Discover Iceland’s most awe-inspiring landscapes, abundant wildlife, local culture, and national treasures on this unique itinerary that circumnavigates the whole island of Iceland. Experience the famous Golden Circle featuring Gullfoss Waterfall, Þingvellir (Thingvellir) National Park, and marvel at Europe’s largest glacier, Vatnajökull, covering 3,100 square miles with an average thickness of 1,250 feet!
DAYS 1/2—WELCOME TO ICELAND!
Enjoy a welcome tour of Reykjavik and entrance to the interactive LAVA experience before free time to explore this cosmopolitan city of 140,000 proud Viking descendants. Then enjoy a welcome dinner together as we make new friends. D
DAY 3—LAND OF SAGAS/SETTLEMENT CENTRE
Visit the Settlement Centre in Borgarnes and learn about the Viking Age and the Icelandic Sagas. In the afternoon, join an optional hike up the Grábrók Volcano crater from where you will have a perfect view of the region’s vast lava fields. Stop at the most powerful hot spring in Europe, Deildartunguhver to learn about geothermal energy. Continue to Hraunfossar, a unique waterfall that drains from under vast lava fields into a glacier river. Visit Sturlureyir Horse Farm and get to know the iconic Icelandic horse. B, D
DAY 4—NORTHERN ICELAND/ICELAND'S LONGEST FJORD
Drive over mountain passes, lava fields, green pastures, fertile farmlands, and stunning fjord landscapes to Northern Iceland. Enjoy whale watching and sea angling in Eyjafjörður, Iceland’s longest fjord. Finish the afternoon at Akureyri, Iceland’s second-largest city, before reaching the picturesque village of Myvatn. B, D
DAY 5—GEOLOGIC WONDERS/NATURAL MINERAL BATHS
Start the day at Goðafoss, one of Iceland’s most famed waterfalls. Tour the area around Lake Mývatn with its abundant birdlife and volcanic landscapes. Stroll through the lava labyrinth of Dimmuborgir and see volcanic craters at Skútustaðir and Hverfjall. Our last stop is the Mývatn Nature Baths, which contain abundant minerals like alkaline, for a perfect opportunity to relax and rejuvenate. B, D
DAY 6— VOLCANOS/EASTERN ICELAND
In the morning, visit the hot springs, fumaroles, and bubbling mud pools of Námaskarð, and see the impacts of volcanic activity at Krafla. Continue the journey to the 144-foot high Dettifoss, Europe’s most powerful waterfall before we head through the uninhabited highlands for a stop at Möðrudalur to visit a local farm church. Enjoy the view of Herðubreið Mountain before arriving in the fertile region of Fljótsdalshérað in East Iceland. B, D
Today, admire the green valleys, high mountains, dramatic fjord landscapes, and tiny fishing villages in the East Fjords. Stop at the charming village of Djúpivogur, then gaze upon the magnificent Vatnajökull, Europe’s largest glacier. Embark on a boat ride upon the floating icebergs in the Jökulsárlón glacial lagoon, before walking along the black sands of the famous Diamond Beach. B, D
DAY 8—VATNAJÖKULL NATIONAL PARK/SOUTHERN ICELAND
In the morning explore the wonderous Vatnajökull National Park where you will see the highest peak in Iceland, Hvannadalshnjúkur. Walk close to a glacier, cross a sandy desert, and admire the beautiful lava field of Eldhraun covered with blue-green moss. Learn about Iceland’s early modern history at the Skógar folk museum with its iconic turf houses. Travel along the famous Eyjafjallajökull Glacier and stop at the picturesque Seljalandsfoss waterfall. B, D
DAY 9—GOLDEN CIRCLE
Begin the day with a horse show at Friðheimar and learn more about Icelandic agriculture. Spend the rest of the day travelling along the famous Golden Circle to see Gullfoss Waterfall, the active geothermal area of Geysir, and Þingvellir National Park, birthplace of the first Parliament (930 AD) and now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. End this amazing day with a farm to table meal at Efsti-Dalur Farms. B, D
DAY 10—DEPART FOR HOME
Depart from the Reykjavík airport with fond memories and more knowledge of beautiful Iceland! B
Night 2: Fosshotel Reykjavík
Night 3: Hotel Laugarbakki
Nights 4-5: Fosshotel Husavik
Night 6: Hotel Hallormsstaður
Night 7: Hotel Laki
Night 8: Hotel Örk
Night 9: Fosshotel Reykjavík
Jul 9-18, 2024
Price Per Person:
Pre-/Post Tour Hotel:
Round-trip airfare from the U.S.
Professional, English speaking Tour Director
Welcome Reception and meals as indicated (B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=dinner)
Fees and tips for included attractions and meals
Luggage handling at most hotels
Free bottled water on coach
24-hour emergency call service
Schedule your flight to arrive into Chicago O’Hare Int’l Airport by 4:30 p.m. on Day 1.
Schedule your flight home to depart Chicago O’Hare Int’l Airport any time after 9:15 p.m. on Day 10.
Airport Transportation / Vehicle Parking
Our Pre and Post hotel offers complimentary shuttle service to and from Chicago O’Hare International Airport. Free parking is offered during the tour at our hotel in Chicago with a Pre or Post night booked.
To fully enjoy your CTD vacation, you should be in good physical health and understand there are times when a good deal of walking is involved in our tours. Those who have difficulty walking may not want to take this trip or should discuss their personal situation with their doctor before deciding. You should be able to walk at a steady pace for a mile at a time for a daily total of three to four miles per day and be able to manage steps to board/de-board the motorcoach several times a day. In addition, many US and European airports require lengthy walks to get from ticketing counters to your departure gate. Due to the lack of proper facilities at some of the farms, ranches, and off-the-beaten-path sites we often visit, we are unable to accommodate walkers and wheelchairs.
We are finding that larger European cities are closing their historic districts to motor traffic. This, of course, adds to the amount of walking involved when visiting a city (sometimes on uneven and/or cobblestone walkways). In addition, you should know that you may be required to exit the motorcoach at each stop because local law often does not allow travelers to remain on the motorcoach while it is parked for a scheduled stop.
July/August – high of 55°, low of 50°
Icelandic Króna (Iceland)
GMT (4 hours ahead of New York)
Hair dryers, TV/cable, telephone, and Spa services available at hotels.
A total of three mailings are sent to assist you in preparing for your tour, including information sent upon receipt of your reservation.
Flight time from Chicago to Reykjavik is 6.0 hours, Reykjavik to Chicago is 6.5 hours. These flights are non-stop on Icelandic Airlines. Icelandic Airlines does not offer complimentary meal service, so please plan to have dinner at the airport and bring along snacks for the flight.
Land Tours begin one day later. Airport transfers not included with Land Only Tours.
Dress on tour is casual.
You may want to bring a bathing suit to soak in a thermal spring during your visit.
A valid US Passport is required for travel to/from the United States.
Travel Protection Available
Yes, see CountryTravelDiscoveries.com/TravelProtectionPlan.