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Our Iceland 7 Day Self Drive Itinerary

Check out what crazy adventures we have planned for our Iceland 7 Day Self Drive Itinerary, including diving in Iceland and Whale Watching!

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Iceland 7 Day Self Drive Itinerary

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?

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.

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27 Comments

27 Comments

  1. The Time-Crunched Traveler (Ellen)

    April 8, 2013 at 12:21 PM

    Sounds like a great time! I’d be game for the diving part!

  2. Megan

    April 8, 2013 at 5:28 PM

    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!

    • Cole Burmester

      April 8, 2013 at 5:51 PM

      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. EurotripTips

    April 8, 2013 at 5:37 PM

    That is going to be *so* helpful for my trip to Iceland next year. Very informative!

    • Cole Burmester

      April 8, 2013 at 5:49 PM

      Wait until we get all the posts from the trip up 🙂

  4. Lance

    April 9, 2013 at 3:06 AM

    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.

    • Cole Burmester

      April 9, 2013 at 8:09 AM

      Glad we are going to the Golden Circle on our 3rd day then from Reykjavik and not on our last day. Thanks for the tip Lance 😀

  5. Matthew Trinetti

    April 9, 2013 at 3:56 AM

    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.

    • Cole Burmester

      April 9, 2013 at 8:08 AM

      Definitely going there then! Thanks for the tip Matthew 😀 Will go check out your site now too!

  6. Ray

    April 9, 2013 at 11:02 AM

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

  7. Jessica

    April 9, 2013 at 1:09 PM

    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!

    • Cole Burmester

      April 9, 2013 at 4:50 PM

      I can’t wait to edit all my photos that I take there! Although that might take a few weeks haha.

  8. Karisa

    April 11, 2013 at 7:58 AM

    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! 🙂

    • Cole Burmester

      April 11, 2013 at 10:35 PM

      Just arrived and can’t wait to start exploring 😉

  9. Casey @ A Cruising Couple

    April 13, 2013 at 9:24 AM

    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!

    • Cole Burmester

      April 13, 2013 at 6:23 PM

      Just did the scuba diving today! Was absolutely freezing but one awesome adventure 😀 Photos and story to come…

  10. Auður - I heart Reykjavík

    April 14, 2013 at 8:08 PM

    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/)

    • Cole Burmester

      April 14, 2013 at 10:55 PM

      Beautiful photos and will definitely try and visit all those places over the next couple of days 😀

  11. Travel Man

    April 14, 2013 at 10:34 PM

    Fantastic photo’s. Wow looks like you had an amazing time.

  12. Lee Cabangbang

    July 28, 2013 at 4:30 PM

    Oh, I’ve just been there in Iceland this summer. I would truly come back.

    • Cole Burmester

      July 31, 2013 at 8:56 AM

      It was a spectacular country and wish that I had longer than 7 days in Iceland. Hopefully I will get to explore the north and east coasts some more in the future.

  13. MightyTravels

    March 16, 2014 at 11:41 AM

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

  14. Vid

    June 13, 2014 at 12:58 AM

    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

    October 17, 2014 at 3:32 PM

    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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Adventure Travel

Explore Auckland’s Coasts With One Exquisite Walking Hike

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There is a wonderful place found in the far southwest of the Pacific Ocean. It is a place called Auckland, and it is found in the amazing terrain of New Zealand. It is a place that commands the attention of over 1 million people who prefer to live and reside in this majestic city.

Did you know that Auckland claims the top spot in New Zealand with its wide range of people and the most concentrated number of people within a city in New Zealand?

But why do so many people come to Auckland, New Zealand, and live there? What do they appreciate the most?

The truth is that the answer may vary, and it may differ from person to person, but it is hard to deny that nature is not a crucial part of their decision making. The beautiful city has fantastic places that offer great adventure and recreational activity.

You can take advantage of the diverse coasts, hidden coves, and more of the northern area in the North Island. It is known for its various boats, and some believe that it has more ships than any other city in the entire world.

It is a city that resides between two large fantastic natural harbors.

Let us find out more about how you can explore this majestic city with one fantastic walking hike.

The Auckland Coast

For those who want to stay near to Auckland’s city and travel well, it is necessary to start your journey with the Auckland Coast’s breathtaking area.

Did you know that Auckland’s coast ranges over 15km, will take over four hours to traverse, and is somewhat challenging to navigate? But the truth is that it is worth it. Why is it worth it? Well, you can seemingly walk the length of an entire nation within the span of a few hours. If you wake up early in the morning and go on this journey, you can finish your hike by noon or an hour past noon.

But in that brief timeframe, you can experience several oceans, notice a slew of volcanoes, and have a glimpse into people’s regular lives in the New Zealand area.

This fantastic walk is excellent because of its duration and because you are able to experience lush greenery and park settings over 30% of the time. It is a great way to clear your head, get to know more about the people you are traveling with, and experience the refreshing Auckland air.

Experts suggest beginning your journey at the less intriguing Onehunga area and then moving forward with public transportation at the Britomart stop. You will find that you can travel east to take in the water sights with a bit of work.

When your walk is over, you can grab a fresh beverage at the Waitemata Harbour, a premium harbor.

You will want to make sure to bring some healthy snacks along for the walk because you may not notice different places to eat as you go on this part of the hike.

It is best to ensure that you understand that you must input the Ferry Building into your mobile device or ensure to use the local municipal iSITE for further guidance.

If you are limited on time, I would suggest that you go on this route because it lets you take in the entire area and understand this excellent place.

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Adventure Travel

Hiking Adventures in Bryce Canyon National Park

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If you are on the lookout for the perfect environment for an adventurous and challenging hike, look no further. Located in the Southern Utah region is the best park that is most suitable for your hiking adventure, the Bryce Canyon National Park. This is a great option to relaxed after you are through playing in $5 minimum deposit casinos.

This park hosts hike lovers from time to time and people even come from other countries in the world to experience the wonder of this park. The landscape and beautiful trails make this a choice venue. There is a rental service at this location if you love to stay behind.

You can enjoy the priceless glimpse of the sunrise and sunset from the different landscape. The part also permits visitors to create traditional camps at different locations for a more adventurous experience.

There are a couple of trails that you can choose from for your hiking adventure, and no matter your level of experience in hiking, you will find a track that matches your taste. Even if you are totally new to hiking, there is something for you at the Bryce Canyon National Park . Below is a list of some of the trails to try when you take a trip to this park.

The Rim Trail

This is the most accessible trail at Bryce Canyon National Park. It is suitable for those who just want to have a good time walking around and savoring the magnificent scenery of the park. From any part of the park, you can connect to this trail as it goes all the way around the park.

When lodging at the Bryce Canyon Lodge, it is a good idea to start your hike from the place known as the sunrise point. Just as the name implies, if you wake up early to start your walk, you’ll be able to watch the sunrise. If you have a camera with you, you’ll take some fantastic pictures.

Also, you’ll get a clear view of the Bryce amphitheater from this point. Just like in an adventure movie, you have to find a way to link up to boat Mesa, and on your way, you walk through some sites like the Mormon temple and Queen garden. This hiking trail is easy, and all you have to deal with is a total of approximately 200 feet elevation. You will surely have a nice time on this trail.

Navajo Loop Trail

On the order of difficulty, this trail comes next after the rim trail. The starting point of this trail begins from the sunset point around the southern area of the Bryce Canyon Lodge. Just like for the rim trail, the trail presents a nice view of the sunset, and with a good camera, you’ll be able to take exciting photo shoots.

Walking this route involves a visit to the Silent City, which is an aesthetic combination of limestone and urban expansion. During the hike, you will also walk through Wall Street, which happens to be a distinctive attraction at the Bryce Canyon park. You won’t ever want to miss the narrow walls. From this point, you may decide to go back to the sunset point or take other shorter hikes like the Peekaboo loop trail and Queen garden trail. Both routes are challenging and adventurous, but you will enjoy every bit of the challenge. After you have done this, you can then go ahead to have some fun in a $5 minimum deposit casino.

Mossy Cave Trail

This Trail presents an entirely different sight than the one that we have previously mentioned. From this trail, you will be able to catch the view of the towers in the park nearby without descending to the amphitheater. This hiking course begins at approximately 4 miles from the entrance to the Bryce Canyon park. However, if you visit this park and would like to enjoy something completely different from the other common tracks, then this is an exciting hiking trail for you to try.

Hiking is more than a walk, it is a fun and adventurous experience. All trails at the Bryce Canyon National Park are worth trying on your next visit. Whether you seek to have some fun or you just want to catch some beautiful scenery and feel close to nature, you will find the right place that suits you. Get ready to have an amazing hiking experience.

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Adventure Travel

Walking the Camino de Santiago Photos

These are my favourite Camino de Santiago Photos from my pilgrimage along the French Way in March. A truly beautiful way to spend a few weeks.

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Puenta La Reina Bridge Camino Arrow

El Camino de Santiago kicked my ass. Well technically it kicked my feet. Turns out my minimal preparation for the Camino de Santiago was terrible. After a miserable effort of only 4 days, the doctor in Legrono told me that I wasn’t allowed to go on until me feet healed. I had walked just over 100 km’s and my feet were bloodied and blistered.

To be honest, I was relieved.

The thought of putting back on my shoes made my shudder. For the last 9 km’s I had stumbled along in jandals and socks. One of the travelling fashion sins I vowed I would never break.

Jandals on the Camino de Santiago

Jandals on the Camino de Santiago

So while I have unfinished business with the Way of St James (an upcoming post), I did want to share with you some of my favourite photos from the Camino de Santiago. Because I had yet to reach some of the more “unsavoury” parts of the Camino that Sherry Ott had discovered, every step of my pilgrimage had been beautiful.

Puenta La Reina Bridge Camino Arrow

Puenta La Reina Bridge – Camino de Santiago Arrows

There is no way you can get lost on the Camino de Santiago. Arrows, scallop shells and signs point you in the right direction at every bridge, road crossing and intersection.

Camino de Santiago Scallop Shell

Camino de Santiago Scallop Shell

Reaching the top of Alto Pedron gave views back the way I had come from Pamplona, as well as views to where I was going. The rocky path on the way down proved to be my ultimate downfall, as my too small shoes caused my toes to smash into the front.

Alto del Pedron Camino de Santiago

Alto del Pedron Camino de Santiago

Metal Pilgrims on Alto del Pedron

Metal Pilgrims on Alto del Pedron

There were so many beautiful old churches along the Camino de Santiago. But since I was walking in early March, it seemed that most were yet to open for the busier summer season.

Church of Obanos

The Church of Obanos

And between every small village the well-maintained pathways of the French Way wound across the spectacular Spanish countryside.

The French Way - Camino de Santiago

The French Way – Camino de Santiago Photos

Puenta La Reina

Puenta La Reina in the evening

Puenta La Reina has one of the most amazing bridges I have ever seen. It was also the 1st village I had the pleasure of sleeping in after busy Pamplona.

Puenta la Reina Bridge and Sunrise

Puenta la Reina Bridge at sunrise

Most mornings I was up and walking before the sun began to sprinkle across the horizon.

Spring flowers on the Camino de Santiago

Spring flowers on the Camino de Santiago

Pilgrims approaching Cirauqui, Spain

Pilgrims approaching Cirauqui, Spain

Every village and town was built on a small hill. Sure it looks beautiful until you realise you have to go back up again to go through them all!

Church of Santa Maria - Los Arcos

Church of Santa Maria in Los Arcos

While there were only about 20 pilgrims walking each section every day, it wasn’t uncommon for you to encounter them all. The people I met along the Camino de Santiago were some of the most inspiring and remarkable people I have ever spoken to. They are the ones that make the pilrgimage so special.

The endless French Way

The endless French Way

Irache Wine Fountain - Fuente del Vino

The free flowing Irache Wine Fountain or “Fuente del Vino”

Hay bales along the French Way

Hay bales along the French Way

Every village had at least one ancient church and it wasn’t uncommon to find them dotting the landscape in remote locations either.

Ermita de San Miguel

Ermita de San Miguel

Iglesia de San Andrés de Zariquiegui Church

Iglesia de San Andrés de Zariquiegui Church

I have travelled through Spain in the past, including cycling in Costa Brava and surfing in San Sebastian with both independent planning and a vacation planner. But having the opportunity to walk at my own pace through some of the most beautiful scenery in Spain on the Camino de Santiago has so far topped them all.

Natural arches - Camino de Santiago

Natural arches on the Camino de Santiago

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Meet Cole and Adela

Cole and AdelaWe have been wearing out our jandals (Kiwi for flip-flops) on our travel adventures around the world since 2009. We think our blog is thought provoking and a little witty. But we have been proven wrong before. Find out more about us here...

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