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  • Address: Iceland
  • Hours:
  • Admission: Free

Reykjavik ATTRACTIONS See all

Golden Circle Route

There’s a lot to see in Iceland, and the grand Golden Circle is your ticket to easily hitting multiple popular sights, especially if you only have one day to venture outside Reykjavik. Departing from the city, Golden Circle tours showcase a number of Iceland’s main attractions and natural wonders—think geysers, waterfalls, lava fields, volcanic craters, and Icelandic horses. There are few other places in Europe where you can see so much topographical variety on one short trip.

Stunning Sights Along the Golden Circle
Closest to Reykjavik on the route is Thingvellir National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site home to the rift valley between the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates and the site of the ancient Icelandic parliament. Head next to the world-famous Geysir and Strokkur geysers, where you’ll see eruptions every six to 10 minutes; the 600-foot-wide (180-meter) Gullfoss waterfall; and Kerid Crater Lake, which is surrounded by striking red volcanic rock. The Golden Circle is also an important geothermal area for Iceland (which runs almost entirely on renewable energy), with the Nesjavellir power plant and the Hveragerdi greenhouse village nearby.

How to Visit with Viator
Most Golden Circle excursions depart from Reykjavik by bus, include an expert guide, and comprise an entire day of sightseeing. If you have time, opt for a group or private tour that tacks on additional activities along the way. Take an Icelandic Super Jeep tour; whitewater raft on the river Hvítá; try a snowmobile tour on the Langjökull Glacier; search for the Northern Lights in winter; or dip into the super heated water of the Blue Lagoon or the Secret Lagoon hot springs.

Insider Tip
The Golden Circle route is one of the most popular day tours among travelers, so expect some crowds. And don’t confuse this expedition with a trip around the Ring Road, which circles the entire country and is best seen with a rental car and (at least) a week’s time.

Things to Know Before You Go
  • Wear comfortable shoes and layers no matter the season.
  • Most sites have paved boardwalks and flat ground for easy accessibility.
  • Don’t worry about food and WiFi—many tour buses include wireless internet, and there are plenty of restaurants and cafes along the way that provide both.
  • From mid-May to mid-August, the sun only dips below the horizon for about three hours per day in Iceland, making the atmosphere especially beautiful in the lingering twilight. In midwinter, you'll get only about five hours of daylight.

How to Get There

It takes just over three hours to drive the famous Golden Circle from Reykjavik, but plan on spending anywhere from six to eight hours depending on how long you explore at each stop. Most bus tours do the full loop before returning to the city. Whether you’re traveling by bus or rental car, the route is paved and 4x4 vehicles aren’t necessary.

Tours & Tickets

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Golden Circle of Iceland - Private Day Tour from Reykjavik by Jeep, Reykjavik, null
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 3

Golden Circle of Iceland - Private Day Tour from Reykjavik by Jeep

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 8 Reviews

Your day starts at 9am with hotel pickup before spending 8 hours exploring the beauty of Iceland with your guide/driver.  This private full-day tour takes ...  Read more

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

From USD $177.41
Golden Circle, Fontana Baths and Northern Lights Day Trip from Reykjavik Including Lunch and ... 
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 3

Golden Circle, Fontana Baths and Northern Lights Day Trip from Reykjavik Including Lunch and Dinner

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 3 Reviews

On this fully packed 11-hour day trip we combine the famous Golden Circle with visits to some local farms and restaurants for tastings of delicious Icelandic ...  Read more

Location: Reykjavik, Iceland
Duration: 11 hours (approx.)

From USD $326.36
Grand Golden Circle Day Trip from Reykjavik, Reykjavik, Day Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Grand Golden Circle Day Trip from Reykjavik

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 205 Reviews

This grand Golden Circle tour takes you to the most popular sights where you can experience the three highlights of the South West of Iceland: Geysir, Gulfoss ...  Read more

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

From USD $89.90
Golden Circle Classic Day Trip from Reykjavik, Reykjavik, Day Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Golden Circle Classic Day Trip from Reykjavik

4.5 star rating: Recommended 1577 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 $89.24
Golden Circle Day Trip from Reykjavik plus Snowmobiling on Langjökull Glacier, Reykjavik, Day ... 
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Golden Circle Day Trip from Reykjavik plus Snowmobiling on Langjökull Glacier

4.5 star rating: Recommended 15 Reviews

This tour combines the very popular Golden Circle tour with the adventure of a lifetime - a one-hour snowmobile ride on Langjökull glacier, Iceland's ...  Read more

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

From USD $224.00
Golden Circle and Laugarvatn Fontana Geothermal Baths Tour from Reykjavik, Reykjavik, Day Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Golden Circle and Laugarvatn Fontana Geothermal Baths Tour from Reykjavik

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 40 Reviews

Discover the otherworldly landscapes and relaxing thermal powers of Iceland on this day trip from Reyjavik. With an expert guide, see the Nesjavellir power ...  Read more

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

From USD $122.57
Golden Circle Tour and Snorkeling Experience with Transport from Reykjavik, Reykjavik, Day Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Golden Circle Tour and Snorkeling Experience with Transport from Reykjavik

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 23 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 $256.97
Inside the Volcano: Small Group Thrihnukagigur Hike and Tour from Reykjavik, Reykjavik, Day Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Inside the Volcano: Small Group Thrihnukagigur Hike and Tour from Reykjavik

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 50 Reviews

Hungry for adventure? Journey into the depths of a dormant volcano on this exhilarating 5-hour expedition from Reykjavik. After a hike through the lava fields ...  Read more

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

From USD $376.31
Golden Circle Afternoon Tour from Reykjavik, Reykjavik, Day Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Golden Circle Afternoon Tour from Reykjavik

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 78 Reviews

Explore the unique volcanic and arctic nature of Iceland. This Golden Circle Afternoon tour is a shorter version of the Grand Golden Circle tour and a great ...  Read more

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

From USD $79.90
Golden Circle and South Coast Day Trip from Reykjavik by Minibus, Reykjavik, Day Trips
TVRM_SORTED : true ESSENTIAL : 1 ADMISSION : 5

Golden Circle and South Coast Day Trip from Reykjavik by Minibus

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 3 Reviews

Save time and money and see both the Golden Circle and the South Coast of Iceland in one day! This is a 11-12 hour tour with stops at the classic Golden Circle ...  Read more

Location: Reykjavik, Iceland
Duration: 12 hours (approx.)

From USD $162.00

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