Activities from Reykjavík
Reykjavik and surroundings offer a multitude of activities to do on top of the standard day tours. Many of these activities can be added onto the tours, making for a fuller day with more than just enjoying the breathtaking nature, while other require a longer time or more dedication. Then there are even a few things that you can do on a whim, and don’t even have to take too much time! Whatever it is, you can trust that there’ll be plenty of things to do!
Snorkelling and Diving IN SILFRA
For those adventure-seeking visitors that want to explore parts of Iceland normally hidden from the naked eye, but are not experienced divers, no need to worry. The fissure Silfra is not only a world class diving location but ideal for snorkelling tours unlike anything you have seen before. The crystal clear water offers over 100 meters of visibility so those not experienced enough for diving can easily enjoy this hidden gem. This location offers the chance of floating along the fissure and seeing first-hand the amazing world underneath ours, an adventure most can handle and previous experience is not required. Silfra is of course also a world renowned diving site, for those that want to actually experience it full-force and have the necessary permits! A number of tour operators offer day tours in this location all year.
Not only is Iceland’s breed of steed a horse of a different colour, it’s a horse of an entirely different genetic make-up. Having been bred in almost perfect isolation for over 1000 years, the Icelandic horse is unique in many respects. They are relatively small (if you fall, you won’t fall far) and notably well-tempered, though they are probably most famous for their unusual fifth gait: the tölt. Tölt is a way of walking unique to the Icelandic horse, which keeps the rider stable while manoeuvring easily over Iceland’s uneven landscape.
Below your feet…
Underneath the mountains and lava fields is an incredible subterranean realm that just begs to be discovered. Iceland has 500 known lava caves, a mere 5% of the estimated total of 10.000. Exploring these caves is a great way to experience first-hand how the land formed from the molten lava, cooling and freezing time forever. It’s a great adventure, and everyone should try it!
Whales, Puffins and Sea Angling
When Icelanders aren’t scarfing down their humpbacked friends, they are admiring their grace and beauty from a respectful (and safe) distance. The ocean surrounding Iceland is a fantastic place to go go Whale Watching. The most frequently seen cetaceans are minke and humpback whales. It’s also easy to take a dedicated Puffin Watching tour, which takes you out to the puffin colonies of the islands outside Reykjavík in the season, from mid-May to mid-August. Finally, if you’d rather taste the inhabitants of the sea than look at them, Sea Angling boat tours abound at the Old Harbour in Reykjavík.
ATVs in All Terrains!
ATVs, four-wheelers, quad bikes… I don’t know what you call them, but we call them fun! Just a stone’s throw outside Reykjavík, you can take your road-rage to the lava fields where these powerful machines eat up the terrain. Quad bikes open up a world that’s normally hidden from the average traveler: the hills and mountains normally only accessible to off-road vehicles.
Iceland’s Volcanoes: Above, On Top Of or Under
Iceland is one of the most volcanically active places on earth with more than 30 active volcanoes. The most famous one of these is probably Mt. Eyjafjallajökull, which temporarily halted Europe’s air traffic in 2010. Other notable volcanoes include Hekla, widely held to be the entrance to Hell in the middle ages, and Bárðarbunga, which erupted in 2014. There is a great abundance of Super Jeep Excursions, Scenic Flights and Helicopter Tours which will take the curious out to these wonders of nature to enjoy their raw power and grotesque beauty. Last but not least there is Þríhnúkagígur, the only place on earth you can go inside an empty volcano.
The columns of steam rising from the geothermal plants at Nesjavellir and Hellisheidi are a magnificent sight. You can actually take a tour of the Geothermal Energy Exhibition at Hellisheiði, a state-of-the-art geothermal power plant. The plant shows how geothermal energy is harnessed in a sustainable manner in Iceland, a showcase for the rest of the world. The area is also an excellent hiking and outdoor destination with trails which vary in length and difficulty and trail maps in place on site.
The surface of Iceland is 11% Glacier. Iceland is home to the largest ice cap in Europe, Vatnajökull, in addition to other formidable ones such as Langjökull, Mýrdalsjökull and Snæfellsjökull. You can barely go anywhere in Iceland without spotting one of these ivory behemoths in the distance, but if you want to get up close and personal, there’s no better way than a guided Glacier Hike, Ice Climbing, Glacial Snowmobiling Excursion or even a unique tour Into the Glacier. Yes. You don’t want to go on a glacier without a certified guide!
Food & Culture tours
Iceland’s cuisine is unique and fascinating. Smoked, cured, dried, salted – meat, fish or bread, there are many unusual and delicious combinations to choose from. One great way to experience this is by taking a guided Food Tour which samples the different flavours in chosen locations.
Reykjavík is a fantastic little city. There are many guided tours of different kinds – paid or unpaid – which focus on major sights, culture and history, the city’s less-known secrets or even good places to party. There are tours on foot, bike or Segway, to name just a few. Keep your eyes peeled for the tour that appeals to you or just turn over to page 94 for some of our self-guided walking tours.
Iceland’s rugged and untamed nature can be hard to navigate in a regular vehicle. This is why you will see a great many specially modified Super Jeeps around, capable of traversing un-bridged rivers, drive up on mountains and generally get around without roads. It’s simple to take such a tour up onto volcanoes and glaciers, into the untouched wilderness of the highlands, or to caves, waterfalls and other inaccessible natural phenomena.
Above and Beyond
Scenic flights by plane or helicopter. Despite its meagre population, Iceland has an area the size of Kentucky, larger than Scotland. The distances are huge and it’s often difficult to take in more than a small part in one trip. Why not take in vast distances at a time in a scenic flight or helicopter tour, getting a unique sense of the scale and power of this wild land? The incredible vistas over the volcanoes, glaciers and sandy deserts are beyond compare!
For those who aren’t content to just look at this island’s magnificent nature, one of the most exciting ways you can experience it first-hand is definitely snowmobiling on a glacier. These adventure excursions will take you on an adrenaline filled ride while allowing you to experience the glacial landscapes in a unique and wonderful way.