Reykjavik RECOMMENDATIONS See all

Summer Activities in Reykjavik

By Viator, June 2016

4.5 41 Reviews | Add your review

Just because its name evokes images of snowshoeing and glacier hiking, doesn’t mean Iceland is only a winter destination; in fact, the summer months are one of the most popular times to explore with extended sunlight hours providing the opportunity to continue tours late into the evening. Here are a few suggestions for what to do in Iceland in summer.

1. Go horse riding
Take to the saddle on one of the legendary Icelandic horses – a small, tough breed of native horses famous for their unique gait known as a ‘tolt’. Speedy but comfortable, tolting across the Icelandic countryside is one of the best ways to get a view of the country’s spectacular volcanic landscape and there are abundant horseback riding tours around the country.

2. Hike in the National Parks
Shed the thermals and snowshoes (unless you’re heading to the glaciers) because summer hiking is an altogether milder affair and it’s the best time to visit Iceland’s National Parks and tackle some of the country’s world-renowned hiking trails. Head to Vatnajökull, Europe’s largest National Park, for expansive views over the country’s biggest glacier and the thundering Dettifoss falls; take a day trip to the Thingvellir National Park from Reykjavik; or scale the famous rhyolite mountains of Landmannalaugar.

3. Take a road trip
With less chance of icy roads and treacherous driving conditions, summer is the perfect time for hiring a car or campervan and driving around Iceland, either as part of a self-guide tour or a DIY excursion. Cruise around the island on the Ring Road, which circles the entire country, or for an authentic Icelandic summer vacation, brave the rugged mountain tracks and hire a log cabin in the wilderness.

4. Go wildlife spotting
Iceland’s coastline is teeming with a variety of marine life and as the weather gets warmer, boat cruises offer plenty of wildlife spotting opportunities. Spot whales in their natural habitats off the coast of Húsavík; get a view of the Puffins on the Lundey and Akurey islands in the Reykjavík bay area; or take a sea fishing excursion.

5. Enjoy Iceland’s summer festivals
Summer in Iceland brings with it a number of fun festivals, many organized on the Verslunarmannahelgi weekend (a bank holiday weekend at the start of August). The National festival, held on the Vestmannaeyjar islands is one of the biggest, a 4-day music and entertainment festival that draws thousands of visitors from all over the country, but Reykjavík also has a number of summer events including the Gay Pride Festival, the Menningarnótt (Culture Night) and the Reykjavík Jazz Festival. Other popular annual festivals include the Bright Days festival in Hafnarfjordu, the Reykholt Music Festival in Reykholt and the Viking Festival in Hafnarfjordur.

Contributed by Zoe Smith

Tours & Tickets

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Small-Group Golden Circle Tour and Secret Lagoon Visit from Reykjavik, Reykjavik, null
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Small-Group Golden Circle Tour and Secret Lagoon Visit from Reykjavik

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 232 Reviews

Indulge in a tour of the Golden Circle - the relaxing way, and explore some of Iceland's most famous sights, including: Thingvellir National Park, Gullfoss ...  Read more

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

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South Iceland Tour from Reykjavik: Waterfalls, Volcanoes and Glaciers, Reykjavik, Day Trips
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South Iceland Tour from Reykjavik: Waterfalls, Volcanoes and Glaciers

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 140 Reviews

Discover dramatic black-sand beaches, thundering waterfalls and ancient volcanoes and glaciers that typify south Iceland on a full-day tour from Reykjavik! ...  Read more

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

From USD $195.34
Viking Horse-Riding Tour and Blue Lagoon from Reykjavik, Reykjavik, Day Trips
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Viking Horse-Riding Tour and Blue Lagoon from Reykjavik

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 101 Reviews

For an Icelandic experience with a difference, ride a Viking horse in the morning or early afternoon and then spend the rest of the day relaxing at the Blue ...  Read more

Location: Reykjavik, Iceland
Duration: Minimum 5 hours

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Day Trip from Reykjavik: Glacier Hiking and Ice Climbing on Iceland's Sólheimajokull Glacier, ... 
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Day Trip from Reykjavik: Glacier Hiking and Ice Climbing on Iceland's Sólheimajokull Glacier

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 98 Reviews

Embark on an adventurous journey from Reykjavik to Iceland’s Sólheimajökull Glacier. Your expert guide will take you glacier hiking and ice climbing ...  Read more

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

From USD $206.19
Day Trip from Reykjavik: Cave Exploring in Gjábakkahellir and Snorkeling in Silfra, Reykjavik, ... 
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Day Trip from Reykjavik: Cave Exploring in Gjábakkahellir and Snorkeling in Silfra

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 58 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.)

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Mountain Helicopter Tour with Summit Landing from Reykjavik, Reykjavik, Day Trips
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Mountain Helicopter Tour with Summit Landing from Reykjavik

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 55 Reviews

Fly to a mountain top close to Reykjavik City on a 40-minute helicopter tour from Reykjavik, and enjoy bird’s-eye views of Iceland’s dramatic scenery. The ...  Read more

Location: Reykjavik, Iceland
Duration: 40 minutes (approx.)

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

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 49 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 $380.03
Snorkeling in Thingvellir National Park from Reykjavik, Reykjavik, Day Trips
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Snorkeling in Thingvellir National Park from Reykjavik

5 star rating: Highly Recommended 31 Reviews

Snorkel between two continents during this incredible experience in Thingvellir National Park. After pickup from your Reykjavik hotel, travel to the ...  Read more

Location: Reykjavik, Iceland
Duration: 4 hours (approx.)

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Blue Lagoon Spa with Roundtrip Transport from Reykjavik, Reykjavik, Snorkeling
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Blue Lagoon Spa with Roundtrip Transport from Reykjavik

4.5 star rating: Recommended 687 Reviews

Find the ultimate relaxation when in Reykjavik on this excursion to the Blue Lagoon. Surrounded by lava fields and snow-capped mountains, the Blue Lagoon is a ...  Read more

Location: Reykjavik, Iceland
Duration: Flexible

From USD $90.12
Reykjavik Whale Watching Cruise in the Midnight Sun, Reykjavik, Attraction Tickets
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Reykjavik Whale Watching Cruise in the Midnight Sun

4 star rating: Recommended 16 Reviews

Take advantage of the Icelandic midnight sun in June and July, and use the bright night sky to look for whales, dolphins and more. The 2.5-hour whale watching ...  Read more

Location: Reykjavik, Iceland
Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes (approx.)

From USD $79.00

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