Pearls of the Highlands including Lowlands and fjords 15 days

Pearls of the Highlands including Lowlands and fjords 15 days

15 days self drive trips in Iceland to pearls highlands, lowlands and fjords with cheap car rental.
The best self drive tour in Iceland is for 15 days self drive vacation and includes some of the greatest sights in the pearls highlands, the lowlands and fjords.

BP16 Map

BP16 Map

AVAILABLE:
July 5 to September 15

DURATION:
15 days / 14 nights

CAR RENTAL DAYS:
13 Days

DEPARTURES:
Daily

TOUR ID:
BP16

Included

Not Included

Itinerary

Day 1. Arrival


Upon your arrival at Keflavik airport a meet and greet service is provided by a TOURIS representative who will take you to your Reykjavik hotel.

Highlights of the day:
ReykjavÝk

Overnight:
ReykjavÝk

Day 2. The Amazing SnŠfellsnes Peninsula


Pick up your car in the morning and head for Hvalfj÷r­ur fjord and Borgarnes town. Hvalfj÷r­ur fjord is scenic and is recommended instead of a tunnel under the fjord. Continue to Borgarnes, a small town at the north coast of the Borgarfj÷r­ur fjord and visit the Settlement Centre. The prime objective of the Icelandic Settlement Centre is to dramatically recreate the fascinating sagas surrounding the birth of this island nation, where multi-media and theatrical techniques are employed to help the visitor experience firsthand the trepidation and excitement of setting off over the open ocean for lands unknown. From Borgarnes, proceed to the SnŠfellsnes peninsula. Enroute, pass the magnificent Eldborg crater and a number of other cone shapes craters before exploring the numerous natural wonders the peninsula has to offer. Head to the west along the south shore of the peninsula towards Arnarstapi, a small fishing hamlet with a spectacular coast and sea cliffs, teeming with birdlife in summer. Continue a short distance to Hellnar, another small settlement with more spectacular sea cliffs and varied birdlife. There is an interesting hiking trail along the coast between Arnarstapi and Hellnar, about 30 - 40 minutesĺ walk. Continue around the tip of the peninsula at the foot of the magnificent SnŠfellsj÷kull, a cone shaped and ice-capped volcano and stop at the rocky beaches of Dj˙palˇnssandur and DritvÝk, popular hiking areas. Continue towards the north side of the peninsula to ËlafsvÝk. From ËlafsvÝk, continue to the scenic Stykkishˇlmur fishing town.

Driving distance
280 kilometers

Highlights of the day:
Borgarnes town
Arnarstapi
Hellnar hamlet
Lˇndrangar rock formation
SnŠfellsj÷kull Glacier
Stykkishˇlmur Town

Overnight:
Stykkishˇlmur area

Recommended optional activity:
The Settlement Exhibition and The Egil Saga Exhibition

Day 3. Brei­afj÷r­ur Bay & Spectacular Lßtrabjarg Cliff


We recommend a very interesting boat trip from Stykkishˇlmur for a little more than 2 hours in the morning to sail among the numerous islands on Brei­afj÷r­ur Bay with very rich birdlife in summer. See numerous species of seabirds, nesting in cliffs on the many islands on the bay, Puffins, Cormorants, Kittiwakes, Shags, and the White tailed Eagle usually nest here too. The cruise is available daily at 11:00 from 14. May ľ 15. October and at 11:00 on Tuesdays from 15. January - 03. December. Please call 433 2254 for details. In the afternoon take the ferry Baldur from Stykkishˇlmur across the beautiful Brei­afj÷r­ur bay to BrjßnslŠkur port on the south coast of the West fjords. Enroute to BrjßnslŠkur, the ferry will make a short service stop at Flatey Island. Drive from BrjßnslŠkur to Lßtrabjarg, one of the most crowded bird cliffs in the world. In summer the 444 m high sea cliffs are occupied by millions of nesting Puffins, Gannets, Guillemots and Razorbills. Enroute, stop at the interesting folk museum at Hnjˇtur.

Driving distance
100 kilometers

Highlights of the day:
Stykkishˇlmur Town
Brei­af÷r­ur Bay
Lßtrabjarg Cliff

Overnight:
Lßtrabjarg area

Recommended optional activity:
Unique Adventure Cruise on Brei­afj÷r­ur bay

Day 4. The Charming Westfjords


Head towards the north to ═safj÷r­ur town. Along the way, pass the charming fishing towns Tßlknafj÷r­ur and BÝldudalur. Continue over the Dynjandishei­i Pass and stop at the great waterfall. Drive along the shores of the Arnarfj÷r­ur Fjord and across the Hrafnseyrarhei­i Pass to the fishing village Ůingeyri. From Ůingeyri proceed across Gemlufallshei­i Pass to Flateyri, a small town and take the tunnel to ═safj÷r­ur, the largest town in the Westfjords. Explore the town of ═safj÷r­ur and its surroundings and the neighbouring towns, BolungarvÝk and Su­ureyri. In summer, Kayak tours are available on the ═safj÷r­ur Fjord and the Natural History Museum of BolungarvÝk is an interesting place to visit.

Driving distance
220 kilometers

Highlights of the day:
Dynjandi Waterfall
═safj÷r­ur Town

Overnight:
═safj÷r­ur area

Day 5. North West Iceland


In summer, an interesting boat tour to the picturesque Vigur Island is available from ═safj÷r­ur. This is a great experience and highly recommended. Drive along the shores of the numerous and mostly uninhabited fjords of ═safjar­ardj˙p with beautiful coastlines teeming with seals and bird life and to HˇlmavÝk. Continue to the Hr˙tafj÷r­ur fjord. The Icelandic Seal Center at Hvammstangi town is an interesting place to visit. It is a research and exhibition center investigating the lives of seals found in and around Iceland. Around Vatnsnes peninsula you have a unique opportunity to watch both harbour seals and grey seals in their natural habitat. The main watching locations are Svalbar­ and at Illugasta­ir on the west coast and and at Ësar on the east coast. The Icelandic Seal Center at Hvammstangi gives more information about these locations and how to approach the seals with care. It is usually best to see the selas at low tide since seals usually rest ashore during low tide but feed during high tide. Cross the Vatnsska­ Pass to the fertile valley of Skagafj÷r­ur, renowned for horse breeding. Popular Horse riding tours for beginners and experienced riders are available in Skagafj÷r­ur. In the upper reaches of Skagafj÷r­ur you will also be able to join some of the best White Water Rafting in Iceland. See GlaumbŠr Folk Museum, open during the summer and the old tiny church at VÝ­imřri is well worth a visit. Hˇlar is also an interesting historical place to visit and the town Hofsˇs with its old buildings and the Emigration Center.

Driving distance
420 kilometers

Highlights of the day:
Vatnsdalshˇlar mounds
HvÝtserkur Cliff
GlaumbŠr Folk Museum

Overnight:
Skagafj÷r­ur area

Recommended optional activity:
Horseback Riding

Day 6. Akureyri & Stunning surroundings of Lake Mřvatn


Continue to Akureyri, the capital of the North. Explore the fascinating town on the shores of the Eyjafj÷r­ur fjord. One of the most extraordinary aspects of Akureyri is its warm climate. Although it is situated only about 60 miles south of the Arctic Circle it enjoys some of the best weather in the country. From Akureyri, head for Lake Mřvatn and on the way, stop to take a look at the waterfall Go­afoss, the Gods Waterfall, named after heathen gods that the early settlers used to worship. Spend the day exploring the many natural wonders of Lake Mřvatn and its surroundings. The Mřvatn area is known worldwide for the abundance of birdlife, especially the great number of breeding duck species. Visit numerous highlights of the area like the lava formations at Dimmuborgir, (Dark Castles) volcano Krafla, Nßmaskar­ solfataras, Sk˙tusta­agÝgar pseudo craters, the Nature Baths and many other interesting and scenic spots. The geothermal power station at Krafla, Kr÷fluvirkjun, is open to visitors during summer, where steam pressure from the ground is harnessed to generate electricity.

Driving distance
240 kilometers

Highlights of the day:
Akureyri
Go­afoss waterfall
Lake Mřvatn
Nature Baths
Dimmuborgir

Overnight:
H˙savÝk/Mřvatn area

Recommended optional activity:
Nature Baths

Day 7. H˙savÝk & J÷kulsßrglj˙fur National Park


Head for H˙savÝk town sometimes called The Whale Watching Capital of the world. H˙savÝk was the first town in Iceland to offer Whale watching cruises and many visitorsĺ sole purpose is to participate in a cruise. The Whale Museum in H˙savÝk, situated by the harbour is a very interesting place to visit. Visit the H˙savÝk Maritime Museum, one of the best of its kind in the country. Continue to Vesturdalur Valley and Hljˇ­aklettar, the Echo Rocks, an extremely beautiful canyon carved by the great glacial river J÷kulsß ß Fj÷llum. This area offers numerous interesting hiking trails to explore the many wonders of the J÷kulsßrglj˙fur National Park. Continue to visit the pretty horseshoe shaped ┴sbyrgi canyon. Overnight in the northeast area.

Driving distance
150 kilometers

Highlights of the day:
H˙savÝk Town
Hljˇ­aklettar rock formations
┴sbyrgi Canyon
J÷kulsßrglj˙fur National Park

Overnight:
Northeast area

Recommended optional activity:
Whale Watching From H˙savÝk

Day 8. A Highland Adventure


Leave early in the morning as this will be a long day out in the wilderness, far from hotels and restaurants. You will not find a filling station or a restaurant until in the evening, after a long journey. Visit the majestic Dettifoss waterfall the largest waterfall in Europe. Continue inland through the deserted lava fields and towards the Her­ubrei­arlindir springs, situated at the foot of Mt. Her­brei­, sometimes called the Queen of the Icelandic highlands. Her­ubrei­arlindir, at an altitude of 484 m is a green oasis in a near desert landscape. Green-clothed with grass, it verges supporting flourishing growth of flowers, the area is laced with springs of crystal clear water, unexpected and gratifying in these surroundings of desolate sands and lava beds. Here is found a mountain hut, warden station and a campground. After a break at the beautiful Her­ubrei­arlindir continue to the great Dyngjufj÷ll mountain range and the magnificent Askja volcano. Leaving Her­ubrei­arlindir, the track continues through the lava, winding around the gravely slopes of Her­ubrei­art÷gl mountain range. To the south, two pyramid shaped peaks of Upptyppingar rising from a level plain are a landmark in this area. On the southern horizon is the edge of the Vatnaj÷kull ice field. Below the track on the left and a short walk from it, the J÷kulsß river flows fast between low, sheer rock walls. There are unusual water sculptured rocks along the banks. The track runs now fairly straight and smooth over vast tracts covered by light brown pumice which blankets the ground. The pumice and ash which spread far and wide came mostly from a powerful eruption in Askja in 1875. Up ahead to the west, the volcanic massif Dyngjufj÷ll, rise abruptly above the highland plateau. The massif covers an area of about 300 sq. km., the largest group of mountains in these parts, rising up to 800 m above the surrounding plateau. In their centre lies the Askja caldera. A thirty-minute hike takes you from the end of the road to the Askja lake, where you find the explosion crater VÝti, a lovely spot for a dip in natural geothermal warmth and comfort of the water in the crater lake. Leave Askja and head towards Egilssta­ir, enroute see the beautiful Hafrahvammaglj˙fur canyon.

Driving distance
320 kilometers

Highlights of the day:
Dettifoss Waterfall
Her­ubrei­arlindir
Askja Volcano
VÝti Crater
Egilssta­ir town
Hallormssta­askˇgur Forest

Overnight:
Egilssta­ir area

Day 9. The Tranquil East Fjords


Drive from Egilssta­ir to the magnificent East Fjords, some now deserted, each a world of its own. The stone collection of Petra at St÷­varfj÷r­ur is interesting to visit. Another interesting option is taking a boat tour to Papey Island near Dj˙pivogur where thousands of Puffins and other seabirds nest in summer. Continue to the south and past Lˇns÷rŠfi and to top of Almannaskar­ pass for a great view. Continue to H÷fn in Hornafjordur, a blooming community in the realm of the greatest glacier in Europe, Vatnajokull. The village H÷fn is located at the base of Vatnaj÷kull, and the scenery is breathtaking.

Driving distance
250 kilometers

Highlights of the day:
H÷fn

Overnight:
H÷fn area

Day 10. J÷kulsßrlˇn Glacier Lagoon & Skaftafell National Park


Start this day by driving to the awe inspiring J÷kulsßrlˇn, the Glacial Lagoon, one of the most popular tourist attractions in Iceland. Huge icebergs, true sculptures of nature are floating on the blue glacial waters of the lagoon at the foot of the Brei­amerkurj÷kull glacier. An extremely popular boat trip is available from here during summer to sail among the huge icebergs on the lagoon. Seals are often to be seen in the lagoon. Continue west along the south coast and head for Skaftafell National Park, nestling between glaciers with many hiking trails. Its natural beauty and rich vegetation is a result interaction of fire and ice and good weather conditions. Beneath the Vatnaj÷kull ice cap, towering above Skaftafell is GrÝmsv÷tn, one of Icelandĺs most active volcano. . In the afternoon of 21. May 2011, a sub-glacial eruption started in the GrÝmsv÷tn volcanic system underneath Vatnaj÷kull Glacier. Later the same day, the eruption broke the ice cover of the glacier and started spewing volcanic ash into the air. The amount of ash fall was the greatest close to the village KirkjubŠjarklaustur. The eruption went on for about a week. It ceased on 28. May 2011. An interesting hiking trail takes you to Svartifoss, one of Icelands most picturesque waterfall, famous for basalt columns which surround it and the hiking trail to Skaftafellsj÷kull glacier is accessible even to wheelchair. A video of a major volcanic eruption in the area in 1996 can be viewed at the Visitor Center. From Skaftafell, drive across the Skei­arßrsandur floodplains. On to KirkjubŠjarklaustur and see Kirkjugˇlfi­, the Church Floor, a protected natural monument just east of the town. Kirkjugˇlfi­ is columnar basalt, eroded and shaped by wind and water. You might also want to visit Fja­rßrglj˙fur a narrow and beautiful canyon.

Driving distance
200 kilometers

Highlights of the day:
H÷fn
J÷kulsßrlˇn Glacial Lagoon
Skaftafell National Park
Svartifoss waterfall
KirkjubŠjarklaustur town
Fja­rßrglj˙fur Canyon

Overnight:
KirkjubŠjarklaustur area

Recommended optional activity:
Amphibian boat Tour on J÷kulsßrlˇn Glacier Lagoon

Day 11. LakagÝgar Volcanic Fissure


A rewarding, although a bumpy drive the scenery at the end of the trail to LakagÝgar makes it worth the effort as there are few wild and rugged natural wonders that equal the beauty of the Laki area.
At the end of the trail is well worth to hike in this strange but fascinating area, which must be exploited on foot.
This area has been the locality of intermittent volcanic activity in centuries past. Everywhere are vary-coloured volcanic ejecta with its scorched and multi-coloured volcanic crags, blistered with countless cone like craters, little and great colourful dunes of volcanic ash.
LakagÝgar craters, named after Mt. Laki, which the 25km long eruption fissure runs through. The craters are on a roughly south-west to a north-east trending line, the general line of fissure eruptions in Iceland. About two thirds of the more than hundred craters are west of Mt. Laki, while the remainder lies south of it. The craters were created in an eruption of five months duration and from them issued the greatest volume of lava in a single eruption within the historical times of mankind.
By now, most of the enormous surrounding lava flows are covered with a thick carpet of green moss. The whole area, scarred with colourful craters and volcanic debris has a character of grim beauty. The crater pitted surroundings show nature at its most rugged overpowering best and here is one of the most spectacular volcanic areas in the world.
From the craters issued mind-boggling masses of molten lava, flowing down to lower ground, in two broad streams, filling and levelling hollows, small valleys and the deep canyon of the river Skaftß on their way down to lowlands, where the broad lava streams spread out to destroy numerous farms. The volume of lava was estimated in excess of thirty billion tons and the area of land covered is about 565 sq km. The aftermath of the eruption caused the death of 1/5 of Iceland's population and most of the livestock. Head Back to your accommodation.

Driving distance
120 kilometers

Highlights of the day:
Kirkjugˇlf Basalt Columns
Laki Craters

Overnight:
KirkjubŠjarklaustur area

Day 12. The Colourful Landmannalaugar


From KirkjubŠjarklaustur continue to Fjallabak route. The Fjallabak route is one of the most scenic trails in the interior highlands of Iceland, perhaps the most colourful and diversified of the many interesting mountain tracks, rugged colourful landscape of unsurpassed beauty. One of the highlights of the route is Eldgjß, one of the most interesting sights in this part of the country. Here, nature has created a unique spectacle splitting mountains and valleys in its course creating a gigantic 30 km long gash into the earth, in some places is up to 600m wide and up to 200m deep. The volcanic fissure is considered to be the greatest of its kind on earth. Only a small part of Eldgjß can be visited by car. ËfŠrufoss, used to be one of the country┤s most beautiful waterfall, framed by a natural bridge, arching over the rivers gorge that collapsed years ago. There is marvellous scenery along the route.
Continue to Landmannalaugar, nesting under the high edge of an obsidian lava flow. Here is a warden station, mountain hut and a camping site. Near the hut is a warm water pool, created by the confluence of natural hot water and a coldwater springs which issue within a short distance of one another from underneath the high edge of the obsidian lava above. This is a great place for a relaxing bath after a hike in the area.
The scenic interest in the area is tremendous. The mountains here are perhaps the most varied and colourful in Iceland.
A hike to nearby Blßhnj˙kur, where the visitor has unobstructed view of the surroundings is highly recommended, also to J÷kulgil, a long rugged defile with several side canyons and tributary gullies. High up on the slopes above the lava under which the hut nestles is a colourful thermal area, springs emitting sulphurous odours. Leave Landmannalaugar and visit Landmannahellir, a cave that runs into a hillside. The mountain track over Landmannalei­ offers some of the finest scenic views available throughout this fascinating region. Off the track there are various trails leading to the volcano Hekla, which is in view on and off to the south of the trail.
On March 20th 2010, a volcanic eruption started on Fimmv÷r­uhßls, a mountain ridge between the glaciers, Eyjafjallaj÷kull and Mřrdalsj÷kull. The eruption on Fimmv÷r­uhßls lasted a couple of weeks. After this eruption came to an end a new and bigger eruption started underneath the nearby icecap of Eyjafjallaj÷kull Glacier. This eruption came to an end on 23. May 2010.

Driving distance
220 kilometers

Highlights of the day:
Eldgjß Canyon
Landmannalaugar
Lake Frostasta­avatn

Overnight:
Hella area

Day 13. The Great Golden Circle


Drive to Selfoss town and from there to the volcanic crater Keri­. Drive further inland and visit the waterfall Faxi. Continue to the Geyser area to see the famous Great Geysir and Strokkur, an active geyser that spouts every few minutes as well as numerous other hot springs. The Geysir Service Center offers a restaurant, hotel, swimming pool, souvenir shop, snack bar, gas station, and a variety of other services. From here proceed to Gullfoss, one of Icelands largest and most beautiful waterfall. Make Gullfoss a turnaround point and head to the National Park Ůingvellir, a unique place from a geological point of view. Research has shown that Ůingvellir is a natural wonder on an international scale. The faults and fissures of the area are evidence of the rifting of the planets crust. Here, the Eurasian and the American continents meet and separate. There are few places on the planet, - if any, where evidence of continental drift is as clearly visible on the earth surface as it is at Ůingvellir. Ůingvellir is also the most historical place in Iceland and a place of exceptional beauty. Ůingvellir were accepted as a UNESCO world heritage site in 2004.From the National Park continue to ReykjavÝk.

Driving distance
210 kilometers

Highlights of the day:
Keri­
Faxi waterfall
Gullfoss Waterfall and Geysir Hot Springs
Ůingvellir

Overnight:
ReykjavÝk

Recommended optional activity:
Horse Riding Tour South

Day 14. The Relaxing Blue Lagoon


Drive to the Blue Lagoon and enjoy a relaxing bath at the Blue Lagoon in an otherworldly setting where lava and thermal water complement each other to prepare you for your journey home. Soak in the refreshing and healing waters of the Blue Lagoon that ensures you are fully relaxed when you leave Iceland. If you plan to take a bath at the Blue Lagoon, we strongly recommend that you book your ticket in advance. It can be booked at www.bluelagoon.com Return to ReykjavÝk and drop off the car.

Driving distance
100 kilometers

Highlights of the day:
The Blue Lagoon

Overnight:
ReykjavÝk

Day 15. Departure


Transfer from your hotel to the KeflavÝk airport by FLYBUS.

ACCOMMODATION

Cat 1

Cat 1

Rooms in guesthouses with shared facilities but sometimes with washbasins in the rooms. Breakfast is included.
Double rooms at most Icelandic hotels are twin rooms with two single beds. In most cases the two single beds can be put together to make a double bed. However this varies from one hotel / guesthouse to another.
Triple rooms are in most cases double rooms with an extra bed and therefore floor space may be limited when an extra bed has been added.

Cat 2

Cat 2

Rooms in guesthouses or hotels with private shower or bath and WC. Breakfast is included.

Cat 3

Cat 3

Rooms in the best quality accommodation available with private shower or bath and WC. Breakfast is included.
Double rooms at most Icelandic hotels are twin rooms with two single beds. In most cases the two single beds can be put together to make a double bed. However this varies from one hotel / guesthouse to another.
Triple rooms are in most cases double rooms with an extra bed and therefore floor space may be limited when an extra bed has been added.

CARS

13.K - Toyota Landcruiser 4WD or similar - Automatic -

13.K - Toyota Landcruiser 4WD or similar - Automatic -

Transmission: Automatic
Seats: 5
Suitcases: 4
Doors: 5

Optional Extra: Would you like to do some extra activities? Below activities can be added to this tour.

Useful Information: Here you will find other information for this tour.


Please note that the tour can not start on Thursdays after 28. August

Pick up of rental car is the morning of day 2.

Drop off is in ReykjavÝk the day prior to your departure ľ day 14.

An extra day will be charged if the car is returned later.

Due to road conditions routes may have to be altered without prior notice.
The highland tracks of Iceland are usually not expected to be open until early June and due to road conditions some routes may temporarily not be passable without prior notice.

Types of car recommended: 4x4 car with high road clearance is required for this tour.

Accommodation is according to your choice in farmhouses, guesthouses or hotels, cat. 1, 2 or 3. including breakfast. Due to limited availability of accommodation in the Icelandic countryside and a great demand for summer, we are only able to confirm specific category but not a specific hotel in each locality until booking has been made and confirmed.


Early morning arrival: Check in time at hotels is usually between 14:00 - 16:00. If you arrive early morning, you may not be able to check in immediately on arrival.
A credit card imprint will be taken at the start of all rentals for security reasons, even when a voucher covers the cost of the rental. Cash and debit card deposits will not be accepted. This credit card imprint may be used to pay all extra charges, including extra driven kilometres if applicable, extra insurance, parking fines, damages or any costs due to the car rental company as a result of the hirer's use of the car.

Self Drive tours can often be modified according to the clientĺs wishes. If you want to change or extend the tour, add days etc, please contact our office.

Travel Insurance: To avoid dispute in case of cancellation, we strongly recommend that our clients purchase a comprehensive travel insurance in their home country, that covers your cost should you have to cancel your tour. This kind of travel insurance is usually not expensive and it frequently covers other risks too.

Price Calculator: There are several factors that determine the price of self drive packages:

1. Time of the year.

2. Number of people traveling together

3. Type of car (we offer more than 15 different types of cars)

4. Type of accommodation (we offer 3 different categories of accommodation)

There is a special Price Calculator button at our website with every self drive tour package where you can enter your choice of type of accommodation and car, number of people and when you want to begin the tour (arrival date) and the Price Calculator will calculate and display the price of different options.

Note: Day(s) can be added before and / or after if your arrival and departure does not fit the itinerary of this tour. Additional day tours can be added for the additional day/s. If you have any questions please don┤t hesitate to contact us by email to tour@tour.is and we will be more than happy to advice.

This site uses cookies to offer you a better browsing experience. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.
Find out more how we use cookies