Golden Circle express afternoon tour to the most popular attractions in Iceland, see Strokkur erupting boiling water skywards at Geysir, feel the power of Gullfoss waterfalland discover the unique geology and history at Þingvellir.
Suitable for most people in fair condition.
Meet on location
Guide to client ratio
Small Group Experience
Þingvellir National Park (Thingvellir)
Geysir Hot Spring Area
Pick-up & drop off from Reykjavík
English Speaking Tour Guide
Golden Circle Tour
Free WiFi on Board Your Bus
This minibus tour is an express version of the Golden Circle – giving you a great small group experience of the three most popular attractions in Iceland.
You travel through beautiful scenery to Þingvellir National Park (Thingvellir). This is one of the most incredible geological wonders of the world and also the place where Icelandic history was made. The Icelandic Parliament, Alþingi, was founded here in the year 930, making it the oldest continuously existing parliament in the world. The Eurasian and North American tectonic plates have been slowly edging apart creating a stunning rift valley which runs right through Þingvellir. The rugged cliff of this valley forms a dramatic and atmospheric backdrop to the place where the Law Speaker, the supreme Icelandic Chieftain would stand to proclaim the law. A flag marks the law rock (lögberg) where the greatest decisions in the history of the Icelandic people were declared. What an incredible photo opportunity!
Next on the agenda is the Geysir geothermally active area. Great Geysir, the spouting hot spring whose fame gave us the English word ‘geyser´ to describe this activity, is inactive nowadays. You will see Strokkur, a nearby erupting hot spring which erupts huge volumes of superheated water every 8 to 10 minutes. These boiling water spouts often soar to 25 m but sometimes the scalding jets will be propelled 40 m skywards. Watching a geyser erupt is always a stunning and incredible moment.
The final highlight is the most popular waterfall in Iceland, the magnificent Gullfoss (the “Golden Falls). The river flowing through Gullfoss is the mighty Hvítá (the White River), this river originates at Langjökull glacier, the 2nd largest glacier in Iceland. Feel the spray in the air as the thundering torrent is forced through the canyon, dropping 32 m in two stages, pivoting as it does so. You will see plenty of golden hued spray around Gullfoss, the Golden Falls!
The tour returns to Reykjavík around 19:00 – please bear in mind that the weather conditions in Iceland can sometimes cause delays.
Pick up is at 12:00 pm from your hotel or a nearby meeting point in Reykjavík. Picking everyone up can take up to 30 minutes, your patience is much appreciated. Available pick-up points: Arctic Adventures’s pick-up list.
What to bring: Warm layers, weatherproof top layer, headwear, gloves, scarves and hiking or sturdy shoes.
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. We do not rent gear from locations, it must be ordered in advance.
The Golden Circle is a name for the very popular sightseeing route that connects Reykjavík with Þingvellir National Park (Thingvellir), Geysir Hot Springs and Gullfoss Waterfall. We offer several Golden Circle trips that combine sightseeing with some of our adventure tours.
Yes, we offer the tour Golden Circle small group tour which is basically the Golden Circle with some extra stops. This tour is focusing on sightseeing and the history of Iceland. Our stops are Gullfoss waterfall, Þingvellir national park (home to one of the first parliaments of the world), Geysir hot spring area and the historic Skálholt cathedral. View Golden Circle Tours.
Disclaimer All our tours are undertaken on the responsibility of its participants. Arctic Adventures does not assume any responsibility for accidents that are caused by its customers or can be traced to their own actions. Participants have to sign a waiver before undertaking all trips stating that they realize that all outdoor activities carry an inherent risk.
Golden Circle Afternoon Tour | Average rating: 4.6/5 based on 28 customer reviews
"Golden Circle Afternoon" | By
Athena Toliopoulos 18/07/2018
Zachary was an amazing guide and was so informative. He has a great personality and was so much fun to be around! We even saw him two days later picking up other tour participants and we said hello. We both enjoyed seeing all of the sights on this tour and learned so much about Iceland. Definitely a fun small afternoon tour worth the time and money!! Thank you for such a great experience!
Nicole and Athena
"Great Tour - Uncomfortable ride" | By
M G Moharam 13/07/2018
Excellent tour and tour guide. Wish that the stops were longer but I understand that was the express version.
However, the bus was extremely uncomfortable. Seats are small and too close to each other. (I am 81 kg and 178cm). The bus appears to be very old.
"Golden Circle" | By
Jo-Ann Zuk 16/07/2018
Our guide Zachary? Was very good. The weather was awful and unfortunately we did not bring warm enough clothing, so we were quite uncomfortable during the tour. This was no one’s fault but unfortunately it put a damper on our experience. Apparently Iceland is having it’s worst summer ever.
"Golden Circle" | By
Chris Birkhead 16/07/2018
Despite the poor weather our guide was upbeat and cheerful. It was nice that we could do the tour in an afternoon and early evening and handy to be dropped off at our ship.
"Fabulous Company" | By
Runa P. 14/07/2018
We booked two different tours with AA. South Coast with Becca was informative, comfortable, and fun. Access to phone charging was a bonus. Whale Watching plus Golden Circle was much the same except Golden Circle needs more time. We did have a problem catching the tour bus for whales as it was not made clear that AA was NOT picking us up but that it was a subcontract for Special Tours Whale Watching and they would transport us to the boat. However the AA staff quickly resolved the problem and made it correct. Heimur was the perfect guide for the Golden tour, even giving us an extra treat of a stop at a working dairy farm with ice cream shop and a chance to pet Icelandic horses. We will use this company again when we return to Reykjavik.
"Good tour" | By
Sue Bolton 27/06/2018
Fantastic country with wonderful landscapes and amazing sights like the waterfall. The itinery was fine and covered many things in the time available. The guide however did not speak loudly enough for everyone on the tour to hear him. The bus was very cramped. I still really enjoyed it though for the splendor of your beautiful country and we were blessed with amazingly clear and sunny weather.
"Easy no stress planning" | By
This tour company was great. I did 3 tours with them, the Golden afternoon, the landmannalauger hike, and the blue ice trip. It was nice to choose the tours and not have to worry about planning out the logistics of getting to the trailheads. On the Landmannalauger (I think I spelled that wrong) tour, Matt was a great guide. He was very nurturing and making sure we applied sunblock and ate to ensure we were comfortable. Matt provided great stories of elves, trolls, and Icelandic culture. On the Blue Ice tour Ben and Kyle were great fun. They explained the anchor systems to me so, that I could be double sure they were safe. They taught us ice climbing techniques that I have long wanted to learn and provided an all around good time. It’s great to be with guides that can make you laugh when you are in unknown terrain during intermittent rain and snow storms. Overall wonderful tour company and worth the price.!
"Great guide" | By
It is really intreasting and richful tour.
"Golden Circle" | By
Traveling with my grandson, had rented a car in north, coming to end of our trip and still hadn’t done Golden Circle. I felt it was obligatory, I don’t like bus tours, so Arctic Explorers seemed to offer perfect afternoon tour to get it done!
To my surprise I really enjoyed it. ‘E’ our guide was terrific. We had just enough time at Gullfoss to enjoy under falls and see around, did Geysir with enough time to ‘snack up’, talked to some clever Icelandic ponies, who had landed great pr job. Then off to Pingvellir, which was beautiful and the best part of the tour... a place I will re-visit.
I liked the small bus in a small group. I think our guide E, really made the tour interesting and I will recommend both Arctic Explorers and short Golden Circle to anyone visiting Iceland.
"Golden Circle Tour" | By
All went well except the weather.
Obviously no one can do much about it!!
However carrying a few raincoats in the bus could help tourists encounter unexpected weather at times.
"Excellent tour guide" | By
Sinead Fallon 31/01/2018
Bjork was our tour guide and she was just fantastic. Her knowledge and humour were great she was friendly and professional. But most of all she was very caring. After a bad fall during the tour, she did everything humanly possible to assist me. She was excellent and I am very grateful.
"Would have been a great tour with better weather" | By
Meena Mehta 08/02/2018
Our tour guide was awesome. The weather was not cooperating so parts of the tour were definitely more challenging to enjoy. For the times the weather was somewhat cooperative, the beauty of the landscapes were terrific to view and enjoy. At the end, we got to feed some "candy" to a few Icelandic horses and that was a terrific treat to experience. All in all, it was a good tour despite the weather issues. I would definitely recommend it to anyone wanting to see the major sites of the Golden Circle.
"Highly likely. Guides were awesome!" | By
Highly likely. Guides were awesome!
"Golden Circle Express" | By
Nuala Morris 23/02/2018
Excellent guide and tour. Very knowledgeable. Would not hesitate to recommend Artic Adventures.
"Afternoon golden circle tour" | By
ANIKO BIBER 04/03/2018
Thank you for the great experience!
We took the afternoon tour because we were supposed to land in the morning. unfortunately, the plane was late so we got to reykjavik at last minute to join the tour.
our tour guide was great. gave us lots of interesting information and showed us around. pointed out the historic facts about places we visited and gave tips how to take pictures.
the only disappointment was that the northern light tour was cancelled because of the bad weather. we should start using the technology to be able to see the northern lights though the cloud cover :) maybe a good idea for kick starter?
definitely recommend the tour.
"Amazing Sights & Great Fun" | By
Loved the way the tour was organised. We were safely escorted by a knowledgeable tour guide to our destinations which was fun and easy-peasy. No tough terrain to negotiate. And Icelandic nature is just stunning!
"Great Tour Guide" | By
Daniel G 16/03/2018
We had a fantastic tour guide who was very informative and accommodating. We made the regular stops on the golden circle and even had some time for a quick extra stop that made our day and tour more enjoyable. We had plenty of chances to look around for souvenirs and to get food. I would recommend the company and our guide for anyone looking for a great tour.
"Golden Circle afternoon tour" | By
The timing of this tour was ideal for us since we landed early in the morning. We underestimated how windy Iceland can be and froze a little bit going through this tour! Overall, the sights were beautiful. I just wish our guide gave us a little more information throughout the drive. I would recommend this for anyone trying to squeeze in as much as they can during a short trip to Reykjavik!
"The Golden Circle tour" | By
Dariusz Myszkiewicz 25/03/2018
One of the best tours in Iceland.Beautifull views mountains volcanos waterfalls geysers.Must see places. Defo will recommend to anyone.
"The tour was great" | By
Helen Hendley 28/02/2018
The tour was great and gave us just enough time at each stop.
"I took three tours with Arctic Adventures and all three were fabulous" | By
Judith Gilbert 16/03/2018
I took three tours with Arctic Adventures and all three were fabulous. The sights were awesome, incredible, and the guides were fantastic. They all told so much about Iceland - so much more than just sightseeing. On the Golden Circle Tour I learned so much about geology and the seismic activity in Iceland. On the Aurora tour I learned a tremendous amount about the lights and cosmic activity. And on the two-day South Coast tour I learned so much about glaciers and waterfalls. The guides were great, friendly, polite, courteous, and very safe drivers. Thank you so so much, Arctic Adventures - and especially to my guides Aevar, Klemmi and Zacho - for making this truly an extraordinary experience, one that I will never forget.
"the tour itself is amazing" | By
Maria de Lourdes Moreno 03/03/2018
Our guide was kind but with his accent I did not understand almost anything that he said. He only gave us 20 minutes for Gulfoss, which I think was not enough.. I think the time spent in each place can be distributed better. Although, the tour itself is amazing, due to the magnificent places.. your tours were great, this is just for you to optimize your service..
thank you, I had an overall amazing experience with you...
"Golden Circle Tour" | By
James Derrett 31/03/2018
A great way to see some of the highlights when staying in Reykjavik. Our guide was Icelandic and very knowledgeable. We had plenty of time at Gullfoss and Geysir although the time at Pingvellir was a little rushed. Our guide also stopped so we could buy food and pet the Icelandic horses and we went to Efstidalur as an extra stop to see the calves and buy delicious icecream.
"Pleasant and Responsive" | By
Abby Heaslet 02/04/2018
The tour guide was very knowledgable and pleasant. He gladly took pictures for us and shared stories about both the tour components and his personal experiences growing up in Iceland. Additionally, Arctic Adventures was extremely responsive and easy to work with. We had a very hard time getting answers from vendors in Iceland, but not Arctic Adventures. They were great to work with and provided a great tour.
"Good tour" | By
"An excellent tour" | By
Janet Burtenshaw 11/04/2018
We were recommended this afternoon Golden Circle Tour by a friend who had been on it. Our guide, Tomas, was excellent and made the tour really interesting.
The minibus was very comfortable and it was nice being with a smaller group rather than on a big coach.
We had enough time at each stop to see everything and all the stops were excellent. Thanks to Tomas for doing an extra little stop at the lovely horses which my daughter really enjoyed.
We would highly recommend this tour to everyone.
"Fantastic guide" | By
Fantastic guide - she was amazing. Lots of positive exciting stories and positive energi :-)
"Hop on - Hop off a service?" | By
I think it would be beneficial to have a hop on / hop off service. I wanted to spend more time at some parks, but I knew we were limited in time. When I did the northern lights, there were two Arctic Adventure trucks in my tour and I think some people wanted to stay, while others wanted to leave and it would have been useful at the Golden Circle too. All the buses have WiFi, so you can easily alert people when it’s time to leave, if there’s an option for anothe bus, etc. that people could use via app.