Our Iceland 7 Day Self Drive Itinerary

| April 8, 2013 | 27 Comments

Iceland has been right near the top of my travel wishlist for a long time now. Every time a friend travels there they end up raving about it. Plus their photos are usually incredible.

Iceland 7 Day Self Drive Itinerary

Northern Lights in Iceland by Where’s my Passport

Iceland 7 Day Self Drive Itinerary

I have read a lot of blog posts about Iceland and browsed hundreds of travel photos. Each one religiously consumed added to my insatiable desire to travel to the land of fire and ice.

As I was browsing through my emails a couple of months ago, one of the many travel deal sites I am signed up to sent through their latest weekly list. Most of the time I am too busy to read them but feeling like a little bit of procrastination was in order, I took a quick read.

A combo travel deal for Iceland immediately caught my eye and within minutes I was researching my own trip. Using my extensive travel resources I found I could book a package for cheaper, plus it would give me more freedom to do and see what I wanted.

And since Iceland is likely to be my last European adventure for a few years, I wanted to make sure I did it right.

Iceland 7 Day Self Drive Itinerary

Iceland 7 Day Self Drive Itinerary – Photo by Javier Iosa

Adela and I have booked our accommodation as well as a rental car, so we have a rough plan of what we are going to see and do. We also have a few exciting adventures planned which we can’t wait to experience as well.

We will start our Icelandic adventure in Reykjavik where we are basing ourselves for 3 days. Not only will we be exploring the world’s most northerly Capital city, but we will also be taking day trips from the city.

While we have snorkelled with dolphins and whales in New Zealand before, we have never actually been on an organised whale watching tour. That is why we are super excited to partner with GetYourGuide for a Whale Watching tour in Iceland. The bonus is that if we don’t see a whale (unlikely) then we get to go back for free until we do!

When we started researching our trip I wanted to see what were some of the craziest adventures you could do in Iceland. I immediately spotted diving and snorkelling in Iceland.

Diving in Iceland?! You have got to be mad. It’s freezing!”

Yup, that is the reaction we have been getting when we tell people that we are doing . But with dry suits provided to keep us warm, and the awesome guides from Dive.is giving us hot chocolates us after our dives. One of the coolest things (excuse the pun) about this adventure is that we will be swimming between the American and Eurasian continents!

Diving in Iceland

Diving in Iceland – Photo by Dive.is

From Reykjavik we will explore the Western and Southern coastlines with accommodation in Selfoss and Vik along the way. While we probably had time to drive the entire Iceland Ring Road, we didn’t want to spend our entire trip in the car. We would much rather be out hiking to remote waterfalls or ice climbing on glaciers than clocking up the km’s.

But this is also where our plan has fallen apart.

While we will tick off the epic Golden Circle, hopefully before the tour buses get there, we also want to see as much as possible along the Southern coast as possible. This is where we need a little bit of your help!

Tell us, what was your favourite waterfall in Iceland? And what is another must see highlight in Iceland? 

As long as it is within a couple of hours drive then we will do our best to get there!

Thanking our other travel partners:

Of course our Iceland 7 day adventure wouldn’t be possible without the extraordinary help of our travel partners in Iceland. If you are planning a self drive itinerary around Iceland then definitely use them to your advantage!

HiHostels – HiHostels have over 4,000 hostels worldwide catering to every budget and every traveller. Whether you want a private room or a massive shared dorm, they have it all. We can’t wait to check into our Vik HiHostel and Reykjavik City HiHostel so that when we are exhausted from exploring we have somewhere relaxing to put up our weary jandals.

HostelWorld – We teamed up with HostelWorld on our incredible Italy adventure last summer, so it is only fitting to work with them again. We are going to be staying 2 nights in Selfoss at the stunning Vatnsholt farmstead. Apparently it’s location is one of the best for viewing the Northern Lights.

CarRentals.co.uk – Everyone we spoke to recommended that we have a car to explore Iceland. We have partnered with carrentals.co.uk to provide us with our wheels while we are on our adventure this week. They have a huge range of vehicles including 4wd cars if you want to go off-road in Iceland.

Do you have any recommendations for us in Iceland?

About the Author ()

Cole is one half of New Zealand's leading adventure travel blogging couple who have been wearing out their jandals around the world since 2009. He loves any adventure activities and anything to do with the water whether it is Surfing, Diving, Swimming, Snorkeling or just lounging nearby on the beach. You can follow Cole on Google+. Or consider following us via RSS Feed, Twitter, Facebook and subscribe to our Newsletter.

Comments (27)

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  1. Sounds like a great time! I’d be game for the diving part!
    The Time-Crunched Traveler (Ellen) recently posted..Confronting Cambodia’s tragic past, Part 1: A brief history of the Khmer Rouge

  2. Megan says:

    The Golden Circle was the last thing I did on my trip to Iceland (after driving the entire Ring Road), and I’ve gotta say that I was a bit disappointed after seeing everything else the country had to offer!

    My favorite waterfalls were Skogafoss and Seljandsfoss (which you can walk behind!). They’re pretty close to each other, so you should be able to fit them both in the same day.

    The other things I recommend: spend some time in Vik, just walking along the beaches. It’s so beautiful. Also go to Jokulsarlon, for sure. It was my favorite place in all of Iceland. You can take a boat tour through the glacial lagoon. And I did a glacier hike too, on Myrdalsjokull.

    So excited to read about your Icelandic adventures!
    Megan recently posted..Old-time German Town: Fredericksburg, Texas

    • Thanks for the recommendations 🙂

      We have 4 days in the south around Selfoss and Vik so we can take the time to explore that area! Will do the Golden Circle before heading south so hopefully that will tick it off before we see everything else haha.

  3. That is going to be *so* helpful for my trip to Iceland next year. Very informative!
    EurotripTips recently posted..5 Things You Should Know About Budget Airlines in Europe

  4. Lance says:

    We did the exact same thing as Megan – drove the entire Ring Road and then did the Golden Circle. And we agree – after seeing the entire country, the Golden Circle was a little disappointing. But Iceland is an amazing destination and we loved it. Can’t wait to see the rest of your posts.
    Lance recently posted..Downtown Atlanta – Georgia Aquarium, World of Coca-Cola, and Centennial Olympic Park

  5. Skogafoss is my favorite (the one pictured in your post). It’s majestic and powerful, but incredibly peaceful as it empties into the stream below. And in the summer when it’s surround by green grass and moss…I could sit and ponder it for hours.
    Matthew Trinetti recently posted..Stephen Reads Book Excerpt at Essay Fiesta in Chicago

  6. Ray says:

    Wow! I like to go there also. Great pictures. Thanks!

  7. Jessica says:

    So looking forward to all the posts that come afterward! I’ve been wanting to go to Iceland for some time now, and am trying to figure out when it will be possible! Enjoy!
    Jessica recently posted..H is for HURRICANE: New Orleans Signature Drink

  8. Karisa says:

    Wow! This sounds like a truly amazing journey! I’ll be looking forward to reading about your time in Iceland. PS Scuba Diving has always been a dream of mine! I never even imagined doing it in Iceland! 🙂
    Karisa recently posted..Hungry? Would You Care For a Fried Tarantula?

  9. Ahhh I am SO jealous about this!! Especially the scuba diving part-I’m not sure I would actually have the guts to jump into water of that temperature, but it sure sounds amazing 🙂 Can’t wait to hear more!
    Casey @ A Cruising Couple recently posted..Photo Friday | Dumplings | Authentic Taiwanese Cuisine

  10. I’m a local and for some reason I’ve always driven past Skógarfoss on my trips around the South but the last time I was there I decided to stop and did not regret it. Skógarfoss is gorgeous, especially on a sunny day like when I was there and there were not one but two rainbows over it. (Some photos: http://www.iheartreykjavik.net/2013/03/a-south-coast-road-trip-with-jennifer-and-richard/)

    I would also look into doing the hike to Svartifoss if you make it all the way to Jökulsárlón – pretty spectacular too but for different reasons (some photos here: http://www.iheartreykjavik.net/2012/05/tried-and-tested-a-day-trip-to-jokulsarlon/)

  11. Travel Man says:

    Fantastic photo’s. Wow looks like you had an amazing time.
    Travel Man recently posted..Apr 13, Travel Europe Cheap

  12. Oh, I’ve just been there in Iceland this summer. I would truly come back.
    Lee Cabangbang recently posted..Split-Berlin

  13. Thanks for the cool guide! One more reason to go back!

  14. Vid says:

    We recently (a couple of weeks back) did the whole ring road and then some (11 days in total) and had the most amazing holiday. Isn’t Iceland the best ? What was your favourite part, Cole ?

    Ours was the Myvatn area and Snaefelsness 🙂

    In terms of waterfalls, I think Selfoss (dettifoss’s “sister”) was our favourite

  15. Bianca says:

    Please let me know what you ended up doing! I am in the process of planning 7 days in iceland over new years and i’m frankly a little overwhelmed by all the options.

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