The Mysteries of Iceland and the Westfjords
(with optional Runner's Festival)
9 days/8 nights | July 12-20, 2018
based on double occupancy
($950 single supplement)
• 9 breakfasts,
• 4 lunches,
• 4 dinners
• Airport transfers upon arrival and departure
• All accommodations from start to end of tour
• All transportation during the tour (air-conditioned mini bus)
• Domestic flight between Reykjavik and Isafjordur
• All included group activities, entry fees as per itinerary
• A full-time Two Dog Travel tour director with you and available 24/7
• A local professional bi-lingual driver/guide
• All local guide, driver and restaurant tips are included per itinerary
What's not included
• Alcoholic or non-alcoholic beverages (not including water) with meals, unless included in the set menu
• Airfare, airport taxes and other transportation to and from the pickup location
• Runner's Festival race fee if participating in the race
• Personal charges such as laundry, telephone calls, rooms service, mini-bar, souvenirs
• Private excursions not mentioned in the itinerary
• Gratuities for chambermaids or personal porters
• Gratuities for your Tour Dog Travel tour director (at your discretion)
• Single supplement of $950 if not sharing a room
This tour includes an option to participate in the Runner's Festival in the Westfjords (race fee is not included in the tour price). The Runners Festival is an annual event offering a half-marathon run, 10 km run, wilderness run (45 km, 24 km and 10 km) plus open water swimming and mountain biking. We will participate in the wilderness race and you have a choice of distance.
NOTE: The tour officially begins at 6:30 pm on Thursday, July 12. You will need to book your flight from the US for Wednesday, July 11 in order to arrive on July 12. The tour ends after breakfast on Friday, July 20.
Day 1 - D
After your overnight flight to Reykjavik, you will be transferred to our centrally located guesthouse. Since most flights from the US arrive early in the morning, there is a chance your room will not be ready so you may opt to store your luggage and head out to explore Reykjavik. Once you have registered for the tour, you will be given some options of things to do (some at an additional cost). Later in the evening we will meet up as a group to enjoy our welcome dinner at a local restaurant where we will toast to the many adventures ahead of us.
DAY 2 - B, L
Today it’s time to enjoy the beauty of Iceland. We’ll spend the day off the beaten path as we head to the Reykjanes Peninsula, an area so close to Reykjavik but yet looks like we’ve traveled to the moon. Our stops include the Krýsuvík geothermal area, where we’ll understand first hand why Iceland is called the Land of Fire and Ice; the Krýsuvíkurberg Cliffs, the largest bird nesting site in Iceland where we’ll hike the trails that run along the dramatic coastline; Gunnuhver, another geothermal area that has been a bit more active of late, some believe that a dragon is sleeping beneath the earth and is slowly awakening. We’ll stop for lunch in a small fishing village before exploring more of this amazing area. Iceland is located on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge and the Reykjanes peninsula is the only place where this ridge can bee seen above sea level. We’ll walk across the Bridge Between Continents and actually set foot on two continents, Europe and America. We’ll end our tour at the domestic airport where we will catch our flight north to Issafjordur. Upon arrival we will be transferred to our guesthouse where we will be staying for the next four nights.
DAY 3 - B, L
The Westfjords are truly off the beaten path and today we get to enjoy the incredible beauty of this remote area. We'll grab out prepared lunches and head off on our adventure. Today will include the beautiful Dynjandi Waterfall, the largest in the Westfjords, a hike in the beautiful surroundings with views that will take your breath away, a relaxing soak in secret natural hot pools, a visit to an artist’s residence and farm and additional stops along the way. After our day’s adventrures are complete it’s time to head back to the guesthouse where you’ll have the evening free to do as you’d like.
DAY 4 - B, D
Today is the Runner’s Festival and lucky for us, the trail races begin right near our hotel. Those of us running will be awed by the incredible scenery as we run the trail between Arnarfjordur to Dyrafjordur. Those who aren’t participating in the Festival can enjoy a bike ride along the coast or a hike in the area. Depending on how the racers feel, there is an option to horseback ride or bike in the afternoon. Tonite we will meet up for dinner and share our experiences of the day.
DAY 5 - B, L
It’s time to work out the soreness from the running and biking. Since Isafjordur is the sea kayking center of Iceland we’ll start the day with a kayak adventure as we paddle between small islands in the beautiful surroundings of fjord Ísafjarðardjúp. We’ll go ashore for a bit where we learn about eiderdown picking and see where sheep were kept in the islet. After our morning of kayaking, we’ll stop for lunch before we the head out for another adventure. Depending on time, we may enjoy another short hike before we head back to our guesthouse for the evening. .
DAY 6 - B, Sushi light lunch
Today we leave the Westfjords as we head south to the Snaefellsness Peninsula, home of Snæfellsjökull volcano. The peninsula is said to be a miniature Iceland because of the diverse geography found here. We’ll make a few stops along the way before checking into our guesthouse in Stykkishólmur, with its picturesque harbor made famous by the movie The Secret Life of Walter Mitty. This afternoon we’ll head out by boat as we join the Viking Sushi tour. We’ll sail around Breiðafjörður’s islands with its fairy tale views and abundance of bird life including the oh so cute puffins. The highlight of the trip could be when they lower the shellfish plough and pull up an abundance of sealife for viewing and eating. We’ll see scallops, sea urchins, crabs, starfish, sea cucumbers and more. Next up, we eat sushi of scallops and sea urchins straight from the sea! It doesn’t get fresher than that.
DAY 7 - B, D
Today we will tip the peninsula and begin to see why this area is called a miniature Iceland. Among our stops will be Djúpalónssandur, with its beautiful black sand where we will have a chance to walk on the beach and explore the rocky coastline. We’ll hike through a lava field from Arnarstapi to Hellnar with its dramatic columnar basalt and cliff formations. Next it’s time to go below the surface as we visit Vatnshellir Cave, an 8000 year old lava tube under Snæfellsjökull glacier, the setting of Jules Verne’s Journey to the Center of the Earth. After of full day above and below ground we head back to our guesthouse where we’ll enjoy a relaxing dinner.
DAY 8 - B, D
Today it’s time to leave Snaefellsness and head back to Reykjavik. We’ll start with a visit to Deildartunguhver, the most powerful hot spring in Europe. After witnessing the spring itself its time to enjoy its power with a visit to the Krauma thermal baths, a natural geothermal bath fed by this powerful spring. After relaxing in the springs, it’s time for another type of enjoyment with a visit to the Brugghus Stedja brewery. Here we’ll learn about one of their unique brews made with a special ingredient that will surprise us all. Time and weather permitting, we may enjoy one last hike to see one of the highest waterfalls in Iceland. In the evening we’ll enjoy a farewell dinner as we toast to the beauty of Iceland and our adventures in this Land of Fire and Ice. After dinner we'll check in to our airport hotel.
DAY 8 - B
Sadly it's time to say good by to Iceland. After breakfast you'll take the hotel shuttle to the international airport where you'll catch your flight back to the US.