SNAEFELLSNES AND THE GRAND CIRCLE

Day 1: Keflavík- Reykjavík (ca 50 km)
Arrival at Keflavik International Airport, pick up rental car at the airport and drive to Reykjavik for an overnight stay. If your arrival is late in the night, your accommodation this night can be arranged closer to Keflavik international airport.
 
Day 2: Reykjavík - Þingvellir national park - Geysir - Gullfoss (ca. 200 km)
Drive east out of Reykjavik towards Þingvellir national park which is a great lava arena in a rift valley and the site of the oldest parliament, “the Althing”. Chance for a short walk and great views over the Lake Þingvallavatn and the surrounding mountains. Drive to Lake Laugarvatn, and to the Geysir geothermal area - have your camera ready for one of the geysers - Strokkur as it spouts a coloumn of hot water. Continue to Gullfoss waterfall - the Golden Waterfall, cascading into the deep gorge of Hvítá glacial river. Overnight in the area.
 
Day 3: Gullfoss - Vík- Skaftafell (ca.320 km)
Continue east by driving along the Þjórsardalur valley - on a clear day you will have a good view of Mt Hekla most of the way.  towards Seljalandsfoss waterfall then continue along the mountains covered by the glacier Eyjafjallajökull with the infamous volcano of the same name resting beneath it. At Skógar a chance for enjoying the view of another majestic waterfall, Skógafoss and possibility to visti the remarkable Skógar museum. Drive on to Dyrhólaey, a bird paradise before continuing to the village of Vík with long black sand beach. Accross the sands of glacial rivers and and lava fields continue to Kirkjubæjarklaustur and Skaftafell National Park which offers possibilities for shorter and longer walks. Svartifoss waterfall is one of the best known sights in the park.  Wild flowers thrive in the shelter of the birch forest which covers the slopes surrounded by glaciers and the sands of glacial rivers. Accommodation in the area.
 
Day 4: Skaftafell national park
Explore the Skaftafell National Park. There are many trails for hiking through the park, suitable for different demands of the hikers. Among other options there is a walk to the edge of a glacial tongue. A chance for optional guided tour to Hvannadalshnjúkur - highest Icelandic mountain. Accommodation in the area.
 
Day 5: Skaftafell - Höfn - Djúpivogur (ca. 240 km)
Drive further east in the direction of the harbour town Höfn. On the way stop at the Jökulsárlon glacier lagoon where it is possible to take a short optional boat excursion among the icebergs. Most of the way along the coastal road to Höfn you have a view of the glacial tongues, some of them reaching quite close to the road. Continue along the East fjords.
Apart from the boat tour on glacial lagoon there are several other possibilities for optional tours on on your route this day - here are a few suggestions to choose from:
- a tractor tour to Ingólfshöfði promontory where among other birds you can see puffins;
- glacial exhibition in Höfn;
- boat tour to Papey Island from Djúpivogur;
Accommodation in the area of Djúpivogur. 
 
Day 6: Djúpivogur - Stöðvarfjörður - Egilsstaðir (ca.150-250 km) 
Today's journey takes you north along the sheltered East fjords and through small fishing villages. Particularly interesting is Petra's stone museum with a colourful collection of Icelandic minerals. From Reyðarfjörður you have a chance for a detour to the remote Norðurfjörður with the picturesque fishing village of Neskaupsstaður. Continue to Egilsstaðir which is the administration centre of East Iceland, located by Lagarfljót river. A chance to take a drive around the Lake Lagarfljót or hop over the hills to the charming harbour town of Seyðisfjörður, nestled at the bottom of the fjord under the steep moutain slopes.  Accommodation in the area of Egilsstaðir.
 
Day 7: Egilsstaðir- Dettifoss- Ásbyrgi- Húsavík (ca. 220 km) 
From Egilsstaðir the road will take you first through the green valley of Jökuldalur with numerous waterfalls dropping down from the hilltops and then through the desert area of Möðrudalur. Drive to the Dettifoss, Europe's most powerful waterfall, over 100m wide and plunges 44 metres deep down into the gorge of Jökuldárgljúfur. Continuing north you reach Ásbyrgi, a horse-shoe shaped canyon with lush vegetation. Along the coastal road around Tjörnes peninsula drive on towards the delightful fishing town of Húsavík. Apart from the famous whale museum there is one of the finest wooden churches in the country just above the harbour. Accommodation in the area. 
 
Day 8: Húsavík - Lake Mývatn (ca. 70 km) 
Possibility for an optional whale watching tour in the morning (duration 3 hours), explore the town of Húsavík or hike up to Mt.Húsavíkurfjall. In the afternoon drive in the direction of Lake Mývatn - one of Iceland's most fascinating regions with fantastic volcanic formations, geothermal activity and the lake teeming with water fowl. Visit the public park Höfði with its lush vegetation. Walk through the fascinating labyrinth of lava formations at Dimmuborgir, or walk up the nearby crater Hverfjall. Among other interesting places to see is the Grjótagjá fissure undir which there are caves filled with hot water. The pseudocraters at Skútustaðir are unique and the Hverir solfatara field at Námaskarð with bubbling mud pits and roaring steam vents is simply out of this world. Possibility to relax in the pleasantly warm geothermal water of the Nature Baths.
Accommodation in the area.
 
Day 9: Mývatn (ca. 20-50 km)
Day to enjoy the wonderous volcanic world of Lake Myvatn. Accommodation in the area.
 
Day 10: Mývatn - Akureyri (100 km)
Leaving the area of Lake Mývatn drive further west to Goðafoss waterfall - the Waterfall of Gods, one of the most beautiful waterfalls in north Iceland, marked by history and folklore. Continue to Akureyri which is often referred to as the capital of the north.  Situated at the bottom of Eyjafjörður, the longest fjord in Iceland it is an important cultural, educational and administration centre. It is worth taking the time to explore this charming town with its old wooden houses, northernmost botanical garden, beautiful church, several interesting museums and cosy cafés.
Accommodation in the area. (About 100 km)
 
Day 11: Akureyri - Skagafjörður - Stykkishólmur (ca. 360 km) 
Leaving Akureyri drive over Öxnadalsheiði mountain pass towards Skagafjörður and further to Blönduós. In Hrútafjörður it is time to leave the ring road again and drive towards Búðardalur and Breiðafjörður as far as Stykkihsólmur where you stay overnight. 

Day 12: Stykkishólmur / Breiðarfjörður 
Explore Stykkishólmur and the surroundings. Possibility for an optional boat tour in Breiðafjörður. This is also a perfect opportunity to make a trip to Flatey Island using the schedule ferry service across Breiðafjörður. Flatey is place where it seems like time stopped about 100 years ago. Old houses were mostly built in 19th and early 20th century and the village preserves the old look. Nowadays there are only 2 farms with permanent residents on the island. And numerous sea birds.
Accommodation on the northern side of Snæfellsnes. 
 
Day 13: Snæfellsnes peninsula (ca. 150 km)
Drive along the northern side of the peninsula will take you through the fishing villages of Grundarfjörður, Ólafsvík, Ríf and Hellissandur with an interesting maritime museum. Visit the sights in the area, among others there is a possibility for a visit to Vatnshellir lava cave where visitors get the chance descend down a ring staircase into the depth of the cave and experience total darknes of the cave and get the feeling for the geology of the country. Several other opportunities to enjoy the natural wonders on the southern side of the Snæfellsjökull glacier/volcano before you reach Arnarstapi with interesting basalt cliff formations by the coast.
Accommodation in the area. 
 
Day 14: Snæfellsnes - Reykjavík (ca. 150 km) 
The southern side of the peninsula offers more sights to visit on the way towards Borgarnes. Here you return to the ring road and drive to Reykjavík, either along the coastline our the Hvalfjörður or shorten your way via the Hvalfjörður tunnel. Arriving in Reykjavík in the afternoon there is time to explore the capital.
Accommodation in Reykjavik. 
 
Day 15: Reykjavík- Keflavík (ca. 50-70 km)
Drive to Keflavík airport, return the rental car and check-in for the flight back home. If your departure is in the afternoon then you have the possibilty for a drive to the Blue Lagoon and a chance for another relaxing bath in the geothermal water before leaving Iceland.


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