Embark on a journey to iconic sites on the Golden Circle and a thrilling hunt for the Northern Lights!
Join our Minibus Golden Circle tour to visit the most famous places in Iceland: powerful Gullfoss, the most popular waterfall in Iceland, Thingvellir National Park, where tectonic plates collide, and the erupting geysers in Haukadalur Valley. Once darkness falls, we take to the roads on a hunt for the glittering Northern Lights.
Your guide will also take free photographs of you so you can keep the memory alive!
This minibus trip is a combination of our very popular afternoon Golden Circle tour and an evening Northern Lights tour. Book this tour to save on both!
Sept. - Apr.
~ 11 hours
Meet on location
Departs from Overwrite
- Tour highlights
- Small Group Experience
- Þingvellir National Park (Thingvellir)
- Gullfoss Waterfall
- Geysir Hot Spring Area
- Northern Lights Hunt
- Pick-up & Drop off
- Minibus Transport
- Golden Circle Tour
- Northern Lights Tour
- Northern Lights Photos
- Certified Guides
- English Speaking Tour Guide
- Free WiFi on Board Your Bus
The Golden Circle
Thingvellir National Park
Travel through Iceland’s beautiful countryside to Þingvellir National Park, the impressive site of Iceland´s historic parliament, the Alþingi. Founded in 930 c.e., it’s the oldest parliament in the world still in existence. On a sunny day, you can stand beside the law rock and look out over the valley. This incredible UNESCO World Heritage Site is also one of the great geological wonders of the world. The rift valley is the result of the ever-shifting Eurasian and North American tectonic plates, slowly moving apart over eons.
Geysir Geothermal Area
Next on the agenda is the Geysir hot spring area. The Great Geysir is no longer active, but Strokkur, a nearby erupting hot spring, spouts huge jets of superheated water every eight to ten minutes. These scalding expulsions often soar skyward to 25 m and sometimes even up to 40 m.
Visit the magnificent Gullfoss Waterfall (the Golden Falls). The river that flows to the falls is known as Hvítá (the White River) and originates at Langjökull glacier. The roar thunders down through the rugged canyon, dropping 32 m in two stages. You’ll likely catch sight of the golden-hued spray that lent this waterfall its name, and, maybe if you’re lucky, a rainbow – remember to make a wish!
Next, you’re dropped off downtown in Reykjavík, close to cafés and restaurants where you have time to enjoy supper. You will be picked up outside your hotel for your northern lights tour at 20:30 (8:30 p.m.).
We’ll drive you out to the best, secret spots in the countryside to see the aurora borealis in the dark sky. The moment when you spot their shimmering, jewel-bright colors is always awe-inspiring and magical. The most common colors are green and yellow, with occasional white and blue. Less common are violet, purple and rose northern lights. Deep red auroras, the rarest in the world, are more common in Iceland than anywhere else. Unfortunately, since the lights are a natural phenomenon, we can’t really guarantee that you’ll see the lights, but our guides do monitor the aurora and weather forecasts closely to increase your chances.
Onlookers have been fascinated by auroras for millennia, and it was only in the last few decades that scientists discovered they are caused by the interaction between the Sun and Earth’s magnetic field. As charged particles from the sun, known as solar wind, enter the earth’s atmosphere, they start to collide with gaseous particles and manifest as these glittering lights.
The tour returns to Reykjavík around midnight, when you’ll be dropped off at or very near your hotel.
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 boots or sturdy shoes. Spikes which fit on your boots are useful in icy conditions if you have them. Please keep in mind that food and drinks are not included, however, we will stop at a café/restaurant where you can purchase snacks or drinks if you like.
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.
As the success of the northern lights tour is heavily dependent on weather conditions, we reserve the right to cancel the northern lights part of the tour until 18:15 on the day of the tour if the aurora forecast is not looking good. If the tour goes ahead and no northern lights are seen we offer clients the chance to join another evening’s departure free of charge upon availability. Note that you need to contact us to re-book.
This is a great question. We ask all participants to be ready from the start of the pickup time indicated. This is because you may well be the first pick up of the day. Please be at your assigned location at the start time that you chose when booking the tour.
Here you should wait for your guide.
Have your email and phone number listed with us so we can contact you if we run into any trouble finding you.
View our pick-up locations in Reykjavík.
Before and during activities on the multi-day tours consumption of alcohol is prohibited. If we suspect that a participant is intoxicated, we will prohibit them from joining the activity.
After the activities of the day are finished, you are welcome to have a drink and relax.
Yes, we do. Langjökull Ice Cave is a magical experience, the tour has no minimum age and is a wonderful option for the whole family. Whale Watching with our partner company Elding has been a favourite with families traveling with young children, these guys have a great success rate in seeing whales (upwards of 98% in the summertime).
Another option would be the Landmannalaugar Safari on this tour you get to explore parts of the Icelandic highlands and bathe in natural hot springs. Most of our jeep tours are also suitable for children over the age of 6 years old. If you would like a nice and relaxing experience we would also recommend the Golden Circle & Secret Lagoon tour.
Your safety is our number one priority! Keeping this in mind, Arctic Adventures reserves the right to adjust the itinerary and/or take different routes depending on conditions. Please read more information in our cancellation policy.
Yes, there is a specially trained and certified guide on each of our tours. The only exception to this is for our self-drive tours.
All of our tours are guided in English.
No, for all your questions and concerns you would need to contact our customer service.
The standard in Iceland is 230V and 50Hz and we use F-type power sockets and plugs, so you might have to bring an adaptor if you are visiting from UK, USA, Canada or other countries using a different voltage, Hz or plugs.
Our tours are split into four different categories that help participants to understand what to expect from the tour. The categories are Easy, Moderate, Challenging and Demanding. Each tour is rated making it easier to find tours that suit you.
For further information about the difficulty ratings and descriptions.
We’ve partnered with the Kolviður Fund in a new carbon offsetting program, which passengers can select to participate in at the time of booking.
The Kolviður Fund is the oldest, most respected carbon offsetting program in Iceland. With your support, one tree will be planted in special Kolviður forests in Iceland to carbon offset your tour with us.
Kolviður forests are strategically planted to absorb the maximum amount of CO2 and the forests are protected for a minimum of 60 years. During their lifetime the trees absorb carbon and store it in their root system, trunk, and branches. Trees also prevent soil erosion and maintain storage of carbon in the soil.
The Northern Lights are natural phenomena and we unfortunately cannot promise you will see them. Their appearance depends upon atmospheric and weather conditions.
For more information on the Northen Lights, please have a look at our Northern Lights information.
Unfortunately, there isn’t just one simple answer to this question.
There isn’t just one single setting for your camera that ensures great photos. But if you have manual options, you are probably best served with experimenting with various combinations of ISO, aperture, and exposure settings. As a rule of thumb, ISO setting between 800 and 3200, aperture between f/2.8 and f/5.6, and shutter speed at between 15 seconds and 30 seconds have proven effective.
A good thing to keep in mind, ISO setting between 800 and 3200, aperture between f/2.8 and f/5.6, and shutter speed between 15 seconds and 30 seconds have given great results.
Different combinations may give very different results. Higher ISO setting will allow you to capture faster exposures, but the downside to this might be for example grainier images.
If the shutter speed is above 15 seconds it will result in a slight star movement.
Wider angle lenses are usually more versatile in low light settings, but longer lenses give you different options for compositions. Make sure that you remove all lens filters, as they may distort images. You will probably get the best results with manual setting for infinite focal length
A refund is not available if the northern lights tour goes ahead and no northern lights are seen but we do offer you the chance to join a Northern Lights Minibus tour free of charge.
Please go to My Adventures to re-book your tour.
When Northern Lights tours are cancelled it’s usually due to unfavourable weather conditions.
In that case, your options will be to:
1. Reschedule for another day.
2. Find another tour to do and use the deposit for it.
3. Get fully refunded.
Like you might have heard, the northern lights are a pretty difficult thing to predict. You can check en.vedur.is to see the forecast and if the level is high and the skies are clear then it’s very likely that the tour is going. We do update our website’s tour departure sheet with the information at 17:00 pm the latest. If the tour is cancelled, you will receive an email from us.
If we think there is no chance at all of seeing the lights we will cancel the tour. We don’t want to bring you out and disappoint if there is no chance to see the lights.
Yes, the guide will take a photo of you with the northern lights behind you. These can be single or group photo’s and free of charge.
The Northern Lights season is said to be from late August until mid-April. However, if you want to increase your chances of seeing them, it is best to wait until the clear winter months of mid-September until March.
If luck and weather are on your side, then you will be able to see the Aurora Borealis above the inviting streets of Reykjavik. Whether you see the lights or not are dependant on two different factors. The first being the weather. If the sky is clear, no clouds, then you are halfway there to seeing the astonishing spectacle that is the Northern Lights (although light pollution can sometimes be a problem). Increased solar activity is the second half so, if these two merge together you may well be able to see the Northern Lights from Reykjavik.
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.
We offer numerous options to spice up your Golden Circle tour and to make the most of your day. Here is a list of all of some great tours.
All year around options:
Golden Circle, Super Truck and Snowmobiling
Golden Circle Small group tour
Golden Circle and Snorkeling
Golden Circle & Local Food Tour
Golden Circle and Secret Lagoon
Golden Circle and Super Jeep tour
Golden Circle and Caving
"A perfect night!"
Review of: Magical Aurora Borealis Adventure in a minibusWe were very fortunate to get an amazing show on our trip out to see the Northern Lights, and our guide Clemmy was fantastic! He gave us an overview of what actually causes the Northern Lights, which has come in handy when talking to others about our trip, and was very knowledgeable and friendly. It was clear how passionate he is about the Northern Lights (and Iceland in general), and his enthusiasm over the activity we saw only made our experience even more enjoyable! It was a great night, and I would happily recommend this tour to others.