic attractions, Thingvellir National Park, the great Geysir, and the famous Gullfoss waterfall, visit stunning Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon, walk through Reynisfjara Black Sand Beach, and make your way through the hikers’ paradise – Landmannalaugar.

THE BEST VALUE VERSION OF TREKKING TOURS

As challenging trekking might seem, it also provides you with a great opportunity to experience Icelandic nature to the fullest. On a 6-day trekking tour on the Laugavegur trail, you’ll make your way through lava fields, volcanoes, mountains, glaciers, and geothermal hot springs. And you’ll get the opportunity to really connect with nature by staying in convenient huts.

12. WHALE WATCHING TOURS

Whale watching in Iceland

Whales you can see in many places in the world but I am not sure that they play as big of a role in people’s lives as they have done in Icelander’s lives for centuries.
You might have heard about Icelanders hunting whales, as they are considered a delicacy and a real treat but the nation is split in two. There are the ones that eat them and then there are the ones that LOVE them.

Whale watching is how you can join the second group!

Whale watching tour in Iceland

This is one of the most affordable activity you can do in Iceland, perfect for a couple of hours and can be done right from Reykjavík’s harbor

If you are looking to see more variety though, we suggest you head North. Dalvík is becoming THE place to spot whales and I swear they are showing up to show off! On a whale watching tour in Dalvik you’ll have the opportunity to see the humpback whale, minke whales, and white-beaked dolphins. Seeing a whale up close and personal in their natural habitat is an experience you will never ever forget!

 

Whale Watching in Dalvik, Iceland | Summer 2017

THE BEST VALUE VERSION OF A WHALE WATCHING TOUR

Thinking of ways you can make your trip to Iceland even more unforgettable? Well, choosing a whale watching tour will surely make your day exciting. But what if you could make it even better by choosing combo tours that include other activities? 

If you’re a true animal lover, then why not choose a whale watching and puffin tour near Reykjavik? On this day, you’ll get to witness the cuteness of the famous puffins as well as witness the grand whales. And if you’re keen on spending your day taking as much as possible from Iceland, then you should go on a Golden Circle and whale watching trip and come back with a head full of remarkable memories and a crossed-out checklist of things to see in Iceland. 

And in case that list includes the chase of the Northern Lights, then know that you’ll also be covered as long as you make your way to whale watching and the Northern Lights tour that will take you to the capital’s old harbor to see the whales and then bring you to the countryside for the Aurora Borealis show.

Those who wish for a short but intense and surely interesting whale sighting should try out RIB boat whale watching from Reykjavik or Dalvik. It’s a perfect opportunity to see these giants up close and admire Icelandic nature from the water. 


Which one of these trips would you like to try?   

 

Whale watching tour from a boat in Iceland

 

 

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