6-Day Winter Self Drive Tour of South Iceland

Use this itinerary as an inspiration to design your own!

Duration

6 Days

Availability

September - April

Difficulty

Easy

Minimum Age

All Ages

Overview

Discover the beauty of Iceland in the winter with this unique 6-Day Self-Drive Tour! Each day is filled with new adventures, from northern lights and black sand beaches to glacier lagoons and hot springs. This fantastic tour is designed for anyone looking to get into wild nature during this winter season.

This 6-Day Self-Drive Tour will see you behind the wheel, travelling between the diverse attractions of Iceland’s southern coastline. On your tour, you’ll visit the Golden Circle and the waterfalls Skógafoss and Seljalandsfoss. You’ll see Reynisfjara Black Sand Beach before heading to Vatnajökull National Park to admire the beauty of Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon.

The tour is fully customizable, meaning that you can add an excursion unique to south Iceland. These include visiting the Blue Lagoon, glacier hiking, and stepping inside an ice cave. You can also choose the level of accommodation and vehicle for your road trip.

Experience the natural wonders of Iceland during the winter season! Book this fantastic adventure today!

Included

  • 5 nights of accommodation (different levels available; breakfast included for all levels; more detailed info in accommodation tab)
  • Vehicle for the duration of the trip with unlimited mileage (VW Golf 2WD or similar. Upgrades available)
  • Medium Protection Package for car rental: CDW, SCDW, PAI, THW and GP (More Info Click Here)
  • Mobile WIFI including 3GB total
  • Detailed Itinerary with fun and practical information on the nature, history and culture of Iceland
  • Hands-on travel agent to oversee your itinerary
  • Taxes

Not included

  • Flights to/from Iceland
  • Personal travel insurance
  • Gasoline/Petrol
  • Driving-Related Fees
  • Meals & drinks (unless otherwise stated)
  • Any services not listed as “Included”

Itinerary

Sun Voyager Sculpture on the coastline of Reykjavik

Day 1 – Arrival

You start this 6-day tour at Keflavík Airport, located on the Reykjanes Peninsula. After picking up your bags, find your rental vehicle and make your way through the rugged lava field of the peninsula to Iceland’s capital, Reykjavík.

In the city, find your accommodation and get comfortable. You can explore the area if you are not too tired after your flight. Close by is the vibrant downtown region, filled with interesting architecture, charming cafés, and world-class restaurants.

  • Reykjavík
  • Blue Lagoon Comfort Entrance: Includes entrance to the Blue Lagoon, silica mud mask, use of towel and 1st drink of your choice.
  • Blue Lagoon Premium Entrance: Includes entrance to the Blue Lagoon, silica mud mask, use of towel, 1st drink of your choice, second mask of choice, slippers, use of bathrobe, table reservation at Lava Restaurant, and sparkling wine if dining.
Erupting Strokkur geyser at sunset

Day 2 – Golden Circle

You depart Reykjavík in the morning and travel east. This day is a history and nature lover’s dream as you will spend the day exploring the diverse sites that make up the Golden Circle route.

You’ll start by visiting Þingvellir National Park. Since the times of the Viking settlers and until the end of the 18th Century, Icelanders would gather here for the country’s parliament, Alþingi. Þingvellir is also the meeting point of two tectonic plates, and you can see their boundary exposed at Almannagjá Canyon.

Next, you’ll venture further east through the splendid scenery surrounding Lake Þingvallavatn and up to the geothermal region of Geysir. Here, you can watch the geyser Strokkur erupt in a large column of hot water every 5-10 minutes.

You continue through the wintry countryside for a short while until you reach the spectacular Gullfoss Waterfall. This dramatic feature falls down 32-metres into a canyon created in the last ice age.

Before you head to your accommodation in the region, make sure to check the weather forecast to see if the conditions are good for northern lights hunting.

  • Þingvellir National Park
  • Geysir Geothermal Area
  • Gullfoss Waterfall
  • Snorkeling in Silfra: Snorkeling between continents in crystal-clear water. Includes a tour with a certified PADI divemaster, all necessary snorkelling gear, Silfra admission fee, and hot chocolate to warm up after the dive. Minimum age 12 years.
  • Snowmobiling on Langjökull: An exhilarating tour on top of a glacier, no previous riding experience needed. Included is a one-hour snowmobile ride with a guide and use of overalls. Two people share a snowmobile and the driver needs to bring their driving licence. Age limit for passenger is 8 years.
  • 2 Hour Horse Riding Tour: Meet the friendly Icelandic Horse. Includes 1-1.5 hour guided horseback ride with a specially trained guide. Use of riding helmets, boots & rain wear. Minimum age is 8 years.
Skogafoss at the golden hour in the winter

Day 3 – Waterfalls & Black Sand Beaches

After breakfast, you’ll travel along the south coast, passing two mighty glaciers on the way.

Your first stop will be the gorgeous Seljalandsfoss waterfall, one of the most famous natural landmarks of the region. This beautiful waterfall falls off a 60-metre-tall cliff and is extremely popular amongst photographers.

From Seljalandsfoss is only a short drive to another beautiful waterfall, Skógafoss, which lies under the shadow of both Eyjafjallajökull and Mýrdalsjökull Glaciers. You can capture the splendour of this impressive feature from two viewpoints, one above and the other at its base.

You then venture further east until you reach the picturesque Reynisfjara beach, known for its jet-black sand and dramatic waves. Close by is the charming village of Vík, where you’ll find shops and numerous restaurants.

Continue on until you reach your accommodation in or near Kirkjubæjarklaustur Village. As always, remember to check the skies for signs of the northern lights.

  • Seljalandsfoss Waterfall
  • Skógafoss Waterfalls
  • Reynisfjara Black Sand Beach
  • Vík Village
  • Glacier Hiking on Sólheimajökull Glacier: A fun and easy glacier hike. No previous experience needed. Tour includes an English speaking glacier guide, use of helmet, crampons, ice axe and other necessary safety equipment. Minimum age is 8 years.
  • Snowmobiling on Sólheimajökull Glacier: Race across a glacier on a snowmobile. No prior experience needed and all you have to bring are warm clothes and good shoes. Use of overalls, helmets and balaclavas are included. Two people share a snowmobile, and the driver needs to bring their driving licence. Age limit for passengers is 5 years.
Diamond beach with glacier ice blocks on black sand close to Jökulsárlon in Iceland.

Day 4 – Glacier Lagoon & Diamond Beach

Today, you’ll be exploring the many wonders of Vatnajökull National Park, home of Europe’s largest glaciers and one of Iceland’s most beautiful attractions.

From your accommodation, you’ll drive through a black sand desert until you see the majestic Vatnajökull Glacier appear on the horizon. Nestled underneath it is Skaftafell Nature Reserve, a great place to stop for hiking enthusiasts.

You’ll make your way to the stunning Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon, which many believe to be the most beautiful site in the country. Here, blue and white icebergs float on a calm lake on a journey to the ocean.

A short walk away is Diamond Beach, where a few of these icebergs have washed up onto the black sand shore.

At the end of the day, you’ll head back to your accommodation in Kirkjubæjarklaustur.

  • Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon
  • Diamond Beach
  • Glacier Hike in Skaftafell: Easy glacier hike, suitable for most people. No previous experience needed. Tour includes an English speaking glacier guide, use of helmet, crampons, ice axe and other necessary safety equipment. Minimum age is 8 years.
  • Ice Caving in Vatnajökull: Explore a cave in Europe’s largest glacier. Includes a tour with a certified glacier guide and all necessary glacier gear such as crampons and helmets. Minimum age is 8 years.
two ATV's on a black sand beach in the south of Iceland

Day 5 – Hidden Gems of South Iceland

Today it is time to head back to Reykjavík, but not without a few adventures first.

As you are behind the wheel, you are in control of where you stop. Do you want to visit some of the sites you’ve seen again? No problem. Iceland’s winter light is ever-changing, meaning these attractions might look completely different on your return journey.

You can also stop at new locations, such as Hjörleifshöfi Cape, Friðheimar Tomato Farm or Selfoss Town. The choice is yours.

At the end of the day, head to your accommodation in Reykjavík. Before reaching the bright city lights, you might want to see if conditions are suitable for northern lights hunting. Unfortunately, the streetlights of Reykjavík often obscure the view of the beautiful auroras, so you’ll have a better chance of seeing them in the darkened countryside.

  • Hjörleifshöfði Cape
  • Friðheimar Tomato Farm
  • Selfoss Town
  • ATV tour on Black Beach: Drive across black sand beaches, glacial streams, and rugged hills to the DC3 Plane Crash on this thrilling Quad Bike Tour from South Iceland’s Myrdalsjokull Glacier.
Women in the silky blue waters of the blue lagoon in Iceland with smoke in the background

Day 6 – Departure

Today, it’s time to head back home. We hope you’ve had a fantastic time on your road trip adventure of South Iceland.

If your flight leaves in the afternoon or evening, you will have some time to explore the city. In the downtown area are some of Reykjavík’s best-known landmarks, such as Hallgrímskirkja Church, Harpa Concert Hall, and Tjörnin Lake.

When it is time to head to the airport, you’ll drive across Reykjanes Peninsula to Keflavík Airport, where you’ll return the car before boarding your plane.

  • Hallgrímskirkja Church
  • Harpa Concert Hall
  • Tjörnin Lake
  • Blue Lagoon Comfort Entrance: Includes entrance to the Blue Lagoon, silica mud mask, use of towel and 1st drink of your choice.
  • Blue Lagoon Premium Entrance: Includes entrance to the Blue Lagoon, silica mud mask, use of towel, 1st drink of your choice, second mask of choice, slippers, use of bathrobe, table reservation at Lava Restaurant, and sparkling wine if dining.

Accommodation

You’ll have a choice of three accommodations levels. See details about each one in the boxes below. All accommodations for this tour have been hand-picked by our local travel experts.

For budget-level, single rooms will be allocated to bookings for one person.  Shared twin/double or triple room(s) will be arranged for two or more people. Groups with an odd number of participants will be allotted a single room in quality-level. Children and teenagers will be arranged in the same room as their parents. Additional cost may occur if additional room(s) is needed.

Please keep in mind that hotel quality in Iceland varies between regions and that not all locations offer quality-level accommodations. At those particular locations, comfort level accommodations will be arranged, which has already been calculated in the upgraded price. We do our best to accommodate special requests, but additional costs may incur. 

Budget

Nice and comfortable rooms with shared bathroom facilities and shower located in farmhouses, guesthouses or hostels, in good locations with breakfast included. An example of this in Reykjavík would be Kex Hostel. 

Comfort

Comfortable rooms in three-star hotels or quality guesthouses, centrally located, very close to popular attractions. Private bathroom and breakfast included. An example of this in Reykjavík would be Fosshotel Rauðará. 

Quality

Rooms in four-star hotels or superior rooms in quality three-star hotels at fantastic locations near popular attractions. Private bathroom and breakfast is included. An example of this in Reykjavík would be Icelandair Hotel Marina. 

Car

You’ll have a choice of three options for your rental car. See details for each option in the boxes below. We only work with highly reputable dealerships, ensuring you a smooth ride throughout your holiday.

The vehicles for all levels are current models, no older than two years. They all come standard with a medium protection package including CDW (Collision damage waiver), GP (Gravel Protection), Super Collision Damage Waiver (SCDW), Personal Accident Insurance (PAI) and a Theft Waiver (THW). They also come equipped with free Wi-Fi with 3GB total. You will also get 24-hour roadside emergency services from the car rental agency. In the wintertime, all cars have winter tyres.

The driver must hold a valid driving licence which they have had for at least 12 months before the date of the rental. Age requirement varies for each level, and you can find more information on that in the boxes below.  

Please note that off-road driving is illegal in Iceland.

Budget 2WD

2WD vehicle such as a VW Golf, good for city driving and shorter trips. Fits up to 5 travellers & light luggage. No Highland capabilities. Driver must be at least 20 year old.

Comfort 4x4

4x4 jeep or SUV. Fits up to 5 travellers and 2 large pieces of luggage. Decent for snow and off-asphalt driving. Basic highland capabilities. Driver must be min. 20 years old.

Luxury 4x4

Large 4x4 like a Toyota Land Cruiser. Comfortable up to 5 travellers with 4 large pieces of luggage. Full highland capabilities. Driver must be min. 21 years old.

Map

Good to know

  • Please note that the Northern Lights are a natural phenomenon, so sightings cannot be guaranteed. However, outside of Reykjavík, you will be staying at rural hotels which increases your chances of seeing them when the weather allows.
  • Note that the itinerary may have to be rearranged to fit your arrival date and time better.
  • The itinerary is dependent upon road and weather conditions and so it may be altered if conditions are not favourable. This includes optional activities as well. If extreme weather affects your travel plans, you will be notified and we will be our best to assist you with rearranging or booking other activities when applicable.
  • Some optional activities may need a valid driving licence, or you may need to send additional information to your travel agent. For snorkelling, you will need to know how to swim and fill out an online medical document.

What to bring

  • Warm and waterproof clothes
  • Good winter shoes that have soles with a good grip, or crampons
  • Swimsuit and towel
  • Camera
  • Driving licence

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From: 87.867 kr. /pp.

Per person based on 4 persons travelling together
(Discounts applied in cart – Amount charged in ISK)

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Terms of Service

For further information, please see our Terms and Conditions.

  • More than 24 hours before scheduled tour departure time: 100% refund. Some day tours might have a different cancellation policy, in which case it will be clearly mentioned in the “Good to know” section of the tour.
  • Less than 24 hours before scheduled tour departure time: 100% cancellation fee. Some day tours might have a different cancellation policy, in which case it will be clearly mentioned in the “Good to know” section of the tour.
  • More than 7 days before scheduled tour arrival date: 15% cancellation fee
  • Less than 7 days before scheduled tour departure date: 75% cancellation fee
  • Less than 72 hours before scheduled tour departure date: 100% cancellation fee
  • 45-30 days before scheduled tour arrival date: 50% cancellation fee
  • 29-15 days before scheduled tour arrival date: 75% cancellation fee
  • 14 days before scheduled tour arrival date: 100% cancellation fee

Scheduled international and domestic flights are non-refundable, be they a part of a package, multi-day tour, or any other service purchasable on the Traveo website, unless the Cancellation insurance is purchased. If a cancellation insurance is purchased, a full refund is given.

If flights are a part of a tour listed as a Day-Tour, standard terms of cancellations of day tours apply to a full refund. For cancelling and refunding of private flights (flights specifically arranged and scheduled for you personally or your group in specific), please contact your service agent.

If your tour is cancelled by the tour provider due to weather conditions or any other environmental circumstances you will always receive a full refund. Exempt from this are any rescheduled second tries of tours which already have been serviced as a first departure. In the case of a volcanic eruption taking place on Icelandic soil stopping you from getting to Iceland, you will also receive a full refund on all products booked on Traveo.

All booking change requests must be made via email by the person who submitted the original booking request.

Changing the number of people in a booking to a smaller number is considered cancellation for the change in number of participants.

  • Packages: 

For multi-day tours and packages, all requests for changes must be made minimum 7 days in advance. Please note that we might not be able to fulfil your changed requirements due to lack of availability, though we will always do our best, and do offer alternative options.

Depending on how far in advance a tour package has been booked and when changes to a booking are requested, an administrative fee of 5000 ISK may be charged each day/night of the itinerary that is modified. Additional supplier costs may still apply depending on the changes requested.

For bookings made within 60 days of arrival, changes can be made without incurring the administrative fee until services have been confirmed and the travel documents have been issued. However, for bookings made 30 days or less before arrival, the administrative fee and any applicable supplier fees may be charged due to the short processing time.

  • Day tours and activities: 

Day tours and activities booked on the Traveo.is that are serviced by independent operators can be changed up to 24 hours before departure.

  • Transfer of bookings: 

A booking may be transferred from one party to another, provided that the new party upholds the terms and conditions of the booking. An administrative fee of 5000 ISK will be charged for the transfer, and both parties must assume joint liability for this fee and any other costs that may be incurred by changes to the booking.

  • Parties travelling together: 

Should two parties wish to book separately but travel together, they should inform travel agents of this prior to booking. If a co-travel request is sent after the booking process has been finished, the change to a package is counted as a tailoring and is subject to a 5000 isk service fee.

  • Significant changes to packages: 

If a package is significantly changed from the original package setup/route as offered on the site, the product will be considered to be a tailored tour and might be subject to a 15% service fee of the total price of the package. This does not apply to added nights at the end or at the beginning of a package as this does not change the original package setup/route.

For budget-level, single rooms will be allocated to bookings for one person.  Shared twin/double or triple room(s) will be arranged for two or more people. Groups with an odd number of participants will be allotted a single room in quality-level. Children and teenagers will be arranged in the same room as their parents. Additional cost may occur if additional room(s) is needed.

During the booking process you will be able to choose a pickup location and starting time. If you do not show up for the scheduled pickup time and location stated on your booking, your reservation is non-refundable.

If you do not know your pickup location at the time of booking, you can choose to update your pickup location later, up to 24 hours before tour departure. Please call the number listed on your voucher if you do not receive a confirmation of your pickup location.

Traveo cannot be liable to any loss, damage, accidents, injuries, death or sickness during your tour. The same applies for any changes in tour schedule due to weather, strikes or any other force majeure. Tour operators reserve the right to change routes, schedules and itineraries if needed because of weather, road conditions or should the necessity arise because of unforeseen reasons or circumstances.

We advise all travellers to purchase a comprehensive travel insurance to minimize possible losses due to unforeseeable situations during your travel. Traveo does not offer any travel insurance, so please contact your preferred private travel insurance company.

If you have a complaint about any of our partners please contact us at [email protected] and we will protect your rights.