The Essential Iceland 3 Day Winter private tour is perfect for the shorter days of the Icelandic winter, when it can be difficult to fit all you want to see and experience within a short holiday. With the help of a private guide your winter getaway will be a fun and safe experience including the most celebrated sights while going a little off the beaten path and hopefully seeing the Northern Lights!
This 3 day winter private tour takes you across the entire south coast of Iceland and includes an ice cave tour in the Vatnajökull National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Marvel as icebergs float around on the Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon and wash up on the shores of the famous Diamond Beach. We will also witness the power of numerous waterfalls, bathe in a geothermal hot pool, watch as geysers erupt within the Golden Circle area and with luck see the Northern Lights dancing across the sky while staying in one of the seclude hotels on the south coast of Iceland. All this within the space of 3 action packed days!
These three days are designed for winter, November to March, however we have a summer and spring version if you are visiting Iceland in another season.
ESSENTIAL SOUTH ICELAND | 3 DAY WINTER PRIVATE TOUR
Day 1: Explore the entire south coast of Iceland with Northern Lights friendly accommodation
Day 2: Adventure day with blue ice cave tour** and the Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon with Northern Lights friendly accommodation
Day 3: Golden Circle with Friðheimar Tomato Greenhouse Lunch and Blue Lagoon
Please Note: Arrival day, departure day and additional days are not part of the proposed itinerary but will be planned by our Trip Planners for you in your first quote. We also recommend having at least one full day in Reykjavík before or after your tour.
Day 1 | Explore The Entire South Coast
We embark on our 3 Day Winter tour from your pick up location in Reykjavík to explore the entire south coast of Iceland. The first day has us ticking off some of Iceland’s most iconic sights. First up, we visit Seljalandsfoss waterfall and the Skógafoss waterfall, the perfect picture locations. Both standing at roughly 60 metres high, there’s plenty of chances to get a great picture and to get a little wet. Don’t say we didn’t warn you. This is all before taking a walk on the black beach of Reynisfjara Black Sand Beach. The unique rock formations and powerful waves ensures this stop is always a favourite.
We continue our drive further east where we’ll soon start to see the spectacular glaciers and Iceland’s highest mountains. We hike along the ridges of the gorge with the impossible name, Fjaðrárgljúfur, before coming into our accommodation for the night at Fosshotel Glacier Lagoon (or equivalent). It is an ideal spot to avoid unnatural light from any towns or cities. On clear nights and favorable conditions you’ll be able to stargaze or see the Northern Lights dancing across the sky from right outside your room, an unforgettable experience.
Where do we stay?
We stay at the wonderful Fosshotel Glacier Lagoon (or equivalent) on our first night of the tour.
Day 2 | Vatnajökull National Park & Ice Caves
After a good night’s rest we set off on another amazing day. We start at one of our all time favourite locations in Iceland, the Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon. Here we take some time to explore this enormous glacier lagoon and the icebergs which float around here, glistening in the winter sun. Seals can often be spotted swimming amongst the icebergs. From there we make our way over to the Diamond Beach, where the icebergs from the lagoon wash up on the shores of this black sand beach.
From here we meet with our partners who get us to a remote part of the Breiðdalsjökull glacier in their amazing super jeeps, so we can access one of the blue ice caves in the region. From where their rugged super jeeps take us it is only a short walk to witness the blues and textures of these natural works of art. To learn more about what the ice cave hike entails, check out our Glacier & Ice Cave Guide.
Afterwards, we head back west stopping along the way. We head to our secluded hotel for the night where we’ll have dinner in their restaurant once you have settled into your room. All hotel options today are perfect for spotting the Northern Lights on a clear night!
Where do we stay?
Tonight we can stay at Hotel VOS, Hotel UMI or the wonderful Skálakot Manor Hotel (pending availability).
Looking to customise this day?
Alternatively to the ice cave tour we can join our helicopter partners who are based in the south east who will fly us to more remote ice caves in the area such as the Blue Dragon Ice Cave. From the helicopter landing spot there is just a short walk to the cave entrance to the massive opening of the enormous Blue Dragon Ice Cave.
Day 3 | Golden Circle
On the final day, we travel around the famous Golden Circle.
After breakfast, we head towards the geothermal area of Geysir, the original exploding geyser, and it’s bubbling hot springs. Next we are to be awed by the force of Gullfoss waterfall, one of Iceland’s most powerful waterfalls. Gullfoss is equally stunning on sunny days, in the midst of a rainbow, as it is on more moody afternoon when you really appreciate its glacier origins.
Next, we visit the tomato greenhouse farm Friðheimar to refuel with a unique lunch inside the geothermal greenhouse amongst all the tomato plants. You can taste their famous tomato soup with homemade bread, ravioli, or grilled tortilla pizza, as well as hot beverages, as a part of your included lunch.
Finally we head onto the UNESCO Heritage Site and National Park Þingvellir. This National Park holds a special place for Icelanders due to its historical and geological significance. It is also a place of astounding contrasts and beauty, sitting in the rift valley of the separating North American and Eurasian tectonic plates. From there, it’s a short drive over rolling hills back into the capital, reaching Reykjavik in time for dinner.
To end the day we either head past the city to the Blue Lagoon to finish the trip with a bang or simply return to Reykjavík in the late afternoon for a chance to explore the city. The choice is yours.
Where do we stay?
Your guide will drop you off at the luxurious Silica by Blue Lagoon hotel. Or, if you have a spare additional night you can opt for the 5 star Retreat by Blue Lagoon (2 night minimum) for a unique treat to wrap up your stay in Iceland. Both these hotels give you access to their own secluded pools as well as access to the Blue Lagoon itself. If you are on a budget you can always opt to stay at the nearby Northern Lights Inn once you’ve finished bathing in the lagoon. Alternatively, we can head back to Reykjavík.
LEVEL OF DIFFICULTY
Depending on availability we will stay at a combination of Fosshotel Glacier Lagoon (or equivalent), luxurious Hotel UMI, unique Skálakot Luxury Manor or the more comfort level Hotel VOS. All hotel choices are modern, spacious and comfortable with private bathrooms, and include breakfast. Ice cave tour with all necessary safety equipment provided. Lunch at Friðheimar Tomato Greenhouse (all inclusive except from alcoholic drinks) and entrance to the Blue Lagoon. Private transportation in a modern and comfortable vehicle and one of our wonderful English speaking guides for the duration of the three days.
Flights to and from Iceland, meals unless otherwise specified. Reykjavík based activities and accommodation.
Extensions / Add-ons
We can include Reykjavík based accommodation.
We can plan your arrival and departure day too arrival day too.
This trip can be extended to 4 or more days upon request.
Additional or replacement activities can be requested (see form below).
Ready to make this your dream trip?
Please try to give us as much information in your submission as you can. We respond to all tour requests within 7 days, but please reach out to us if your request is urgent, or you want to provide more info.