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Iceland ATTRACTIONS See all

Thingvellir National Park

This rocky, hilly volcanic landscape in the southwestern countryside was made Iceland’s first national park in 1928, and a UNESCO site in 2004. A deeply significant cultural site for Iceland, this is where Althing, a historic open-air assembly of Icelandic representatives, was held from 930 to 1798. Ruins remain of 50 rock-hewn attendee booths, symbols of a medieval-era Norse political practice that persisted here well into the 18th century.

Althing was Iceland’s initial version of Parliament, and reflected the governmental style of Iceland’s early Norwegian settlers. In the ancient Norse culture, individual chieftains ruled disparate geographical areas but worked collaboratively with other chieftains to create a balance of power; this collaboration required annual face-to-face gatherings of chieftains and their extended clans. These gatherings would last two weeks or more, accompanied by temporary dwellings and markets, as well as entertainment like storytelling, feasts and sports tournaments.

By the year 930, the public land of the Thingvellir region had been chosen for this purpose, as it was deemed accessible from much of the country, which is full of (then-insurmountable) obstacles like huge mountains, glaciers and wide rivers. While communal gatherings here ultimately strengthened the Icelandic culture, the power of the Althing system eroded over time, proving ineffective at keeping more influential chieftains in check. The country was folded into the kingdom of Denmark in the late 1300s, kicking off a long period of decline that included the Black Plague and other deadly diseases; Danish imposition of the Reformation and later, a crippling trade monopoly; and many violent volcanic eruptions.

Though it evolved to represent the voices of an increasingly feudal system of land ownership, the Althing continued to be held at Thingvellir until 1798, when it was moved to the growing capital of Reykjavik. Within two years, it would be dissolved by royal decree, but re-established in 1848; it was this fateful move that prompted Iceland’s eventual autonomy as a sovereign state with its own flag and government.

Tours & Tickets

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Viking Horse-Riding and Gulfoss and Geysir Express Tour from Reykjavik

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 37 Reviews

For a full-day experience with a difference, ride a Viking horse in the morning then spend the afternoon touring Gulfoss, Geysir and other Icelandic natural ...  Read more

Location: Reykjavik, Iceland
Duration: 9 hours (approx.)

From USD $150.83

Golden Circle Evening Trip from Reykjavik

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 29 Reviews

Explore the Golden Circle at night! Enjoy visiting Thingvellir National Park, as well as the most popular tourist spots in Iceland such as the famous waterfall ...  Read more

Location: Reykjavik, Iceland
Duration: 5 hours (approx.)

From USD $72.24

Day Trip from Reykjavik: Cave Exploring in Gjábakkahellir and Snorkeling in Silfra

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 18 Reviews

This adventurous tour is your chance to go cave exploring and snorkeling in one incredible day. On this day trip from Reykjavik, visit Iceland's ...  Read more

Location: Reykjavik, Iceland
Duration: 8 hours (approx.)

From USD $229.41

Golden Circle Tour and Snorkeling Experience with 4x4 Jeep Transport from Reykjavik

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 17 Reviews

Snorkel at Silfra Fissure in the UNESCO-listed Thingvellir National Park, and visit incredible Golden Circle attractions on this day trip from Reykjavik! After ...  Read more

Location: Reykjavik, Iceland
Duration: 10 hours (approx.)

From USD $382.77

Golden Circle Classic Day Trip from Reykjavik

4.5 star rating: Recommended 528 Reviews

Want to see some of the best-known natural phenomena in Iceland on a day trip from Reykjavik? From spouting geysers, tumbling waterfalls and ancient ...  Read more

Location: Reykjavik, Iceland
Duration: 8 hours 30 minutes (approx.)

From USD $79.85

Reykjavik Super Saver: Blue Lagoon Round-Trip Transport plus Gulfoss and Geysir Half-Day Tour

4.5 star rating: Recommended 157 Reviews

Combine two tours in one Super Saver for the perfect Icelandic experience. Start your morning relaxing at the Blue Lagoon surrounded by lava fields and snow ...  Read more

Location: Reykjavik, Iceland
Duration: 10 hours 30 minutes (approx.)

From USD $105.20

Gulfoss and Geysir Express Half-Day Trip from Reykjavik

4.5 star rating: Recommended 116 Reviews

Take an afternoon tour from Reykjavik to experience geysers, waterfalls and some of the most exciting natural phenomena Iceland has to offer. In just six hours ...  Read more

Location: Reykjavik, Iceland
Duration: 6 hours (approx.)

From USD $76.05

Whale Watching including Gullfoss and Geysir Express Tour from Reykjavik

4.5 star rating: Recommended 38 Reviews

For a full-day experience with a difference, go on a whale watching boat trip in the morning then spend the afternoon touring Gullfoss, Geysir and other ...  Read more

Location: Reykjavik, Iceland
Duration: 10 hours (approx.)

From USD $152.09

Reykjavik Sightseeing including Gullfoss and Geysir Express Tour

4.5 star rating: Recommended 14 Reviews

Combine two tours in one for the perfect Icelandic experience: See the highlights of Reykjavik in the morning, then spend the afternoon touring Gullfoss, ...  Read more

Location: Reykjavik, Iceland
Duration: 10 hours (approx.)

From USD $110.27

Reykjanes Peninsula and Gulfoss and Geysir Express Tour from Reykjavik

4 star rating: Recommended 4 Reviews

Combine two half-day tours in one! You'll tour the Reykjanes Peninsula in the morning, then spend the afternoon touring Gulfoss, Geysir and other Icelandic ...  Read more

Location: Reykjavik, Iceland
Duration: 10 hours (approx.)

From USD $145.76

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