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2nd July 2019
South Iceland’s remote, beautiful wilderness has much to offer those seeking an ‘away from it all’ destination - amazing glaciers, gushing waterfalls and impressive volcanoes, including mighty Hekla and one other notorious, unpronounceable one - Eyjafjallajökull!
Iceland is right in the middle of the Auroral Zone or 'Northern Lights belt' so the chances of seeing the Northern Lights are pretty good, but even if you don't then you will still have seen some amazing sights!
Should ‘the Lights’ make a middle of the night appearance, then reception at both the country hotels will provide you with a wake-up call, then it's time to throw on your clothes and hot-tail it outside. Don't worry though...the wake-up call isn't obligatory!
Day 1 - Arrive Iceland, Land of Fire and Ice
Arrive Keflavik Airport and collect your Avis hire car (Hyundai i30 or similar) for 5 days hire. Drive eastwards towards Reykjavik before continuing on the 'Ring Road' via the greenhouse town of Hveragerði (much steam in this area!) and Selfoss to your accommodation near Hella (approx. 88 miles).
2 nights HELLA - Hotel Rangá **** (BB)
Day 2 - Free day
We highly recommend driving the Golden Circle route taking in Þingvellir National Park (UNESCO) where you´ll be able to see where the tectonic plates are pulling apart, the world-famous Geysir area and magnificent Gullfoss Waterfall. You could also visit the Fontana geothermal baths at Laugarvatn (try out the delicious lava bread at either 1130 or 1430) and/or the Secret Lagoon geothermal pool at Flúðir.
Day 3 - Drive to Vik
After a leisurely breakfast continue south-eastwards on the Ring Road for the wonderful drive to Vik, Iceland's southernmost town and the perfect base from which to see many of Icenad's most famed attractions. En route you will visit two of Iceland's most impressive waterfalls, Seljalandsfoss and Skógafoss (53 miles).
The pretty village of Vik, with a population of only 300, is in a stunning location with the striking Reynisfjall mountain framing the famous black sand beach and the Reynisdrangar sea stacks protruding up to 66 meters from the ocean and which can be seen from your hotel. A short drive west of Vik is Dyrhólaey, Iceland's most southerly tip or cape, 120 metres high and where a unique arch-shaped rock is found. Amazing views from the lighthouse!
2 nights VIK - Icelandair Hotel Vik***+ (B)
Day 4 - Free day
Today we recommend you take the wonderfully scenic drive eastwards to Jökulsárlón Glacial Lagoon (approx. 120 miles one-way, but well worth it) one of Iceland's most stunning attractions with icebergs floating in the country's deepest, and now largest, lake. En route we recommend you visit Skaftafell Visitor Centre where you can take the walk from there to impressive Svartifoss waterfall ('Black Falls'), which plunges over a wall of symmetrical columnar basalt. Nearby you can take the little track road and park up before walking up to the edge or snout of Svinafellsjökull glacier.
Day 5 - Explore Reykjavik
Retrace your route via Selfoss to Reykjavik then park near to your accommodation (approx. 59 miles). Remainder of the day free to explore Iceland's quirky capital. The city has a wonderful selection of bars and restaurants and a visit to the top of Hallgrimskirkja church is recommended for a great view of the city or try one of the geothermal swimming pools which all have hot tubs! It is possible to drive to the Blue Lagoon on this day should you have a morning flight back the next morning, but pre-booking is required.
1 night REYKJAVÍK – Hotel Reykjavík Centrum**** (BB)
Day 6 - Homeward bound
Drive back to Keflavik Airport (approx. 31 miles) and return your hire car. Avis will drop you off outside Departures, 2 minutes away. Please note, should you have an afternoon flight back then you could drive to the Blue Lagoon first, near Grindavik, and spend some time in this famous geothermal spa (pre-booking required). The airport is only a 20 minutes' drive away.
Departure Day: Daily
Departure Dates: 1 Nov 2018 - 31 March 2019* (*prices on request for 23 Dec - 8 Jan).
Duration: 5 nights
Prices: Prices are based on two people travelling together and sharing a room throughout
|Departure Dates||Price from per person||Single supplement*|
|1 Nov 2018 - 31 Mar 2019||£1295||On Req|
|Supplement to upgrade to deluxe rooms at all hotels||£280||On Req|
Please note: there is a Keflavik Airport Service Charge for the hire car of ISK5,400 per rental and an Environmental Fee of ISK650 per rental which are payable locally.
TO BOOK: To book this holiday either telephone us on 01274 875199 (this is our preferred option as it gives us the opportunity to chat with you!) or email your booking request to firstname.lastname@example.org
It is important to read the Terms and Conditions which apply when making a confirmed booking with us. By asking us to confirm your booking, we are entitled to assume that you have read and understood our terms and conditions, and agree to them.
It is your responsibility to check and fulfil the passport, visa, health and immigration requirements applicable to your itinerary. We can only provide general information about this. You must check requirements for your own specific circumstances with the relevant Embassies and/or Consulates and your own doctor as applicable. For further information contact the Passport Office on 0300 222 0000 or visit www.gov.uk/browse/abroad/passports. Up to date travel advice can be obtained from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, visit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice.
Non British passport holders, including other EU nationals, should obtain up to date advice on passport and visa requirements from the Embassy, High Commission or Consulate of your destination or country(ies) through which you are travelling.
HOTEL RANGA (4 star) - Hella
The wonderful location of Hotel Rangá offers picturesque views of the famous Mt. Hekla to the North; a range of mountains, glaciers and a live volcano to the North-East; and of the Westman Islands to the South. Whilst at Hotel Rangá, you'll able to relax in luxury and serenrity, by enjoying the comforts on offer, from outdoor geothermal hot tubs to massage facilities. All rooms are decorated to a high standard and include all modern necessities.
After a day of exploration, the acclaimed gourmet restaurant at Hotel Rangá offers a wonderful atmosphere to relax and indulge. The restaurant's motto is the concept of a "Farmers Market" - in effect using predominantly local ingredients of the highest quality and freshness - following seasonal availability. The menu is inspired by modern Nordic cuisine with a Mediterranean twist.
ICELANDAIR HOTEL VIK (4 star) - Vik
Icelandair Hotel Vik is a new hotel in a wonderful setting in the village of Vik in Myrdalur Valley. It is nestled under sandstone hills and is embraced by magnificent natural surroundings. The views are stunning as you look out over the beach, to the sea and the Reynisdrangar Pillars, and experience the spectacular cliffs and birdlife where the puffins in Mt. Reynisfjall are only a stone’s throw away. Myrdalsjokull Glacier stands guard over the region in all its splendour and there are adventures to be had all around. The hotel has 36 elegantly fitted rooms, decorated with Icelandic design and inspired by the natural environment. All rooms are ensuite and furnished with TV, hairdyer, writing desk, tea and coffee making facilites.
HOTEL REYKJAVIK CENTRUM (4 star) - Reykjavik
On the doorstep of Reykjavik's main attractions, this hotel comprises of three charming 18th century style buildings. Proudly opened in 2005 and consists of 89 elegantly decorated en-suite rooms all with satellite and TV, cable and wireless internet, mini-bar, room safe, hairdryer, ironing board and tea/coffee making facilities. The hotel has its own restaurant serving breakfast, lunch and dinner and a bar/cafe offering light refreshment during the day.
Southern Nights and Northern Lights
To see the best of South Iceland using your hire car, follow our suggestions on things to see and do.
The Golden Circle
Perhaps South Iceland's most famous excursion but with a hire car being able to take it at your own pace. Highlights include Gullfoss, Geysir and Thingvellir National Park.
Svartifoss Waterfall (‘Black Falls’) and Svinafellsjökull
Svartifoss plunges over a wall of symmetrical columnar balsalt and an easy walk to its base provides a spectacular photo opportunity. Walk to the edge of Svinafellsjökull, a glacial tongue of Vatnajökull, Europe’s largest glacier.
Dyrhólaey (‘Doorway Hill Island’)
Iceland’s most southerly tip. A 120 metres high promontory where unique arch-shaped rock is found. The cliffs and sand dunes have been declared a nature reserve protecting large seabird colonies. Spectacular views of the black sand beaches from the lighthouse!
Just 20 miles away from Vik you will discover one of Iceland’s most beautiful and photographed waterfalls. Skógafoss is also one of the biggest waterfalls in the country with a width of 25 metres and a drop of 60 metres. Due to the amount of spray the waterfall consistently produces, a single or double rainbow often appears by its side!
Jökulsárlón Glacial Lagoon
This iceberg filled lagoon may be furthest away but we urge you to take the stunning drive from Vik. The term ‘out of this world’ could not be more accurate for this place!
We know you will have a few extra questions regarding this holiday so we have tried to answer those we have already been asked below. Any new ones will be added to the list!
Who is this holiday suitable for?
Everyone but most especially those interested in unique, weird, breathtaking, bizarre Iceland! This holiday travels along the south coast of Iceland and therefore appeals to those who do not want to spend all their time in one destination, but prefer to explore that little bit further. It also appeals to those who like the freedom of movement a hire car provides as this is a fly-drive holiday.
Is it easy to drive in Iceland?
Due to the nature in Iceland you will find a mixture of tarmac (main roads) and gravel roads, though most of the roads are gravel roads with a loose top surface. This means that speed limits are rather low, which is great, because it gives you time to negotiate the road without feeling rushed or flustered. Off roading is forbidden in Iceland as it damages the nature, therefore you will only be negotiating primary roads.
All hire cars are fitted with winter tyres which mean you can drive over snow safely and easily. We provide detailed driving directions as part of our service, however we can arrange a SatNav system in hire cars for those who wish (supplement applies).
As long as you follow the speed limit and drive carefully you will be absolutely fine.
Can special diets be catered for?
Absolutely! Just let us know at the time of booking in order that we may organise delicious alternatives, whether gluten free, vegetarian, vegan or just plain fussy!
What sort of clothing will I need?
You will need clothes for cold/cooler outdoor weather: warm trousers, a woollen pullover or fleece sweater, a warm wind and waterproof jacket and rain pants, woollen socks and an insulated bottom layer, like thermal underwear. A hat, scarf and gloves that are made from material that will dry overnight are great protection in Iceland’s winter weather and strong winds. Sturdy comfortable (hiking) boots are necessary for walking and when there is snow and icy terrain.
Buildings are often very warm, so bring light indoor clothes – t-shirts, lighter shirts and blouses. Bathing suits are essential, as a lot of the natural hot water is used to fill swimming pools, which are all over the country.
Do I need to bring any sort of equipment with me?
You don't need to but we would certainly recommend the following:
Would you recommend I buy Duty-Free items?
If you would like to have a pre-dinner drink or enjoy a nightcap in your room, then consider stopping at the duty-free store on arrival at Keflavik Airport because alcoholic beverages are very expensive in Iceland. The same applies to tobacco. Travellers are allowed to bring 1 litre of strong liquor as well as 1 litre of wine or similar drinks into the country, and 1 carton of cigarettes.