Iceland Ring Road Guided Tour – Small Group Adventure

10 days / 9 nights
Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon at sunrise
The Goðafoss waterfall in summer
rocky arch cliff in a turquoise sea
Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon at sunrise
The Goðafoss waterfall in summer

Mind-blowing nature is waiting for you on this guided tour

On this 10-day small group trip around Iceland, you’ll see tons of the country’s top sights and make new friends! Join up to 16 travelers on a minibus and let your driver-guide take you around Iceland’s famous Ring Road.

This trip packs so much in, including the famous Golden Circle with its hot springs and waterfalls, along with plenty of glaciers and back sand beaches. 

Your itinerary will take you eastwards along the south coast, winding through the picturesque Eastfjords. And you’ll head north to the Lake Mývatn area, with its unusual geology and wildlife.

Then you’ll loop back round to Reykjavík, stopping at jaw-dropping natural sites en route. You’ll leave Iceland with a reel full of photos, unforgettable memories, and maybe even travel buddies you’ll stay in touch with for years to come!

This tour is operated by a partner of Iceland Tours.

See the big group version of this guided tour.

Travel styleGuided small group
Trip length10 days / 9 nights
VibeSocial
SeasonSummer
(2 May–26 Sep)
TransportBus
Starts fromReykjavík
Minimum age8 years
Tour codeGT01

On this tour you will...

  • See powerful geysers and plunging waterfalls on the Golden Circle

  • Visit Þingvellir National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage site

  • Stroll along volcanic black sand beaches

  • Glimpse icebergs bobbing on Jökulárslón glacial lagoon

  • Marvel at rugged landscapes on the Snæfellsnes peninsula

  • Learn about Icelandic culture from your expert tour guide

Top attractions

The Tjörnin pond in Reykjavík in summer

Downtown Reykjavík

The Gullfoss waterfall in summertime

Gullfoss

Þingvellir National Park, Iceland, in autumn colors

Þingvellir National Park

The Strokkur geyser erupting in winter against a sunset

Geysir and Strokkur

A rainbow over the Skógafoss waterfall on a sunny day

Skógafoss

The Seljalandsfoss waterfall covered in icicles

Seljalandsfoss

Vik Church with Reynisdrangar sea stacks in the distance

Vík í Mýrdal

Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon at sunrise with a pink sky

Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon

Mountains in the Skaftafell Nature Reserve on a cloudy day

Skaftafell Nature Reserve

The edge of the Vatnajökull glacier

Vatnajökull Glacier & National Park

The harbor at Höfn í Hornafirði

Höfn í Hornafirði

The town of Reyðarfjörður, East Iceland, seen from above

Reyðarfjörður

View over the Fellabær neighborhood of Egilsstaðir

Egilsstaðir

The Dettifoss waterfall in autumn

Dettifoss

Lake Mývatn in its autumn colors

Lake Mývatn

The Dimmuborgir lava formations in North Iceland

Dimmuborgir

The skyline of Akureyri, North Iceland

Akureyri

The Goðafoss waterfall in summer

Goðafoss

The Hraunfossar waterfall in winter covered in ice

Hraunfossar and Barnafoss

Town of Borgarnes from above

Borgarnes

Water coming out of colorful rocks at Deildartunguhver hot spring

Deildartunguhver

The Snæfellsjökull glacier at sunset

Snæfellsjökull Glacier & National Park

A man standing below Kirkjufellsfoss

Kirkjufell

Gatklettur rock arch at Arnarstapi

Arnarstapi

The black sand of the Djúpalónssandur beach

Djúpalónssandur

Why book a guided group trip with Iceland Tours?

  • Pick from wide range of departure dates

  • Expert local guidance in English

  • Small and big group options available

  • 24/7 emergency helpline in Iceland

  • Secure your booking with just a 5% deposit

  • Handpicked local accommodation options

Your 10-day guided group itinerary

Your 10-day guided group itinerary
Staying inReykjavík
Driving distance50 km (31 mi)

Transfer from Keflavík International Airport to Reykjavík (included).

If you’re arriving earlier in the day, you might consider adding a day tour. We’d be happy to make suggestions based on your interests.

One of our favorite activities after a long flight is to visit one of the neighborhood geothermal pools. It is so refreshing to relax in the warm water, breathing in the fresh Icelandic air. It’s a great way to get to see Icelandic daily life and maybe meet a few locals. It’s also nice to take a stroll in the old city center, perhaps visiting one of the museums or relaxing with a cup of coffee in a cozy café.

Tonight, there will be an information meeting at your hotel. You’ll meet your guide and travel companions and learn more about the tour.

Dinner this evening is at your leisure. Reykjavík offers a multitude of restaurants and/or coffee-houses, making dinner a great way to get better acquainted with Iceland’s capital.

Please note: If you’ve added extra nights in Reykjavík before your tour, your guide will meet your group on the evening of Day 1 as per the standard itinerary for this tour.

If you cannot make the information meeting on Day 1, you’ll meet your guide in the morning of Day 2 in the lobby of your hotel. Please check the “Services” section in your travel documents to see how to meet your guide at the start of the tour.

Highlights

The Tjörnin pond in Reykjavík in summer

Downtown Reykjavík

Extra activities

Riders on FlyOver Iceland above a virtual waterfallExtra

FlyOver Iceland

Staying inHveragerði area
Driving distance205 km (127 mi)

Your guide will meet you at your hotel at around 08:45.

After a quick introduction to our home city of Reykjavík, head to Lake Þingvallavatn, Iceland’s largest lake and Þingvellir (Thingvellir) National Park. This UNESCO heritage site is where the world’s oldest continuing parliamentary government was founded in the 10th century. It is also the place where the North American and European tectonic plates meet. You will have the unusual experience of walking between two continents!

Next on your journey is Gullfoss, the “Golden Waterfall”, where various walking paths give you photo-worthy views of the beautiful double-ledged cascade. You’ll also visit the nearby Geysir hot spring area to see the famous Geysir and Strokkur, as well as numerous other hot springs and boiling mud pools.

During the day you’ll get a glimpse into Icelandic local life. Visit an Icelandic family farm where tomatoes are grown using organic geothermal energy. Tour the greenhouse and sample some of the farm’s sweet Icelandic tomatoes.

The day ends in Hveragerði, a pretty town located in an active geothermal area. The locals have made clever use of underground hot springs to provide heat for homes, as well as greenhouses that grow flowers, fruits and vegetables.

Staying inVík area
Driving distance295 km (183 mi)

Explore the enchanting Þjórsárdalur valley and its ever-changing landscapes of birch woods, sandy lava fields, rivers, and waterfalls. If the skies are clear, you’ll also see the impressive and beautiful Mt. Hekla volcano towering over the region. Visit Stöng, where you can view a replica of a Viking-age longhouse that was buried by a volcanic eruption of Hekla. The area was a filming location for Game of Thrones Season 4.

Drive along the scenic farmlands of Iceland’s South Shore. Stop to admire the scenic waterfalls Seljalandsfoss and Skógafoss. Each waterfall has its own charm. Continue to Dyrhólaey* and the thundering waves of the Reynisfjara black sand beaches. End the day in Vík, Iceland’s southernmost town.

*Please note that Dyrhólaey is closed for the bird nesting season between mid-May and 25 June.

Staying inHöfn area
Driving distance285 km (177 mi)

Today you’ll be in a world of glaciers! You’ll be visiting the southern area of Vatnajökull National Park, named after Europe’s largest glacier. The total park area covers almost 14% of Iceland, making it the largest national park in Western Europe. Drive through vast sand plains created by glacial outwash as you head east.

Visit the national park’s famous Skaftafell area, a site of outstanding natural beauty. Enjoy the views of rich green landscapes and black sands dominated by several magnificent glaciers. You’ll also see Svínafellsjökull, one of the most beautiful glacial “tongues” that are slowly creeping down from Vatnajökull.

Visit Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon where you’ll enjoy the breathtaking sight of icebergs floating in the fantastic 180-meter (591-foot) deep glacial lagoon. Make sure that camera is charged and ready! Nearby is the dramatic beauty of Breiðamerkursandur (the Diamond Beach), named for the shrinking icebergs that settle on the black sands before drifting out to sea.

Your overnight stay is in Höfn, a fishing port in the shadow of Vatnajökull glacier. Höfn has a nice selection of restaurants and cafés. The local specialty is langoustines (Norway lobsters), and you might enjoy the opportunity to try some for yourself!

Staying inEgilsstaðir area
Driving distance260 km (162 mi)

Drive from Höfn through Almannaskarð pass, stopping to admire the majestic coastline. Continue to the towering mountains plunging vertically into the sea that form the magnificent Eastfjords. We’re sure you’ll love the amazing views, so keep your camera ready. You’ll also pass villages, each with its own special history and charm.

One of these is the tiny village of Breiðdalsvík. Your group will visit the Beljandi Microbrewery and sample some of the wonderful beer. The local community came together in 2017 to transform a rustic warehouse into a charmingly quirky brewery. You’ll meet one of the townsfolk and get a feel for life in a small town, as well as see how great beer is made.

The road brings you to Egilsstaðir town, located near Iceland’s largest forest and a lake said to be home to a legendary (friendly) monster. The area also has an excellent reputation for locally sourced cuisine, and you’ll enjoy some of it at dinner.

Staying inMývatn area
Driving distance255 km (158 mi)

Explore the empty vastness of the highland desert plateau Möðrudalsöræfi, desolate and yet hauntingly beautiful, as you head towards the Lake Mývatn area. On the way, stop at Dettifoss, Europe’s largest and most powerful waterfall.

Continue onwards to the Námaskarð pass with its boiling mud pools and vibrant colors. We often feel like we are visiting another planet when we come here, and you may feel the same way. It’s such a surreal experience!

Explore the natural beauty of the Lake Mývatn area, including the pseudo craters at Skútustaðir and the Laxá salmon river. You will probably see why this area has become so popular for film producers.

Staying inAkureyri area
Driving distance85 km (53 mi)

Start your day’s adventure with a visit to magnificent Goðafoss waterfall, one of North Iceland’s most important symbols. Afterwards, you’ll head to Akureyri, the colorful northern “capital“ of Iceland. The town has charming buildings and a beautiful view of the Eyjafjörður fjord. Though small in size, Akureyri has a lively cultural scene.

The rest of the day is open for you to explore Akureyri. If you’re interested in culture, check out the trendy Listagil area, the “Art Canyon.” You can stroll the street here, browsing art galleries and stopping in at one of the friendly cafes or pubs for delicious, locally sourced food. Several museums are worth a visit. The botanical garden is open year-round; many visitors find it interesting that a garden so close to the Arctic Circle has such a large variety of plants. Akureyri also has a nice variety of restaurants, so you’ll enjoy the chance to dine out tonight.

Staying inBorgarfjörður area
Driving distance415 km (258 mi)

Icelanders consider the Skagafjörður area to be one of the country’s finest places for horse breeding. Enjoy an introduction to the unique Icelandic horse breed with its special fifth gait – the tolt. This horse breed has remained unchanged since Viking times.

Cross the Holtavörðuheiði plateau taking you into West Iceland. Drive through Borgarfjörður, a region that has been getting international recognition for its lovely volcanic and wooded scenery and for its Viking history. Walk up to the top of Grábrók crater for an amazing view. Listen to the powerful rushing waters of Deildartunguhver, Europe’s mightiest hot spring area. Stop to admire the beautiful Hraunfossar waterfalls, where brightly blue water rushes through black lava formations. Nearby is Barnafoss, a waterfall with even more brilliantly blue colors. There is an interesting and poignant legend associated with this waterfall.

Staying inReykjavík
Driving distance405 km (252 mi)

Today you will explore the amazing variety of natural landscapes in Snæfellsjökull National Park. The park’s crown jewel is Snæfellsjökull glacier itself, which covers a dormant volcano that last erupted in 250 AD. In addition, you’ll also see Kirkjufell, one of the most photographed mountains in Iceland. Walk along the uniquely pebbled seascape of Djúpalónssandur beach. At the picturesque harbor village of Arnarstapi, you can observe magnificent basalt rocks in stacked formations.

One Icelandic Saga mentions that Snæfellsnes and its people are protected by a benevolent half troll who lives high on the glacier. You might even find a sense of magic and healing energy in this beautiful peninsula.

At the end of the afternoon, head to Reykjavík for a last night in the colorful capital city, where your guide bids you farewell.

Driving distance50 km (31 mi)

Shared airport transfer to Keflavík Airport for your return flight (included).

Breakfast at your hotel. Please note that this might be a light breakfast if you are taking an early morning flight.

We recommend you depart your hotel no later than three hours before your departure flight. We wish you a pleasant trip back to your homeland and hope to see you in Iceland again!

What’s included?

Quality accommodation every night

Continental breakfast every day

5 two course or buffet dinners in the countryside (exl. day 4 and 7)

Airport transfer

Local transport with guidance in English

Free on-board wi-fi

Microbrewery tour including beer tasting

Admission to Friðheimar greenhouse

Admission to Stöng Viking longhouse

Introduction to Icelandic horses

Admission to Bjarnarhöfn Shark Museum

24/7 emergency helpline when you’re in Iceland

VAT, taxes & service fees

Flights to Iceland

Food & drink, unless otherwise stated

Attraction entrance fees, unless otherwise stated

Personal travel insurance

Your accommodation

More info

Stay in well-located hotels and guesthouses that are highly rated by visitors and handpicked by experts.

On this trip, you’ll stay at the following hotels or similar :

  • Day 1 – Fosshótel Reykjavík 
  • Day 2 – Hótel Örk 
  • Day 3 – Hótel Vík or Katla Hótel KEA
  • Day 4 – Hótel Höfn 
  • Day 5 – Hótel Hallormsstaður or Valaskjálf Hótel 
  • Day 6 – Laxá Hótel or Berjaya Hótel Mývatn or Sel Hótel Mývatn 
  • Day 7 – Berjaya Iceland Hotel Akureyri 
  • Day 8 – Hótel Hamar 
  • Day 9 – Fosshótel Reykjavík 

Adults

Ages 12+

2

Children

Ages 2-11

0

Infants

Ages 0-1

0

FAQs about our guided group trips

On this type of tour, you’ll travel around Iceland by bus with the same driver-guide for the length of your trip. Guided group tours are a great way to make like-minded friends, as you’ll spend time with the same travelers for your whole vacation.

You’ll get to stay in accommodation around the country, and some tours include a few evening meals too. After a day’s exploring, you’ll go back to your private room and meet your guide and group the next morning to continue your trip.

All of our guided group tours start and finish in Reykjavík.

There are 2 group sizes available:

  • Small group: Up to 16 people
  • Big group: Up to 36 people

Small groups offer a more intimate travel experience, whereas big groups are more wallet-friendly.

You’ll likely be with people from a whole mix of backgrounds, from different countries and of different ages. Your guide will entertain you with fun facts and jokes as you journey around Iceland. It’s almost guaranteed you’ll be laughing along with your group!

There will most probably be a mix of solo travelers, couples, and small groups of friends and family.

The luggage restrictions on guided group tours 3 days and longer are as follows:

  • 1 suitcase or large bag per person for clothes and overnight items
  • 1 day bag for essential items, like a camera, extra clothes, and valuables

The luggage restrictions on guided group tours up to 3 days are as follows:

  • 1 small carry-on luggage, bag size: 50 x 30 x 60 cm (19.9 x 11.8 x 23.6 inches)
  • If you have large luggage with you, please check with your accommodation if they offer luggage storage while on this tour. If that is not a possibility, you can pay an extra fee per luggage (2000 ISK) with 72 hours notice.

Each day your luggage will be loaded onto the bus. In the evening, you’ll take all your bags with you to your room.

Our guided group tours have fixed start dates and itineraries. While it’s not possible to customize the actual tour, you can tailor your trip with extra days and activities before or afterwards.

For example, you could add a couple more days in Reykjavík at the end of your trip. Fill these with day tours or exciting activities like ice caving and snowmobiling.

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