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Auroras, Volcanoes & Glacier Lagoon
Winter Short Break to Explore Highlights of Iceland
Iceland is the perfect place to enjoy a winter trip full of adventure, icy landscapes and the chance to see the elusive Northern Lights. You visit Iceland's most popular sites such as the Golden Circle route, the South coast and Vatnaj√∂kull national park. You see cascading waterfalls, smoking geysers, colourful volcano craters, a spectacular ice lagoon with floating icebergs and black lava beaches, all set against a backdrop of glistering¬†glaciers and restless geology. There is always a thrilling potential for the night sky to be decorated with the jewels of the amazing aurora borealis. Imagine the excitement to search for the most spectacular - and natural - light show on earth.
WELCOME TO ICELAND (50 km/31 mls)
The Flybus shuttle brings travelers from Keflav√≠k International Airport to the accommodation in Reykjav√≠k where you spend the night. We provide you with ideas how to explore Iceland's capital on your own, dinner suggestions too! Food lovers will be pleased and perhaps even impressed by the number of diverse restaurants in Reykjav√≠k. Many award winning chefs create delicious Icelandic cuisine that is characterized by an imaginative use of local ingredients such as fresh seafood, organic lamb and wild game; but be sure to try the fabulous Icelandic hotdog and pizza too!¬†
VOLCANO HOUSE & THE GOLDEN CIRCLE¬†ROUTE¬†(220 km/136 mls)¬†
At 08:30 meet our tour guide and start the escorted tour program with short introduction to Icelandic geology while watching a striking film at Reykjavik Volcano House documenting the eruptions of Eyjafjallaj√∂kull and Fimmv√∂r√įuh√°ls in 2010, which caused millions of people to be stranded worldwide as thousands of flights were cancelled. These films give a good insight into the general geology and volcanology of Iceland. At the Volcano House you can experience a hands-on geological exhibition and examine various pieces of pumice, ash and lava from Icelandic volcanoes. Later on we depart Reykjavik for √ěingvellir National Park, a UNESCO world heritage site. √ěingvellir is one of Iceland's most fascinating historical and geological places. The site is situated on the boundaries of the tectonic plates of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. The faults and fissures of the area make the rifting of the earth's crust evident. Exploring¬†the hot springs at Geysir is like watching a geography lesson in real life: natural springs bubble away in the ground until the pressure becomes too high and explode spectacularly. Geysir and Strokkur are the two biggest of the geysers there. While Geysir no longer is active, Strokkur still spouts every 5 to 15 minutes to the delight of visitors. Next we¬†travel to¬†Gullfoss, a double waterfall that tumbles 34 meters into a canyon. Further south we stop at the explosion crater called Keri√į which is filled with water and resembles an ancient amphitheatre. After dinner we show a movie about Northern Lights as part of the Northern Lights educational program. Naturally, once darkness falls, we are out in the garden waiting for the Northern Lights.¬†Overnight Hotel Eyjafjallakojull
Day 3 Jokulsarlon - Vatnajokull GlacierMeals: Breakfast / Dinner
VATNAJ√ĖKULL NATIONAL PARK & GLACIER LAGOON¬†(385 km/239 mls)¬†
A long drive brings us to a world of¬†glaciers, ice and icebergs. We travel to J√∂kuls√°rl√≥n, a glacial lagoon filled with floating icebergs. We explore this extraordinary site and perhaps see seals swimming in the arctic waters. You can walk on the black sandy beach where large icebergs get stranded. The Vatnaj√∂kull National Park is about 12,000 square kilometers and it is the largest National Park in Europe. In this area we find Iceland‚Äôs highest mountains, an alpine environment and Europe's largest glacier. In the evening, you hear about the Northern Lights from our tour guide. Be careful not to go to bed too soon in this remote and quiet location, or you may just miss out one more chance of seeing the Northern Lights shimmering and dancing across the night sky.¬†We stay for one night in the Vatnaj√∂kull region.¬†Hotel Hofn.
SOUTH COAST¬†(305 km/189 mls)
We¬†head across the Eldhraun lava field to the village of V√≠k where we make a photo stop. We take a stroll on the black lava beach and along the bird cliffs at Reynisfjara in South Iceland. We pass the glacier M√Ĺrdalsj√∂kull and the infamous volcano Eyjafjallaj√∂kull and continue to Sk√≥gafoss waterfall which is 60 meters high and belongs to the most impressive waterfalls in the country.¬†¬†Further west we reach the high but narrow Seljalandsfoss waterfall. In the¬†evening you return to Reykjavik. An optional Northern Lights bus tour or¬†fjord cruise can be booked on the spot, if the weather conditions are ideal. We stay one night in Iceland's capital.
Day 5 Reykjavik
Individual transfer by Flybus airport shuttle from your accommodation in Reykjav√≠k to Keflav√≠k Airport
For 2017/2018 season the Fosshotel Nupar is replaced by Fosshotel Glacier Lagoon on day 3.
Practical Tour Information
DAILY DRIVING:¬†Total mileage without airport transfer is 910 km (564 miles) which is an average of 303 km (188 miles) per day. You spend about 4 hours per day on the bus, depending on road conditions, traffic and daily distances. On some days the driving might be longer than on some other days.¬†
NOTE:¬†In rare cases, a change of itinerary might be necessary during winter programs in Iceland, should snow, road and weather conditions not allow to follow the scheduled itinerary, and certain outdoor activities might be cancelled. In this case no refund will be given, but Scantours will try to find reasonable alternatives where and whenever possible.
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