Date: October 2024 (12 days/11 nights)
Group Size: Minimum of 6, maximum of 12 people
If there’s one destination in the world that has captured the hearts of landscape photographers from across the globe, then it will surely be Iceland. From amazing lava landscapes to glaciers and snow-capped mountains, gushing geysers and hot springs, and more waterfalls than you can ever imagine. Iceland has it all, and if we’re very lucky, you may experience the greatest light show on earth, the Aurora Borealis, more commonly known as the northern lights.
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Day 1: Arrive Reykjavík (D)
Upon arrival you will proceed through airport formalities then gather your luggage. Arrival transfers will be arranged in advance and communicated nearer to the tour date. Depending on your arrival time in Reykjavík you may wish to explore the city by foot or relax and recover from your lengthy journey. Your photographic leader will already be in Reykjavík and will happily accompany you in your exploration. At night we proceed to a nearby restaurant for our welcome dinner where an overview of the trip will be provided. Overnight in Reykjavík.
Day 2: Reykjavík – Snæfellsnes (B,D)
We will rise early and take a short walk down to The Sun Voyager Sculpture for sunrise. After breakfast we commence our journey to Snæfellsnes Peninsula, travelling past spectacular scenery. It will quickly become apparent why Iceland draws so many landscape photographers and travellers from around the world.
Our first major stop for the day will be the spectacular Hraunfossar where a series of waterfalls cascade out of an ancient lava flow. The contrast of the cold water flowing out of warm autumn coloured shrubs makes for some great photography.
Our final destination is Kirkjufell and Kirkjufellsfoss waterfall for sunset, regarded as the most photographed scene in all of Iceland. We then proceed to our accommodation for the night then dinner at a nearby restaurant. If the skies are clear and we’re expecting Aurora activity we may choose to return to Kirkjufell and Kirkjufellsfoss again. Overnight in Stykkishólmur.
Day 3: Snæfellsnes (B,D)
After an early breakfast we return to Kirkjufell and Kirkjufellsfoss waterfall seeking out some great lighting and hopefully beautiful reflection during sunrise. We then proceed to explore the magical Snæfellsnes Peninsula.
Throughout the day there will be numerous stops to visit and photograph the amazing scenery, including but not limited to Buoakirkja Black Church, Arnarstapi Village, the rugged shoreline of Londranger, Ingjaldshóll Church and more.
Depending on how successful our visits to Kirkjufell and Kirkjufellsfoss have been, there’s an opportunity to make the most of sunset again. As with the previous night, if the skies are clear and we’re expecting Aurora activity, we will seek out a suitable location for photography. Overnight in Stykkishólmur.
Day 4: Snæfellsnes – Sauðárkrókur (B,D)
This morning we depart early for our long day of driving to the north of the Island. During our travel the landscape will be constantly changing yet continually beautiful.
As wind our way around bays and past spectacular mountain ranges there will be numerous stops for photography.
We will enjoy scheduled stops to visit Kolugljúfur Canyon/Kolufossar waterfall, Flodhidh Lake and Kálfshamarsviti Lighthouse with its amazing basalt rock formation.
We end our day at Sauðárkrókur on the shore of Skagafjörður bay, a small-town of 2600 people and the second largest town in Northern Iceland. Overnight in Sauðárkrókur.
Day 5: Sauðárkrókur – Mývatn (B,D)
Today we make our way across the northern part of Iceland heading towards Lake Mývatn Geothermal Area. In the morning much of our travel will be through mountains where snow is most likely to be seen, offering some spectacular landscape opportunities.
After lunch it’s time to photograph two amazing waterfalls. The first we visit is the more remote Aldeyjarfoss Waterfall which will involve some walking, however it is certainly well worth the effort. We then returning to photograph Goðafoss waterfall (Waterfall of the Gods) from two different vantage points before sunset.
Our day ends at Lake Mývatn where we enjoy a two-night stay. Mývatn is a shallow lake situated in an active volcanic region and attracts numerous waterbirds. Overnight in Mývatn.
Day 6: Mývatn (B,D)
Today we enjoy a somewhat less hectic day exploring the beautiful volcanic wonderland of Mývatn, particularly the lake and surrounding features.
Immediately across from our hotel is Skutustadagigar, an unusual collection of pseudo craters formed some 2300 years ago. This volcanic landform resembles a crater however is not formed from the eruption of lava.
As we travel around the lake we are afforded numerous views of the lake and surrounding landscape, including Hverfell Crater Mountain which was formed in an explosive eruption approximately 2500 years ago. Finally we end out day with a brief visit to Grjótagjá rift before exploring nearby Dimmuborgir, also known as the Dark Fortress, consisting of huge lava formations that will make you feel as if you are on another world.
If we’re fortunate to have Aurora activity we will venture across the road from our hotel to photograph reflections shots in the lake. Overnight in Mývatn.
Day 7: Mývatn – Egilsstaðir (B,D)
Our first visit of the day is Hverir Geothermal Area at the foot of Namafjall volcanic mountain, a half hour drive from Lake Mývatn. The area consists of a series of colourful sulphurous mud springs, geothermal steam vents, pools of cracked mud and fumaroles.
Afterwards we make our way to Dettifoss, the second most powerful waterfall in Europe. This stop will involve some cautious walking, particularly if they have had snow, however it’s well worth the effort.
As we travel there will be plenty of opportunity to photgraph remote churches with spectacular mountainous landscape in the background, as well as the unique grass covered buildings. With waters aplenty, there no doubt will be further stops to photograph the cascading water. We end our day at Egilsstaðir. Overnight in Egilsstaðir.
Day 8: Egilsstaðir – Jökulsárlón (B,D)
Today we enjoy one our most spectacular drives, heading south down the eastern part of the Iceland to Jökulsárlón.
Beautiful bays, remote fishing villages and incredible coastline scenery fill our day of travel, so you should expect and be prepared for many photographic stops.
Our final photo shoot of the day is at Vestrahorn Mountain, on the Stokksnes peninsula near Höfn and one of the most impressive scenes in all of Iceland.
We then continue towards Jökulsárlón, one of Iceland’s most visited locations. Overnight in near Jökulsárlón.
Day 9: Jökulsárlón (B,D)
This morning we rise early to photograph sunrise at Diamond Beach, a black sand beach dotted with chunks of ice resembling diamonds glittering in the sunlight. This is an amazing photography shoot but will involve great caution as the waves wash icebergs in and out.
During the day we continue to explore and photograph a number of the lesser known glaciers and glacial lakes.
Later in the afternoon we return to Jökulsárlón Glacial Lagoon with numerous icebergs floating about the crystal blue waters. The icebergs have broken away from Breiðamerkurjökull Glacier and are estimated to be over 1000 years old. Keep your eyes open for resident seals.
Depending on conditions and tide, our sunset shoot will either be at the Lagoon or we will return to nearby Diamond Beach. Overnight in near Jökulsárlón.
Day 10: Jökulsárlón – Vik (B,D)
Today we commence our journey south-west to the seaside town of Vik. Our journey is only 193 kilometres however with many amazing stops along the way, it will easily fill the day.
As we travel there will be numerous stops on the side of the road to photograph nearby waterfalls and churches/farms amongst the mountainous landscape, including the beautiful Hofskirkja Turf Church. Afterwards we get up close to Svínafelljökull Glacier where we can more easily photograph the blue tones and textures in the glacial ice. If time allows and conditions are fine, we may consider visiting Svartifoss waterfall.
Our next stop is the magnificent Fjaðrárgljúfur, a 2 kilometre long steep wall canyon. Nearby is the incredible Eldhraun Lava field, the largest lava flow in the world, created by one of the greatest volcanic eruptions in recorded history. Now being covered with a thick cover of green moss, it’s a must-see destination. On arrival in Vik we visit Vik i Myrdal Church with the township and Reynisdrangar, an impressive rock formation off the coast. Overnight nearby Vik.
Day 11: Vik – Reykjavík (B,D)
Our first stop for the morning is Reynisfjara Beach where we photography Reynisdrangar rock formation during sunrise. Afterwards we continue to Dyrhólaey for unique views of the arched rock formation and black sand beach.
We then continue our slow journey back to Reykjavík on a route that will take us to three incredible waterfalls. Our first visit is to Skógafoss waterfall, one of the biggest waterfalls in the country with a width of 15 metres and drop of 60 metres. Keep your eye out for rainbows formed from sunlight shining through the spray. Our next stop is Seljalandsfoss waterfall, one of the most beautiful and popular in the country, with the most distinguished feature being you can walk around behind the falls. Finally we visit Gullfoss waterfall, one of the most beloved and iconic falls in Iceland.
Our final stop before continuing to Reykjavík is a nearby Geyser Field, with one particular geyser erupting routinely every several minutes. Being our final night, we enjoy a farewell dinner before preparing for our journey home. Overnight in Reykjavík.
Day 12: Reykjavík – Departure (B)
Depending on your departure, you’re free to further explore the city or just relax at the hotel whilst waiting for your pre-arranged transfer to the airport.
This tour will be jointly led with Kav Dadfar of That Wild Idea
The complete tour as per itinerary (we cover the ring road and more, most tours only do the southern part of Iceland), arrival/departure transfers, clean twin share accommodation for 11 nights, in country ground transport by private air-conditioned vehicles with driver/local guide, breakfast and dinner (majority of tours don't include any meals), and fully escorted by an experienced professional photographic tour leader/s.
International flights to and from Iceland, visa if required, personal travel insurance (requirement of joining tour), meals not indicated in program (lunch), additional beverages such as soft drinks and alcohol, activities during free time, laundry, items of personal nature, tips and gratuities, excess baggage fee.