1 DAY - Arrival in Reykjavik
Arrival in Iceland. Non-guided transfer from Keflavik International Airport to accommodation in Reykjavik.
2 DAY - Golden Circle Tour, Green House Visit & Horse Show
After breakfast at your hotel, the first stop is Þingvellir National Park. This UNESCO world heritage site is the most important historical place in Iceland. It was in the year 930 that Icelanders gathered from all over the country and formed the Althing – the world’s first democratic parliament. While it now meets indoors in Reykjavik, this same type of national assembly operates today. The park has wonderful areas to walk through and experience the atmosphere of times long past. Þingvellir is not only important for Icelandic history but it also is a place of unique geological interest, where the great Atlantic rift is clearly visible. Iceland is slowly drifting apart along tectonic plates, and you can literally walk between the American and Eurasian continental plates. From there we continue to Geysir, passing the village of Laugarvatn. We will explore the hot spring area of Geysir – multi-colored pools of water and mud. Strokkur, the Great Geysir’s little brother, is spouting to a height of 25 meters and erupts at 5- 10-minute intervals. After lunch (included) we drive to the mighty Gullfoss (the Golden Waterfall), perhaps the most beautiful in the country. We walk around Gullfoss Falls, where the river Hvitá tumbles 32 meters in a double cascade. After Gullfoss, we head to Fridheimar – a geothermal greenhouse farm where fresh tomatoes are grown all year round. We continue to the Eldhestar riding center to watch the popular horse show about the Icelandic horse, which has light feet, incredible balance, and the ability to master five gaits rather than the traditional three. We reach Reykjavik around 18:30. Dinner on your own. (BL)
3 DAY - City Tour, Whale & Folk Museum, Viking Lunch & New Year's Celebration at the Pearl
Your Reykjavik city tour begins after breakfast at your hotel. See the highlights of Iceland´s exciting capital including the Whales of Iceland museum that features life-size models of dolphins and whales. Then we head to the lava town of Hafnarfjörður where we experience a Viking lunch while listening to traditional Icelandic folk songs at a famous local restaurant. After that, we visit the open-air museum of Árbæjar and learn how Icelanders lived in the past. We return to the hotel around 15:30. Please note that during this tour our guides give out individual tickets for the festive dinner at the Pearl showing your table number and the GJ-Travel badge which allows you the following: participation in the bonfire tour, re-entrance to the Pearl building, and the return transfer back to the hotel (scheduled for 01:00 and 02:00).
PEARL FESTIVE DINNER AND BONFIRE TOUR
After the city tour, you will be transferred to your hotel. There will be a welcome drink upon arrival at the Pearl, a famous landmark with fantastic views and simply Iceland’s prime location to celebrate New Year’s Eve. The festive dinner is served on the 5th floor where you can enjoy a 360° panoramic view over Reykjavík. Following is the Evening Bonfire & Christmas Light Tour when you visit one of many bonfires all over the city of Reykjavík and experience how many Icelanders celebrate New Year’s Eve. The bonfire tour takes about two hours. Good shoes, warm clothing, headwear, and gloves are needed. (BL)
4 DAY - Reykjanes Peninsula & The Blue Lagoon
The morning begins after breakfast at your hotel. We leave Reykjavik and explore the Reykjavik Peninsula with its dramatic seashores, fascinating geology, moonscapes, lava fields, and fishing villages. The guided tour starts in Bessastaðir, the residence of the Icelandic president, and continues to the Viking World Museum in Reykjanesbær to visit an authentic model of the Viking ship that sailed across the Atlantic Ocean to New York in the year 2000. After a light lunch (all-you-can-eat soup) that is included, we continue to the bridge over the continents and a lighthouse located at the edge of the Reykjanes peninsula. During this time, we also visit a geothermal power plant to learn how Icelanders benefit from clean geothermal energy in their daily lives. We reach the Blue Lagoon for photographs at 16:00 or 17:00 (depending on your group), to experience an oasis in the lava that owes its existence to a nearby geothermal power plant, looming large over the aqua tinted waters. We stop for 2 hours for a refreshing bath or a swim in the pleasantly warm mineral-rich water, reputed for its healing properties. Dinner will be served in the LAVA restaurant in the Blue Lagoon complex. After dinner, we continue to Reykjavik. Depending on the weather, we will do a northern light hunt by bus on the way from the Blue Lagoon to Reykjavik. (BLD)
5 DAY - Depart Reykjavik
Transfer without a guide to Keflavik Airport. (B)