- 10 Days / 9 Nights
- Vehicle: All types are suitable
- Season: July-Aug
Main areas of this itinerary:
Reykjavik, Golden Circle, Snæfellsnes Peninsula, West Fjords, F35, Landmannalagur.
This unique itinerary is ideal for adventurers among you. It will take you to the less inhabited and more wild parts of Iceland, including the vast western fjords, the enchanting Landmannalaugar nature reserve, and the one-time Kjolur – F35 road. This itinerary is only accessible during the summer months when F35 and the roads to Landmannalauger open, and a 4WD vehicle is required. The itinerary is also highly suitable for a second trip to Iceland, especially for travelers who couldn’t explore the fjords or experience Iceland’s Highlands on their first journey.
Day 1 – Arrival in Iceland: Exploring Reykjavik, the Capital
Upon picking up your car at the airport, embark on a journey towards the capital, Reykjavik. The route takes you through the Reykjanes peninsula, marked by the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. In comparison to other European capitals, Reykjavik may be compact, but it serves as the cultural, economic, and governmental hub, making it Iceland’s largest city by population. Reykjavik’s urban skyline is characterized by spaciousness, with low-rise structures dominating the scene. The city is renowned for its vibrant cultural scene, with an abundance of restaurants, cafes, and bars scattered throughout. Iconic wooden houses with colorful roofs define Reykjavik’s charm. A stroll through the city center is a fantastic starting point for your upcoming adventure.
Optional Activities: FlyOver Iceland, Perlan, Sky Lagoon
Day 2 – Exploring the Snæfellsnes Peninsula and Snæfellsjökull National Park
Departing from Reykjavik, your journey heads northwest, passing through the undersea tunnel beneath the whale-filled fjord to Borgarnes, the capital of West Iceland. Borgarnes serves as the central hub for farmers in the region.
As you proceed towards the Snæfellsnes Peninsula, the route weaves through craters and lava fields. Notable among them is Crater Eldborg, visible from the road, with a walking trail leading to a scenic viewpoint at its summit.
Explore the seal colonies along the peninsula before reaching the Snæfellsjökull National Park area. The park’s focal point is the impressive volcano crowned with a glacier at its summit, standing tall at 1,477 meters. This dominant volcano is visible even from Reykjavik.
Various attractions surround the mountain within the park, including Djúpalónssandur Beach adorned with black stones and captivating lava formations. Charming fishing villages hug the black cliffs along the coast, offering a picturesque scene with a diverse array of seabirds and the occasional sighting of whales breaching the water.
Continue along the northern side of the peninsula to the town of Stykkishólmur, the gateway to the Western Fjords. Take a short walk to the top of the harbor lighthouse for a breathtaking view of numerous small islands. The next morning, from Stykkishólmur, embark on a ferry to the West Fjords.
Optional Activities: Lava Cave
Day 3 – Breidafjordur Bay Ferry Cruise and Látrabjarg Cliff Exploration
Take a relaxed ferry cruise from Stykkishólmur, enjoying the picturesque islands of Breidafjordur Bay. With its small islands framed by the West Fjords and the peninsula’s coastline, the bay offers a pleasant two-and-a-half-hour journey. Keep an eye out for the White Iceland Eagle if you’re lucky. The cruise concludes with your arrival in the untamed West Fjords.
The West Fjords feature the stunning Látrabjarg Cliff, a colossal nesting ground for birds, including puffins. This fourteen-kilometer cliff rises over 400 meters, providing an impressive natural habitat. Nearby, explore a serene red sand beach in the southern part of the fjords, offering a peaceful and magical escape.
Accommodation: Latrabjarg area
Day 4 – Dynjandi Waterfall to Ísafjörður, Capital of the Westfjords
Head north to explore the Western Fjords, making your way to the town of Ísafjörður. Enjoy a break at the beautiful Dynjandi Waterfall, known for its scenic beauty. Continue through the Flateyri tunnel and reach Ísafjörður, the largest town in the Western Fjords.
Take some time to wander through Ísafjörður and neighboring towns like Bolungarvík and Suðureyri. If you’re visiting in the summer, consider a kayaking excursion in Ísafjörður’s fjord or explore the Bolungarvík Nature Museum. This day offers a relaxed exploration of natural wonders and local communities in the Western Fjords.
Accommodation: Ísafjörður area
Day 5 – Hólmavík and the Enchanting Strandir Coast of the West Fjords
In the summer, don’t miss the daily boat trip to the picturesque island of Vigur from Ísafjörður – a highly recommended experience. Driving along the scenic beaches of Ísafjarðardjúp fjords, you’ll immerse yourself in the enchanting beauty of the surroundings.
Make a stop at Sudavík, home to the Arctic Fox Center, and witness the charming colonies of seals along the fjord’s coast. Continue your journey towards Reykjanes, where you can unwind with a swim in Iceland’s largest open geothermal pool.
Explore the town of Hólmavík, where the Museum of Sorcery and Witchcraft shares intriguing insights into the area’s unconventional history. Move on to the secluded village of Drangsnes, a quaint fishing village nestled by Steigrímsfjörður fjord. Here, indulge in relaxation at an outdoor pool fed by naturally hot water – a perfect way to unwind after a day of fjord exploration.
Day 6 – Seal colonies and the Troll Rock at the Vastnes Peninsula – Skagafjörður region
You will continue to the fertile valley of Skagafjörður renowned for horse breeding. On our way you will make a detour around the Vastnes Peninsula, famous mainly due to the large seal colonies located there, flocks of birds and the beautiful landscapes.
On the Peninsula is located one of Iceland’s most famous natural statues that looks like a giant troll standing on the shoreline of the sea. After you finish our trip in Vastnes, you will continue to the east. The town Blönduós, further on the Ring Road, is located on the banks of the river Blanda, where you can make a stop for refreshments.
You will continue and cross the Vatnsskað and enter the district Skagafjörður. As it is the region of horse-breeders, rides for beginners and experienced riders are possible in this area. In the highlands of Skagafjörður you can also join one of the best rafting cruises in Iceland.
In Skagafjörður region is located the Glaumbær grass houses museum, which recreates the life of Icelanders in the past. You can explore the unique houses with grass roofs and feel like a hobbit in the movie Lord of the Rings.
Near the town Varmahlíð you will visit the old and the tiny church Víðimýri with Vikings characteristics. Estimated driving distance: 280 km.
Day 7 – Crossing Iceland via Kjölur – Geysers in Kerlingarfjöll (4WD)
Accommodation: Gullfoss Area
Optional Activities: Hiking in Kerlingarfjöll
Day 8 – Trip to Landmannalauger
The Landmannalaugar area invites visitors to stunning views of colorful rhyolite mountains alongside natural hot springs, offering a perfect opportunity for a dip in a geothermal pool at an ideal temperature. The unique landscape of the valleys and vibrant mountains of Landmannalaugar is the result of volcanic eruptions beneath the ice caps that once covered the region during the Ice Age. The area boasts several beautiful hiking trails for all levels.
En route to the reserve, explore the “Disgusting Pool,” a crater with a lake at its summit, providing an impressive panoramic view of the distinctive landscape.
Accommodation: Gullfoss area
Optional Activities: Hiking in Landmannalauger
Day 9 – The Golden Circle
Continue along the Golden Circle route and explore three additional iconic landmarks. First, visit the majestic Gullfoss waterfall, often referred to as the “Golden Waterfall.” Marvel at the powerful cascade as it plunges into a rugged canyon, creating a mesmerizing spectacle.
Next, immerse yourself in the historical and geological wonders of Thingvellir National Park. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is where the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates meet, and it played a significant role in Iceland’s history and governance.
Conclude your Golden Circle adventure at the Geysir Geothermal Area, home to the erupting geyser Strokkur. Witness the thrilling displays of nature as Strokkur shoots hot water high into the air, showcasing the geothermal energy beneath the Earth’s surface.
Optional Activities: Secret Lagoon, Silfra Diving
Day 10 – Reykjavik – Keflavik – Flight
If your flight schedule permits, consider spending the remaining day exploring Reykjavik before your departure. The car return is conveniently located at the airport. Enjoy your final moments in Iceland’s vibrant capital city. Safe travels!
Among our collection of 50+ itineraries, the ‘The Westfjords including F35 (4WD) – 9 Days’ itinerary stands out as a perennial favorite, securing its place on the ‘Top Itineraries’ list of ‘Take Me There Iceland’. Explore the beauty of Iceland at your own pace, guided by our app for an unforgettable road trip experience.