3 Day Self Drive
The Magic of Snæfellsnes - Glacier View
- DAY 1 The Volcanic crater, Stykkishólmur and The Bay of Thousand Islands
- DAY 2 Golden Beach, Kirkjufell Mountain, and Snæfellsjökull Glacier
- DAY 3 Arnarstapi, Red Mountain Gorge and the beautiful Bjarnarfoss
TRAVELING AND EXPLORING
Some people tend to have a hard time falling asleep while traveling around Snæfellsnes and this is said to be because of the magnetic energy of the Snæfellsjökull glacier. In fact, many consider the glacier to be one of the seven “chakras” or energy centers of planet Earth. As such, it is called Scartaris and among the others are the ancient Keops pyramid in Egypt and Rapa Nui, the Easter Islands. But even if sleep proves to be scarce during your three-day tour, surely the energy vibes from the glacier should keep you fully charged, up and running.
Snæfellsnes is virtually a constant string of photography moments so just make sure your photo apparatus of choice is fully prepared for some serious snapping. A road diary might be in order as well since there is a piece of history in seemingly every single rock in Snæfellsnes.
Seize the day and use this opportunity to create the perfect 3-day stay in Iceland. You can see the booking availability in the calendar to the left.
You can rearrange days, activities and routes as you like from scheduled itinerary.
Approx. km driven:
After landing i Keflavik, make your way towards the National Route 1 – the Ring Road – and head for Eldborg, or the Fire Castle, your first of countless attractions in Snæfellsnes. This impressive crater is situated on a short SW-NE fissure, and it is among the most symmetric and beautiful of the craters in Iceland. It rises about 60 metres above the surroundings , 200 m long and 50 m deep. The best way to approach the crater is from the parking area to its south. The walk takes about half an hour each way and visitors are kindly asked to stick to the trodden and marked paths.
Next up is Gerðuberg, a stunning wall of octagonal basalt columns, forming beautiful geometric patterns in the cliffs. The columns are 14 meters at their highest and around 1-1.5 meters wide. The lava of Gerðuberg flowed in the Tertiary era and the site is listed as a natural heritage.
Head for Stykkishólmur, the largest town in Snæfellsnes, situated on the North side of the peninsula. Before entering the town, however, you will make a slight detour to the right – towards the Holy Mountain. That’s right, Helgafell bears a name that suits the folklore that surrounds it. 73 meters with a breathtaking panoramic view across Breiðafjordur Bay and a convenient viewing dial at its top. Legend advises anyone climbing the mountain for the first time to walk straight up without looking back or speaking and three wishes will be granted. The wishes have to be of good intent, the wisher must tell no one what he/she wished for and has to face east when making them.
Once in Stykkishólmur town you will immediately see why many consider this among the prettiest of Icelandic townships. The oldest part of town surrounds a beautiful, natural harbour and the old houses have been wonderfully preserved. Enthusiasts of architecture and design have long admired the town church, an unconventional and modern structure. Stykkishólmur is also the gateway to the innumerable islands of Breidafjordur bay, which is renowned for its natural beauty and remarkable wildlife. A seat on a cruise boat is highly recommended. Check in for the night at Fosshótel Stykkishólmur.
Attractions on the way: Eldborg, Gerðuberg, Helgafell, Breiðafjörður, Stykkishólmur.
GOLDEN BEACH, KIRKJUFELL MOUNTAIN, AND SNÆFELLSJÖKULL GLACIER
Approx. km driven:
As you drive westwards, counterclockwise around the peninsula, there is no shortage of interesting names in the landscape. Care to visit the Berserk Lava Field? Berserkjahraun is ever so slightly off the beaten track so you are likely to have the place to yourself. Here you can observe some bright green moss flowing over black lava formations of all sizes.
The most photographed mountain in all of Iceland is probably Kirkjufell, your next stop. The vantage points to take a decent picture of Kirkjufell are endless, as it is practically impossible to take a bad picture of the mountain. Its isolated position makes it a natural focal point for tourists and seamen alike. Surrounded by beaches, Kirkjufell has an exquisite walking trail around it as well as a more challenging climb up to the top where bird and fish fossils can actually be found. A guide is recommended for the trip to the top.
If tall structures pique your interest then stop by Hellissandur, a tiny hamlet along the way around the peninsula, because Hellissandur Longwave Radio Mast is the tallest architectural structure in Western Europe, 412 meters high or 1352 feet.
Next up is a perfect spot for a picnic. Skarðsvík beach is a beautiful little cove with golden sand, black cliffs and blue waters. It is easily accessible and provides a perfect moment of tranquility with the gentle humming of the waves.
Djúpalónssandur (the Black Lava Pearl Beach) is a beautiful place to visit, virtually like stepping into a lava wonderland. A short drive from the main road, you can leave your vehicle at the parking lot just above Djúpalónssandur. There is a short walk down Nautastígur – the Path of the Bull – where you will pass through an amazing lava field with large, incredible lava formations. There is even a peculiar rock there with a big hole in it, called Gatklettur. Looking through this hole you can see Snæfellsjökull glacier.
And now for the jackpot itself – Snæfellsjökull glacier. Many will recall it as the gateway to the center of the earth in Jules Verne’s seminal adventure, Journey to the Center of the Earth, and this 700.000 year-old stratovolcano never fails to amaze. Some will simply settle for a moment of clarity at the base of the dormant volcano, absorbing the cosmic powers many believe the mountain emits, while others might want to ascent the mountain. In summer, the saddle near the summit can be reached easily by walking, although the glacier’s crevasses must be avoided. Several tour companies run regular guided walks during the season. To reach the true summit, however, requires technical ice climbing.
Finish the day by admiring Lóndrangar (the Lagoon Stacks), uniquely-formed remnants of ancient basalt volcanic dikes sticking out from the sea. The farmers in the area traditionally never make hay on the hill, because it is said to belong to the hidden people living in the area. The Icelandic puffin lives in the cliffs of Lóndrangar, see if you can spot one or two!
Check into hotel at Hellnar for the night.
Attractions on the way: Stykkishólmur, Kirkjufell, Skarðsvík, Berserkjahraun, Djúpalónssandur, Snæfellsjökull
ARNARSTAPI, RED MOUNTAIN GORGE AND THE BEAUTIFUL BJARNARFOSS
Approx. km driven:
Once awake, it’s time to give Hellnar a second glance. For centuries, Hellnar was among the largest fishing villages beneath Snæfellsjökull glacier. Here you can also enter one of Iceland’s most peculiar caves, Baðstofa, or the Bathing Room. It is known for its special light exposure and colourful interior. A cold water spring is to be found at the lava’s edge. It is dedicated to the Holy Virgin, because it is said she had appeared here once. Remember to check out the visitors’ Centre of the National Park Snæfellsjökull.
As you make your way eastwards along the south coast of the peninsula, Arnarstapi is the next stop. A village in the southern part of the Snaefellsnes peninsula, the area has several old and charming houses with interesting stories to them and is furthermore renowned for its beautiful nature. An old horse trail through the lava field Hellnahraun is highly popular for hiking, due to the impressiveness of the surrounding landscape.
The mighty gorge of Rauðfellsgjá is a must-see. The cliff formations on either side of the opening resemble two gigantic clenched fists, something right out of a fairy tale. You can climb into the crack, where a small stream runs out from further up in the rocks.
Bjarnarfoss waterfall is an impressive waterfall right by road 54 on the Snæfellsnes Peninsula. Although the waterfall can be seen from the main road, the most enjoyable and interesting part of the waterfall is quite high in the cliffs and takes an effort to walk up the steep slope by the stream coming from the waterfall. It is oh-so worth it as only there can you see and almost shake hands with the fairy woman that stands on top of the columnar basalt and seems to be bathing in the middle of the waterfall. Don’t believe us? Go see.
Finish this three day tour by heading back to Reykjavik or Keflavik for your flight back home
Attractions on the way: Arnarstapi, Hellnahraun, Rauðafellsgjá, Bjarnarfoss.
- Accommodation – Upgrade available
- Car rental vehicle – Upgrade available
- NO HIDDEN FEES and NO BOOKING FEES
- CDW, SCDW and TP Car Rental Insurances
- GPS Navigation System
- Travel Plan with a map of the area and information package
- Access to Go Personal Travel Assistant, GPTA – Go Icelandic Travel Service
- Professional and quick service
- NO HIDDEN FEE
- Free WIFI
- Optional: Breakfast or Lunch buffet
- Personal and friendly service – High ranked company!
- NO HIDDEN FEE
- 24/7 Pick up and Drop off at Keflavík International Airport
- 24/7 Road service
- Fuel Discount at N1 Gas stations, all around the country
- Unlimited Mileage and Taxes
- TP and SCDW insurance with a liability 150.000 ISK
- Studded Winter Tires on all vehicles during the Winter time
- Optional: Gold Insurance Package available with a liability of 65.000 ISK
- Optional: Platinum Insurance Package available with a liability of 0 ISK
- Optional: WIFI Hotspot in the vehicle – Unlimited data
- We offer a wide range of vehicles, everything from a small 2WD cars to nine-seat vans and Luxury vehicles
- Available: April – September
- Total Duration of the Tour: 3 days
- Easy and Relaxed
PLACES YOU WILL SEE
CAR PICKUP INFORMATION
- Keflavík Airport 24/7 service – Very important to choose a correct pick-up time and flight number
- Car rental shuttle bus outside the arrival terminal will shuttle you to the car rental company, it’s only 2-3 min away
- Pick up options at Keflavik Airport, address in Keflavík and greater Reykjavik area
- Pick up and drop off fee may apply for delivery in Reykjavik
- Starting time is Flexible
CAR RENTAL RETURN
- Keflavik Airport – 24/7 service
- Reykjavik by request – Drop off fee may apply
WHAT TO BRING AND DON’T FORGET
- Warm Clothes and walking boots for all weathers – Wool and Cotton is essential and dress in layers – even in summertime
- Mobile Phone, Camera, and Batteries
- Valid Driver’s license with photo ID and Passport
- Swimsuit and towels
GOOD FOR YOU TO KNOW
- Monitor weather forecasts well before the trip starts – even in summertime
- Check road conditions on www.road.is in advance
- Give someone (hotel staff) your travel plans (look for info about SAR app in you Travel Package)
- Download many great mobile Apps to use throughout your journey – Information Included in Travel Package
EMERGENCY NUMBERS FOR ACCIDENTS
- The official number for emergencies: 112
IMPORTANT: ICELANDIC WEATHER – ROADS – SPEED LIMITS
Weather in Iceland is notoriously unpredictable, hence the local saying: if you don’t like the weather, wait five minutes! This holds true for all seasons so regardless of the time of your visit, prepare well before start driving and make sure you are able to find your way back home safely. Never hesitate to ask the locals for advice when needed. They know how to deal with difficult situations and are a friendly bunch to boot.
It is of imperative importance to keep in mind that Icelandic roads are quite narrow. You are not driving on anything like US freeways or European autobahns. Due to constantly changing weather conditions, roads can be slippery in summers and icy in the winter or just might be loose gravel alongside the asphalt and single-lane bridges can be particularly treacherous. You might find the tarmac cut off, continuing with a gravel road which commands special precaution. Drivers need to be alert at all times, adhere to speed limits and take care whenever traveling on Icelandic roads. There is also good reason to warn drivers about the animals. Icelandic sheep can roam the open countryside and on the roads during the summer season. They can be quite unpredictable and drivers are advised to keep a watchful eye on them along with other animals as well.
Remember to take your own, sweet time; if you don’t, you’re bound to pass something and miss out. Now that you’re finally in Iceland, you wouldn’t want that, would you?
GO ICELANDIC – ACCOMMODATION
See our sample of our accommodation options below. Single person bookings will be in a single room and bookings of 2 or more people will be booked in twin/double room(s) (or triple rooms). Please let us know if you have special requests and we do our utmost to make your stay enjoyable. Please note, any changes to the original plan may incur additional costs to the booking.
Comfort Rooms – 3 stars
All rooms are with a private bathroom at three-star hotels or similar at quality guesthouses. Located in the city center or in close vicinity. Breakfast is included.
This category features rooms at four-star design hotels in the city center with a private bathroom at the absolute best locations downtown or seaside locations such as the Fosshótel Reykjavík. Breakfast is included.
For those who are in for the very best and prefer to stay at high-end luxury accommodation, please email us to firstname.lastname@example.org directly after booking. We will suggest a specially customized upgrade for your stay. Please note that special requests are subject to additional cost.
GO ICELANDIC EXCLUSIVE – VEHICLES
Go Icelandic offer just the right selection of vehicles to suit your wishes. Just book the one that fits your needs and travel plans. Our rental partners offer only highest quality vehicles and service to our guests and customers with care.
Our self-drive packages include only newest models of cars in each category or maximum 2 years old. Most of the fleet is equipped with a GPS for your safety and comfort. Please see the categories of available vehicles and select the car you need for a magical vacation in Iceland. Based on weather conditions we do recommend a comfortable 4X4 as a minimal standard for winter traveling due to the high probability of snow, and subsequently the possibility of icy and challenging road conditions.
Budget Option – 5 Persons Max
Great 2WD vehicle for your comfort. Great for regular road conditions and traveling enjoyment. We offer a selection of cars like KIA, VW, and Toyota or similar in all our tours. Does not fit for offroad driving.
Comfort 4X4 Option – 5 Persons Max
A medium sized SUV with 4 Wheel Drive (4×4), fit for most travel, and capable of snow and off-asphalt travel, such as Toyota, KIA or similar. This vehicle has basic highland capabilities.
Luxury 4×4 Option – 5 Persons Max
A large sized SUV with 4 Wheel Drive (4×4) such as Toyota Land Cruiser 150 or similar, capable of nearly all traveling routes. This vehicle has full highland capabilities to drive on accessible mountain roads.