The Iceland Must See 6+ Day Private Tour Summer Itinerary is designed for people who want to immerse themselves in Icelandic nature and do all the must see sights without vast amounts of driving each day. This itinerary is a combination of must see sights, nature, adventure and culture. What a week!
Throughout the trip we will explore the entire south coast of Iceland, sneaking behind waterfalls and strolling across pristine black sand beaches. Our most adventurous day will include a glacier hike (designed for first timers) in the Vatnajökull National Park. We will be awe-struck by huge icebergs bobbing up and down in the expansive Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon before seeing the smaller shards wash up on the close by Diamond Beach. At the height of summer we will take a ferry ride to the volcanic Westman Islands to discover the countries volcanic past (and hopefully see a few Atlantic puffins). We’ll also venture through the popular Golden Circle with its erupting geysers, massive waterfalls and scarred Þingvellir National Park.
This 6 + day trip is similar to the Iceland Must See Winter itinerary but with the added flexibility of adding in locations not advised to visit in winter, like the Westman Islands, with its extensive Atlantic puffin colony.
Icelandic Horse. Hidden Iceland. Photo by Tom Archer
ICELAND MUST SEE 6+ DAY PRIVATE TOUR | SUMMER ITINERARY
Day 1: Explore the entire south coast of Iceland
Day 2: Adventure day with a glacier hike, designed for first timers, and the Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon & Diamond Beach
Day 3: South Coast Half Day with optional activities e.g. snowmobiling, ATV, horse riding or a real Lava Show
Day 4*: Ferry to the volcanic Westman Islands with the biggest Atlantic puffin colony in the world
Day 5*: Journey into the highlands of Thórsmörk (Valley of Thor) through rivers and deep valleys
Day 6: Golden Circle with Friðheimar Tomato Greenhouse Lunch
Day 7: Reykjanes Peninsula with the Lava Tunnel and the recently erupted volcano
*The proposed itinerary is 7 days in total, not 6. If you have a maximum of 6 days then Day 4 or 5 can be removed.
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.
Thórsmörk Highlands. Þórsmörk 4×4. Hidden Iceland. Photo by Erik Solie. Thorsmork.
Day 1 | Explore the South Coast
On our first day we travel the entire south coast of Iceland to get us right into the action. This is our longest driving day but don’t worry, we have plenty of stops along the way. First, we take in the impressive Seljalandsfoss and Skógafoss waterfalls. Both are around 60 metres high. Seljalandsfoss is famous for allowing you to walk behind it. Skógafoss is famous for being the filming location of Game of Thrones, Vikings and more recently, Eurovision. Around lunch time we’ll visit the Reynisfjara Black Sand Beach with its unique hexagonal basalt columns and crashing waves. In the afternoon, you will take an easy hike to the feather like ridges of the 100m deep Fjaðrárgljúfur gorge. Not a bad first day!
Where do we stay?
We stay at the Fosshotel Glacier Lagoon on our first night of the tour (or equivalent)
Skógafoss in Summer. Hidden Iceland. Photo by Norris Niman
Reynisfjara Black Beach on the South Coast. Photo by Paul Fencaros
Seljalandsfoss Aerial | Hidden Iceland | Photo Danny Mcgee | Featured
Fjaðrárgljúfur Gorge by Norris Niman
Seljalandsfoss at Sunset by Danny Mcgee. Hidden Iceland
Fjaðrárgljúfur gorge is on the south coast of Iceland. Photo by Marc Hoey
Day 2 | Glacier Hike and Vatnajökull National Park
Our second day will focus more on adventure, namely, hiking on a glacier! This is a must see Iceland sight. Our breath-taking hike on the Falljökull glacier is designed for first timers with good mobility. For around 4 hours you will explore crevasses (cracks), moulin (holes) and seracs (ice sculptures) as you hike on the ice. Today is the most adventurous but also the most rewarding. Especially with the views of the surrounding area from the top of the glacier.
Later in the day, you’ll be amazed by the giant icebergs floating around the Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon. A definite must see. If you’re lucky, you will spot some curious seals swimming around the lagoon, as well as large crystals of ice washed up on the nearby Diamond Beach. On a clear day they sparkle in the low sunlight.
To learn more about what the glacier hike entails you can check out our Glacier Hike Guide here. If you prefer a shorter/ easier glacier hike or don’t want to do the glacier hike at all we can easily swap it for something a little more tranquil in the area. This is a UNESCO World Heritage Site for a reason. Plenty to see and do.
Where do we stay?
We stay at the Fosshotel Glacier Lagoon again (or equivalent)
Day 3 | South Coast Half Day with Optional Extras
Let’s take this day a little easier after such an epic day yesterday. We will start driving back west stopping at some scenic spots along the way, getting to the picturesque town of Vík in time for lunch. For those choosing to take it easy today, we will have ample time to get some souvenirs, try the ‘best coffee in the south of Iceland’ at the Skool Beans converted school bus café. Our hotel for the night is just a short drive from here where you can spend the afternoon relaxing and revisiting all the pictures taken for the past couple of days.
For those wanting to squeeze in even more into your trip you can choose between 3 optional extras, all as exciting as the last. Please note, only 1 is possible this afternoon. Extra days will be needed if you wish to do more than one.
OPTION 1: The Icelandic Lava Show in the town of Vík where the locals will share tales of past eruptions before pouring re-melted lava over ice just metres from your face. A great family friendly experience on a cold day.
OPTION 2: Take a horse ride on the famous Icelandic horse with its smooth 5th gait. These docile animals are as friendly as they are fast. This is a great way to see Iceland’s hidden landscape off the beaten path.
OPTION 3: Snowmobile on top of one of Iceland’s ice caps. To get there you will jump in the back of a superjeep before swapping over to a snowmobile where you will zoom across this snowy landscape. This is only recommended between November and June. Outside of these dates we swap this activity for an exhilarating ATV tour through rivers and remote wilderness.
Where do we stay?
We have plenty to choose from in this area from the quaint Hotel VOS guesthouse to the Skálakot Luxury Manor or the pristine Hotel UMI (or equivalent). All great options based on your budget and preference.
Vík í Myrdal church photo by Norris Niman. Feature
Icelandic Lava Show in Vík. Pouring lava.
Horse Riding at Skálakot
Snowmobiling Tour. South Adventure. Hidden Iceland
Reynisdrangar in Vík í Myrdal. By Tom Archer.
Day 4 | The Volcanic Westman Islands
After breakfast we head to Landeyjahöfn Harbour and take the short ferry ride to the volcanic chain of islands known as the Westman Islands. The entire island is an Iceland must see in our opinion. The main island was almost destroyed by a volcanic eruption in 1973. If you are feeling up to the challenge you start the day by hiking to the top of the still warm Eldfell volcano with great 360 degree views of the island and coast of Iceland. It is often referred to as the “Pompei of the North”. We will eat lunch at one of our favorite restaurants in Iceland, GOTT, which uses all local ingredients.
After lunch we have more time to explore the island. With your Hidden Iceland guide you can head to the southern side of the island in search of puffins. On a clear day, you can catch a glimpse of the newest of the Westman Islands, the pristine UNESCO Heritage Site Surtsey.
In the evening, we take the ferry back to the mainland and return to our south Iceland accommodation for dinner and a good night’s rest.
Looking for a little something extra?
You can join a 1 hour RIB boat ride (optional extra). The scenic and fun boat tour takes you deep inside sea caves, and around the small islands. If you are lucky you may even get close to the wildlife such as whales and puffins.
Ferry to the Westman Islands. Hidden Iceland. Photo Norris Niman
Close up puffins. Photo taken by Dagný Björg Stefánsdóttir.
View from Eldfell volcanic crater on the Westman Islands by Lucas Peters
Westman Islands. Hidden Iceland. Photo By Norris Niman
Day 5 | Þórsmörk (Valley of Thor) Highland tour
Today we truly go off the beaten track going into Þórsmörk, a lushly vegetated mountain valley in an off road 4×4 vehicle that enable us to cross deep glacial rivers and handle nearly any terrain. On the way, we head all the way up to Gígjökull, one of the outlet glaciers of the Eyjafjallajökull volcano. Here, you will get an idea of the forces that were at play during the 2010 eruption of Eyjafjallajökull. Next stop, we will explore Stakkholtsgjá canyon, a beautiful natural wonder. Walking to the end of the canyon is one of the most rewarding short hikes in Iceland. After our walk in the canyon, we will make our way deep into Þórsmörk, a nature reserve in the southern Icelandic Highlands, nestled between the Myrdalsjökull, Eyjafjallajökull and Tindfjallajökull glaciers. You have the opportunity to enjoy the amazing landscape and take nice short hikes around the area, and really take in the beautiful unspoiled nature of Iceland.
Thorsmork Midgard Superjeep in highlands summer.
Thorsmork Superjeep in highlands summer.
Thorsmork – Incredible highlands of Iceland – Þórsmörk. Hidden IcelandFeature
Thorsmork (Þórsmörk). The Valley of Thor in the Highlands of Iceland.
Thorsmork Canyon | Hidden Iceland
Day 6 | The Golden Circle
After breakfast, we get to witness the force of Gullfoss, one of Iceland’s most powerful waterfalls. From there, we drive to the must see geothermal area of Geysir. The geyser Strokkur erupts every 5 to 10 minutes.
Afterwards, lunch will be served nearby inside the tomato greenhouse farm of Friðheimar Tomato Greenhouse. Surrounded by busy bees and tomato plants. We will be able to try their famous tomato soup, ravioli pasta, grilled tortilla pizza and homemade bread. Maybe must eat is a better description than must see for this experience. Make sure to pop outside to say hi to the Icelandic horses before leaving.
After all this, we drive to the famous Þingvellir National Park. Þingvellir is the site of the first known parliament in the world, where many of Iceland’s most important decisions were made. It also sits in the rift valley of the separating North American and Eurasian tectonic plates.
Where do we stay?
Tonight we give you the chance to explore Reykjavík and try some of the best restaurants in town. We will pick from one of many of our favourite hotels. Reykjavík Residence apartments or the luxurious Canopy By Hilton are two of our favourites but the city has plenty to choose from for everyone’s budget and preference.
Gullfoss waterfall into canyon by Norris Niman * Featured
Friðheimar Tomato Greenhouse Lunch by Kat Craats
Strokkur at Geysir Erupting in the Golden Circle by Guindo Amezcua
Þingvellir National Park by Dennis Stever. Thingvellir National Park.
Dining in the greenhouse. Photo courtesy of Friðheimar Tomato Farm.
Day 7 | Lava Tunnel, Volcano & Blue Lagoon
The Reykjanes peninsula and LAVA Tunnel tour is all about the tectonic effects on the island. We spend the day visiting the UNESCO Global Geopark of Reykjanes Peninsula which is home to some incredible sights.
We start with a visit to Raufarhólshellir, or more widely known as the Lava Tunnel. This is one of the longest lava tubes in Iceland and a must see spot. Here we will explore the depths of this colourful lava tunnel. You will witness the inner workings of a volcanic eruption from 5200 years ago.
Afterwards, we will take part in a moderate hike to the newest lava field on the planet at the dormant volcano, Geldingadalur. We will walk around the lava field learning all about the eruption that started on the 19th of March 2021. There is no hot lava on the surface these days but the otherwordly landscape is still breathtaking. On a clear day it’s possible to hike to the top of the nearby hill for a view of the volcanic crater. Please note, although the volcano has stopped erupting it is not always possible or safe to visit the site. On these days we would add in other great spots on the Reykjanes Peninsula before finishing the day at the Blue Lagoon.
Where do we stay?
Your guide will drop you off either at the luxurious Silica by Blue Lagoon or the 5 star Retreat by Blue Lagoon 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.
LAVA Tunnel Walk by Norris Niman
The Lava Tunnel. Photo taken by Norris Niman. Featured.
Pahoehoe Lava Textures. Hidden Iceland. Photo by Dr Holly Spice
Blue Lagoon, Iceland
The Retreat Spa & Lagoon by Blue Lagoon
Mid May –
Minimum 5 days
Recommended 7 days
(10 y.o. glacier hike)
can be customised
LEVEL OF DIFFICULTY
Easy to Moderate
(glacier hike moderate)
can be customised
can be customised
Blue Lagoon area
can be customised
Depending on availability we will stay at a combination of Reykjavík hotels, Fosshotel Glacier Lagoon (or equivalent), luxurious Hotel UMI, unique Skálakot Luxury Manor or the more comfort level Hotel VOS. The final day will be at the luxurious Silica by Blue Lagoon or the 5 star Retreat by Blue Lagoon or the comfort level Northern Lights Inn for a unique treat to wrap up your stay in Iceland. All hotel choices are modern, spacious and comfortable with private bathrooms, and include breakfast. The glacier hike will have all necessary safety equipment provided. Lunch at Friðheimar Tomato Greenhouse (all inclusive except from alcoholic drinks). Return ferry to the Westman Islands. 1 hour RIB tour. Lunch at GOTT restaurant (all inclusive except from alcoholic drinks). 4×4 off road trip to Thórsmörk with lunch. Private transportation in a modern and comfortable vehicle and one of our wonderful English speaking guides for the duration of the 7 days.
Flights to and from Iceland, meals unless otherwise specified. Reykjavík based activities and accommodation.
Extensions / Add-ons
We can include Reykjavík based accommodation and activities upon request
This trip can be shortened to 6 days or extended to 7 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 as you can in the form below so that we can come up with the best private trip for you as quickly as possible. We will always do our best to respond to all messages within 3 business days, excluding weekends.