This tour is only accessible during summer; this is also the best season to visit Gullfoss.
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Black croc double buckle jeans belt. Black gold tone ring belt. The Geysir Centre , just opposite the geysers, has a large, boutique shop with many handcrafted and locally made Icelandic goods.
The centre also has several restaurants, serving traditional Icelandic food made from locally sourced ingredients. The Haukadalur Valley is an incredible place to stop and marvel at the nature. Just ensure that you respect the area, and do not throw anything into the hot springs or geysers. This should go without saying, but since an ' artist ' filled Strokkur with thankfully all-natural food colouring to see what it would look like pink, it seems to be a point worth reiterating.
The third and final stop on the Golden Circle is one of the most spectacular waterfalls in Iceland, Gullfoss. It can be found less than ten minutes down the road from Geysir.
Located in a plunging, ancient valley, this powerful falls tumbles down two drops, from an overall height of 32 metres ft. At its heaviest flow during summer, an average of cubic metres cubic feet of water pours down it every second. Gullfoss is not only known for its breathtaking power but also the rainbows that are thrown from its spray on a sunny day.
These only add to an already beautiful sight; other than the dramatic valley and falls, the area looks over rolling fields, right up to the magnificent ice sheet of Langjökull. Accessible for newcomers, but still appealing to experts, the rafting tour takes you on an adventurous ride with the powerful currents, down an ancient valley dotted with fascinating geological features. This tour is only accessible during summer; this is also the best season to visit Gullfoss.
When there is no ice on the ground, a walkway opens that takes you right up to the edge of the falls, close enough to feel the spray on your face. The photo opportunities here are incredible, and one could spend hours marvelling over the awe-inspiring power of the water. That is not to say, however, that Gullfoss is any less spectacular in the winter.
While you cannot get as close, seeing it partly frozen, carrying chunks of ice into the abyss, is mesmerising. It is incredibly fortunate, therefore, that it has remained preserved, and has not been meddled with in any way. In the early 20th Century, foreign investors saw a huge amount of opportunity in damning Gullfoss and turning it into a hydro-electric plant. The owner of the falls at the time, Tómas Tómasson, had indirectly leant outsiders the right to do what they wanted with it.
Although her actions did not directly save the waterfall, they drew national criticism of the plans and ensured that the process of damning it was delayed. Eventually, the lawyer she enlisted in her protests managed to work with the investors, who were lacking in money to take action, to annul the contract. As a poor, uneducated woman fighting a capitalist, patriarchal society in the name of the beauty of nature, she helped pave the way for both feminism and environmentalism to prevail in Icelandic culture.
As the most popular tourist trail in Iceland, many different ways to see the Golden Circle have emerged. There are hundreds of different tours, from dozens of different providers, that combine your Golden Circle with extra activities or more sightseeing locations. Doing it this way allows you to take as many detours to lesser-known, nearby locations as you like, as will be discussed more in depth below.
For those who would rather avoid the pressure of driving in Iceland, there is a vast array of guided tours from which you can choose. As the Golden Circle can be completed in around six hours, including driving to and from Reykjavík, many combination tours have cropped up. The Golden Circle and snowmobiling tour , for example, whisks you around all three sites, then from Gullfoss, you are driven up to Langjökull glacier for an exhilarating blast across the ice.
No matter your time in this country, your budget, or your agenda, it is nearly always possible to fit in a trip around the Golden Circle. With an incredible diversity of scenery available within a simple drive, it is an almost essential Icelandic experience for any traveller.
If you elect to drive the circle yourself, however, there are many detours you can take to fascinating sites nearby. Most of these are lesser-known, thus you can combine this classic sightseeing trail with visits to locations well off the beaten track. Below are the top nine detours that are recommended for those with the inclination and time. Locals have enjoyed this area since ; the current spa, however, has only been open since Features of Fontana include three steam rooms, all atop of natural hot springs, and a traditional wooden Finnish sauna with fantastic views of the surrounding nature.
Photo credit Fontana Geothermal Baths. The crater was formed about years ago and is completely oval with a lake in its bottom. Be aware that if you wish to visit this location, it is always best to book in advance, as it is growing ever-more popular.
Probably the most popular activity to combine with the Golden Circle is snowmobiling on Langjökull glacier. This excursion is not to be missed by the adventurous travellers. This is the perfect place to stop for a lunch between This is one of Iceland's most underrated locations, and is well worth a visit.
With Grade II rapids, this tour is excellent for beginners and experts alike. Here you can book a Golden Circle tour with river rafting. Sólheimar is an eco-village of approximately people. Formed in , it has always been a unique place with a distinct philosophy of maximising the potential of every person, notably without regard to their age or disabilities. Over the past few years, its unique charm and quirky vibe have drawn more and more visitors, and now over 30, come every year to see what it is all about.
The settlement, nestled seamlessly in the nature, has everything visitors could need, with a bakery, cafe, guesthouse and multiple art venues. It hosts workshops in arts such as candle-making, weaving and ceramics, to name a few. It also is home to the Sesselja House, an educational exhibition centre focussed around ecology and sustainable development.
When travelling from the former location to the latter, along the , turn right at the roundabout in Laugavatn onto the At the end of this road, turn left onto the 35, and right onto the You will find the eco-village on this road.
To get there you drive south on road number 30 from Gullfoss, then take a left turn onto road number You can read more about Icelandic hidden gems here and find more self drive tour suggestions here. Find a tour Rent a car Find accommodation. You will always find the best deals and prices on Guide to Iceland. We are certain that our marketplace will always provide you with the best possible prices at any given time. If you find a better price elsewhere, we will refund you the difference.
Guide to Iceland is the world's largest marketplace for Icelandic travel services. We offer more than 5, tours and packages that have been tried and tested for quality. Book with us to secure an authentic local experience and find the popular and unique attractions in Iceland. We follow the easiest booking and cancellation policies in Iceland. Add multiple services to your cart or book a package in a single checkout.
You can book and cancel day tours and rental cars up to 24 hours before departure, or change your booking as often as you require. Guide to Iceland is the world's most popular source of Iceland travel information. We provide you with more material about Iceland than any other website.
Discover a wealth of unique articles and travel blogs; study up on local hints, tips and find insider knowledge. You can even read blogs by other travelers. See the largest selection of Golden circle tours here Hear anyone talk about excursions in Iceland, and it is more than likely that they will bring up the Golden Circle. The company is progressive and puts focus on the safety and distribution of travellers, environmental policies as well as innovation and development in giving out information.
It's very important to get such a company to collaborate with us at this time of immense growth in the travel industry. Instead our travel headquarters are now on the first floor of Reykjavík's City Hall , Tjarnargata 11, right next to the Reykjavík City Pond. On its other side there's a small pond and a wall of moss with water dripping down it. The building itself is well worth a visit!
We have always been proud of the informational value that we offer and partnering with the City of Reykjavík will push us to continue to be an impartial hub of travel information, and an open marketplace for high-quality service providers in Iceland.
Our aim is to work together to make Reykjavík one of the most accessible and fun cities in the world, but at the same time protect its cultural and environmental heritage. Be very welcome in Iceland, and see you in Reykjavík's City Hall!
How long does a sunset or a sunrise last? How long is the period you can experience the midnight sun in Iceland?
How do you sleep during the midnight sun? Read on to find out everything you need to know about the glorious Midnight Sun in Iceland!
What Brings About the Midnight Sun? The Midnight Sun is caused by the tilt of the Earth's axis towards the sun during summer. This same tilt of the Earth's axis, along with the Earth revolving around the sun, is what causes seasons to happen. Each year the north part of the Earth tilts towards the sun between April and September and then the south part tilting away from the sun and vice versa between September and April. As a result summer occurs in the Northern Hemisphere in the months of June, July and August, but summer occurs in the Southern Hemisphere in the months of December, January and February.
The poles of the Earth get the most contrast, both being exposed to the sun's rays continuously for 6 months, and then experiencing total darkness, or Polar Nights, for the remaining 6 months of the year. Most people in the world live far enough away from these poles, so the daylight hours and nighttime hours more or less stay the same all year round.
That is not the case in Iceland; here, when it comes to daylight hours, it is an all or barely nothing experience. Still, Iceland is far away enough from the North Pole to not experience such a crazy contrast.
March and April Spring and September and October Fall see Iceland's daylight resemble what is mostly considered to be 'normal' by global standards, with the sun rising between And winter is not completely dark either, although December and January only experience hours of daylight each day. Amusingly, the most common one is: Another common question is: No more worrying about time restraints, needing to get somewhere or get home or get to bed "before it gets dark.
Taking a midnight sun tour provides you with an opportunity to experience some of Iceland's best attractions in a truly unique way, thus maximising your time on the island. During summer, it is possible to travel everywhere in Iceland, whereas during the winter months, some areas of the country are not accessible. The Icelandic Highlands is one example of a region that is only accessible from late June or early July until September.
At the height of winter, it may be difficult to access the Westfjords, and even some parts of North and East Iceland due to heavy snow and bad weather. This is not a problem during summertime. Although it may sometimes be windy, rainy or foggy, there will not be any snowstorms except maybe on top of glaciers!
The Ultimate Guide to Driving in Iceland. We recommend renting a car and exploring the country at your own pace. And with the long days, you can fit in more hours of sightseeing, driving around and doing activities to max out your holiday time in Iceland. See the Best Attractions by Route 1 in Iceland. Summer and Winter Solstices in Iceland The further north or south you go on the planet, the more effect there is by the summer and winter solstices.
This makes experiencing time in Iceland a truly unique concept, unlike anywhere else on the planet. The shortest day of the year the winter solstice is around the 21st of December.
In Reykjavík, that means the sunrise is around Again, the further north you go in the country, this day will be even shorter. In between the shortest and the longest day of the year, the days are either getting longer or shorter, from just a few seconds up to several minutes per day. So if you want to know how much daylight there is in a particular month, note that there can be a drastic difference from the beginning and the end of the month, and which location you are planning on visiting in Iceland.
The town is surrounded by tall mountains and is situated so far north in the country that the sun doesn't rise high enough for its beams to reach over the mountaintops in wintertime. Find Westfjords Tours here. Find Reykjavík Tours here. Technically speaking, the midnight sun only occurs in Reykjavík between the 16th and the 29th of June, since these are the only days of the year when the sun sets after midnight.
So the height of the Midnight Sun in Iceland is in the last two weeks of June, but if you are visiting Iceland in May , early June, July or early August then you will also get to experience the Midnight Sun. In the beginning of August, a couple of hours per night can get quite dark, not more than dusk though. Towards the end of August or beginning of September there will be a couple of hours of pitch black night, so the Northern Lights will start making an appearance in the sky as well.
Late August or early September is the perfect time of year to experience the long days and milder weather, but still with a few hours of darkness during the night to catch some Auroras dancing in the sky.
Iceland in August and Iceland in September. Top 10 Beautiful Waterfalls of Iceland Iceland is a country of many amazing waterfalls, but which are the best ones? Where do you need to travel to find the most spectacular waterfalls? Are there waterfalls all around the country? For more general information on waterfalls in Iceland see: Waterfalls in Iceland Photography in Iceland 7.
At the base of the fall are sharp rocks that have broken from these columns, making for quite a spectacular sight. Find tours from Skaftafell here 6. It is the only one specifically featured on the classic 'Diamond Circle' route. Certainly, those who witness the sheer beauty of the falls will agree that the name is fitting. Gullfoss Widely considered the most famous of Icelandic waterfalls, the aptly named Gullfoss 'The Golden Waterfall' belongs to the famous ' Golden Circle ', the most popular tourist trail in the country.
Stay within the fence though, for if you fall through, you'll never emerge again. Find Golden Circle tours here 2. Find South Coast tours here 1. Seljalandsfoss Seljalandsfoss is another widely popular waterfall when travelling the South Coast. When the earth is covered with a blanket of white snow, the green of the lights strikes out with an otherworldly appeal.
For more information about the Northern Lights, read Northern Lights Aurora Borealis in Iceland The lights are always there, but you can only see them when the sky is dark. Because of Iceland's midnight sun during the summer, the time for Northern Lights is usually restricted to the winter months of September until April. From then on, it's all up to the sun's magnetic activity. You can check the forecast of the strength of the aurora's visibility at the aurora forecast. Besides, going somewhere rural provides the perfect backdrop for phenomenal photography—and a solitary moment with the cosmos.
Remember to look up from your lens from time to time when hunting for the aurora, to remind yourself of the infinity of the universe. In the words of the one and only Carl Sagan: For the optimal Northern Lights excursion, a fantastic tip is to bring a thermos of piping hot chocolate or coffee. You can read about more Romantic Destinations in Iceland here Although their most common colour is green, the lights sometimes boast purples, blues, pinks and reds.
These are, however, rarer and only appear if the activity of the lights is especially strong. So if you catch a pink or purple auroras, know that you are one of the lucky few. If you want to know what causes the Northern Lights, read this article: What are the Northern Lights?
If you haven't made your way to the edge of the Arctic as of yet and only seen the Northern Lights on photographs, know that they're far from static. In fact, depending on their activity, they dance wildly across the sky. For a visual journey of Iceland's natural wonders, see this article: Amazing Videos of Iceland Since the Northern Lights need clear and dark nights to appear, that means when the lights are out, the stars are out as well.
With the right camera equipment, you might catch the lights coiling themselves around the milky way. There are plenty of scenic lakes to be found all over Iceland for such a mystical display. For information and pictures on the lakes of Iceland, see this article: So if you notice a few veils in the sky before you head out on your hunt, don't let it stop you—since you might still get your lucky shot. Travelling the Icelandic Westfjords in winter is not for the faint of heart, but the scenery at hand is unique and desolate in the most stunning of ways.
If daring the journey, make sure you rent a 4x4 vehicle. Both are part of the greater Vatnajökull National Park, the most recently created and largest National Park in the country. We hope you enjoyed these magnificent photographs of the natural phenomenon that is the Northern Lights. Now, all there is left for you to do is get out there and collect equally stunning shots of your own. Iceland looks forward to your visit! Iceland is filled with interesting rock sculptures, lava formations, volcanoes and mountains of all shapes and sizes.
In the Westfjords you can find high table-top mountains with narrow fjords in between but the mountains by the fjords in the east of the country are more rugged and harsh. The mountains in the Westfjords are older about million years old and have been shaped through thousands of years of carrying heavy glaciers and battling with the natural elements, polishing off the rough edges.
Younger mountains that have been formed when two tectonic plates crash into each other are rougher on the edges. Iceland is situated right on top of two tectonic plates and is also on one of so-called hot spots on earth, with intense volcanic activity and frequent earthquakes happening.
Volcanoes have many different types of lava, for example smooth and fast running lava, thick and slowly crawling lava or spitting lava.
These different types of lava will cool into different types of mountains, stones and rock formations with different textures, thickness, colours and weight. Famous Mountains in Iceland Most Icelanders have their favourite mountain and some mountains are more known then others. You can also take the bus to Esjan, and if you want to hike to the top, it only takes about 2 hours one way!
Following are my personal favourite mountains and rocks in Iceland. It is situated in the east of Iceland. In front of it you see a little bit of Vestrahorn mountain, that is right next to it and is also a gorgeous mountain as can be seen above. Landmannalaugar Mountains Landmannalaugar is an area in south of Iceland that actually has many different mountains and is not one specific mountain. To get there you will need to take a bus or drive a 4x4 car as these mountains are situated in the Icelandic highlands.
A number of Landmannalaugar tours are available and this is also where Iceland's most popular hiking route, Laugavegurinn , starts. Blatindur Mountain Picture from Hlynur A. It also overlooks the Herjólfsdalur valley, where the biggest festival in Iceland takes place every summer, and you can see all over the Westman Islands from the top.
From the ground it looks very impressive and towers over the low-lying valley. To get to the Westman Islands you can either fly from Reykjavík only a 20 minute flight or you can drive to Landeyjahöfn harbour in the south of Iceland and either fly from there 6 minutes or get a ferry over to the Westman Islands, meaning you can take your car as well. You drive the ringroad heading east, past Hvolsvöllur and take a turn right towards Landeyjahöfn or Bakki airport, before you reach Seljalandsfoss waterfall.
Here you can find our Westman Island tours. Many hills or mountains in Iceland have this natural, round shape — the mountain Baula is another example. To reach the mountain itself, you'll need a 4x4 car to drive the highland roads F35 and F First you drive the Golden Circle to Gullfoss, then continue on road 35 until it turns into a mountain track F After a short while you take a left onto F until you reach the mountain.
Jules Verne also used it as the entryway to the centre of the earth in his book Journey to the Centre of the Earth. On a clear day, you can see the mountain from Reykjavík. Hvitserkur Rock The coolest looking rock in Iceland. A 15 meter tall rock out in the sea in the northwest of Iceland. A hidden gem in Iceland's nature, not to be missed.
To get there you drive for 3 hours and 40 minutes from Reykjavík, heading north on ringroad number 1. To go exploring, check out our car rentals or our summer self drive tours! Reynisdrangar Rocks Beautiful rocks rising from the sea in the south of Iceland, by Dyrhólaey. The road is accessible by any type of car.
Hornbjarg Mountain Picture from Wikipedia. Last, but definitely not least, I want to mention Hornbjarg mountain. It is one of the most difficult mountains to get to in Iceland. It's a part of Hornstrandir can be translated as Corner Shores in the northernmost tip of the Westfjords in Iceland, the most remote area of the country. Some people used to live in this area but they all left in the 's.
Besides gorgeous scenery, remoteness and total tranquility, this is also a great place for birdwatchers and those who'd like to catch a glimpse of an arctic fox. Check out these main attractions by Route 1. What are the most popular tour choices and cultural excursions? Read on to find out the Top 12 Things to Do in Iceland.
Considering the sheer variety of experience available in Iceland, picking and choosing what one has time for—and within what budget —can often be a difficult and indecisive period of the pre-holiday organisation. Thankfully, having tried and tested every tour, adventure and cultural experience available in the country, we here at Guide to Iceland are an authority when it comes to choosing the best means of filling your time here.
As with many tours in Iceland, whale watching guests will also spot a variety of seabirds, including Skuas , Arctic Tern , Guillemots and even the colourfully billed Puffin. Whale watching tours depart from three primary locations: Whale Watching in Iceland Whale watching tours can be undertaken either on larger vessels or smaller power boats.
The bigger boats mean for larger tour groups but reliable tracking technology, almost ensuring that you'll see a whale.
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