Sunset over some fields in Iceland


Arctic Iceland Self Drive

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    Holiday Duration

    10 nights

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    Best Time To Go

    May - September

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    Price From

    £1620 per person

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    Wild Rating

    3.5 out of 5

Holiday Idea

Take to the open road on Iceland's first official scenic byway, the Arctic Coast Way. Combine world-famous wonders with off-the-beaten-track destinations. Discover the charming and captivating landscapes of the northern region, experience the natural wonders of the Golden Circle and visit picturesque fishing villages in the East Fjords.


Snowy road in iceland
The Ring Road, or Route 1, in Iceland

Day 1 | Arrive in Iceland

Arrive at Keflavík airport where you will collect your hire car. Set off on your self-drive adventure by heading south to the country's geothermal area. Take the chance to visit Iceland's famous Blue Lagoon to relax in the healing mineral waters.

Waterfall in iceland in winter

Day 2 | Thingvellir National Park

Today you'll enjoy exploring some of Iceland's most spectacular natural wonders. Visit Thingvellir National Park, the site of the ancient Icelandic Viking parliament and admire the Gullfoss waterfall and the Geysir hot spring area.

Melting ice in iceland at sunset

Day 3 | Glaciers & Vik

After breakfast, head out on the south coast to discover the Skogafoss and Seljalandsfoss waterfalls and Myrdalsjokull glacier. Take a guided snowmobile or ice hiking tour and in the afternoon explore Iceland’s southernmost village of Vik. Take a stroll along Reynisfjara beach with its black, lava sand.

Black sand beach in iceland

Day 4 | Vatnajokull National Park

Drive along Iceland's famous Route 1, taking in incredible views of the Vatnajokull glacier. Visit the idyllic oasis of the Skaftafell area and embark on a guided hike on one of the park's glaciers to explore the ice caves, snowy mountain peaks, active geothermal areas and rivers. Continue onto the Jokulsarlon Glacial Lagoon and visit the famous black sands of Diamond Beach.

Puffins sat on a rock in East Iceland

Day 5 | The Eastfjords

Today you'll discover Iceland's Eastfjords with its striking mountain peaks and picturesque fishing villages. Discover authentic Icelandic restaurants and shops in Egilsstadir before continuing on to the Langanes Peninsula, an outdoor haven for hikers and birdwatchers. 

Lighthouse in iceland in summer

Day 6 | Northern Route

After breakfast, drive along the Arctic Coast Way towards Raufarhofn. Here you can enjoy several easy walking trails to the beach and the lighthouse. Perhaps stop for lunch at the popular Kaupfelagid Restaurant, known for delicious Icelandic meals and cakes. In the afternoon drive across Iceland's isolated “Arctic Fox plain,” or discover the charming fishing village of Kopasker. You might want to visit Dettifoss, Europe's largest waterfall. Spend the night in the Husavik area. 

Godafoss waterfall, located just off the main ring road in North Iceland

Day 7 | Godafoss Waterfall & Whaling

Driving westward, visit the beautiful Godafoss waterfall and stroll through the historic town of Akureyri, with its bustling cultural scene, art galleries and one of Iceland's best geothermal swimming pools. Head along the dramatic coastline to Siglufjordur, enjoying spectacular views of the Icelandic Alps dropping into the sea. In Siglufjordur, enjoy a variety of activities like golf, hiking or whale watching. Spend the evening in a local restaurant taking in the incredible fjord views.

Hofsós Town  in iceland

Day 8 | Hofos & Drangey Island

Enjoy a day discovering beautiful landscapes and Viking legends. Drive to Skagafjordur, known for horse breeding and its medieval history and stop in Hofos with its unique infinity pool. Discover the history of Holar or take a guided boat tour out to Drangey Island from Saudarkrokur harbour to enjoy hiking with the chance to view seabirds and puffins. Spend the night in the Laugarbakki area.

Seals in iceland on the beach

Day 9 | Seal Watching

Your route today is one of Iceland's areas for seal watching. Enjoy a guided seal watching tour at the Seal Center in Hvammstangi town, explore the Vatnsnes Peninsula or spot seal colonies on Illugastadir Beach. Here, you can try Icelandic seafood, popular with the locals before continuing on for a view of Hvitserkur arch. Unwind for your overnight stay in the eco-friendly town of Stykkisholmur. 

Snæfellsjökull Volcano in the Snaefellsnes peninsula in West Iceland

Day 10 | Snaefellsnes Peninsula

Discover the spectacular Snaefellsnes Peninsula, and Iceland's iconic Kirkjufell mountain. Enjoy a number of activities including glacier hiking to discover the Vatnshellir lava cave, whale watching near Olafsvik, and sea kayaking near Kirkjufell. In the beautiful area of Borgarfjordur you will find beautiful handicrafts and taste local farm products. Spend the night in Reykjavik.

The Harpa concert hall in central Reykjavik in Iceland

Day 11 | Departure Day

Enjoy a final morning in Iceland exploring Reykjavik. Drive back to the airport to return your hire car before your return flight home.

What's included

  • Car hire for eleven days in a Suzuki Swift 4WD or similar. Pick up and drop off at Airport
  • Ten nights accommodation in a selection of hotels, farmhouses and guesthouses including breakfast
  • Blue Lagoon Premium entrance fee
  • Lonely Planet guide book

The price of this itinerary is based on two people sharing an economy 4WD and staying in basic accommodation. 

Price per person will vary based on the type of car and standard of accommodation you choose.

If you are looking for more comfort, upgrade to accommodation with private facilities in three-star standard properties.

For those wanting the most comfortable accommodation each area has to offer, we can book quality hotels, farmhouses and guesthouses.

Want a price including flights? Get in touch today.

Our Iceland team would love to start planning your Arctic Iceland Self Drive holiday