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Things to do in Iceland

Things to do in  Iceland

Welcome to Iceland

Iceland, the country of fire (volcanoes) and ice (glaciers), lives up to its magical reputation. Human presence feels minimal and nature reigns supreme: The northern lights, hot springs, glaciers, active volcanoes, geysers, and inviting desolation makes Iceland a natural phenomenon in itself. Your entry point will be the capital Reykjavík, where the top things to see and do include Hallgrímskirkja church and Harpa concert hall. Reykjavík also serves as an ideal jumping-off point for the country’s natural wonders. The well-known Golden Circle of the island contains three of the country’s most famous natural attractions: Thingvellir National Park, Gullfoss waterfall, and the Strokkur Geysir and geothermal area. Discover the south coast with a guided visit to the famous Blue Lagoon for a hot swim in an ice-cold climate, or take a whale-watching boat tour.

Top 15 attractions in Iceland

Blue Lagoon

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To understand why Iceland's Blue Lagoon is so popular, just imagine bathing in steaming milky-blue waters, sipping a cocktail at a swim-up bar, and looking out over an otherworldly landscape of jagged peaks and black lava fields. This geothermal pool, the most visited of Iceland's many such oases, boasts mineral-rich waters, a luxurious spa, and a magnificent setting, all just minutes from Reykjavik.More

Godafoss

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Often said to be one of the most spectacular waterfalls in Iceland, Godafoss (which translates to “Waterfall of the Gods”) cascades into the Skjálfandafljót River that tears through Bárdardalur lava field. It lies along the “Ring Road” and leads to the Sprengisandur highland plateau, nestled between Hofsjökull and Vatnajökull glaciers.More

Sólheimajökull Glacier

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Among Iceland’s most famous peaks, the notoriously difficult-to-pronounce Eyjafjallajökull volcano made headlines when it erupted in 2010, spewing an enormous cloud of volcanic ash that grounded air traffic all across Europe. The imposing, ice-capped volcano has three main peaks, the tallest of which reaches 5,417 feet (1,651 meters).More

Thingvellir National Park

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Thingvellir National Park is a remarkable volcanic landscape of gorges, waterfalls, lakes, and more, and is a favorite stop on Iceland’s Golden Circle Tour. Plus, the park offers endless recreation opportunities, from hiking and camping to snorkeling, diving, and fishing.More

Gullfoss Waterfall (Golden Falls)

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Gullfoss (Golden Falls) is a massive waterfall on the river Hvita in western Iceland. The falls are considered one of Iceland's most treasured natural wonders, with a name inspired by the phenomenon when glacial sediment in the water turns the falls golden in the sunlight.More

Reynisfjara Beach

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A place of stark, wild beauty, this black-sand beach on Iceland's south coast is one of the country's most photogenic locations. Here, roaring Atlantic waves batter the Reynisdrangar sea stacks, the black pebble shoreline, and the pyramid-like cliff of basalt columns known as Garðar, where you can spot puffins and guillemots.More

Skógafoss

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Stretching 82 feet (25 meters) across the Skógá River, into which its teeming waters plunge 197 feet (60 meters) from a rocky cliff, Skógafoss clocks in as one of Iceland’s biggest waterfalls. Its clouds of spray regularly create vivid rainbows—often double rainbows—across the waters. The waterfall is also an important site for local folklore.More

Great Geysir (Great Geyser)

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The world's original geyser, the Great Geysir (Great Geyser) is the source of the English word after which all other geysers are named. Geysir literally means "gusher" in Icelandic, and this natural phenomenon in the Haukadalur geothermal region has been active for more than 10,000 years; records of hot springs activity in the region date back to 1294.More

Seljalandsfoss

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A slim cascade of water slicing through the air and pooling in the Seljalands River below, Seljalandsfoss is one of Iceland’s most photogenic waterfalls. Because the falls’ chute of water is so narrow, visitors can also step behind Seljalandsfoss for a unique vantage point.More

Vatnajokull National Park

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Established in 2008 by combining Iceland’s former Jokulsargljufur and Skaftafell National Parks, Vatnajokull National Park is one of Europe’s largest national parks. It presents incredibly diverse and dramatic scenery including glacial plateaus, active volcanoes, towering ice caps, black-sand beaches, and terrain that is bubbling with geothermal activity. The park is dominated by the Vatnajokull glacier, Europe’s third-largest glacier, and contains Iceland’s highest mountain (Oraefajokull) and deepest lake (Jokulsarlon).More

Dimmuborgir

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Dimmuborgir (“the dark castles” in Icelandic) is a surreal, unusually shaped lava field composed of volcanic caves and rock formations resembling an ancient collapsed citadel. It is frequently cited as being one of the most striking naturally-formed landscapes in a country filled with exceptional scenes– that’s saying something. It is consequently one of Iceland’s most visited attractions.Although Dimmuborgir recently gained worldwide popularity after being featured in the acclaimed TV showGames of Thrones, it has long been part of Icelandic folklore. Indeed, Dimmuborgir is said to be the home of homicidal troll Grýla, her husband Leppalúði and their mischievous sons the Yule Lads; the story of this psychopathic family has been told to Icelandic children for centuries now as a means to get them to behave.Moreover, Icelandic folklore says that Dimmuborgir connects earth with the infernal regions, and is rumored to be the very place where Satan landed when he was cast from the heavens. But contrary to popular beliefs, the Dimmuborgir area was not born out of divine intervention; science has a more plausible explanation. It was formed about 2,300 years ago during a volcano eruption caused by the Þrengslaborgir crater row. Lava started flowing in the area, forming a massive lava pool in the process and bringing water from nearby marshes to a boil. The vapor resulting from this chemical reaction created lava pillars that measured up to a few meters in diameter. But eventually the reservoir’s top crust collapsed under the lava’s weight, miraculously leaving the hollow pillars that we see today completely intact.More

Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon

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Perched on the cusp of Europe’s largest glacier and separated from the Atlantic Ocean by just a narrow isthmus, the Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon is the largest, deepest, and arguably most magnificent of Iceland’s many glacial lakes. Here, icebergs bob in glittering water framed by jagged peaks, rugged lava fields, and black-sand beaches.More

Harpa (Reykjavik Concert Hall and Conference Centre)

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Set on the waterfront, the striking Harpa (Reykjavik Concert Hall and Conference Centre), home to both the Icelandic Opera and Iceland Symphony Orchestra, is one of Reykjavik’s most prominent landmarks. Designed by world-renowned Icelandic-Danish artist Olafur Eliasson and Danish firm, Henning Larsen Architects, the building’s glass facade features honeycombed panels that change colors as they reflect the sky and the ocean.More

Golden Circle (Gullni Hringurinn)

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There’s a lot to see in Iceland, and the grand Golden Circle (Gullni Hringurinn) 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.More

Mývatn Nature Baths

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Iceland’s natural hot springs, fed by volcanic activity and dotted all around the country, are world renowned. The most famous is the Blue Lagoon, but it’s almost always crammed with day-trippers from nearby Reykjavik. Myvatn Nature Baths, on the other hand, remain a pocket of tranquility, hidden away in the less-visited north.More

Trip ideas

Top activities in Iceland

Blue Lagoon Ticket with Optional Transportation
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Classic Whale Watching from Reykjavik | The Original

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Classic Whale Watching from Reykjavik | The Original

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Glacier Walk and South Coast Tour by Minibus from Reykjavik
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Golden Circle, Kerid Volcanic Crater, and Blue Lagoon Day Trip from Reykjavik
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Recent reviews from experiences in Iceland

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Amazing act of nature
Kay_H, Dec 2022
Northern Lights Bus Tour from Reykjavik
After 5 visits to Iceland, I finally got to see the northern lights!
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Beautiful country
Kay_H, Dec 2022
Golden Circle Day Trip with Kerid Volcanic Crater from Reykjavik
So pleased to see a part of the country without the snow!
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Golden Circle Tiur
Robert_B, Dec 2022
Golden Circle and Secret Lagoon Full Day Tour from Reykjavik by Minibus
He brought the attractions to life with great stories.
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Great small group and great guide
Bronwyn_A, Dec 2022
Golden Circle Afternoon and Northern Lights Tour from Reykjavik
Loved every stop and we even got to see the northern lights.
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Great experience to see...
Wendy_P, Dec 2022
FlyOver Iceland
Great experience to see so much more of Iceland than we could do on our trip and also to expeirnec the inaccessible places
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Great Golden Circle trip
Eva_V, Nov 2022
Small-Group Golden Circle and Kerid Volcanic Crater Day Trip from Reykjavik
Golden Circle places are all well chosen and especially I liked Gullfoss waterfall, Kerid volcanic crater as well as Gayser.
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Iceland made us feel in paradise.
Patricia_H, Nov 2022
South Iceland Glaciers, Waterfalls and Black Sand Beach Day Tour from Reykjavik
The glacier was amazing, the black beach, the waterfalls.
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Brilliant guide , very...
Aoife_B, Nov 2022
Golden Circle & Northern lights in Iceland
The guide for the Northern lights part of the tour was lovely , took us to a great spot to see the lights, which didn't disappoint.
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Great trip
Melissa_O, Nov 2022
Golden Circle and the Secret Lagoon from Reykjavik
Wonderful trip, would recommend if you’re only in Iceland for a short break as you get to see some of the best sights all in one go.
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Excellent tour
Jes_R, Nov 2022
Golden Circle Classic Day Trip from Reykjavik
We saw the sights on this tour as planned and were given ample time at each stop to see the attractions.
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Highly Recommended
Anne_L, Nov 2022
Reykjavik Walking Tour - Walk with a Viking
Well worth doing if you want to see more of the city and learn about both city and Iceland.
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Amazing experience!!...
JEANELLA_I, Nov 2022
Northern Lights tour from Reykjavik |Small group, FREE photos & Hot Chocolate
I feel blessed i got to see the Northern Lights on my first trip to Iceland.
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Breathtaking sites
Maureen_P, Nov 2022
Golden Circle, Volcano Crater & Blue Lagoon Small Group Tour
The waterfalls and geysers are something everyone should experience.
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Amazing northern light
Mandy_L, Nov 2022
Northern Lights Small-Group Minibus Tour from Reykjavik
To able to see the Northern Light definitely base on luck and chances.
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Unique experience
Sonja_H, Nov 2022
Golden Circle Day Trip with Kerid Volcanic Crater from Reykjavik
We visited a Geysir, golden waterfall and a creater.
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Beautiful Northern light
Usha_W, Nov 2022
Northern Lights small group tour, with hot chocolate, pastries and photos
We planned this November trip to Iceland to see Northern lights.
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A Must-do Tour
Susan_T, Nov 2022
South Coast Full Day Tour by Minibus from Reykjavik
He took us to beautiful waterfalls, black sand beach, glacier, and more.
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Must do trip
Christopher_R, Nov 2022
South Coast: Fire & Ice - Waterfalls, Glaciers & Icelandic Lava Show in Vík
Both waterfalls, beach and glacier were incredible.
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Iceland Everwhere South Coast Tour
BRIDGET_F, Nov 2022
South Coast tour from Reykjavík in minibus
Brilliant South Coast tour with Iceland Everywhere Tours, Waterfalls, Glaciers and the spectacular Reynisfjara Beach (Black Sand beach), the weather was very kind, mild and mostly dry and the tour guide Tomas very knowledgeable and a great sense of humour.
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Golden Circle - Big adventure
Jonathan_T, Nov 2022
Golden Circle & Glacier Snowmobiling Day Trip from Reykjavik
Big geysers, big waterfalls, big skies, big trucks, BIG BIG a fun on the glaciers.
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All about Iceland

Currency
Icelandic Króna (ISK)
Time Zone
GMT (UTC 0)
Country Code
+354
Language(s)
Icelandic
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