- This trip is perfect for couples, families, and friends, and you'll stay in private Icelandic homes
- This mighty journey includes the Golden Circle, the Wild West hidden away from the crowds, and Reykjavik and its inhabitants
- Your itinerary includes Reykjavik with a local and tickets to the Krauma baths
- A 4x4 vehicle, a local Concierge and great, hand-picked locations are part of the service
Contact one of our specialists + 44 (0) 20 3958 6120
YOUR PRIVATE HOUSES IN ICELAND
Borgarnes, on the West Coast - You'll stay in a beautiful wooden house overlooking the Snaefellsnes Peninsula in the distance. A refuge in the countryside, with understated, contemporary shades, antique furniture, and a high-quality restaurant, giving you a stylish country atmosphere. Use the lake terrace to soak up the sun or sit under the starry skies at night or, better yet, to catch a glimpse of the Northern Lights.
In Reykjavik, you'll stay in a historic building - A small house in Grjoti district, one of the oldest in the city. Classified as a heritage site, this cabin was built in 1848 and was used to store goods. A few years ago the house was renovated by Icelandic architect Argos, with the greatest respect for tradition and the original design. Its owners have made it available for rent as they want to share the essence of life in Iceland. Your window looks out to a back-to-basics, simpler life, and you'll appreciate the peace and quiet. You'll also love the ultra-cosy rooftop room.
YOUR TRIPBegin with the three wonders of the Golden Circle : Geysir, the world's only erupting geyser , Thingvellir National Park, where for centuries the Vikings ruled and which was home to the parliament - it's a place of two worlds, and you can stand with one foot on the American tectonic plate, the other on the Eurasian plate. Visit the Gullfossfalls, as impressive as those of the wilder Niagara Falls, where you'll pay your respects to Sigridur Tomasdottir, who devoted her life to fighting the industrialists who wanted to use this site for installing the turbines of a hydroelectric plant. Then head for the West Coast, which is more unspoiled and less well-known, and the Snaefellsnes Peninsula, made famous by Jules Verne: the Snaefellsjokull volcano was the inspiration for the entrance in his 'Journey to the Centre of the Earth'. Here, Iceland is condensed into a single peninsula, which you travel along a coastal road, and is a real feast for the eyes: spectacular fjords and rugged cliffs, lava fields, black sand beaches, light-coloured sandy beaches, and windswept grass. And finally, it's off to Reykjavik, which is both a small village and big capital whether you are walking or cycling, with its arty villages where multi-coloured wooden houses are nestled, cosy cafes and showrooms populated by artists who love their country.
On the logistical side, you'll have your own rental 4x4, so you can travel at your own pace, a GPS and the best, hand-picked hotels at the ready. Your itinerary includes bathing in the warm waters of Krauma, lunch in one of our favourite restaurants, where lobster and langoustines are served up in a friendly atmosphere, and a walk through Reykjavik with a local. For any last minute advice or request, our local Concierge in Reykjavik is just a phone call away.
Flight to Reykjavik - Stokkseyri
Pick up the hire car at the airport and drive to Stokkseyri, near Selfoss, where you'll spend three nights in your first private home. Cosy home with a wooden design where you can enjoy a lovely view of the sea and which is perfectly located for venturing out across the southwestern corner of the island.
The Golden Circle and the South Coast
With Selfoss as the drop-off point, you'll have two days to explore at your own pace, discovering the incomparable Golden Circle region and the glaciers and volcanoes of the South Coast. In winter, the sky and vast expanses of unexplored land change colour as the sun charts its short arc across the sky. The almost unreal Northern Lights are its absolute highlight.
Things to see and do - Thingvellir National Park, the former site of the Althing, the Icelandic national parliament, founded in 930 AD, making it the world's first. Here there's a beautiful waterfall, numerous geological faults including Almannagja, which offers beautiful views of the valley, and Lake Thingvallavatn, Iceland's largest natural lake. It's also home to Strokkur geyser (Icelandic for 'churn'), which erupts every five to eight minutes to a height of 65ft. Then head for the Gullfoss waterfall, undoubtedly Iceland's most famous waterfall, but also one of the most beautiful - it falls in two stages into a beautiful canyon.
Included in your itinerary - Lunch at a restaurant in Stokkseyri, one of our favourite places in Iceland. It's a lovely restaurant adorned in wood, with a large slate displaying the dishes of the day. However, there's one speciality in particular: langoustines sauteed in butter. Bon appetit!
Stokkseyri - Hafnarskogur
Head north to reach the West Coast and Hafnarskogur, through lava deserts, meadows and pretty bays.
Things to see on the way - Hvalfjordur (Whale Fjord) - the open-air museum in Arbaerjarsafn, which showcases art and tradition.
Spend three nights in your second private house, a charming cocoon in the countryside, just a short distance from the coast. In the distance is the Snaefellsnes Peninsula and, just opposite, Borgarnes, a small harbour nestled at the bottom of a fjord, with colourful houses gathered around a wooden church.
Spend a few days exploring the wild coasts of the west and the Snaefellsnes Peninsula, dominated by the Snaefellsjokull volcano glacier (4,680ft). Creeks alternate with cliffs, which are home to black-legged gulls, seagulls, and Arctic terns. Take a walk along the cliff-top paths and skirt the sides of the volcano, where Jules Verne located the entry point to the Centre of the Earth in his most famous novel. The more adventurous among you can explore the glacier by snowmobile, while others may prefer to hike or ride. You'll also go on a fishing trip and a boat tour to discover the birds and mammals that inhabit the bays.
Sites worth seeing - Gerduberg basalt column cliff - Eldborg crater and its glowing walls - Reykholt valley and Barnafoss and Hraunfossar waterfalls, which are among the most beautiful on the island.
Your itinerary includes the baths of Krauma, which welcome visitors for a geothermal experience in a modern facility. In addition to the five hot baths supplied by Deildartunguhver, the most powerful hot spring on the European continent, there is a cold bath from Rausgil, which springs from Ok, Iceland's smallest glacier. There are two saunas and a relaxation room, where you can relax by the fire to prolong your stay.
Option - Snaefellsjokull glacier snowshoe trip.
Hafnarskogur - Reykjavik
You'll take a short drive south to the capital, where you'll spend three nights in a small private house in Grjoit, one of the city's oldest districts, which is listed as a heritage site.
In your itinerary - Reykjavik with a local guide. With your local guide, you'll share a slice of life, talk about everyday life, discuss societal issues, or learn about the history of one of the world's most northerly cities. It's an informal encounter, an improvised walk to suit individual tastes. It's also an opportunity to visit many great places.
Things to see and do - Climb to the top of Hallgrimskirkja Church; walk or take a bike or scooter to district 101, around Laugavegur Street, a 'village' of wooden houses of all colours, from pink to olive green, and concept stores where you can buy virgin wool blankets or pretty ceramic dishes; visit the Arbaejarsafn in Kistuhyl, the open-air museum of architecture, to discover what the Icelandic capital looked like at the beginning of the 20th century; eat cooked shark fin for lunch, accompanied by Brennivín, a potato and caraway aquavit; visit Marshall House, a former herring factory opened in 1948 and financed by the Marshall Plan, which has now been converted into an exhibition space for artists collectives.
Reykjavik - Return flight
Private transfer to the airport and catch your flight home.
A la carte
SNOWSHOEING ON THE SNAEFELLSJOKULL GLACIERYou'll take a Snowcat to Eysteinsdalur, where the snowshoeing tour begins through beautiful lava formations that emerge from the ground along the way, to a tent perched on high ground that offers stunning views of both the glacier and the coastline below. Distance: just over half a mile. Elevation: +325ft.
A Rough Idea of Price
- International flight to Reykjavik
- Airline taxes and fuel surcharge
- 4x4 car hire for six days
- Private hotel/airport transfer for the return flight
- Three-night stay in Stokkseyri near Selfoss, in a private quadruple house (room only)
- Three-night stay in Hafnarskogur near Borgarnes, in a private quadruple house (room only)
- Three-night stay in Reykjavik in a private quadruple house (room only)
- A meal at the island's best langoustine restaurant
- Entry tickets to the Krauma baths in Reykholt
- Half a day of walking in Reykjavik with a private local guide
- Our local Concierge service
- Our app, loaded with your itinerary, hotel details and recommended places to visit
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