Join us for this extraordinary tour and experience the unmatched North Icelandic ambiance!
Experience the wondrous North Iceland region, packed with many of Iceland’s remarkable natural attractions and strong arctic characteristics. Explore the furiously steaming geothermal fields and volcanic landscapes in the Mývatn area, visit some adorable and colorful villages; age-old turf houses and churches, some of the largest waterfalls in Europe and more.
Meet on location
Departs from Overwrite
- Tour highlights
- Small Group Experience
- Grábrók Crater
- Dalvík Village
- Whale Watching Tour
- Glaumbær Turf House
- Goðafoss Waterfall
- Lake Mývatn
- Dimmuborgir Lava Fields
- Námaskarð Geothermal Area
- Mývatn Nature Baths (optional extra)
- Mt. Hverfjall view
- Grjótagjá Lava Cave
- Northern Lights (in winter)
- Kaldi Microbrewery Tour
- Accommodation with Private Bathroom - 2 Nights
- Breakfast Each Morning at Your Hotel
- Pick-up & drop off from Reykjavík
- Guided Tour in Minibus
- Beer Tasting Tour
- Whale Watching Tour
- English Speaking Licensed Adventure Guide
- Free WiFi on Board Your Bus
In North Iceland, the summer has more sun and the winter has more snow. As the north is closer to the Arctic Circle, daylight is a bit longer in summer than in the south of Iceland. For the same reason, the winter is much darker with more visible Northern Lights.
You can go fishing, whale watching, geothermal bathing, and taste some famous local craft beers. In winter, you can also try to find the mystical Northern Lights.
Pick up is at 09:00 am 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.
You will return to Reykjavík around 08:00 pm approximately.
What to bring: Warm outdoor clothing, a waterproof jacket and pants, headwear and gloves. Good hiking boots are recommended.
What if I don’t own all of the necessary clothing items?
Don’t worry, you can always rent sturdy hiking boots, waterproof jacket and pants in the booking process. We do not rent these items from the location, they must be ordered in advance.
Day 1: Grábrók Crater, Hvítserkur, Akureyri, Dalvík, and Beer Tasting
We will pick you up at 09:00 am and hit the Ring Road. After a 1.5 hour drive, the day will start with a refreshing, short hike around the impressive volcanic crater, Grábrók. This crater was formed in an eruption approximately three thousand years ago and lies right next to the Ring Road.
There are two other craters formed in the same eruption that become visible once we climb Grábrók along with the seven-square-kilometer lava field that surfaced during the same volcanic event. It is a short, easy, but incredibly scenic hike and the perfect way to start our memorable adventure.
Next, we will leave the beaten path in search of a real hidden gem. After another 1.5 hour drive, we will arrive at a beautiful fjord where we will see a totally unique rock formation. Hvítserkur is a 15-meter (49 feet) high basalt stack that looks like a dragon or an elephant drinking from the water. The bizarre phenomenon stands in the water surrounded by beautiful natural scenery.
Next, you will get the chance to pamper your taste buds and discover where all the strength and energy of the Vikings comes from. We will visit a famous local microbrewery in a tiny village. The hour-long beer tasting includes a guided tour through the brewery where the owners will introduce some of Iceland’s best craft beers and explain how it is made. You will even get to keep your beer glass as a souvenir!
From here, it is only a short drive to Dalvík, a small fishing village where we will spend the night in a cozy hotel. In winter, we will look at the Northern Lights forecast every evening during the tour to try to catch a glimpse of this beautiful phenomenon.
Day 2: Goðafoss Waterfall, Lake Mývatn, Skútustaðagigar, Dimmuborgir, Víti Crater, Námaskarð, Mývatn Nature Baths, and Akureyri
The second day will start with a drive to a stunning and historic waterfall. Goðafoss, the waterfall of the gods, was named after Iceland switching from the Norse religion to Christianity. According to the legend, the person who had the right to make Christianity the official religion of Iceland threw his statues of the Norse gods into this waterfall.
The water falls from a height of 12 meters (39 feet) over a width of 30 meters (38 feet). The waterfall has a unique shape of a half circle, making it absolutely picturesque.
After a short drive, we will reach the Lake Mývatn region. Covering an area of 36.5 km2, Mývatn is the fourth largest lake in Iceland. Countless tiny islands dot its surface, surrounded by a thrilling volcanic landscape, and home to an incredibly vibrant range of flora and fauna. This area is deservedly one of Iceland’s most valuable protected nature reserves.
During our travel around the lake, we will visit the insanely enchanting Skútustaðagigar pseudo craters. These interesting geological features were formed when fresh lava entered the lake and trapped the wet sediment underneath, causing many steam eruptions. This happened approximately 2,300 years ago. Today, the picturesque, small craters are covered with grass and there are marked walking paths through the area.
We will continue by discovering some more about the region’s violent volcanic history. Just a few minutes from the craters is Dimmuborgir, there is a fascinating lava field. This incredible site is loaded with massive lava rock sculptures, huge rock pillars, caves, caverns, tunnels, and lava bridges. Walking through this alien scenery feels like being on another planet or even like being in the middle of a fairy tale full of trolls and magical creatures.
After getting lost and found again on the paths of the mystical lava park, we will hit the road again. It is a short drive to a scenic volcanic crater located right in Hell itself, or at least that is what the name of the Víti Crater means.
The 300-meter-wide crater was formed in 1724 when a massive eruption took place in the Krafla Volcano. The violent volcanic event lasted for five years. The crater is filled with milky blue and green water and the ground around it is still steaming, giving it a surreal look.
Next, we will explore one of Iceland’s most terrific geothermal fields, Námaskarð. The area is part of the Krafla volcano system and is highly active today. There is no fresh lava surfacing, but there are wildly bubbling hot springs, mud pots, and loud, meter-high fumaroles surrounded by poisonous soil with minerals that paint the site in extremely vivid colors. The air smells intensely of sulfur. This can be quite unpleasant, but the sights will definitely make you forget about the smell!
On our way to our hotel, we will stop at the beautiful Mývatn Nature Baths. It is often referred to as the Blue Lagoon of the North. Indeed, the color of the water is the same milky-blue as the Blue Lagoon while the entrance fee is half the price.
Enjoying a pampering bath here is an optional extra which you can do at your own cost. You will have an hour and a half to relax and enjoy the benefits of the natural geothermal water before we continue on to our accommodation in Akureyri. Those who choose to stay dry can have a meal or coffee in the restaurant and enjoy the view.
To end our long day, we will return to our hotel in Dalvík, the cute fishing village where we stayed on our first night. On our way back, we will drive through Akureyri, the capital of North Iceland. Even though it is very small with a population of fewer than 20 thousand people, Akureyri is the largest city outside of the greater capital area.
Day 3: Whale Watching, the Glaumbær Turf Farm, and Reykjavík
We will begin our last day with what may be the biggest adventure of the tour. We will board a boat to go on an amazing whale watching tour to see the gentle giants of the north! Dalvík is famous for its incredibly high whale watching success rates. These exceed 99% in summer, with anywhere from months up to half years in a row with 100% success rates.
We will probably see some humpback whales, as they are abundant in the bay all year round. Humpbacks are favorites of all visitors as they are not at all shy and often show off. Leaping, splashing, and approaching the boat, they are sensationally friendly to the whale watchers. White-beaked dolphins, harbor purposes, and minke whales are also often seen in the bay.
After seeing the whales, you will have the chance to grab a rod and do some sea angling on the way back to the harbor. We will barbecue the catch as soon as we arrive and share the fresh, amazing food together.
After the whale watching adventure, we will start our drive back to Reykjavík. It is a long way to go, but we will make time for a stop at the charming Glaumbær Turf Farm. The farm is made up of 13 age-old turf houses with walls built of turf layered in a herringbone pattern. The farm is said to have stood here since the Age of the Settlements (900 AD). The present buildings are newer, of course. The oldest one was built sometime in the 18th century.
Leaving the farm behind, we will head to Reykjavík, arriving at the city at around 8:00 pm. We will drop you off at your original pick-up location.
Our multi-day tours are operated in a minibus which will give you a small group experience and a better connection with the guide.
Accommodation is included during your multi-day tour which is often booked far in advance. By booking with us, you don’t have to worry about finding an accommodation during the time of the tour. Staying overnight in the countryside gives you the opportunity to explore Iceland further and experience places that you would normally not be able to on a one day tour. Note that Adventure packages do not include accommodation.
You’ll have an English speaking licensed adventure guide throughout the tour that will be able to tell you about everything you will see along the way and knows where the best locations to stop by are to give you the absolute best experience.
When booking with Arctic Adventures, you are guaranteed an accommodation at a nice country hotel and/or a guesthouse. The hotels we have partnered up with are all of the same standard and offer nice rooms with made-up beds. The rooms come with private or shared bathrooms, depending on your booking. The standard room is a twin room but it’s possible to request a double room or a triple room, with no extra charge.
If you are traveling solo, you will have to add the single room fee if you wish to have a single room.
All hotels have free Wi-Fi. Towels, a hairdryer and a kettle are accessible at all of the hotels. Hotel breakfast is included!
A single supplement is available if you want to have your own room, but you are not required to pay a single supplement. If you are a single traveler and do not wish to book a single room, you’ll be roomed with another traveler of the same gender.
If your tour includes an accommodation, breakfast is included during the tour at the hotel/guesthouse restaurant. Meals and beverages are otherwise not included on your tour. However, we will be making stops at restaurants and convenience stores where you will be able to purchase all necessities.
You should count on spending around 8,000 ISK (80$) on food each day per person. Cash is not necessary, as credit cards are almost always accepted. Having a small amount of cash doesn’t hurt though.
Breakfast is included at all the hotels we stay in during the tour. The breakfast will be a typical breakfast buffet, offering bread, toppings, cereal, yogurt, fruits, coffee, and tea etc.
Your guide will also find a good place for the group to eat lunch. We always try to choose places that have a wide selection of dishes on the menu, so there will be options available for everyone. The dinner is usually at the hotels we stay at for the night.
For multi-day tours, each participant is allowed to bring a small backpack and 1 piece of luggage weighing a maximum of 20 kg (44 lbs).
* The combined dimensions of each bag must not exceed 158 cm (62 in).
* It’s possible to store your luggage with us in Reykjavík while you are on your tour, for a small fee. We highly recommend storing the luggage in Reykjavík to help us reduce our carbon footprint.
* Please note that luggage storage is not refundable.
We do welcome participants of all ages older than the listed minimum age for each tour. We have people of ages ranging from 8-99 years joining our multi-day tours. Our average group usually consists of participants between the age 20-55 years. We do get a lot of solo travellers joining our tours, as well as families and friends.
If you have difficulties participating in any of the activities included in the tour, for example, a glacier activity, you are more than welcome to skip it. You can explore your surroundings in the meantime or wait elsewhere. Our guide should be able to drop you off at a nearby place where there are some services available.
We drive on average around 300 km (186 miles) per day on our multi-day tours. You will be spending approximately 4-5 hours in the car each day. We do of course stop on multiple locations throughout the tour for sightseeing, activities, bathroom breaks and lunch stops.
If you are not sure that you have suitable gear for your tour, we offer some necessary items for rent. For most of our multi-day tours, we rent out waterproof jackets and pants as well as hiking boots. You can book these items and more under the selection “Extras” in the booking widget when booking your tour on our website.
If you have already booked the tour and wish to add some rental gear to your booking, you can do so at least 24 hours prior to your tour starts.
For further information about rental gear:
Most of the hotels we use during our tours are remotely located and therefore ideal to spot the northern lights. If the forecast is in your favor, then it is more than likely that you will be able to see the magical show put on by the dancing northern lights during your tour with us. Most of the hotels offer a Northern Lights wake up call up on request if they lights are spotted.
The Northern Lights are a natural phenomenon and therefore we can unfortunately never promise that they will be seen. Their appearance depends upon atmospheric and weather conditions. The best time to see them is between September and March when it’s dark and clear. The sky needs to be as dark as possible, so the best places to see them are well away from city lights (that’s where we are going!).
For more information on the Northern Lights, please have a look at our Northern Lights information.
We always recommend booking a multi-day tour starting at least one day after arriving in Iceland. If you’re flying in from the US or will be landing early (4-6:30 am) you should be able to join the tour, but some risks would follow (i.e if the flight gets delayed) and could, therefore, miss out on the tour.