Epic diversity, adventure, one of a kind experiences, and beauty fill this ideal 4 Day Iceland Itinerary.
We visited Iceland with friends in mid June, giving us nearly 24 hours of sunlight per day to tour this beautiful country! This 4 Day Iceland Itinerary was incredible. While it’s peak season, I recommend the mid summer visit to get the most out of your days in Iceland.
Be prepared to spend some serious cash while visiting. The prices to fly to Iceland have certainly dropped, but once you arrive, nothing is cheap!
Food, beer, and gasoline were approximately three times what you would expect to pay in the United States or Mainland Europe.
1 ISK (Icelandic Krona) = 10 US cents
Day 1 – Iceland’s Ring Road Part I
Your international flight, if coming from the US or Europe, will likely land in the early morning. Grab your rental car and begin your Ring Road drive. One of the most beautiful drives I’ve ever experienced. Here are the sites along the way and a map of our Ring Road Journey east from the airport.
Hvolsvöllur – Icelandic Horses
You’ll find these beauties throughout the country. Approach with care, they’re wild after all.
“Foss” is the Icelandic name for Waterfall. Seljalandsfoss Waterfall is one of the most famous and is 60 breathtaking meters high.
You can get up close and personal (and soaked) by following the trail behind the falls.
We paid about $7 USD to park.
US Military Airplane Wreckage
Everyone inside the United States Navy DC plane when it crashed in 1973 survived. Now, it is a popular tourist destination for those patient and determined enough to make the journey as it is not reachable by vehicle.
How to get there:
There is no sign on the road for the wreck, just a newly made parking lot where you’ll likely see several cars already parked. Here is a link to the map location of the parking lot. The coordinates of the wreckage itself are: (63 27.546-19 21.887).
Fair warning, its about an hour walk each direction to reach the wreckage, but may be worth it if you’re into photography. It has an eerie sci-fi atmosphere and made for fun drone flights.
Black Sand Beach “Reynisfjara”
Find a great view of Reynisdrangar cliffs from the village of Vík.
Day 2 – Iceland’s Ring Road Part II
Continue east on Ring Road and then head back to Reykjavik. Lots of driving today, about 7 hours, but it’s just so beautiful!
Here’s a map.
Hike to Svartifoss Waterfall
Svartifoss translates to “black falls,” referring to the basalt columns surrounding the waterfall. They resemble organ pipes and were crafted by lava.
Glacier Lagoon & Diamond Beach
I felt like I was witnessing global warming first hand as large chunks of ice chipped off icebergs and came crashing down into the water. The noise was enough to make me jump. The ice from the lagoon washes ashore Diamond Beach, with the melting pieces glimmering like diamonds.
Day 3 – Iceland’s Iconic Golden Circle
This is definitely the most toured part of the country, so be prepared for more crowds and traffic. (3.5-4 hours of driving – Map)
Þingvellir National Park
We started our day with a snorkel tour at Þingvellir National Park where you snorkel through a fissure above tectonic plates. Due to filtration through glaciers over several decades, the water is the cleanest you’ll ever drink and provides incredible visibility. This is an unforgettable experience if you can fit it into your schedule and budget! We booked through Snorkel Iceland for about USD$200 per person and would recommend them. They’ll set you up with a dry suit, but your face is uncovered besides your mask. Be prepared for a half day of numb lips.
Golden Falls “Gullfoss”
This multi-level cascade of waterfalls is considered public land, which makes it free to visit. This made for an excellent rest stop on our Golden Circle tour as well since there were well-established facilities on site.
The rainbow in our picture below persisted throughout our entire visit at Gullfoss.
Fun fact: Geysir is derived from an Icelandic word Geysa, which means “to gush.” You won’t have to wait more than 5-10 minutes to see the gush for yourself.
Kerio Crater Lake
Kerid is a 3000 year old volcanic crater. This simple, less than one-mile hike is perfect with the family. The kids will enjoy collecting lava rock along the trail.
Natural Hot Springs
After reading up on Iceland’s infamous Blue Lagoon, we decided to seek out one of the more natural, less crowded, and better priced geothermal pool options.
Day 4 Tour Iceland’s Snaefellsnes Peninsula
(6 hours driving – Map)
Day 5 (Half Day) in Reykjavik City, Iceland
60% of the country’s population lives in the city of Reykjavik which is a 45 minute drive from the airport.
While you’re in town, grab some souvenirs, visit Hallgrimskirkja church, and try the hot dogs from the famous stand, Bæjarins Beztu Pylsur! The hot dogs were the cheapest meal of our entire trip.
Final Thoughts on 4 Day Iceland Itinerary
We squeezed every ounce out of our 4.5 days in Iceland with this Itinerary. I’m confident you’ll enjoy it too. One day, we hope to return to see the Northern Lights during winter.