Iceland – truly a paradise on Earth; a visual treat; breathtakingly serene; nature’s might & of course, if you don’t like the weather – wait for 30 minutes!


We visited Iceland in the month of Feb when winters are just fading away but it’s not yet time for the evening sun. This meant it was still not time to tread the F-roads but a 4×4 Duster can surely give you a taste of it! We covered the entire west & south Iceland; almost forming a necklace on this beautiful country.

Overview Map

Now before you start packing your bags & look for the next flight to Reykjavik (pronounced Re-ka-vik); here’s a quick guide for the same –

  • What is the best time to visit?
    • If Northern Lights is a must on your list (who are you kidding? Of course it is), winters is the time. Fag end of the winter season (Jan wk4-Mar wk1) is better suited as per climate (Oh trust us, it feels at least -2°C lower than reported temp due to winds)
  • What should I pack?
    • Basic rule of thumb: Winters 4 layers; Summers 2 layers, your camera (duh! Of course) & water resistant (waterproof would be even better) shoes for full day comfort & no cigarettes (it’s mostly a No Smoking country)
  • Where should I stay?
    • There’s a string of options ranging from Airbnb to hotels in all major towns. Where we stayed is given below
  • How much money do I need? (No Euros/GBP/USD ; majorly acceptable currency is ISK)
    • A very table top estimate:
      • Self-drive car for 7 days (4×4) – 36k ISK/23k INR/335 USD
      • Quite decent Hotel/night (luxury has no limits J) – 14k ISK/ 9k INR/ 130 USD
      • Meals (breakfast mostly in hotels) – 3k ISK/ 2k INR/ 28 USD
      • Fuel – Diesel fuel efficiency approx. 10km/ltr; 210 ISK/ltr approx.
    • What to visit?

Well, here it goes:


Journey: Keflavik -> Car pickup -> Blue Lagoon – > Reykjavik

Day 1

Stay: Reykjavik – multiple hotels/stay apartments. We stayed at Einholt Stay Apartments

It’s your first day. Tired? Jet lagged? Need to relax, right? Make sure you’ve pre-booked your slot in the Blue lagoon here. After you’ve picked up your car, it is just a 20 minute drive to the Blue Lagoon. Enjoy the mesmerizing natural geo-thermal pool as a welcome to Iceland. It is expensive, but the silica masks, the drinks in the milky blue hot waters in the lap of snow clad mountains is worth it. Once you’re done/your slot has ended, take the ride to Reykjavik. Check in to your hotel/stay apartment & freshen up. If you have a couple of hours before you want to start exploring the Reykjavik streets & are looking for a taste of nature’s might, you might want to check out THE VOLCANO. You may now start exploring Reykjavik by taking a stroll alongside the old harbour area & the sea front. You may choose to visit Hallgrímskirkja Church. Laugavegur is the main shopping street with some great cafes.

PS: Alternatively, Blue Lagoon experience can also be scheduled on the last day as it is quite near to the airport



Journey: Reykjavik

Stay: Reykjavik – multiple hotels/stay apartments. We stayed at Einholt Stay Apartments

Wake up early and head for a sea side stroll. The Sun Voyager is an early morning visual treat. Whale watching is an experience that Iceland boasts about. While we were unlucky to spot the whales in action, it is said to be a must do in Iceland. The tour will typically take up 3-4 hours & do remember to pre-book your slot.

After the tour, you may head to The Settlement ExhibitionReykjavik Family ParkSaga MuseumÁrbaer Open Air Museum (most museums close early). Walk alongside the frozen lake in this beautiful city with colourful buildings. For shopping, you’ll likely want to head to the city centre where you’ll find a number of shops, restaurants, and cafés clustered together.


Journey: Reykjavik -> Borgarnes -> Reykholt -> Hraunfossar -> Kirkjufell -> Borgarnes

Day 3

Stay: Borgarnes – few hotels. We stayed at Icelandair Hotel Hamar

Grab a quick bite in Reykjavik & leave for Borgarnes. If you use the undersea tunnel (you must once), you will be able to save about 40 minutes for a small toll fee & experience the undersea construction marvel. You will start nearing the mesmerizing sights of black mountains, the famous Icelandic horses and landscapes that exist in all schoolkid’s drawing books. Check in to the hotel & freshen up. Leave for the Geothermal plant nearby. Look at the natural marvel & nature’s dominance being harvested for the right cause (30 minutes is more than enough). There would be a lot of stables & fields with Icelandic horses. Stop at a safe place & if they are kind enough to get themselves clicked with you (they generally are!) you are looking at a gallery full of horse pics 😊. Next you drive towards Reykholt to visit Snorri’s town. Snorri was a great Icelandic historian, author & thinker of his time being elected into the parliament twice. This is a small & quiet township you can roam around his hut, the church & if you’re interested, the museum. You may wish to restrict it to 1 hour if Waterfalls & the Game Of Thrones (GOT) fame mountain interests you!

Next up you drive to Hraunfossar. Majestic waterfalls (First of the many that are yet to come) with some breath-taking viewpoints reached after walking on thin ice (quite literally). The café here is pretty good & we had one of the best sandwiches here. The Chef was kind enough to make something as per our wishes 😊. FYI – Cheapest souvenirs here.

Nearby is the lava cave tour/Langjokull glacier. We did not book it as we had the Ice Cave tour booked for later. Remember to book any of this in advance.

Now you begin your journey to the most anticipated peak in Iceland. GOT fans – brace yourselves, Mt Kirkjufell is coming! Drive down there, grab a gab of Doritos from the nearby store, park your car in front & embrace this view!



Journey: Borgarnes -> Thingvellir -> Geysir -> Gulfoss Waterfalls -> Selfoss

Day 4

Stay: Selfoss – few hotels. We stayed at an Airbnb Apartment

Today is the day for the Golden Circle. The Golden Circle! Leave early from Borgarnes & head straight towards Pingevllir national park. Now this is some sight – Crystal White Snow for as far as you can see. Park your car on the sides (few spots available along the road) & just walk down the ice. Play, get clicked and just savour the moments with your loved one (s). Next up you enter the national park and take a stroll down to a waterfall. On the way would be a historic fort wall, the old parliament, the flag & a lot of snow!


Now you drive down to Geysir – the natural phenomenon after which the appliance is named. The “Strokkur” Geyser bursts almost every 3 minutes and is a delight to watch. There’s a network of smaller roads near this place (marked as ‘F’ Roads in winters). Take your 4×4 for a spin here if you are comfortable (WARNING – It is a risk, I experienced it…. But a lot less riskier than the Volcano Experience!).

Now you’re headed to Gulfoss Falls – falls of the gods. Mesmerizing scale & a joy to watch. There are a few smaller & cheaper “Blue Lagoon” experiences offered by local spas. You may want to relax here. But what you’d DEFINITELY want is to relish the Rye bread prepared using the geothermal heat.


For the first time ever we experienced Light pollution as we could see a cloud of orange light (PS – don’t mistake this as the Aurora Borealis) from far away. Driving for so long under the clear night sky made us realise this human settlement from far off. This was Selfoss (our abode for the night) & No, it did not feel like the sight of shore to a long lost sailor!

There is this cool Pizza place right next to Pizza hut that runs daily offers & decent pizzas if you want to try. Nearby is this place which has an offering called “Huppu” that you must try. It seemed like a dairy based dessert/shake. Whatever it was, made the prefect end to a beautiful day!


Journey: Selfoss -> Seljalandsfoss -> Dyrholaey-> Kirkjubæjarklaustur

Day 5

Stay: Kirkjubæjarklaustur – very limited options. We stayed at Icelandair Hotel Klaustur

Today you drive along the southern coast of Iceland. First stop – Seljalandsfoss. The 65-metre-tall waterfall offers a unique experience as you get to go INSIDE the waterfall, and if you’re lucky with the sun shining bright, you get a rainbow emanating out of the waterfall for free! Just imagine that! The path to go behind the waterfall is slippery so take caution. (PS – use flash to click pictures).


Now continue on the Ring Road & you’ll see Skogafoss on your left after about 30 KM. It is yet another marvellous waterfall that you may want to stop at if you’re still not done with waterfalls!

Next up is Eyjafjallajökull volcano that erupted in 2010 & gave Iceland the tourism advertising that still does no justice to the beauty of this land.

About 15 minutes drive from there, keep an eye on your right (since there is no signage as it is a private property) for black sand & a lot of cars parked. Park your car, drink some water & gear up for a 25 minute walk into nothingness. There it is – the WW2 US navy douglas super DC-3 plane that crashed in 1973. As picturesque as it can get! But the walk back again would seem to be the most boring 25 minutes in Iceland.

GOT maniacs are up for a ride at Dyrholaey. Black beach & humungous stones in the ocean. OF course there are no Dragons but how hard is it to imagine that, right? We’ve all seen Khaleesi & her dragons enjoying a break here 😛


On your way to the 3 monsters (pillars) that you see from Dyrholaey you’ll get the chance to WALK ON WATER.


In Kirkjubæjarklaustur, there’s more for GOT fans. You know there’s a Dragon right there:


Enjoy the sunset. Stop at Vik, Then head for the hotel.



Journey: Kirkjubæjarklaustur -> Hofn-> Kirkjubæjarklaustur

Day 6

This was the day we reserved for our Into the Glacier tour. But due to bad weather it got cancelled & we were sent on the Ice Cave tour (pre book all of these). Our guide CUBA was an amazing person & the Ice Cave tour was simply phenomenal to say the least. You are never disappointed in Iceland!


After the Ice Cave tour, since we had not seen the Aurora Borealis thus far, we checked the Aurora forecast for the night (fortunately a little better than the other days) & hit the road Aurora hunting! We headed for the far eastern town of Hofn on the Ring Road, famous for its crabs & sea food. And Voila! Bang on the highway, we experienced it! Lights form the heavens. Dancing to the tune of the Gods. Speechless! Spellbound! Dumbstruck!


Multiple such small & big encounters on the way back just meant the perfect roundup for this trip.



Journey: Kirkjubæjarklaustur -> Reykjavik-> Keflavik

Since we had missed the Whale Watching tour due to bad weather initially, we rescheduled it for this day. First half of the day went into searching for Whales. Remember the 3Bs of whale scouting – Birds, Blows & Bodies. Then we headed towards Keflavik!


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