Subject: We have mentioned our top 3 from must do, animal lovers, adventure tours and indoor tours in Iceland.
AB Iceland Tour guide special Iceland can be considered as a small sub-Arctic island but one that has an amazing selection of tourist destinations. Its 8 regions have so many natural wonders that tourists struggle to plan their tour itinerary efficiently. From the busy Capital Region and its neighboring Western Region to the secluded West Fjords and the eastern coast, covering all of Iceland will take you nearly a month. Most travelers do not have that luxury and only manage to see a handful of places. Making the most of the sightseeing is quite feasible even if you are taking a short trip for a few days. You might even end up hiring hiking gear or gazing endlessly at the marvelous display of the Northern Lights.
But what if you knew what places must not be missed during your trip to Iceland? What are the attractions where you can witness the best of what Iceland has to offer?
If these are the questions you have been seeking the answers to, take a look at this extensive tour guide to make up your mind. Listed below are some of the most iconic locations along with some honorable mentions.
Top 3 tours of Iceland - The Must Do Tours
The top 3 tours you can choose from while in Iceland include -
Golden Circle - The Golden Circle or Gullni Hringurinn is an immensely popular tour in the southern part of Iceland. It covers some of the south’s most popular destinations including Gulfoss waterfall, the Geysers, and Thingvellir National Park. There are ample tour options for individuals, small groups and large groups. Reykjavik is generally the starting point of this tour circuit. You can opt for a single day tour, or more extensive multiple day tours as per your itinerary. Some of the most interesting tours include Golden Circle jeep and snowmobile tours, as well as those clubbed with whale watching and Northern Lights observation expeditions.
South Shore - Another popular tourism circuit in southern Iceland is the South Shore. Its key attractions include Seljalandsfoss Waterfall, Skogafoss Waterfall, Solheimajokull Glacier, Reynisfjara Black Sand Beach, Eyjafjallajokull, and Helka, among others. There are many variations of this tour circuit depending on the agency you choose. South Shore tour options are excellent for both small and large groups of travelers. You might be able to enjoy activities like glacier hiking and horse riding and embark on an exciting hunt to view the Northern Lights. A South Shore tour can be availed from Reykjavik.
Reykjavik Bus Tour - A Reykjavik bus tour is one of the best ways to cover all the important tourist locations in and around the city. Also known as a hop on - hop off, this tour usually takes an entire day to complete. This tour covers all key attractions of the Icelandic capital city including the Old Harbor, Hallgrímskirkja Church, Reykjavik City Hall, The National Museum, Harpa Concert Hall, Lækjartorg, Whales of Iceland Museum, Perlan and the Kringlan Shopping Center. You can easily avail bus tours around the year and at very frequent intervals. A hop on-hop off ticket has a 24-hour validity which is sufficient to take in all the sights and sounds of Reykjavik. You can hop off to grab a sip and bite and see the attractions at your own pace. Audio guides in multiple European languages are available to enhance your Reykjavik tour experience.
Honorable Mention: Blue Lagoon - Taking a short trip to the Blue Lagoon is a great option if you are short on time. It is a bus tour that offers transfers to this iconic attraction situated south of Reykjavik. The Blue Lagoon is a UNESCO Heritage Site and a unique destination. You can spend several hours bathing in the warm and mineral-rich waters of the Blue Lagoon. Gaze into the mesmerizing surroundings as you let your stress and worries fade away. Most tour operators also provide return transfers to Reykjavik or the Keflavík International Airport.
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Tours for Wildlife Lovers
Iceland is quite famous for its varied flora and fauna, which attracts countless wildlife lovers to its shores throughout the year. The most amazing land and water animals associated with Iceland are its distinct Icelandic horse breeds, colorful puffins and the many whale subspecies in its surrounding waters. All of these are animals rarely spotted in other parts of the world. During your Iceland visit, you can choose to go on dedicated wildlife-centric tours. Take a look at the best options below.
Whale Tours - Iceland is famous as a country that offers amazing opportunities with its many whale watching tours. Whale watching enthusiasts can avail various options from Reykjavik, Akureyri, the Snæfellsnes Peninsula, Westfjords and the whale watching capital, Húsavík. The type of whales you can observe can vary between regions. Whale watching in Iceland is a phenomenal experience due to the very high probability of spotting these majestic beasts. Ferries and yachts will take you out to the best spots where you can observe Minke whales, Humpbacks, Killer Whales, Fin whales, Harbor Porpoise and even the legendary Blue Whale. Be ready with your cameras to capture amazing visuals of leaping whales right off the ports. Whale watching in Iceland can help you create fantastic memories in the company of your loved ones.
Horse tours - Horse tours in Iceland are for those tourists who love riding these magnificent animals, and those who want to observe the unique indigenous Icelandic horse breeds. You can choose to do both and have the time of your life. Horse riding tour options are available for half-day, full-day and even for multiple days. You can traverse vast expanses of Iceland’s natural areas on horseback, under the guidance of experienced riding professionals. Most tours start from horse farms such as Vellir, where you can see how the animals are fed, raised and taken care of. Some horse riding tours also offer ample sightseeing opportunities for interested tourists. You can book a horseback riding tour even if you are not a decent rider as there is always help at hand. Be sure to ask about the 5 different gaits of Icelandic horses.
Puffin tours - Puffins are one of the most widely recognized representatives of Icelandic wildlife. These adorable birds with bright orange beaks bring innumerable tourists to the country. The best places to see these birds are the Látrabjarg cliffs, Borgarfjörður Eystri, Lundey, Papey and the Westman Islands. The chances of you coming across puffins is quite high, as Iceland is home to 60 percent of the world’s Atlantic puffin population. Availing a tour during the summer months of May to August is the best option Knowledgeable guides will lead you to the cliffs and beaches where you can incredibly close to these amazing birds. Tour participants can also be provided with binoculars to give them a better experience of viewing puffins. You can greatly enhance your experience in Iceland by booking a puffin watching tour.
Goat Tours - Iceland is home to a specific goat breed known as the ‘settlement goat’. This endangered goat species was brought to the Icelandic shores at the start of the settlement, roughly 1100 years back. Today, there are dedicated tours that take tourists to some of the most famous goat farms in Iceland. Háafell Goat Farm is the best place to see the famous Icelandic goat in action. You can spend a good deal of time with these friendly animals. Goat tours are especially recommended for families with children, as the little ones will enjoy the most.
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Iceland is one of the best destinations for those who thrive on the spirit of adventure. The Island's volcanoes, cliffs, rock formations, glaciers, canyons, and lava fields offer amazing adventure opportunities. You can visit the county's dedicated hiking spots, hop on Jeeps and snowmobiles, explore ice caves and walk on the surface of glaciers. Make sure to avail dedicated adventure tours during your Iceland trip for the best experience. Experienced professional guides associated with leading tourism companies will look after your safety. Icelandic adventures are always accompanied by breathtaking views that inspire the thrillseekers. Check out the best adventure tour options below.
Snorkelling Tours - Snorkelling in Iceland is a great adventure your option during your Iceland visit. The most popular snorkeling destination in the country is the Silfra Fissure, an inland location created by the gap between the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates. It is situated in Thingvellir National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage site.Most adventure seekers who visit Silfra love the idea of being able to swim in the space between two continents. This is not something you can do anywhere else. The remarkably clean water of the fissure offers great views of the amazing rock formations lying below. Get ready for an unforgettable snorkeling adventure that lasts almost an hour. Tours from Reykjavik are available for Sifra at all times of the year. Tour operators supply all snorkeling and safety gear but you can only those with swimming experience are allowed to dive in.
Glacier hiking tour - Glacier hiking is a must-do activity in Iceland if you are an adventure lover. You can avail guided hiking tours on some of the most amazing glacier walking trails, in places like Vatnajökull, Sólheimajökull and Katla. All of these glaciers are at a few hours distance from Reykjavik, So, you can easily avail glacier hiking tours that take a few hours to complete. Hiking trips will give you an incredible feeling as you make your way to the top of the thick glacial ice. On your way, you will notice various ice caves and interesting ice formations that look even more incredible. A glacier hiking guided tour will take you to various beautiful and picturesque locations. But you always need to watch your step even though adequate safety gear is provided by almost all prominent tour operators. Pay attention to the instructions of guides and do not veer off designated paths.
Center of the earth tour - Get ready for an astounding experience in the Snaefellsnes Peninsula region of Iceland as you venture to the Center of the Earth. Made famous by the Jules Verne novel Journey to the Center of the Earth, the volcanic Snaefellsjokull glacier is where you will be led. This volcano is also regarded as one of the major energy centres of the world. You will also explore Vatnshellir Cave, situated just below the Snaefellsjokull glacier. As you descend down to the lower reaches of this lava tube, you understand where Verne drew his inspiration from. The most practical option is choosing a tour from Reykjavik if you are traveling as a small or large group. Many tour operators include nearby locations the picturesque Snaefellsnes region in the tour. The sights and sounds that await your arrival at Snaefellsjokull are quite amazing.
Northern Lights - Northern Lights tours are quite popular in Iceland and bring thousands of people to the country each year. The island’s stunning natural beauty makes it the best place to see the dance of the lights in the night sky. You can easily find several tour options from Reykjavik to the best Northern Lights observation locations. Some of the best places to see the Northern Lights in Iceland include - Seltjarnarnes, Thingvellir National Park, Threngsli, Vík, Djúpavík, Eldborgahraun, Ásbyrgi Canyon, Jökulsárlón, Hvitserkur and Siglufjordur. Travel to these locations and wait till you see the glimmer of lights spanning across the sky.
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Indoor Tours Iceland also offers a number of interesting indoor attractions that capture the imagination of tourists and locals alike. Interestingly, the most popular indoor locations are used for showcasing the bulk of Iceland’s natural wonders. Take a look at the must-visit indoor locations listed below.
FlyOver Iceland - FlyOver Iceland is an immersive attraction that takes you on an amazing aerial journey over Iceland. It consists of a massive and high-tech setup to simulate the feeling of flight, complete with all sensory special effects. You can take part in this experience in the Grandi district of Reykjavik, and even collect a photograph before your virtual flight journey.
Whale Museum - The Whale Museum or Whales of Iceland offers an interesting tour option in Reykjavik. This is an exhibit containing the life-size replicas of 23 different whale species found in the waters surrounding Iceland. People of all age groups will enjoy a trip to this museum and do some whale watching without having to travel on a boat.
Northern Lights Museum - The Northern Lights Museum is a fascinating indoor attraction for those seeking information about the Northern Lights. It features VR systems to help you gaze at realistic Northern Lights views, and learn about the various myths and legends surrounding the phenomenon. Prepare yourself for a gripping and atmospheric experience, complete with surround-sound music.
Tales from Iceland - Tales from Iceland is a museum exhibit where tourists can expect to learn a great deal about the country and its residents. The venue shows short features based on individual subjects like history, culture, landscape, recent happenings, music, fishing, and more. This Reykjavik location offers an entertaining and educational experience.
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Refer to this tour guide to plan out your tour and have a great time in Iceland.