Scenic Iceland & the Northern Lights - Insight Vacations

Scenic Iceland & the Northern Lights (Winter 2017-18)

Duration: 8 days Visiting: Iceland

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  • Overview
  • Itinerary
  • Highlights
  • Optional experiences
  • Accommodation
  • Reviews
  • Dates & prices

Autumn, winter and spring are all great seasons to experience Iceland’s world of natural phenomena; by day marvel at waterfalls, volcanoes and incredible landscapes and by night, seek out the dancing lights that fill cloudless skies.

  1. Day 1

    Your Journey Begins

    Board your overnight flight to Europe (please ask about our great deals).

  2. Day 2

    The Viking City of Reykjavík

    Welcome to Iceland. At Reykjavík's Keflavík Airport, transfers depart for your tour hotel at 08:00, 12:30 and 16:30. Later, join your Tour Director for a Welcome Reception and an opportunity to get to know each other over a pleasant evening of dinner and wine. Afterwards, search for the most spectacular show on earth - the Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis). See the breathtaking night sky filled with an array of different colours. Please note: The Northern Lights are a natural phenomenon and sightings, therefore, cannot be guaranteed.

  3. Day 3 - Relaxed Start

    South Shore Adventure to Vík

    (Relaxed Start) Take a journey through the stunning landscape of Iceland‘s south coast to visit its newest geothermal heat and electric power station at Hellisheiðavirkjun. Continue on to witness the majesty of Seljalandsfoss and Skógafoss. Stand awestruck by the beauty and powerful force of these thundering waterfalls before venturing on to view more phenomena. After seeing the magnificent Hekla and Eyjafjallajökull volcanoes, arrive in the welcoming communtiy of Vík. Later, perhaps enjoy another chance to go in search of the mystical Northern Lights?

  4. Day 4 - Relaxed Start

    The Golden Circle to Flúðir

    (Relaxed Start) Embark on a day of discovery around Iceland's Golden Circle, taking in some of the famous landmarks this magical country has to offer. Your first stop is in Fontana to visit a fascinating geothermal bakery. Sample the delicious rye bread, dug hot from the ground and served with butter. You will then experience the exploding hot springs at Geysir and the mighty Gullfoss Waterfalls – the Icelandic equivalent of Niagara Falls. Next stop is Friðheimar, to find out about the processes in Icelandic greenhouse horticulture. Visit a family-run vegetable farm that specialises in tomatoes. Tour their greenhouses and sample the sweet, unique flavour of their lovingly-grown crop. Continue to your hotel in Flúðir, where there is again a chance to look to the night sky to watch nature's theatre unfold.

  5. Day 5 - Relaxed Start

    Thingvellir, Borgarnes and Húsafell

    (Relaxed Start) Continue on to Thingvellir, where the first meeting of the Icelandic parliament was held in 930 AD. This remarkable natural site lies on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge line, where the American and European tectonic plates meet. Continue on the trail of Viking warrior and poet Egill Skallagrímsson to Borgarnes. En route, stop at the pretty village of Reykholt, home of poet and medieval scholar Snorri Sturluson. On arrival in Borgarnes, learn about Iceland's history with a visit to the fascinating Icelandic Settlement Centre. Journey on through glorious landscapes taking in views of the Hraunfossar and Barnafoss waterfalls and Deildartunguhver - Europe's most powerful hot spring.

  6. Day 6 - Relaxed Start

    Reykjavík sightseeing

    (Relaxed Start) Journey back to the capital - Reykjavík, where sightseeing shows you the old town centre, the 19th century parliament building, Höfði House (the location of the 1986 Reykjavík Summit meeting of presidents Ronald Reagan of the United States and Mikhail Gorbachev of the U.S.S.R.), the colourful harbour and the modern, landmark church - the Hallgrímskirkja. The afternoon is at leisure.

  7. Day 7 - Relaxed Start

    The Blue Lagoon

    (Relaxed Start) Relax and enjoy your final day with a visit to Reykjavík's Blue Lagoon. Surrounded by lava fields and snow-capped mountains, the Lagoon is a wonder of nature and offers a unique experience for both body and soul. Choose to bathe in the pleasantly warm mineral-rich geothermal waters, or perhaps enjoy a water massage or spa treatment? Facilities also include an indoor geothermal pool, a winter garden and restaurants. With your new-found friends, toast the culmination of your fascinating journey of discovery with a celebratory cocktail. The rest of the day is free, perhaps spend time relaxing in a sidewalk cafe?

  8. Day 8

    Depart Reykjavík

    Your Icelandic adventure comes to an end, with transfers arriving at Reykjavík's Keflavík Airport at 05:00 and 12:30.

Highlights

 

SIGNATURE EXPERIENCES

  • Borganes: Learn about Iceland's history with a visit to the fascinating Icelandic Settlement Centre with your Local Expert.
  • Reykjavík: Explore the city with your Local Expert. See the old town centre, the parliament building, Höfði House, the colourful harbour and the Hallgrímskirkja.

TOP RATED HIGHLIGHTS

  • Reykjavík: Witness nature's most spectacular show on earth - the Northern Lights.
  • Seljalandsfoss and Skógafoss: Admire the majestic beauty of these two impressive waterfalls.
  • Gullfoss: See the spectacular two-tiered waterfall. This Icelandic equivalent of Niagara Falls drops a total of 32m (105 ft.), while spanning the entire width of the Hvítá River.
  • Thingvellir: The Parliamentary Plains are the most important historic site of the country, as the meeting place of the Althing (world's oldest parliament), founded in 930 AD.
  • Blue Lagoon: Enjoy a truly indulgent, once-in-a-lifetime experience at the most visited attraction in Iceland. Its geothermal seawater flows from volcanic aquifers 2,000 metres within the earth, emerging at the surface enriched with algae, silica, and minerals. With new-found friends, enjoy bathing in the lagoon in style, as you sip on a celebratory cocktail.

ADDITIONAL INCLUDED HIGHLIGHTS

  • Hellisheiðavirkjun: Visit Iceland’s newest geothermal heat and electric power station.
  • Hekla and Eyjafjallajökull: See these magnificent volcanoes.
  • Geysir: Visit the famous spouting Geysir which has become synonymous with hot springs all around the world.
  • Reykholt: Stop at this pretty village, home of poet and medieval scholar Snorri Sturluson.

AUTHENTIC REGIONAL FLAVOURS

  • Friðheimar: Tour a family-run farm and sample their sweet-tasting, homegrown tomatoes.
  • Fontana: At a geothermal bakery, sample delicious rye bread dug hot from the ground.
  • Included Quality Dining: 6 Buffet Breakfasts (BB) and 3 Three-course table d'hôte Dinners (D) with tea or coffee; plus 1 Welcome Dinner (WD) with wine. Departure on tour for New Year's Eve will enjoy a festive Highlight Dinner which will replace an included meal.

STAY AT THE BEST ADDRESSES

  • Iceland Hotels: Insight handpicks hotels to consistently provide the best central and scenic locations. Hotels in Iceland are generally traditional and much simpler in style, typical of the region, with clean rooms and private facilities.
  • Reykjavík: Inside Icelandair Hotel Reykjavík Natura, you'll find a warm and inviting atmosphere, filled with thoughtful details inspired by the beautiful nature that surrounds the property.
  • Vík: Located in the quaint village of Vík, the Icelandair Hotel offers elegantly fitted guest rooms, decorated with Icelandic design and inspired by the natural environment.
  • Húsafell: Hótel Húsafell is located in an area rich in history and extraordinary natural wonders.

OUR FIVE-STAR SERVICES

  • Our highly-skilled Insight Tour Director will ensure your journey is seamless, serving as your expert guide, consummate organiser, and friend in a foreign land.
  • Enjoy the comfort of Insight's luxury, air-conditioned, 40-seat touring coach, with extended Business Class legroom and on-board restroom.
  • Personal radio headsets give you the freedom to wander during visits to famous highlights, without missing any of your Local Expert's fascinating commentary.
  • We carry your bags for you and promptly deliver them to your hotel door.
  • Hotel and restaurant tips are included; you'll never have to worry about how much to give, nor search for foreign currency. Plus, we include all taxes and porterage charges at hotels.
  • Stay connected with friends and family with our complimentary coach and hotel Wi-Fi.
  • From time to time, your Tour Director will enchant you with an Insight Flourish - a local tidbit representing authentic food or beverages unique to the destination.
  • Included airport transfers from/to Reykjavík's Keflavík Airport are available at scheduled times, on arrival and departure days only. Should your flights not coincide with these, additional charged transfers are available. Alternatively, please make your own way to/from the airport.

Optional experiences

Most Insight trips already include a host of bonus highlights and comprehensive sightseeing. There may also be an exciting array of Optional Experiences which will turn an already amazing experience into the trip of a lifetime! These are entirely optional and can be booked through your Travel Director/Local Representative at the commencement of your trips. Please note, many Optional Experiences are operated by independent third party suppliers, not Insight Vacations. The Optionals and pricing listed here are a guideline only and subject to change.

The Secret Lagoon at Flúðir

The Secret Lagoon natural hot springs is located in the small village of Fludir and stay at 38-40 Celsius all year due to its location in the Golden Circle. The pool’s natural surroundings and the steam in the air give the place a magical feeling and a true Icelandic experience. There are also several geothermal spots and a little Geysir which erupts every 5 minutes year-round for the enjoyment of guests relaxing in the hot spring.

Adult Price: EUR 23.00

Code: VIK0001

Lava Riding Tour

Enjoy the pure beauty of Icelandic nature from horseback. Whether you’re a beginner or a more advanced rider, this is a wonderful way to experience the Icelandic countryside. Starting from the Íshestar riding centre in Hafnarfjörður, you‘ll explore the lovely conservation area of Heiðmörk, with its numerous caves and canyons. Your tour will be led by experienced staff and the horses are used to riders of all levels.

Adult Price: EUR 92.00

Code: REY0003

Northern Lights by Boat

Sailing away from the coastline of Reykjavik, we'll escape the lights of the city and begin our search for the northern lights. Seeing the aurora borealis, with a beautiful backdrop of mountains and city lights, is something you won't ever forget. In less than 30 minutes we'll be in a prime location, away from the city lights, perfect for viewing the auroras. This tour is subject to weather conditions.

Adult Price: EUR 72.00

Code: REY0004

Visit to the Viking World

Enjoy a visit to the home of the Viking Ship Íslendingur (the Icelander). You'll learn about Viking exploration, Norse mythology and the early settlement of Iceland. Normal opening hours are between 12:00-17:00

Adult Price: EUR 24.00

Code: REY0005

Accommodation

 

Icelandair Hotel Reykjavik Natura

Reykjavik (Central) - Iceland

Inside Icelandair Hotel Reykjavík Natura, you'll find a warm and inviting atmosphere, filled with thoughtful details inspired by the beautiful nature that surrounds the property.

Icelandair Hotel Vík

Vik (Traditional) - Iceland

Icelandair Hotel Fludir

Flúðir (Scenic) - Iceland

Close to three National Parks (Gullfoss, Geysire and Thingvellir), the Icelandair Hotel Flúðir is a comfortable hotel offering views of Midfell Mountain. All rooms have a patio with garden access.

Hotel Husafell

Húsafell (Scenic) - Iceland

Hótel Húsafell is located in an area rich in history and extraordinary natural wonders.

Guest Reviews & Experiences

Our guests rate us 4.5 out of 5 based on
8002 independent user reviews received during the past year.

  • 16 April, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Enjoyed the various sights chosen.

    Service: Yes I would recommend them to family and friends. Tour director was great.

  • 16 April, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Beautiful scenery !!!!!!!

    Service: Overall the service was good, but we are not happy with the optional tour boat ride in the last evening. We were told if the weather was not good, they would cancel the boat ride. The weather forecast had snow for the night and It started to rain when we board the bus to the dock, they should have cancelled the ride. We were struck inside the boat for 2 hours, terrible experience !😦

  • 15 April, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: I liked the variety of activities that allowed the visitor to appreciate the interesting and exciting experiences in Iceland.

    Service: Well organised and planned with attention to detail.

  • 14 April, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: wonderful overview of the capitol area of Iceland

    Service: I needed to have a pair of jeans washed and asked about laundry facilities at our next stop. Lavisa arranged to have the hotel take care of them for me. I really appreciated the extra step she took to do this for me.

  • 13 April, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Plenty of info given before & during tour. Friendly tour guide &bus driver. Interesting places visited

    Service: Always gave plenty of information before & during tour

  • 10 April, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: I liked the combination of sights from technical, natural wonders and Iceland history and businesses.

    Service: Our guide (Heidi) was knowledgeable and interesting. She didn’t just ramble on because she had control of a microphone. She addressed all members of the group with their individual needs and she had a great sense of humor. Otto the bus driver handled the bus in very difficult wind conditions and I felt safe. The one problem we had was when we arrived in Iceland was the transfer from airport to hotel. We had a voucher stating there were 3 pickups and one of these were for noon. When no one showed up we called Iceland travel who had no information on a noon pickup. The agent arranged for a taxi for the four us. If we had to wait until the evening transfer my rating of five stars would be different. Some one from insight should sit in the arrival section on Iceland’s airport after a long flight and see how awful this would be.

  • 07 April, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: There were still other tours that could have been added to the schedule that were worth seeing. The optional tours were not great. The survey was routed even before the whole tour was finished. But the hotel accommodations were good.

    Service: The hotel transfers was excellent. Our luggages were handled well.

  • 07 April, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Saw and experienced allot of what Iceland had to offer.

    Service: They made booking our trip very easy, explained everything. Yes would travel with Insight again, actually this was our 4th trip with them.

  • 07 April, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Good places to see. But we needed to stay much longer at the national park; a half day minimum. Secret lagoon and blue lagoon were the highlight even though we missed northern lights the whole week. Include at least one more geothermal swim. Include a lunch break with the tomatoe farm instead of stopping elsewhere. Stay longer at the two main waterfalls, Gulfoss and the one with water coming out of the lava rocks. Two-three hours at least to give people time to walk to the top or to hike around. In Reykjavik take us to the top of that church. There were Too many 15-20 minute stops. Skip the hot springs stop. Unless you have never seen a geyser, The geyser was a dissappointment, but if it was an add on to a lunch break, then that was ok. Stay at the geothermal bakery longer. Get a tour or speech of how the bread was made. Or better yet let folks make the bread. Make that a lunch break. Stay at the black beach a bit longer. Stop off at least once along the higher road and allow us a chance to touch the snow or walk on the ice. Take out the first two waterfall stops and the hot springs to free up time for the other. The last two waterfalls were magnificent enough without having to have a lead up to them. We saw enough of hot springs elsewhere on the trip. The Settlement stop was fair, but I would not recommend it. If you want to add history, include the Viking Museum instead of Settlement. Viking museum was a much nicer place and it had the same history/culture. Plus it had the real replica. The ship was amazing and had a great story behind it. The Settlement was creepy; not for young kids. The (Bill Clinton) hot dog stand was a nice surprise. Thanks.

    Service: Nice hotels. Bus driver was good and got us places on time.

  • 07 April, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: We saw virtually the whole country.

    Service: I learnt a lot about Iceland. The Tour Director and the Coach Driver were very personable. Leaving times in the mornings were reasonable. My first name was misspelled on the documentation.

  • 07 April, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Should have included bus tour and boat tour for northern light sighting

    Service: Excellent accommodations, good pace

  • 05 April, 2018

    TRIP:
    SERVICE:

    Trip: Great variety of places to see, Golden Circle tour is wonderful.

    Service: Excellent tour, guide and driver very professional. All the hotels selected were clean and staff very friendly! Iceand is a beautiful country, good food and friendly people.

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