If you are hitting Iceland for an amazing holiday soon then chances are you are going to want to be breaking away from the capital city of Reykjavik and discovering some of the amazing destinations it has to offer. Lucky for you I have made the ultimate day trips from Reykjavik list for you to follow.
Iceland has amazing natural attractions that are sure to keep you busy during your trip. There are amazing waterfalls, natural spas, black sandy beaches and other natural wonders that will keep your camera clicking from the moment you land to the moment you leave. All of the destinations listed below are able to be reached via day trips from Reykjavik.
Below are my favourite places I visited while touring around Iceland in my rental car.
The Blue Lagoon spa is a must see while spending a vacation in Iceland. It is actually one of the most popular tourist destinations in the whole of Europe and recognised as one of the most romantic places in the world to spend a day with a loved one. You can see the brownie points being banked already right gents?
The lagoons themselves are located about a 30-40 min drive outside of Reykjavik city centre and being so popular gives you plenty of options to find transport that suits you. I have mentioned in other blogs that the best way to look around Iceland, in my opinion, is by renting a car but if not, there are other transport options.
A trip to the Blue Lagoon is a completely relaxing experience that will leave you feeling brand new. If you have been travelling for a while or simply just need to fight some jet lag or aches from the flight this is the perfect solution. Be sure to give your face and skin the loving they deserve with the volcanic nutrient rich soil located on the surface all throughout the natural spas.
The Blue Lagoon complex has a spa centre where you can book in for massages and other holistic treatments. It also has a great restaurant that you can opt for a meal in when making your booking. I highly recommend this extra.
Just be sure to book your visit as far in advance as possible to avoid the disappointment of missing out. Check if you still have availability right now if you like by following this link.
Vik is Iceland’s southernmost village and is certainly a tourist hotspot as of the past few years. It is a charming village that sits right on the wild ocean. It has an underwhelming population of just 318 but don’t let that stop you from visiting this amazing destination
Located just below the base of Katla volcano, Vik spends its time stuck in the shadows of the vast Mýrdalsjökull glacier, another worthwhile spot to visit if you have the time.
While exploring Vik, be sure to allow some time to check out the Vik I Myrdal Church, that has been around since 1929. As mentioned before Vik is situated right on the coast, although this beach is a little different to most and the main reason tourists make the trek down to this southern coast.
The beach here is made up of tiny black pebbles and grains which make it a delight to view when accompanied with the chilly white snow sitting on top and the roaring Atlantic waves crashing into the shore.
You can look to combine a couple of these spots below into your day trips from Reykjavik.
While venturing south to the town mentioned above you will have the chance to make a slight detour and discover one of Iceland’s lesser known waterfalls, Seljalandsfoss waterfall. Be sure to make time to check out this impressive waterfall on your way down to Vik, it is raw and undisturbed nature at it’s very best.
This could easily end up being one of your highlights of any of your day trips from Reykjavik, so be prepared with fully charged camera batteries. It is one of the most photo worthy destinations I have visited on my travels, I’m sure you will be in awe of mother nature as you walk besides the brute force that is the Seljalandsfoss waterfall.
You can even venture up the side of it for an amazing aerial view but be careful as it can be slippery.
You could spend a lot of time here in complete amazement at the sheer size and volume of water pounding over the sides of the fall but somehow try and stop taking pictures or staring open-mouthed at it and push on further towards Vik.
If you are not heading all the way to Vik then you could always look at heading to the Eyjafjallajökull volcanos, this is something you are best to have planned in advance. There are many ways to see this impressive Volcano up close, browse through some of the options here.
A little further down the main road to Vik, 30km to be precise, is another of Iceland’s many powerful waterfalls. This one is called Skógafoss and is just as impressive as any you have witnessed already.
Skógafoss is an intimidating sight that drops from a height of 60m to the ground below and an ever so impressive 25m wide. It is located on the Skóga River and is again worth a stop off if you are slowly making your way to Vik.
Don’t worry you will get there, Skógafoss is 148 km drive from Reykjavik and that means you only have roughly another 35km more until you reach the black pebbled beach of Vic.
There are countless look out spots and beautiful landscapes to pull over and take in along the way so don’t have your tunnel vision set just on making it to Vik and that’s it for the day, enjoy the surroundings on offer while available. Afterall that is why you have decided to do day trips from Reykjavik in the first place right?
There are plenty of day trips or multi day trips if hiring a car is not something you can do or feel comfortable with. Search for the best options now.
Geysir is another of nature’s natural attractions that should be on the top of one’s list when heading to Iceland. It is a natural phenomenon that occurs in nearby hot springs. Every so many minutes a huge eruption will occur out of these that really needs to be seen to be fully believed and appreciated.
You roughly know when each violent gash of water is set to be released as the ground beneath your feet begins to shake, be warned though as capturing the perfectly timed Instagram snap is harder than you may think.
Be sure not to leave the area before you have witnessed one of these explosions for yourself.
Once you have had enough of the Geysir explosions it is time to head another 10km down the road to witness the Father of all Iceland’s amazing waterfalls, the Gullfoss. It is the most impressive of the thousands of waterfalls in this beautiful country.
Anyone and everyone heading to Iceland will have this bad boy on their list so be prepared for a little bit of foot traffic when visiting. The footpath and viewing platforms are setup perfectly though and with a little patience everyone will get their perfect holiday shot.
The two tiers on this waterfall can lay the impressive claim of being the largest volume waterfall in all of Europe and once you see it for yourself you most certainly won’t argue. Its water can flow at an approximate 80 cubic meters (2,825 cubic feet) per second during winter to about 140 cubic meters (4,944 cubic feet) per second during summer.
The Gullfoss waterfall could possibly be better known to you as the ‘Golden Falls’ and this comes about from the fact that when sunny the water takes a golden-brown colour. This place is so magical that even when it receives a light covering of rain it has a separate power, this time you will see a rainbow appear over Gullfoss making it an, even more, picture friendly destination whatever the weather on the day.
If you go by a tour to see this amazing waterfall then all tours will be combined with a visit to the Geysir that I mentioned above.
Kirkjufjara Beach is another worthwhile stopping point while in the Vik area. It is not as well known as Vik but offers a look at Dyrhólaey arch and the Reynisdrangar stacks. There is virtually nothing here and just screams natural untouched nature. Enjoy some great views along the cliff line but please be careful.
If the weather is not being kind to you on the day then please don’t attempt to go to this destination as the risk is just far too high, this also applies for when the tide is high.
In case your camera hasn’t gotten enough use already while in Iceland I thought I’d save arguably the most impressive of Iceland’s destinations until last. The Kerid Crater is one of Iceland’s most iconic postcard landmarks and is widely regarded as the highlight of the “Golden Circle Tour”. Kerid Crater is the site of an enormous volcanic crater.
Each time of the year brings a different look to the area surrounding the giant crater. This along with the seemingly ever-changing water colour inside the crater make it the shot to get. During the winter months, it is possible for it to freeze over completely.
Whatever the season ensure that The Kerid Crater is a scheduled stop you don’t forget about during your trip to Iceland.
This is another spot deserving of your time when you are in the Vik area. It is possible to see the stacks from Vik itself but the best place to see them is by taking a turn-off just before you get to Vik.
From here you will have the chance to see some other impressive sights when walking along to the end of the beach. These will be mysterious basalt sea stacks, scattered on the Reynisfjara shore and something you certainly can’t see from the shores of Vik.
There are a few strange stories to be told about these rocks that may or may not be true but one thing I can be sure on is they make for a great picture.
I hope this list inspires you to see more of Iceland than just the capital city because day trips from Reykjavik are amazing.
Have a great time in Iceland and enjoy one of the most stunning and unique countries I have had the privilege to travel around. Remember to look at hiring a car if possible when there to really free up your travels or of course book some great days out with a trusted tour agency like Viator.
My personal favourite day trips from Reykjavik was to Vik. It was an amazing drive that offered so many highlights when combining some of the selections above. I took off early, got the chance to watch the sunrise and avoided most of the tourist buses.
If you would like any more tips for travelling around Iceland or things to think about before making the trip yourself then please have a read of my “Tips for Iceland” blog or comment below.
Enjoy and let me know how your own trip goes and where your favourite day trips from Reykjavik are or please let me know what you thought of this blog in the comments section below.
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Happy Travels, Brodie
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