10-Day Iceland Road Trip | Hunt for Hot Springs

Duration 10Days

Summer (May - Sept.)

Flexible

Bonus Secret Stops

Are Iceland’s hot springs at the top of your travel plans? On this tour you can visit various hot pots in addition to the some of the main highlights on the island. 

In ten days, this journey will take you along the ring road and including the Snæfellsnes peninsula in the west. Along the way you will have the opportunity to visit the best sights – plus a whole lot more! The Golden Circle with Gullfoss waterfall, black beaches and glacier lagoons of the south coast as well as the more rugged north with Lake Mývatn and the pretty town of Akureyri await you. In addition to the attractions of the ring road, we will also take you to the picturesque Snæfellsnes Peninsula, where you will see the mountain Kirkjufell, famous as being featured in HBO’s “Game of Thrones” 

On this trip, our team will book all the necessary services in advance, so that all you have to do is jump into your rental car and drive off. The accommodations and additional options offered are ideally matched to the itinerary. 

In addition, you will receive a travel plan that contains everything you need to know about your trip and all the sights. We’ll provide you with our own favorite places and give you great recommendations for eating, no matter where you are. 

So, do you have ten days and are you eager to discover Iceland’s famous hot springs? Then let’s take a plunge into the itinerary.

Included

  • Rental car for 10 days (different categories available, more info below)
  • Accommodation for 9 nights (different categories available, more info below)
  • SCDW insurance and Gravel Protection for the rental car
  • Detailed travel information (Roadbook)
  • Personal travel advisor
  • Icelandic taxes

Itinerary

Day 1

Highlights:

Capital Reykjavík
Reykjanes Peninsula & Volcano Fagradalsfjall (optional)

Summary:

Accommodation: Reykjavík

Driving Distance: approx. 50 km

Optional Activities: Blue Lagoon, Guided City Tour, Food Tour, Whale Watching, FlyOver Iceland 

The eruption of Fagradalsfjall volcano in Iceland

Day 1 is the day of your arrival. Don't worry, we'll plan everything according to your flight time. Upon arrival, you can pick up the rental car without any fuss, no matter when you land. The rest of the day is open for a soothing dip in the world-famous Blue Lagoon or a gentle stroll through Reykjavík. If your flight lands early, you can even opt for a hike to the erupting volcano in the Geldingadalur valley! 

In the capital you can also do as the locals do and visit the hot pots in one of the many swimming pools in the city, and then enjoy the evening in Reykjavík.

Day 2

Highlights:

Þingvellir National Park
Geysir & Strokkur
Gullfoss Waterfall
Kerið Crater

Summary:

Accommodation: Hvolsvöllur

Driving Distance: approx. 215 km

Optional Activities: Snorkeling, Snowmobiling, Laugarvatn Fontana, Secret Lagoon 

The second day is dedicated to the famous Golden Circle. The three main attractions along the route are Þingvellir National Park, Strokkur Geyser and Gullfoss Waterfall. Walk between the continental plates and experience a piece of Iceland’s geological and political history in Þingvellir: Iceland's first democratic parliament was founded here in 930. The Silfra rock crevice, which presents crystal-clear glacier water, is quite a sight. Believe it or not, you can also snorkel here! In the hissing valley of Haukadalur, the Strokkur geyser awaits you, erupting every few minutes. Its sleeping big brother, Geysir, is where all the world’s Geysers get their name. 

Make sure you don't miss the Gullfoss waterfall. It rushes powerfully over two steps more than 100 meters wide - a breathtaking sight! On the drive to the accommodation on the south coast, the Secret Lagoon is located directly along the route. If you feel like it, you can end the day here in a relaxed manner.

Day 3

Highlights:

Seljalandsfoss & Skógafoss Waterfalls
Seljavallalaug Geothermal Bath
Reynisfjara Black Sand Beach
Skaftafell Nature Reserve
Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon
Diamond Beach

Summary:

Accommodation: Vatnajökull area

Driving Distance: approx. 250-300 km

Optional Activities: Jökulsárlón Boat Tour

Shortly after you set off today, you will be able to marvel at the famous waterfalls of Seljalandsfoss and Skógafoss. You can even visit the cave behind Seljalandsfoss, just make sure you have your raincoat! Between these two cherished waterfalls is where you can find Seljavallalaug geothermal bath, which you can reach after a short hike. It is a simple concrete pool with a changing room that was built in 1923. The water may not be the cleanest in the country, but the scenery is simply amazing! 

Further along the South Coast, you will reach the most famous beach on the island, Reynisfjara, and the coastal town of Vík. Here you can marvel at the troll-shaped rocks of Reynisdrangar and, with a little luck, you might even catch a glimpse of a puffin or two. The Skaftafell nature reserve also features on this route, where you have the option of taking a short hike to Svartifoss waterfall. 

You will reach the famous Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon in the evening, and your accommodation is in the area. Here you can watch the icebergs lazily float in milky blue water before they are swept out to sea. We highly recommend a boat tour on this amazing lagoon.

Day 4

Highlights:

Hoffell Hot Pots
Vestrahorn Mountain
Eastfjords with Picturesque Stops Like Djúpivogur & Fáskrúðsfjörður
Lagarfljót Lake
Hallormsstaðaskógur Forest

Summary:

Accommodation: Egilsstaðir

Driving Distance: approx. 225-300 km

Optional Activities: Vök Baths

Day 4 begins in the shadow of mighty Vatnajökull. Europe’s largest glacier. If you did not get to see the Glacier Lagoon, then now is your chance. Otherwise, you will start the journey by heading East, which leads you through authentic fishing villages and along picturesque fjords. The glittering Atlantic will be your companion. 

However, there is a chance to take a dip on the way! At Hoffell you can enjoy several hot pots for a small fee. In Djúpivogur there are bizarre sculptures at the harbor to marvel at: several larger-than-life bird eggs that honor the rich bird life of the area. You can either drive directly towards the largest city in the east, Egilsstaðir, or take a trip through the fjords and get to know picturesque places like Fáskrúðsfjörður and Eskifjörður. 

In the surroundings of Egilsstaðir, there is also the lake Lagarfljót, in which a monster is believed to dwell. Nessie or not, Hallormsstaðaskógur Forest is an enchanting backdrop. Fancy taking another plunge? Then the new geothermal bath Vök should definitely be on your list.

Day 5

Highlights:

Dettifoss Waterfall
Húsavík Village
Námaskarð Geothermal Area Lake Mývatn Grjótagjá Cave
Dimmuborgir Lava Field
Skútustaðagígar Pseudocraters

Summary:

Accommodation: Mývatn

Driving Distance: approx. 240 km

Optional Activities: Mývatn Nature Baths

Today you drive towards Mývatn. This lake offers some sights that you shouldn't miss. The first thing on the program is a visit to the mightiest waterfall in Europe: Dettifoss. Almost 200,000 liters of water per second cascade down into the depths. Films like Prometheus were filmed here, and you're sure to get some stunning shots. 

Further along the route, the area around Lake Mývatn is waiting for you. The colorful Námaskarð geothermal area has bubbling mud springs and steaming fumaroles. You will smell it before you see it, and it should not be missing from your photo album. There is also much to discover around the lake itself: the rock formations Dimmuborgir, the pseudocrater Skútustaðagígar and the volcanic crater Hverfell await you. The Grjótagjá cave houses a hot spring and was featured as the love cave of Jon Snow and the wilding, Ygritte, in HBO’s Game of Thrones ... even if you cannot swim here, you can take a break in the milky water of the Mývatn Nature Baths in the evening.

Day 6

Highlights:

Goðafoss Waterfall
Capital of the North: Akureyri
Hofsós Swimming Pool
Glaumbær Museum
Grettislaug Hot Pot

Summary:

Accommodation: Skagafjörður area

Driving Distance: approx. 250 km

Optional Activities: Horseback Riding, Whale Watching

Can't wait to enjoy a piece of civilization again? Akureyri is Iceland's capital of the north and today offers you interesting shops, cool bars and some exciting museums. You can also use this opportunity to go whale watching, where the chances of catching a glimpse of a whale is excellent! On the way from Mývatn you pass the pretty Goðafoss waterfall, which you shouldn't miss. 

Today you can also catch a glimpse of Iceland’s past and visit the Glaumbær grass sod farm. Today's hot spring is either the picturesque swimming pool in Hofsós, with a view of the fjord, or the Hot Pot Grettislaug, which offers you an authentic bathing experience. Both options are by Skagafjörður, which is famous for its horse breeding. You can certainly take a selfie with a real Icelandic horse today! If you fancy a ride, now is your chance.

Day 7

Highlights:

Fosslaug Hot Spring
Hvítserkur Troll Cliff
Seals at the Vatnsnes Peninsula
Guðrúnarlaug Hot Pot

Summary:

Accommodation: Snæfellsnes

Driving Distance: approx. 300-350 km

Today the route leads through the rugged northwest and ends at the picturesque Snæfellsnes peninsula. After you set off, you can decide to take a detour to the Fosslaug hot spring, where you can also pay a visit to the beautiful and lesser-known Reykjafoss waterfall. 

Otherwise, a gravel road leads you to the impressive troll rock Hvítserkur, on the Vatnsnes peninsula. Seals can often be seen on the coast here too! If you've skipped Fosslaug, a short swerve will take you in the direction of the Westfjords to the historic hot pot Guðrúnarlaug. You will spend the night in an ideal location before tomorrow’s journey along the coast of the peninsula.

Day 8

Highlights:

Stykkishólmur Village
Kirkjufell Mountain
Lóndrangar Sea Stacks Djúpalónssandur Black Beach
Gatklettur Rock Arch
Ytri Tunga Seal Beach

Summary:

Accommodation: Snæfellsnes

Driving Distance:  approx. 200 km

Optional Activities: Whale Watching, Vatnshellir Caving, Snowcat Tour 

The peninsula is ready to be explored today and you can look forward to great highlights such as Mount Kirkjufell, the picturesque village of Stykkishólmur, the Gatklettur rock arch, the black beach Djúpalónssandur and the rocky peaks of Lóndrangar. 

Of course, all of this is dominated by the mighty Snaefellsjökull glacier volcano, which you can even drive up to with a snowcat in good weather. In the village of Grundarfjörður, you can go whale watching and with a little luck, you will see orcas! After all the explorations, you are sure to feel like relaxing in warm water: Landbrotalaug is a hot spring along the south coast of the peninsula, which is located in a rough environment but offers great views of the surrounding mountain ranges.

Day 9

Highlights:

Deildartunguhver Hot Spring
Reykholt Village
Snorralaug Historic Hot Pot
Hraunfossar & Barnafoss Waterfalls

Summary:

Accommodation: Reykjavík

Driving Distance: approx. 270 km

Optional Activities: Krauma Baths, Víðgelmir Caving, Into the Glacier, Húsafell Canyon Baths 

Day 9 is the last full day of your trip: The beautiful area of Borgarfjörður has some final highlights in store. The fjord is known for its lush nature and attractions such as the historic town of Reykholt and the Hraunfossar and Barnafoss lava waterfalls. 

Reykholt was the hometown of the poet Snorri Sturluson, legendary writer of Icelandic sagas. Hraunfossar consists of a series of electric blue waterfalls that arise from a porous lava field and are simply enchanting in every season. From here it is only a short distance to the Víðgelmir lava cave or the Langjökull glacier, where you can embark on several exciting activites. A tour through your choice of colorful lava rock or deep beneath the glacier surface into its blue ice tunnels is definitely a highlight of your trip. 

However, if you want to take it easy on the last day, you can visit the Krauma geothermal bath, which offers 5 hot pots, a relaxation room and saunas. You will spend the last night in the capital again, where you can treat yourself to a delicious dinner.

Day 10

Highlights:

Capital Reykjavík
Reykjanes Peninsula & Volcano Fagradalsfjall (optional)

Summary:

Driving Distance: approx. 50 km

Optional Activities: Blue Lagoon, Guided City Tour, Food Tour, Whale Watching, FlyOver Iceland

Today you start your journey home, guaranteed with unforgettable memories that will stow away neatly in your luggage. The day's activities depend entirely on the flight time. You can opt to take one last stroll through Reykjavík, relax in the Blue Lagoon, or maybe even hike to the active volcano on Reykjanes if you did not use the opportunity before. You will kick yourself if you don’t. 

If your flight starts very early, there is an option to add an extra day to the trip. If you want to make sure you include a “volcano day” we can book an additional night in Reykjavík as well as an additional day for the rental car.

Budget category in Iceland

Budget (Shared Bathroom)

In our budget category, we will accommodate you in cozy countryside guesthouses. Private rooms with shared bathroom, breakfast is included.

Comfort category in Iceland

Comfort (Private Bathroom)

In our comfort category, we will accommodate you in hotels and boutique guesthouses. Private rooms with bathroom, breakfast is included.

Kia Rio rental car in Iceland

Standard 2WD

In this category, we book a manual transmission Kia Rio (or similar). SCDW insurance and gravel protection are included.

Dacia Duster rental car in Iceland

Standard 4WD

In this category, we book a manual transmission Dacia Duster (or similar). SCDW insurance and gravel protection are included.

Kia Sportage rental car in Iceland

Comfort 4WD

In this category, we book an automatic transmission Kia Sportage (or similar). SCDW insurance and gravel protection are included.