Travel Guide for Iceland

Travel Guide for Iceland

Personalized for these inputs:

  • Destination: Iceland
  • Trip length: 10 days
  • Trip dates: September 09 - September 19
  • Travel style: travelling with friends
  • Budget: $$
  • Accommodation: hotel, apartment or house, villa
  • Activities: outdoor adventures
Picture of Iceland

Key Facts

  • location: located in the North Atlantic Ocean
  • currency: Icelandic Krona (ISK)
  • religion: Lutheran
  • population: 364,134
  • language: Icelandic
  • electricity: 230V, 50Hz, Plug Types: C, F?
  • country code: +354
  • internet access: High-speed internet access available
  • climate: Cool Temperate

Useful Phrases

Language: Iceland
    hello
    halló (hatl-ou)
    goodbye
    bless (bless)
    yes
    (ya)
    no
    nei (nay)
    how much
    hvað kostar þetta? (kva-th kos-tar the-ta)
    please
    vinsamlegast (vin-sa-mle-gas-t)
    thank you
    takk fyrir (ta-k fy-rir)
    excuse me
    fyrirgefðu (fy-ri-rgef-thu)

Introduction

Welcome to Iceland, a captivating island in the North Atlantic known for its stunning natural beauty. With a history dating back to the Viking Age, the country's rich cultural heritage is evident in its folklore, arts, and traditional cuisine. In September, Iceland experiences the shift from the summer warmth to the crisp, cool air of autumn, offering a colorful landscape of changing foliage, ideal for outdoor adventures.

During your visit, don't miss the iconic Golden Circle route, including the Geysir geothermal area, Gullfoss waterfall, and Thingvellir National Park. Explore the vibrant city of Reykjavik, known for its lively music scenes and trendy cafes. With opportunities for budget-friendly activities like hiking, hot spring bathing, and camping under the Northern Lights, Iceland is a perfect destination for a memorable traveling-with-friends experience.

Getting There

The best way to travel to Iceland is by air. Keflavik International Airport, located near the capital city of Reykjavik, is the country's main international airport, with flights from major European and North American cities.

For those on a budget, several low-cost carriers offer flights to Iceland from various European destinations. Once in Iceland, domestic flights, buses, and rental cars are available for traveling around the island.

However, keep in mind that the weather in Iceland can be unpredictable, especially in September, so it's essential to stay updated on any potential flight or travel disruptions, especially if planning outdoor activities.

For those traveling with friends on an average budget, flying with low-cost carriers or booking flights well in advance can help save money.

Additionally, considering shared accommodations such as guesthouses or vacation rentals can also be budget-friendly options. It's important to plan activities with potential weather disruptions in mind, and to be flexible with travel plans if needed due to weather conditions.

Climate and Best Time to Visit

Iceland's climate is characterized by its changeable and unpredictable nature. The island experiences a relatively mild climate due to the Gulf Stream but be prepared for sudden weather changes regardless of the season. In September, Iceland is transitioning from summer to autumn.

Days are getting shorter, and temperatures begin to drop. Weather can be quite varied, with possibilities of both mild, sunny days and chilly, rainy ones. It's wise to pack layers, waterproof clothing, and sturdy shoes for outdoor adventures during this time.

September typically does not see extreme weather events, but it's always good to check the forecast before any outdoor activities.

Itinerary

Day 1

Embark on a thrilling glacier hike to explore the stunning ice formations and mesmerizing landscapes of the Skaftafell National Park. Then, visit the Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon for a boat tour amidst floating icebergs. End the day with a relaxing soak in the Vatnajökull National Park hot springs.

  • Glacier Hike at Skaftafell National Park

    Embark on a guided glacier hike at Skaftafell and witness the breathtaking ice formations and otherworldly landscapes of the park. Learn about the unique features of the glacier from your experienced guide.
  • Boat Tour at Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon

    Take a serene boat tour at Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon and admire the captivating icebergs drifting in the tranquil waters. Listen to the informative commentary about the lagoon's formation and its significance.
  • Relaxing Hot Springs at Vatnajökull National Park

    Unwind with a soak in the soothing hot springs of Vatnajökull National Park, surrounded by the picturesque natural beauty of the park. Enjoy the calming warmth of the geothermal water after an adventurous day.













Day 2

Begin the day with a thrilling snowmobile adventure on Langjökull Glacier, speeding through the snow-covered expanses and enjoying panoramic views. Then, explore the iconic Gullfoss Waterfall and Geysir Geothermal Area for a captivating natural spectacle.

  • Snowmobile Adventure on Langjökull Glacier

    Embark on an exhilarating snowmobile ride across the icy terrain of Langjökull Glacier, taking in the breathtaking views of the surrounding snow-covered landscapes. Feel the adrenaline rush as you explore the glacier.
  • Gullfoss Waterfall Exploration

    Marvel at the awe-inspiring beauty of Gullfoss Waterfall, one of Iceland's most iconic natural attractions. Observe the powerful cascades as they plummet into the rugged canyon, creating a mesmerizing display of nature's forces.
  • Geysir Geothermal Area Visit

    Witness the erupting geysers and colorful hot springs at the Geysir Geothermal Area, where the earth's geothermal activity is on full display. Experience the natural wonders of spouting hot springs and bubbling mud pools.













Day 3

Indulge in a scenic hiking experience at the otherworldly Landmannalaugar, known for its colorful rhyolite mountains, geothermal pools, and panoramic vistas. Enjoy a relaxing dip in a natural hot spring and unwind in the midst of breathtaking natural beauty.

  • Hiking at Landmannalaugar

    Embark on a picturesque hiking adventure amidst the vibrant rhyolite mountains of Landmannalaugar, taking in the awe-inspiring colors and otherworldly landscapes of the area. Traverse the unique terrain and capture stunning photographs along the way.
  • Relaxing Hot Spring Dip

    Rejuvenate your senses with a refreshing dip in a natural hot spring at Landmannalaugar, surrounded by the stunning scenery of colorful mountains and geothermal features. Immerse yourself in the soothing warmth and tranquility of the water.
  • Panoramic Vista Exploration

    Take in the breathtaking panoramic views of the scenic Landmannalaugar area, capturing the stunning natural beauty of the colorful mountains and the unique geological features. Spend time immersing yourself in the serene atmosphere of the landscape.













Day 4

Discover the enchanting Thórsmörk Valley, a lush and dramatic landscape nestled between glaciers. Embark on a thrilling ATV adventure through the rugged terrain, soaking in the stunning views of the surrounding mountains and valleys.

  • ATV Adventure in Thórsmörk Valley

    Embark on an adrenaline-pumping ATV excursion through the captivating scenery of Thórsmörk Valley, navigating the rugged terrain and enjoying panoramic mountain views. Experience the thrill of off-road adventure surrounded by breathtaking nature.
  • Valley Exploration and Picnic

    Explore the enchanting valleys and lush landscapes of Thórsmörk, soaking in the natural beauty and tranquility. Enjoy a scenic picnic amidst the breathtaking surroundings, surrounded by majestic mountains and serene nature.
  • Nature Photography

    Capture the stunning landscapes and natural wonders of Thórsmörk Valley through photography, preserving the beauty of the valley and its unique features. Take time to focus on the intricate details and expansive views of the area.













Day 5

Embark on an immersive exploration of the Fimmvörðuháls Trail, following a challenging hiking route that leads to the volcanic landscapes and cascading waterfalls of the area. Connect with nature and revel in the majestic views along the trail.

  • Hiking the Fimmvörduháls Trail

    Embark on a challenging yet rewarding hike along the Fimmvörðuháls Trail, traversing diverse terrain and encountering volcanic landscapes, gleaming glaciers, and magnificent waterfalls. Experience the thrill of conquering the trail's varied landscapes.
  • Waterfall Sightseeing

    Marvel at the spectacular cascades along the Fimmvörðuháls Trail, including the iconic Skógafoss and Seljalandsfoss waterfalls. Stand in awe of the powerful, misty torrents and capture mesmerizing photographs of the natural wonders.
  • Volcanic Landscapes Exploration

    Explore the captivating volcanic landscapes along the Fimmvörðuháls Trail, with panoramic views of craters, lava fields, and glaciers. Immerse yourself in the unique geology and history of the area.













Day 6

Engage in an exciting horseback riding adventure through the stunning Icelandic countryside, taking in the panoramic views and natural beauty. Later, visit the stunning Seljalandsfoss and Gljúfrabúi waterfalls for a captivating sightseeing experience.

  • Horseback Riding in Icelandic Countryside

    Embark on a scenic horseback riding tour through the scenic Icelandic countryside, experiencing the unique beauty of the landscape from a different perspective. Enjoy the gentle pace of the horses and the serene atmosphere of the surroundings.
  • Seljalandsfoss Waterfall Visit

    Marvel at the majestic beauty of Seljalandsfoss Waterfall, known for its graceful cascades and the hidden cave behind the falls. Capture stunning photos and feel the refreshing mist as you explore this natural wonder.
  • Gljúfrabúi Waterfall Exploration

    Discover the hidden gem of Gljúfrabúi Waterfall, concealed within a narrow canyon and offering a magical environment to explore. Venture into the secret canyon and witness the awe-inspiring beauty of the cascading waters.













Day 7

Embark on an invigorating hike across the stunning Reykjadalur Valley, famous for its geothermal activity and warm rivers. Experience a unique bathing adventure in the geothermal river, surrounded by breathtaking natural landscapes.

  • Hiking in Reykjadalur Valley

    Embark on a scenic hike through the captivating landscapes of Reykjadalur Valley, experiencing the unique geothermal features and lush greenery of the area. Capture the panoramic views and savor the tranquility of the valley.
  • Geothermal River Bathing

    Indulge in a one-of-a-kind bathing experience in Reykjadalur Valley, soaking in the warm, geothermal river waters surrounded by the stunning natural beauty of the valley. Relax and unwind in the soothing warmth of the natural hot spring.
  • Valley Viewpoint Exploration

    Take in panoramic views of the picturesque Reykjadalur Valley, capturing the lush greenery, geothermal activity, and vibrant landscapes of the area. Spend time connecting with nature and appreciating the unique features of the valley.













Day 8

Discover the dramatic landscapes of Þjórsárdalur Valley and Háifoss, one of Iceland's tallest waterfalls. Engage in an exhilarating river rafting adventure on the Hvítá River, experiencing the thrill of the rapids and the stunning surroundings.

  • Exploration of Þjórsárdalur Valley

    Immerse yourself in the stunning landscapes of Þjórsárdalur Valley, with its winding river, lush meadows, and panoramic mountain views. Capture the beauty of the surroundings and soak in the tranquility of the area.
  • Háifoss Waterfall Sightseeing

    Marvel at the majestic beauty of Háifoss Waterfall, one of Iceland's tallest waterfalls, as it tumbles down the rugged cliffs into the colorful valley below. Capture the awe-inspiring beauty of this natural wonder through photography.
  • River Rafting on Hvítá River

    Embark on an exhilarating river rafting adventure on the Hvítá River, navigating through thrilling rapids and enjoying the scenic landscapes along the riverbanks. Experience the rush of adrenaline and the natural beauty of the surroundings.













Day 9

Enjoy a thrilling ATV adventure through the rugged and diverse terrain of Hekla Volcano, exploring the volcanic landscapes and encountering unique geological features. Later, visit the iconic Þingvellir National Park for a captivating journey through Iceland's natural and historical heritage.

  • ATV Adventure at Hekla Volcano

    Embark on an adrenaline-pumping ATV excursion through the captivating and diverse terrain of Hekla Volcano, taking in panoramic views and experiencing the unique geological features of the area. Enjoy the thrill of off-road exploration surrounded by volcanic landscapes.
  • Þingvellir National Park Exploration

    Discover the rich natural and historical heritage of Þingvellir National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site known for its cultural significance and stunning landscapes. Immerse yourself in the unique geological formations and historical landmarks of the park.
  • Cultural Heritage Trail

    Embark on a cultural heritage trail in Þingvellir National Park, exploring historical sites and cultural landmarks that showcase Iceland's rich heritage and natural beauty. Learn about the park's significance and its role in the country's history.













Day 10

Conclude the trip with a visit to the delightful Hveragerði Hot Springs, where you can take a leisurely stroll through the geothermal area and relish the natural steam vents and bubbling hot springs. Then, enjoy a relaxing afternoon at the charming Icelandic town of Hveragerði, known for its picturesque gardens and friendly ambiance.

  • Hveragerði Hot Springs Experience

    Explore the enchanting geothermal area of Hveragerði Hot Springs, taking in the natural steam vents and bubbling hot springs that create a unique and soothing atmosphere. Stroll through the area and connect with the earth's geothermal activity.
  • Relaxing Afternoon in Hveragerði

    Spend a leisurely afternoon in the charming town of Hveragerði, known for its picturesque gardens and welcoming ambiance. Explore the town's green spaces, local shops, and friendly atmosphere, savoring the peaceful and idyllic setting.
  • Culinary Delights at Local Eateries

    Indulge in the culinary delights of Hveragerði by visiting local eateries and trying traditional Icelandic dishes. Experience the flavors of the region and enjoy the warm hospitality of the town's dining establishments.













Accommodations

For a traveling-with-friends-style trip to Iceland on an average budget, Reykjavik is a great place to stay. Look for a hotel or apartment in the downtown area, offering access to restaurants, bars, and shops.

Booking. com and Airbnb have a range of budget-friendly options, from self-catering apartments to cozy guesthouses.

For a more unique experience, consider staying in a traditional Icelandic house in the countryside, offering a peaceful escape and stunning views. As for special considerations during September 9-19, booking in advance is advised, as this is a popular time with the last remnants of summer weather and the possibility of catching the Northern Lights.

If you're interested in exploring beyond Reykjavik, consider staying in accommodations along the Golden Circle route, providing access to Iceland's most famous natural attractions, including the geysers, waterfalls, and thermal pools. Alternatively, the South Coast offers picturesque landscapes and charming guesthouses where you can unwind after a day of sightseeing.

Keep in mind that Iceland's accommodation options can fill up quickly, so it's wise to secure your bookings as soon as possible to ensure the best choices for your trip.

Food and Drink

Icelandic cuisine offers traditional dishes like lamb stew, rye bread, and smoked fish. For a unique experience, try the fermented shark and hákarl. In terms of drinks, don't miss out on Brennivín, a traditional Icelandic schnapps.

Reykjavik is dotted with budget-friendly options for dining and drinking. Enjoy Icelandic street food at the Reykjavik Street Food restaurant or dig into a hearty meal at Sæta Svínið Gastropub. For a caffeine fix, visit Reykjavik Roasters for excellent coffee. Tipping isn't customary in Iceland, as service charges are usually included in the bill.

When visiting Iceland, keep in mind that the country's cuisine is heavily influenced by its geography, with a focus on fresh seafood and organic produce. It's important to note that some traditional dishes may not align with every traveler's dietary preferences.

Attractions and Activities

Iceland is a nature lover's paradise with year-round activities like glacier hiking, snorkeling in Silfra, and exploring the Golden Circle. In September, you can witness the mesmerizing Northern Lights, go whale watching in Husavik, and visit the stunning Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon. For outdoor enthusiasts, there's year-round trekking in Landmannalaugar, horseback riding in the countryside, and visiting the volcanic Black Sand Beach.

With average budgets, travelers can enjoy camping, self-driving tours, and staying in guesthouses for an authentic experience.

Off-the-Beaten-Path Experiences

Explore hidden ice caves in Vatnajokull, hike to the abandoned plane wreck at Sólheimasandur, and soak in the remote thermal hot springs of Landmannalaugar. Experience the tranquility of Westfjords, and witness the midnight sun at Grímsey Island. Discover the stunning hidden gem of Hveravellir, a geothermal oasis, and go on a glacier camping adventure in Langjökull. Iceland's hidden gems offer a sense of adventure and awe-inspiring natural beauty for the intrepid traveler.

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