Ring Road Tour

Iceland Independent Self Drive Tours

Circle the entire country on the Ring Road, stopping along the way to see most of Iceland’s most popular attractions, as well as some hidden secrets. Our shorter trip is great for those with limited time, while the longer itinerary affords more time to take in the beauty or to spend a couple of nights in the same location for a more relaxed trip.

Iceland Ring Road Tour Highlights

  • Visit the Golden Circle- the mighty Gullfoss waterfall, Geysir geothermal area (where the Strokkur geyser erupts every 5-10 minutes), and Thingvellir, where Iceland's parliament was established (the world's oldest parliament) and where the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates converge unlike anywhere else in the world.
  • Visit black sand beaches, spectacular canyons, and several glacial lagoons full of icebergs.
  • Delight in fresh seafood in Höfn, the lobster capital of Iceland, and visit Akureyri, Iceland's second largest city and the main city in the North.
  • Stop by Lake Myvatn, Iceland's famous lake that is home to a wide variety of wildlife, and visit a puffin nesting site to get up close to one of Iceland's most iconic birds.
  • Discover Iceland's most beautiful waterfalls such as Skogafoss, Dettifoss, and Seljalandsfoss, a waterfall you can walk behind! Warm up in Hot Spring rivers and geothermal pools.
  • Stay at comfortable accommodations, including a guesthouse in the quaint fishing town of Höfn and a charming farmhouse with a hot tub and sauna.

Itinerary

This is our suggested itinerary for a self-drive Ring Road trip. The itinerary can be changed and customized to suit your needs.

Leave Reykjavik to go and explore the Golden Circle attractions. Visit the magnificent Gullfoss waterfall, one of the largest in Iceland, as well as Geysir where Iceland’s most active geyser is located (it erupts every 5-10 minutes!). The third attraction on the Golden Circle is Thingvellir National Park, where Iceland’s parliament (and the world’s first) was founded over 1,000 years ago. This is also where the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates are drifting apart, an incredible phenomenon that you can only witness in Iceland! You can also go snorkeling, whitewater rafting, or snowmobiling on a glacier. (Approx. 2-3 hours driving)

The South Coast is a favorite for many visitors to Iceland due to all of the incredible waterfalls in this area. You will get to stop at several waterfalls (including one that you can walk behind!) as well as a black sand beach and a breathtaking canyon. You will spend the night near Skaftafell, which has some of the best hiking in Iceland. (Approx. 3 hours driving)

Continue driving along the southern coast to Jökulsárlón, Iceland’s famous glacier lagoon. The lagoon is filled with magnificent icebergs that broke off from the glacier in the distance, which is part of Vatnajökull- Europe’s largest glacier. You can walk around the lagoon or take a zodiac tour to see the icebergs from the water. There are a couple of additional, lesser known glacier lagoons nearby as well. We recommend partaking in an incredible glacier-related activity- either kayaking among icebergs in a glacial lagoon (summer trips) or exploring ice caves inside a glacier (winter trips). These are once in a lifetime experiences that you can only have in a handful of places in the world, and Iceland is one of the best! You will spend the night in the charming fishing town of Höfn, the lobster capital of Iceland. (Approx. 2 hours driving)

Drive along the East Fjords to the town of Egilsstadir. This relaxing drive along the coast will reveal plenty of beautiful scenery (even some puffin colonies), and if visiting in the winter this secluded part of Iceland is the perfect place to view the Northern Lights! (Approx. 3 hours driving)

Today’s drive is to the Lake Myvatn area. This is Iceland’s most famous lake, and a stunning volcanic area. You can explore the lake shore, head inland to the Dettifoss waterfall or hike to nearby canyons. In the evening, we recommend a visit to the Myvatn Nature Baths (the Blue Lagoon of the north!) for a relaxing soak in the geothermal water. (Approx. 2 hours driving)

Today’s shorter drive to Akureyri gives more time to relax and explore the quaint city. Akureyri is Iceland’s second largest city and the main city in northern Iceland. You can shop at the charming shops, visit the museums, or explore some of the nearby towns. You can also go to nearby Husavik, Iceland’s best location for whale watching! (Approx. 1.5 hours driving)

In the morning, you can visit more of the attractions of Akureyri before driving back to Reykjavik. On the drive back, stop at some one of several dairy farms for some delicious homemade ice cream, cheese, or skyr (Icelandic style yogurt). (Approx. 4.5 hours driving)

This is our suggested itinerary; your trip can be customized based on your preferences.

Prices

Low Season

November - April

Shoulder Season

May, September, October

High Season

June, July, August

  • Low Season
  • Shoulder Season
  • High Season
Low SeasonShoulder SeasonHigh Season
Standard Price - Shared Bathroom$995$1,145$1,345
Upgraded Rooms - Private Bathroom$1,190$1,400$1,795
Additional Day/Night
Additional day/night may cost more depending on what upgrades you have chosen and the desired location of the extra night.
$115$125$150

*Prices are in US Dollars, based on two people traveling together // Luxury room upgrade available some or all nights upon request.

  • Low Season
  • Shoulder Season
  • High Season
Low SeasonShoulder SeasonHigh Season
Automatic Transmission Upgrade$88$88$88
Midsize Car Upgrade$88$88$88
4x4 SUV Upgrade$113$125$163

*Prices are in US Dollars, based on two people traveling together // Luxury car upgrade available upon request // Upgrade to a larger car is free of charge for groups of three or more travelers

IncludeD:

  • Appropriate sized car rental with unlimited miles.
  • Comfortable accommodations with shared or private bathrooms (some may include breakfast)
  • Taxes/fees for car rental and lodging
  • Fuel discount card (also gives you free coffee and discounts on food at select gas stations)
  • CDW insurance
  • Customized itinerary suggestions
  • Personalized digital map of your tour
  • Suggested Apps for smart phones to help make the trip as enjoyable as possible

Not IncludeD:

  • Airfare
  • Fuel/Gasoline
  • Meals
  • Excursions/Activities (suggestions will be provided for both free and paid activities based on your selected trip, we will make the reservations for you!)
  • Personal travel insurance
  • Car Extras (such as additional driver fee, additional insurance, etc)
  • Any other item not mentioned in our "Included" section

Supplemental (Add On Days):

  • If you would like to extend your trip, you can 1-2 additional nights, or more! You can either spend an additional night along the South Coast or near the Glacier Lagoon (recommended for those who prefer more hiking) or an additional night at the Golden Circle (recommended if you would like to partake in whitewater rafting, snorkeling/diving, snowmobiling, horseback riding, or a glacier hike). You can spend more time in the North, or add an extension to visit the Snaefellsnes Peninsula or the Westfjords.

Additional Information

Tours for a number other than 2 or 4 people are possible- pricing will vary depending on the number of rooms desired- contact us for pricing for tours of 1, 3 or 5+ travelers. If you have questions about the self drive tours, check out our Self Drive FAQs or contact us

To book your trip, please pay a deposit and we will then contact you to collect additional information about your trip.

About the prices: The quoted prices are per person, based on double occupancy. On a rare occasion, the pricing may be slightly higher depending how far in advance the trip is booked, as well as availability at preferred accommodations. Lower prices are available if you are interested in staying at hostels. Any of our self-drive itineraries can be customized for you- please contact us with any requests for modifications. 

About the car rental: For two travelers, the quoted price includes a mini car (Chevy Spark or similar model). For four travelers, the quoted price includes a compact car (Opel Astra or similar model). The rentals include unlimited miles. Car rental pickup and drop off is from downtown Reykjavik or Keflavik Airport. The rental includes basic CDW insurance, but you can add enhanced protection (super collision damage waiver, gravel protection, and sand/ash protection) for a fee. 

About the accommodations: The standard price includes private rooms but a bathroom that is shared with other rooms. Upgraded room options include rooms with private bathrooms. Accommodations will vary but will include a mixture of guesthouses, farmhouses, bed & breakfasts, hotels, apartments, or cottages. Some include shared or private hot tubs. All of the accommodations we choose are well liked by previous travelers. Further details will be given when we are provided with your trip dates and we can check availability at our preferred lodgings. 

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