Encounter the natural splendor of Iceland—home to powerful waterfalls, massive glaciers, volcanoes, spouting hot springs, and black-sand beaches — on a popular tour to the geological wonders of the island’s north, south, and west.

Starting at: $5,992 * Includes airfare, taxes & all fees Make a Reservation Ask Us A Question or Call 855-330-1542
 Seljalandsfoss, near Vik
 Snaefellsnes Peninsula
 Puffins along the cliffs of Iceland
 Black sand beach and basalt columns at Reynisdrangar, near Vik
 Godafoss Waterfall
 Dettifoss, Vatnajökull National Park
 Iceland's Namaskard geothermal area near Lake Mývatn
 Volcanic steam vent
 Atlantic puffins
 Thingvellir National Park
 The Great Geysir
 Rainbow over Gullfoss Waterfall
 Iceland's Namaskard geothermal area near Lake Mývatn
 Black lava beach near Vík
 Skógafoss Waterfall
 Icelandic horses
 Traditional Icelandic home
 The colorful capital of Reykjavik
 The Statue of Leif Eiriksson and Hallgrímskirkja Church
 The Blue Lagoon
 The Northern Lights in Iceland

Adventure in Iceland

11 days from $5,992 | includes airfare, taxes and all fees

Encounter the natural splendor of Iceland—home to powerful waterfalls, massive glaciers, volcanoes, spouting hot springs, and black-sand beaches — on a popular tour to the geological wonders of the island’s north, south, and west.

or Call 855-330-1542

Tour Details

WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY

Iceland is the most unique place we've ever been and Smithsonian Journeys did a magnificent job of showing it to us. We learned a lot, laughed a lot and had a wonderful time. This is a great tour.

- Richard L.

The trip to Iceland felt adventurous, exciting and comfortable. The place was gorgeous and the leadership skillful. Thanks for the unforgettable experience! 

- Mariana V.

Iceland is one of the most revealing places to study the history of our earth. The volcanoes, lava fields, waterfalls and geysers are amazing reminders of the power of nature. 

- Judith H.

This trip was a wonderful experience. I loved the beauty and diversity of Iceland. Being led by such an experienced and knowledgeable guide made it very special. I would love to go back! 

- J. Trehy

JOURNEYS DISPATCHES

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SPECIAL OFFER

This tour is specially designed for a small group of 16 to 24 Smithsonian travelers and offers outstanding travel value. Prices include airfare, airline taxes, fuel surcharges, and departure fees.

Overview

Experience Earth’s incredible power and diversity, exploring fascinating geological phenomena as you make your way from the black-sand beaches  of the south to the bubbling landscapes of the north to the glacier-covered volcanoes of the Snaefellsnes Peninsula. Along the way, admire five of the island’s most impressive waterfalls; watch for seabirds or whales, visit local farms and age-old turf houses; and enjoy free time to soak up the character and charm of cities and towns like Akureyri, Vik, and Reykjavík.

Highlights Include

  • ​Dramatic Waterfalls: Encounter Iceland’s most iconic waterfalls, each one breathtaking in its own way. See two-tiered Gullfoss, a stop on the popular Golden Circle, and admire Skogafoss and Seljalandsfoss along the southern coast.  Witness the thundering cascades of Dettifoss, one of Europe’s most powerful waterfalls, and hear the legends of Godafoss, the “waterfall of the gods.”
  • Lake Myvatn: Venture to the bubbling, steaming, lava-crusted landscapes of Lake Myvatn, discovering massive explosion craters, craggy lava sculptures, popping mud pools, and more. Venture into dramatic canyons in Vatnajoküll National Park and, from Husavik, go whale-watching or take a bird-watching cruise to Puffin Island (depending on the season).
  • The Snaefellsnes Peninsula: Walk along a shell-sand beach at the abandoned fishing village of Budir, surrounded by a vast lava field. Explore the caves and bizarre basalt rock formations near Arnarstapi, site of thousands of nesting cliff birds. Then stroll the black-pebble beach of Djupalonssandur. 
  • Southern Iceland: At Thingvellir National Park witness the spot where the world’s oldest Parliament met and walk the rift valley between the North American and European tectonic plates. Watch geysers erupt at Geysir and walk the black-sand beach at Reynisfjara to caves lined basalt columns. Stop in lovely Vik, and visit the interactive Lava centre for a close encounter with Iceland’s geological forces. Visit a fascinating glacier exhibition at the renowned Perlan Museum in Reykjavík, and take an optional tour to the Blue Lagoon.
  • The Northern Lights: Iceland is an ideal place to view the aurora borealis. You’ll have the best chance of experiencing this celestial phenomenon on the September or October departures. (As the northern lights depend on weather and solar activity, sightings are not guaranteed.)

Iceland is the most unique place we've ever been and Smithsonian Journeys did a magnificent job of showing it to us. We learned a lot, laughed a lot and had a wonderful time. This is a great tour.

- Richard L.

The trip to Iceland felt adventurous, exciting and comfortable. The place was gorgeous and the leadership skillful. Thanks for the unforgettable experience! 

- Mariana V.

Iceland is one of the most revealing places to study the history of our earth. The volcanoes, lava fields, waterfalls and geysers are amazing reminders of the power of nature. 

- Judith H.

This trip was a wonderful experience. I loved the beauty and diversity of Iceland. Being led by such an experienced and knowledgeable guide made it very special. I would love to go back! 

- J. Trehy

Itinerary

Day 1 – Depart the U.S. for Reykjavik, Iceland

Day 2 – Reykjavik and Selfoss

Arrive in Keflavik in the early morning and transfer to Reykjavík, Iceland’s capital to meet your tour leaders and have breakfast at a local restaurant. Enjoy a scenic drive east, stopping to view the geothermal exhibit at the Hellisheidi Power Plant. After reaching your hotel mid-afternoon, enjoy time to relax before this evening’s briefing on the journey ahead followed by a welcome dinner. (B,D)

Day 3 – Selfoss and Vik

This morning, visit the new Lava Centre, a multi-media, interactive exploration of Iceland’s geological forces, from volcanic eruptions to earthquakes. Stop to see two stunning waterfalls: Seljalandfoss, which tumbles nearly 200 feet over a rock hollow, and the legend-infused Skogafoss. Continue to lovely Vik, Iceland’s southernmost town. Enjoy time to have lunch on your own and meander through the town, known for its locally produced wool products. Take a walk along the black-sand beach at Reynisfjara, where coastal caves are lined with basalt columns and craggy sea stacks lie just off shore. On the way back to the hotel, see Solheimajokull, a “sliding” glacier that advanced rapidly in the 1990s. (B)

Day 4 – Selfoss, Keflavik, Lake Myvatn

Return to the airport in Keflavik this morning for the one-hour flight to Akureyri, Iceland’s “northern capital.” Travel overland to Lake Myvatn, set in a fascinating geothermal landscape of lunar-like lava fields and volcanic craters. Learn about the area’s “pseudocraters,” and walk among boiling mud pots and steaming fumaroles at Namaskard. Learn the folklore behind the otherworldly lava formations at Dimmuborgir, and see the lake within the explosion crater at Viti, part of the Krafla volcano system. (B,D)

Day 5 – Lake Myvatn, Husavik, Vatnajokull National Park

This morning, travel to Husavik and depending on the season, embark on a bird-watching cruise to Puffin Island, home to puffins, black guillemots, fulmars, and Arctic terns for part of the years; or take a whale-watching cruise to look for minke, humpback, and blue whales. This afternoon, visit Vatnajoküll National Park, a recently established park that encompasses Europe’s largest ice cap. Venture into the impressive canyon of Asbyrgi to see a hoof-shaped rock called “The Island.” Then, traverse Hljodaklettar Echo Cliffs, a the labyrinth of unusual basalt formations with that create unique acoustics. End your tour at Dettifoss, one of Europe’s most powerful waterfalls. (B,L,D)

Day 6 – Akureyri and Siglufjordur

Admire the curved waterfall of Godafoss this morning. When Iceland became a Christian country 1,000 years ago, a priest threw idols of Norse gods into the falls, which were known as Godafoss, the “waterfall of the gods” thereafter. Return to Akureyri, and enjoy free time to explore and have lunch on your own. Continue to Siglufjordur for a visit to the unique Herring and Maritime Museum. Arrive at your hotel in time for dinner tonight. (B,D)

Day 7 – Northern Iceland and Húsafell

Travel southwest today, passing through more incredible natural scenery. Stop to visit Glaumbaer, a folk museum featuring authentic turf houses, and see the small and sturdy Iceland horses at a farm in Gauksmyri. Enjoy the scenic vista at Grabrok Crater, visit the thermal areas of Deildartunguhver, and view Hraunfossar Falls before checking in to your hotel. (B,D)

Day 8 – Snaefellsnes Peninsula

Discover the windswept beauty of the Snaefellsnes Peninsula today. Begin with a walk along the shell-sand beach at the abandoned fishing village of Budir, surrounded by a vast lava field. Watch for thousands of nesting seabirds among the cliff, caves, and bizarre rock formations of Arnarstapi. After at a rustic seaside restaurant, stroll the black-pebble beach at Djupalonssandur and see the haunting remains of a shipwreck still scattered along the coast. (B,L,D)

Day 9 – The Golden Circle and Reykjavík

Travel south to the sites of the famed Golden Circle. Visit Thingvellir National Park, important historically as the meetingplace of the ancient parliament—founded here in A.D. 930—and geologically as it straddles the fissure between the North American and European tectonic plates. Next, witness the two-tiered, “golden” waterfall known as Gullfoss, and watch for the frequent eruptions of the Strokkur Geyser at Geyser. Continue to Reykjavík for a visit to the interactive glacier exhibit at Perlan, a state-of-the-art museum with an onsite ice cave. Meet with a local expert before dinner on your own tonight. (B,L)

Day 10 – Reykjavik

Set out on a morning tour of the highlights of the Icelandic capital. The remainder of today is yours to discover Reykjavík as you wish. You’ll have the opportunity to take an optional tour to the Blue Lagoon for a therapeutic soak. Tonight, celebrate your journey at a farewell dinner. (B,D)

Day 11 – Depart for the U.S.

Depart for the airport in time for your flight home. (B)

Included meals are denoted as follows: Breakfast (B), Lunch (L), Reception (R), Dinner (D)

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