Iceland Ring Road & Westfjords Grand Tour

17 days / 16 nights
The town of Ísafjörður in the Westfjords on a sunny day
A rainbow over the Skógafoss waterfall on a sunny day
A kittiwake flying above cliffs in the Breiðafjörður bay
The town of Ísafjörður in the Westfjords on a sunny day
A rainbow over the Skógafoss waterfall on a sunny day

Leave no corner of the country unexplored

Experience all of Iceland in its incredible diversity on this 17-day road trip. As you pass through landscapes filled with waterfalls, hot springs, glaciers, and fjords, you’ll form a lifelong connection with Iceland’s natural beauty.

Wind along fjord-studded coastlines, watch hot springs and geysers at play, and marvel at gigantic waterfalls. And because you’ll be at the wheel, you can stop as often as you like. This itinerary also includes a full free day in Reykjavík to spend however you please.

Travel styleSelf-drive
Trip length17 days / 16 nights
VibeUltimate
SeasonSummer
(1 May–30 Sep)
TransportRental car
Starts fromReykjavík
Tour codeSD26

On this tour you will...

  • Explore ‘Iceland in Miniature’ on the Snæfellsnes peninsula

  • Sail to the remote Westfjords region by ferry

  • Discover the moonlike landscapes of North Iceland

  • Roam black sand beaches on the south coast

  • Come close to enormous ancient glaciers

  • Check out every one of Iceland’s national parks

Top attractions

The town of Ísafjörður on a sunny day

Ísafjörður

Multiple cascades of the Dynjandi waterfall in summer

Dynjandi

The Bolafjall radar station near the village of Bolungarvík

Bolungarvík

The skyline of Akureyri, North Iceland

Akureyri

The village of Drangsnes in the Westfjords at sunset

Drangsnes

Lake Mývatn in its autumn colors

Lake Mývatn

The Goðafoss waterfall in summer

Goðafoss

The Dettifoss waterfall in autumn

Dettifoss

Trees in the lush Ásbyrgi canyon

Ásbyrgi

The harbor in the fishing village of Húsavík

Húsavík

The rocky Jökulsárgljúfur canyon

Jökulsárgljúfur

The Seljalandsfoss waterfall covered in icicles

Seljalandsfoss

A rainbow over the Skógafoss waterfall on a sunny day

Skógafoss

The Strokkur geyser erupting in winter against a sunset

Geysir and Strokkur

Þingvellir National Park, Iceland, in autumn colors

Þingvellir National Park

The Gullfoss waterfall in summertime

Gullfoss

Vik Church with Reynisdrangar sea stacks in the distance

Vík í Mýrdal

The Rauðisandur beach from above

Rauðisandur

Gatklettur rock arch at Arnarstapi

Arnarstapi

The black sand of the Djúpalónssandur beach

Djúpalónssandur

The Hraunfossar waterfall in winter covered in ice

Hraunfossar and Barnafoss

Water coming out of colorful rocks at Deildartunguhver hot spring

Deildartunguhver

Why book a self-drive trip with Iceland Tours?

  • Start your tour on the date that suits you

  • 24/7 emergency helpline in Iceland

  • Secure your booking with just a 5% deposit

  • New rental cars with 2 drivers as standard

  • Handpicked local accommodation options

  • Best Price Guarantee

Your 17-day self-drive itinerary

Your 17-day self-drive itinerary
Staying inReykjavík
Driving distance50 km (31 mi)

Your memorable Iceland adventure begins the very moment you arrive at Keflavík Airport. Once you pick up your rental vehicle, you’ll head directly to Reykjavík for your exciting, first night in the Land of Fire and Ice.

Highlights

The Tjörnin pond in Reykjavík in summer

Downtown Reykjavík

Extra activities

Riders on FlyOver Iceland above a virtual waterfallExtra

FlyOver Iceland

The Sky Lagoon at sunsetExtra

Sky Lagoon Pure Pass

Staying inSnæfellsnes area
Driving distance300 km (186 mi)

Today you will be discovering an interesting area, rich with cultural and historical heritage. As you head toward Borgarfjörður, we recommend stopping by the magnificent, Hraunfossar waterfalls, where the water seems to magically flows from the lava bed into the river below. Heading to Snæfellsnes peninsula you should visit the beautiful places all around the peninsula; for example Búðir, Arnarstapi and Hellnar on the way to your accommodation on the peninsula.

Staying inSnæfellsnes area
Driving distance200 km (124 mi)

Today you will be exploring the natural wonders of the Snæfellsnes Peninsula, and the stunning Snæfell Glacier. This journey is perfect for nature lovers where you will explore the adventurous world of the ocean, coastline and beach.

Drive along the coast and visit many popular sites such as the basalt pillars of Gerðuberg, Búðir with its small wooden church surrounded by a lava field, Arnarstapi, a small fishing village where you can have a look at the fascinating rock formations by the old pier and Djúpalónssandur, a black sand beach.

On the north part of the peninsula you will drive along the shore of the Breiðafjörður bay, passing through charming fishing villages.

Staying inSouthern Westfjords area
Driving distance150 km (93 mi)

Your day will start with a boat ride on the Baldur ferry, taking you to the beautiful Westfjords. You will depart in the morning from Stykkishólmur, heading to Patreksfjörður and sailing through Breiðafjörður bay.

Staying inNorthern Westfjords area
Driving distance200 km (124 mi)

Today you continue up north along the Westfjords, one of the most remote regions of Iceland. The landscape is breathtaking as you cross mountains and heaths and drive along the dramatic fjords at the foot of steep cliffs.

Dynjandi is a beautiful waterfall that lies in the northern arm of the fjord Arnarfjörður.

You continue toward the north until you reach the village Flateyri and from there you drive on to reach your accommodation near the Ísafjörður town.

Staying inHrútafjörður area
Driving distance360 km (224 mi)

Today your journey through the most remote places in Iceland continues. Next up is Strandir, the eastern part of the Westfjords. You’ll thrill to the spectacular landscape, while driving along the numerous small fjords of Ísafjarðardjúp and passing Vigur Island along the way.

Staying inAkureyri area
Driving distance200 km (124 mi)

Today your journey will take you up north to the town of Akureyri. First you will go by Hvammstangi where you can see some seals and the Skagafjörður valley. This area is known for its horse breeding and many Icelandic horses can be seen grazing. A fun extra stop is also to take a small detour to Hvítserkur, a 15-meter-high basalt stack.

Staying inMývatn / Húsavík area
Driving distance80 km (50 mi)

In the morning you can spend some time in Akureyri before heading to the Lake Mývatn area. It is undoubtedly one of Iceland’s most renowned areas, due to its volcanic activity and its amazing bird life.

On the way to Mývatn, plan to stop at the impressive, Goðafoss waterfall, known as “the waterfall of the gods”.

Staying inMývatn / Húsavík area
Driving distance50 km (31 mi)

Your whole day is dedicated to the marvels of the Lake Mývatn Nature Reserve, one of Iceland’s most inspiring natural sights. On your way there, you might want to stop by the horseshoe-shaped Goðafoss waterfall, known as the ‘Waterfall of the Gods’.

You’ll then spend the rest of the day exploring Lake Mývatn, with its rich birdlife, volcanic formations, steam vents, mud pools, and more.

Or why not experience the area’s geothermal activity with a dip in the Mývatn Nature Baths? You could soak in the milky blue geothermal waters overlooking the rugged volcanic landscape.

Staying inEgilsstaðir area
Driving distance310 km (193 mi)

Your day starts in the charming fishing village of Húsavík. After Húsavík, you will drive the Tjörnes Peninsula coastline, where you can make a quick stop on the way at the extremity of the peninsula to enjoy the view and spot some seabirds. The journey then continues to the eastern part of Iceland, with a few stops on the way, for your next evening’s stay.

Staying inEgilsstaðir area
Driving distance80 km (50 mi)

The day is for relaxing or for excursions around Egilsstaðir. It is worth making a trip to Bakkagerði, drive to Seyðisfjörður or walk around the lake Lögurinn and Hengifoss Waterfall for hiking. Accommodation as on the previous day.

Staying inHöfn area
Driving distance260 km (162 mi)

Today is the day to discover the Eastfjords. Starting toward the fjord Reyðarfjörður, where a small-but-fascinating World War II history museum is located, you continue along the fjords toward Southeast Iceland. At times, the road hangs precariously high on the mountain slopes. Finally, you drive through the tunnel of Almannaskarð to arrive in the Höfn region, where you will spend that night.

Staying inKirkjubæjarklaustur / Vík area
Driving distance280 km (174 mi)

Your next stop is Iceland’s scenic southeast. After passing various, outlet glaciers belonging to Vatnajökull, Europe’s largest ice cap, you’ll arrive at the stunningly surreal beauty of Jökulsárlón, a glacial lagoon. This exceptional sight sits at the foot of Iceland’s highest mountain, Hvannadalshnúkur.

Skaftafell National Park is another area definitely worth a visit. This oasis, surrounded by glaciers and black sand plains, offers a broad range of options for great hiking. Later, continue your drive to Vík/Kirkjubæjarklaustur for your overnight stay.

Staying inSelfoss / Hveragerði area
Driving distance130 km (81 mi)

Today you can start by taking a look at the black sand Reynisfjara beach, famous for the Reynisdrangar rock stacks that rise from the sea and for its basalt columns. Dyrhólaey cape is the southernmost point of Iceland. A small road takes you to the top of this 120 m high sea cliff where you often can see a large number of puffins. (Please note that Dyrhólaey is closed during nesting season from May 15 til June 23 and from mid- August the puffins will have gone to sea!).

Continuing westbound you arrive at Skógar and pass Skógafoss waterfall, one of the highest in Iceland. As you continue towards Selfoss you pass Seljalandsfoss waterfall and you can actually walk behind it.

Staying inReykjavík
Driving distance200 km (124 mi)

Today you will explore and marvel at the attractions of the famous the Golden Circle. First, the imposing Gullfoss waterfall, followed by the steaming power of Geysir. Here you can witness the Strokkur geyser propel warm water columns in the air every 5-10 minutes. Last but not least, the Þingvellir National Park. This is where the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates meet, creating this impressive landscape.

Later, you’ll reach Reykjavík where you will spend your last night in Iceland.

Staying inReykjavík
Driving distance70 km (43 mi)

Reykjavík offers a wide range of sights to visit and lots of activities. Among the things you can visit in Reykjavík are the old city center where you can walk by the lake, Tjörnin, visit the Town Hall, and walk through the Austurvöllur square, where the Parliament building stands, and down to the harbor.

You can stroll along the main street Laugavegur to have a look at the shops and the art galleries and find a restaurant or a café to your liking. Do not miss the church Hallgrímskirkja or the dome Perlan, a modern building from where you have a magnificent view over the whole city.

There are several museums worth visiting in Reykjavík, for example the National Museum of Iceland near the University, the National Gallery of Iceland and the Reykjavík Art Gallery (includes 3 different collections).

A whale-watching tour from Reykjavík harbor is also a wonderful experience or you can take a half-day excursion from Reykjavík to the Reykjanes Peninsula, taking you to the geothermal springs in Krýsuvík.

Driving distance50 km (31 mi)

Now it’s time to head back home, after an amazing journey through one of the world’s most picturesque landscapes.  You will drive back to Keflavík Airport for your flight back home. Depending on your flight time, you may be able to enjoy your last day strolling around Reykjavík. Or, even better, consider booking an extra night in Reykjavík to really give yourself time to experience all the amazing things Iceland’s capital city has to offer.

What’s included?

Detailed itinerary

Budget, Comfort, or Quality accommodation every night

Continental breakfast every day

Rental car of your choice for 16 days

2 authorized drivers as standard

Unlimited mileage

Unlimited in-car Wi-Fi

Collision damage waiver

24/7 emergency helpline when you’re in Iceland

Tickets for Baldur ferry to Westfjords

VAT, taxes & service fees

Flights to Iceland

Fuel & parking charges

Food & drink, unless otherwise stated

Attraction entrance fees, unless otherwise stated

Personal travel insurance

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FAQs about our self-drive trips

On a self-drive trip with Iceland Tours, you’ll be at the wheel of the rental car of your choice and free to go pretty much where you want, whenever you want.

We provide a detailed itinerary to help you plan your route and where you want to stop along the way. But it’s up to you whether you want to stick to it or go your own way. If you do take detours, make sure that you aren’t too far from your accommodation on any given night.

That said, it’s a good idea to stick to the suggested itinerary if you’ve never visited Iceland before. Created by our Reykjavík-based travel experts, it contains plenty of things for you to and see and do on each leg of your trip. One thing’s for sure: you won’t be short on ideas!

You also get unlimited in-car Wi-Fi, so you can stay connected and use maps on your phone for navigation.

You have to be at least 20 years old to rent a car in Iceland, or 23 years old for larger vehicles like jeeps and vans. You’ll need to have held a valid driver’s license for at least 1 year and present a credit card when you collect your car.

You don’t need an International Driving Permit unless your license is not in Latin script (for example, Arabic or Chinese).

Find out more about car rental in Iceland.

Yes! It’s possible to add extra activities or extend your trip with additional nights in Reykjavík or the countryside. Check the itinerary above to see what activities are available on what day.

Once you’ve paid your deposit for your trip, we’ll finalize bookings for your accommodation, rental car, and any activities. As soon as we receive confirmation of everything, we’ll email your travel documents to you.

We aim to finalize everything within a few weeks of receiving your booking request, but in busy periods this might take longer. That said, you’ll always receive all of your documents before your departure date.

You’ll be able to pick up your rental car at Keflavík International Airport from the arrivals hall. Before your trip, we’ll send you information about where to go in the terminal to collect your keys.

Make sure you have your driver’s license and credit card ready when you collect your vehicle.

If you land late at night, you can use the out-of-hours phone at the pick-up desk to contact someone who will be able to help you.

You also have the option to collect your rental car in Reykjavík, if you’re planning to spend some extra days in the city before your trip starts. If you’d like to do this, please let us know in the ‘Special requests’ box at checkout.

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