Loading...

7 Day Trips from Reykjavik

Björk Jónsdóttir Iceland Guide Plan your trip Things to do Travel Tips

 

When it comes to day trips, Reykjavik is the perfect starting point. Here are 7 of the best Iceland day trips and tours from Reykjavík to connect with Icelandic nature.

 

Visiting Iceland is high on most people's travel wish list and with northern lights, glaciers, volcanoes, waterfalls, hot springs and breathtaking landscapes, it's no wonder why. With cheap flights to Reykjavik from many destinations around the world opening up visits to Iceland to all sorts of destinations around the world many people are headed to Iceland stopover for a long weekend or for weeks at a time!

If you only plan to be in Iceland for a few days it makes sense to base in the Reykjavik, the capital city of Iceland. What's great about basing out of the city is that you have plenty of incredible day trips, tours and activities from Reykjavik to choose from that can fill up an entire weekend or week while being conveniently located in the city where all the best shopping, museums, bars, restaurants and accommodation on the island.

TOP 7 TRIPS FROM REYKJAVÍK


1. THE GOLDEN CIRCLE

This is the most popular day trip for those who visit Iceland from Reykjavik. There are many tour options, by bus, small groups and private tour but you can also rent a car and do it on your own so you can go at your own pace.

The three main attractions are Thingvellier National Park, Gullfoss, and Geysir. Thingvellir National Park is the first national park in Iceland and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. You can visit the museum and see different sites on a self-guided walking tour.

Your next stop will be Geysir and Strokkur, which is a geothermal area with geysers and mud pots. It's also home to the original “Geysir,” which is where we got the English word geyser from.

Lastly, you can stop at Gullfoss to see one of the most spectacular waterfalls.

Golden-Circle-Strokkur-by-Emily-Campbell-
Golden Circle, Strokkur by Emily Campbell 

2. THE SOUTH COAST: VIK

The second most visited day trip area is the South Coast. It has some of the most iconic waterfalls and landscapes. It takes roughly 2 and a half hours to drive to Vík, but with so many stops along the way, it will keep you busy all day.

South-of-Iceland-by-alex-mustaros

 Seljalandsfoss, Iceland by Alex Mustaros 

Places to Check Out:

  • Seljalandsfoss: the waterfall you can walk behind
  • Skogafoss: probably one of the most photographed waterfalls in Iceland.
  • Sólheimassandur Plane Wreck
  • Dyrhólaey: sea arch and dramatic cliffs
  • Reynisfjara Black Sand Beach: famous black beach with Basalt Columns

3. THE SOUTH COAST: JÖKULSARLÓN GLACIER LAGOON

We broke up the South Coast into two parts since there are so many stops and the second portion is farther. Between Vík and Jökulsarlón, there is plenty more to see that's worth another day trip out. 

If you are wondering whether it's worth it to drive all the way to Jökulsárlón and back in a day from Reykjavík, It depends on how much you want to see Jökulsárlón. The main stop will be Jökulsarlón or Glacier Lagoon. We would recommend you to stay one night in the South due to all the amazing places you can visit and will be safer to rest after an intense day of driving and exploring Iceland. Driving from Reykjavík to Jökullsarlón glacier lagoon is 379 km and it takes about 4 hours 20 minutes to get there. We recommend this trip mostly in the summertime with more than one driver and 24h sunlight will let you enjoy the landscape.

Jokullsarlon-Glacier-Lagoon-by-mimie-hercus-
Jökullsarlón Glacier Lagoon  by mimie hercus 

Other Places to Visit:

  • Svinafellsjökull Glacier, where you can hike and walk (check our tours)
  • Blue Ice Crystal Caves
  • Jökulsarlón Ice Beach: Diamond Beach
  • Svartifoss
  • Fjadrarglijufur

 

Ice-Cave-in-Iceland-by-Jonatan-Pie
Ice Cave in Iceland by Jonatan Pie

4. SNAEFELLSNES PENINSULA

One of our all-time favourite photography spots is only 2 hours away from Reykjavík. Grundarfjörður is where Kirkjufell mountain and Kirkjufellsfoss waterfall is.

Kirkjufell-Snaefellsnes-Peninsula-by-Robert-Bye-
Kirkjufell Snaefellsnes Peninsula by Robert Bye 

Other Places:

  • Snaefellsjökull Glacier: role as the Center of the Earth in the novel Journey to the Center of the Earth (1864) by Jules Verne.
  • Gerduberg Basalt Columns
  • Budir Church: beautiful historic black wooden little church
  • Londrangar: unique lava formations off the coast
  • Spot seals in Ytri-Tunga sandy beach
  • Bjarnarhofn Shark Museum

5. HRAUNFOSSAR AND BARNAFOSS

This day trip gets you to two waterfalls in one spot. Hraunfossar, that means Lava Falls, is one of the more unique waterfalls in Iceland. It's a series of smaller falls that emerge from the ground and flow down to the river. Barnafoss is a few steps away, this waterfall rushing down a narrow gorge.

Hraunafossar-Waterfall-by-Adam-Edgerton-
Hraunafossar Waterfall by Adam Edgerton 

6. BLUE LAGOON

If you're looking for a relaxing day, then drive out to the Blue Lagoon. It's only 45 minutes from the city and is a large complex with everything you need. Be sure to book your time online in advance as it fills up.

Blue-Lagoon-Agua
Blue Lagoon by Maarten van den Heuvel 

If you're looking for something less commercialized and off the beaten path, check out Secret Lagoon in Fludir, Krauma or Fontana Geothermal Baths.

Check out our article on Blue Lagoon Tips.

7. NORTHERN LIGHTS

If you're in Iceland during the winter, a car is really helpful if you're trying to catch the Northern Lights. Although there are tours that take you from the city, they usually only go out for a certain limited amount of time before heading back. If you have your own car, you can stay out as long as like or move freely.

Northern-Lights-in-Iceland-by-Jonatan-Pie
Northern Lights in Iceland by Jonatan Pie 

Check out our guide of Northern Lights in Iceland.


RENTING A CAR IN ICELAND

Having your own car is one of the best ways to explore Iceland, whether you want to do it via day trips from Reykjavik or drive around the whole island. To book your car, visit the best deals in Destiny Iceland. We have brand new cars with the best price guarantee and make everything really easy. Their offices are at Keflavík International Airport (KEF) and in Reykjavík.

Destiny-Iceland-Car-Rental-by-Erik-Nielsen-

Rent a Car in Iceland by Erik Nielsen

BOOK YOUR RENTAL CAR IN ICELAND