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  • Admission: Free

Reykjavik ATTRACTIONS See all

Golden Circle Route

Iceland is spectacular and so is the Golden Circle Route. The wide open landscapes are like nothing you've ever seen before. Actively volcanic, this inland route is a mass of waterfalls, glaciers, geysers, lava fields, and, of course, those volcanoes. The first stop is Thingvellir National Park, the spectacular site of Iceland's first parliament and the place where the Eurasian and North American tectonic plates meet - and are moving apart. There is a widening fissure in the ground where the planet is literally opening up. Next it's on to Gullfoss waterfall, a huge fall of water. From here you can see a glacier off to one side. And then it's geysers. The sheer power of water and steam erupting from the ground due to the build up of extreme heat is awesome and really makes you realize how alive the ground is beneath our feet. 

On the road back to Reykjavik, you pass through the Hveragerdi greenhouse village, an example of how the Icelanders harness the power beneath the earth to live in this often tough, if beautiful, environment. Passing the geothermal power plant at Nesjavellir is another example: electricity is the country's main export! (As it's a bit difficult to send electricity over the oceans, overseas companies establish metal smelters etc in Iceland to use the plentiful electricity.)

Practical Info

The best way to see the Golden Circle highlights of Iceland is with an organized tour. It's a 185 mile (300 kilometer) loop, some of the roads are rough, and in winter snowy, but the tourist buses are designed to cope with the terrain.

Tours & Tickets

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Golden Circle Classic Day Trip from Reykjavik

4.5 star rating: Recommended 990 Reviews

Location: Reykjavik, Iceland
Duration: 8 hours 30 minutes

From USD $74.97

Golden Circle Tour by Super Jeep Including Glacier Snowmobiling

4.5 star rating: Recommended 26 Reviews

Location: Reykjavik, Iceland
Duration: 10 hours

From USD $407.76
From USD $464.56

Golden Circle Evening Trip from Reykjavik

4.5 star rating: Recommended 40 Reviews

Location: Reykjavik, Iceland
Duration: 5 hours

From USD $68.15
From USD $305.54
From USD $164.70

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