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Northern Lights Around Iceland

8 days
7 nights

Rates

Dates

Rates:

Per person in USD:

$ 2,975.00 (A - double occupancy)
$ 3,455.00 (A - single occupancy)
$ 3,350.00 (B - double occupancy)
$ 4,005.00 (B - single occupancy)

season A - October 2016 - March 2017
season B - October 2017 - March 2018

Dates:

Oct 01, 2017 - Oct 08, 2017 
Oct 15, 2017 - Oct 25, 2017 
Oct 29, 2017 - Nov 05, 2017 
Nov 05, 2017 - Nov 12, 2017 
Nov 19, 2017 - Nov 26, 2017 
Feb 11, 2018 - Feb 18, 2018 
Feb 18, 2018 - Feb 25, 2018 
Feb 25, 2018 - Mar 04, 2018 
Mar 04, 2018 - Mar 11, 2018 
Mar 11, 2018 - Mar 18, 2018 
Mar 18, 2018 - Mar 25, 2018 
Mar 25, 2018 - Apr 01, 2018 

Hotels:

  • Hotels and Country Guesthouses
  • Reykjavik: Fosshotel Baron first and last night
  • Northeast Iceland: Sel-Hotel Myvatn at lake Mývatn (small rooms) 
  • East Iceland: Hotel Hallormsstaður and Fosshotel Eastfjords in Fáskrúðsfjörður
  • South Iceland: luxurious country Hotel Grímsborgir near Selfoss

Included:

  • Arrival & departure airport transfer by FLYBUS 
  • Fully escorted 6-day bus tour with an English-speaking guide
  • Domestic flight Reykjavík-Akureyri
  • Airport transfers in Reykjavik 
  • 7-nights accommodation in 3* tourist-class hotels and country guesthouses
  • Daily breakfast, two-course dinners, 5 midnight refreshments on days 2-6
  • 1 light lunch, coffee and cake on day 3
  • Shark meat, dried fish and Brennivín schnapps tasting on day 4
  • Entrance with towel at Mývatn Nature Baths
  • Visit to bird museum at lake Mývatn
  • Entrance and tour at Maritime Museum and Randulf’s sea-house in Eskifjörður
  • Visit to the home of Sigurborg and Petra‘s Stone & crystal collection
  • Evening with the Northern Lights photographer Jónína Guðrún Óskarsdóttir
  • Visit to a multi media presentation at Eyjafjallajökull Volcano Information Center
  • Northern Lights program during 5 evenings with a combination of lectures, presentations, film and guided searches for the Northern Lights
  • Use of winter & Northern Lights explorer equipment: simple non-slip snow & ice grippers spikes for shoes and a flash light that is helpful when walking in the dark and operating your photo camera at night

Highlights & Experience:

This program includes during 5 evenings a combination of presentations, lectures, film and guided tours at spots that are likely to offer a glimpse of the Aurora Borealis – the Northern Lights. All countryside hotels in this program offer a Northern Lights  wake up call for guests that register for that special service at the hotel reception. This tour series is designed to spend 5 evenings in the countryside to maximize the chances of seeing the elusive Northern Lights, still the tour is dependent on weather and therefore sightings are not guaranteed. The Northern Lights are in the northern hemisphere from September through April but are only visible when the sky is clear and free of clouds. Like many of natural wonders, the Northern Lights are ephemeral – they may be visible, they may appear for a bit and then be gone (it is not a TV show that you can just turn on and off). But it is worth the patience which is much required. Because they are a winter event, you need to be prepared to wait outside while looking for them. It is best to dress very warmly, in layers, with good footwear, gloves, hats and whatever else will make you comfortable while you await patiently this truly outstanding light show. For the best photos we recommend using a tripod

Aurora Statistics:

05.10.-12.10.14 1x medium
15.02.-22.02.15 2x strong, 1x medium + 1x weak
01.03.-08.03.15 1x strong + 1x medium
8.03.-15.03.15 2x medium
15.03.-22.03.15 1x medium
22.03.-29.03.15 1x medium + 1x weak
29.03.-05.04.15 1x medium + 1x weak

Itinerary:

A trip to Iceland exploring striking landscapes and Northern Lights.

Young lava fields, roaring waterfalls, deep fjords, majestic glacial ice-caps, black lava sand beaches, basalt formation, volcanoes, hot springs in moonlike surroundings, iceberg lagoons and more. We travel to North, East and South Iceland in pursuit of the awe-inspiring, magical, breathtaking, spellbinding and mesmerising Northern Lights.

This new escorted bus tour gives you the opportunity to dramatically improve your chances of seeing, and photographing the Northern Lights, as well as enabling you to experience geology, nature, culture, history, wildlife and magnificent scenery around Iceland. This exciting winter program includes several soft adventures and activities, educational programs about Northern Lights and 5 evenings of guided Aurora hunts (subject to weather). Please note that Icelandic weather is unpredictable and you will enjoy this tour even more when you bring along an adventurous spirit. Some walks in snow are required during this trip, as not all sights can be reached by bus if there is a lot of snow. As with any winter adventure in Iceland, conditions may sometimes require alternatives to the planned itinerary, but that’s part of the adventure!

Day 1  : Sunday - WELCOME TO ICELAND (50 km/31 mls)

Welcome! Today is the first day of your Iceland trip. Individual transfer by Flybus shuttle bus from Keflavík Airport to your hotel in Reykjavík. You spend the night at Fosshotel Baron in the center of town. We provide you with ideas how to explore Iceland's capital on your own. 

Day 2  : Monday - THE CAPITAL OF NORTH ICELAND & LAKE MÝVATN (140 km/87 mls)

Meet your tour guide. Transfer to Reykjavík Domestic Airport for a morning flight to Akuryeri, the capital of North Iceland. We explore this charming town of 17000 inhabitants, visit the botanical garden and enjoy the panoramic view over Eyjafjörður fjord. In the afternoon, we travel to an important spot in Iceland’s history, Goðafoss, the waterfalls of the Gods. We continue to lake Mývatn which is known for its geological wonders, active bird life and being Iceland’s winter wonderland, but also for having Iceland's coldest temperatures. We stop at the bizarre lava formations at Kálfaströnd followed by a walk around the many pseudo craters and finally hike in a lava labyrinth at Dimmuborgir “the dark castles”, hoping to get a glimpse of the trolls who are said to live there. Good hiking boots, winter clothing, hat and gloves are required. 
In the evening you can join a lecture about Northern Lights and after dinner we take a relaxing soak at Mývatn Nature Baths that contains a unique blend of minerals, silicates and geothermal micro-organisms. The warm soothing waters benefit both skin and spirit alike. This will get us revived to be ready to chase the elusive Northern Lights. 

Day 3  : Tuesday - TRAVEL EAST (220 km/137 mls)

We start the day with a visit at the Sigurgeir’s Bird Museum at lake Mývatn, where the original owner, Mr Sigurgeir, had a passionate interest in Icelandic birds, and today his museum has over 80 species all in a well organized exhibit causing interest to people of all ages. Afterwards, we travel to the hot spring area of Námaskarð with bubbling mud pools and steaming solfataras. We have some time to take pictures and see the Mývatn Nature Baths where a light lunch is included. We head through the uninhabited highlands and moonlike surrounding to East Iceland. With some luck with might spot an Arctic fox or see some reindeer. En route we stop for coffee and cake at a small exhibition center about the Icelandic reindeer.
We overnight at Hotel Hallormsstaður located in Iceland’s largest forest on the shores of lake Lögurinn, the home of the famous monster Lagarfljótsormur. This setting is perfect for hunting the magical auroras. The hotel offers also a small indoor spa with sauna and hot tubs. 

Day 4  : Wednesday - WALK IN THE WOODS, VISIT FISHING VILLAGES & MEET THE LOCALS (120 km/75 mls)

If the weather permits we start the day with a walk through the Hallormsstaður arboretum which is unique to Iceland, and it comprises a collection of around 70 tree species. In the afternoon we travel over a mountain pass to the East Fjords and pass several fishing villages. Eskifjörður is one of the most charming seaside villages in Iceland. The village culture and trade has been shaped by the sea. We take a short walk passing some historical buildings and piers. A visit to the Maritime museum will add to the experience. The nearby old seafarer’s lodge has remained unaltered since 1890 and it shows today how fisherfolk used to live and work. There you get a private tour through this beautifully preserved shore-building and you get the opportunity to taste shark meat and dried fish that are produced in Eskifjörður. You toast to this local experience with Brennivin, which is a real Viking snaps. Our local tour continues to a woman called Sigurborg who has been collecting stones and crystals in Iceland all her live. She invites us to her home and shows her incredible collection of stones and minerals. After a short drive we reach the small village of Fáskruðsfjörður which became Iceland’s main hub for french fishermen in the later part of the 19th century. The french heritage is visible; even the village road signs are printed in French. You will overnight at Fosshotel Eastfjords which is situated in the reconstructed building of the French hospital. In this building you find also the French museum. 
During dinner we get a visit from the local photographer and Aurora hunter, Ms Jónína Guðrún Óskarsdóttir, who tells us about living in a small fishing village in the East Fjords. She shows us some of her best Northern Lights photos, tells us about her Aurora encounters and at last but not least, if the weather conditions are suitable, leads us to her secret Northern Lights spot just outside the village. 

Day 5  : Thursday - FJORDS, GLACIER AND ICE (385 km/239 mls)

It’s a day to admire the dramatic fjord landscape and its tiny fishing villages at the end of twisty roads in the East Fjords. Soon we see Vatnajökull, Europe’s biggest glacier, which is visible all over the Southeast of Iceland. We pass the town of Höfn and stop at Jökulsárlón glacial lagoon filled with floating icebergs. There we enjoy some time to explore the extraordinary sights and perhaps see some seals swimming in arctic waters. You can walk on the black sandy beach where large icebergs get stranded. We travel along the southern part of the glacier Vatnajökull, stop at the tiny turf church at Hof and continue through a region which has Iceland’s highest mountains. The Vatnajökull National Park is about 12,000 square kilometers and it is the largest National Park in Europe. We overnight and dine at Fosshotel Núpar. 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. 

Day 6  : Friday - SOUTH COAST (255 km/158 mls)

A beautiful drive with many natural wonders awaits you today as you head across the Laki lava field, cross the sandy desert of the south coast, overlooked by mountainous cliffs, glaciers and waterfalls. We stroll along the black lava beach of Reynisfjara. In the small village of Skógar there is the Skógafoss waterfall which is 60 meters high and is one of the most impressive waterfalls in the country. Further west we stop at the Eyjafjallajökull Information Center and learn about living next to a glacier and an active volcano. We continue to the high but narrow Seljalandsfoss waterfall which plunges over the mountain. There is an interesting trail that goes behind the fall – if you are prepared to get wet! 
Dinner and overnight is at Hotel Grímsborgir. Tonight, enjoy a video presentation about Northern Lights which is part of the Northern Lights educational program. Naturally, once darkness falls, you are out and about chasing the Northern Lights that are most pleasant while you are soaking in the hotel’s outdoor hot tubs. 

Day 7  : Saturday - GOLDEN CIRCLE (190 km/118 mls)

We explore classics today as we travel the route of the Golden Circle sights. You see steam from the Geysir geothermal fields as you arrive. There is a variety of hot springs and bubbling pools. The original geyser is now dormant but has been replaced by Strokkur "the Churn" which erupts at 5-10 minute intervals. We continue to Gullfoss, “the golden falls“, which is a double waterfall that tumbles 34 meters into the Hvítá river and attracts travelers in summer and winter. We travel inland to Thingvellir National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage site. As we return to Reykjavík, we take you for a short city tour to show some of the highlights of the world's northern-most capital. The overnight is at Fosshotel Baron, located in the center of Reykjavík. 

Day 8  : Sunday - DEPARTURE HOME (50 km/31 mls)

We hope you've enjoyed your trip to Iceland. Your tour ends today. Individual transfer by Flybus airport shuttle to Keflavík Airport. 

Daily driving: 
Total mileage without airport transfer is 1.310 km / 814 miles which is an average of 219 km (135 miles) per day, about 3 hours per day will be spent on the bus. On some days the driving might be longer than on some other days. 

Note: In rare cases, 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 the tour operator will make every effort to find reasonable alternatives where and when ever possible but no refund can be given.

Notes:

NFORMATION REGARDING DINNERS & LUNCHES

In Reykjavik. the dinner is on your own. There are many restaurants for both fast food and a fine a la carte dining in Iceland's capital. In the countryside hotels, a 2-course dinner is included. If you have any special diet requests or allergies, please let us know at the moment of your booking.
For lunch the group will either stop at road side shops or restaurants.