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This itinerary will allow you to discover the region of the West fjords, a region with very little tourism, the wildest in Iceland. With magnificent landscapes, the North West of Iceland will give you the feeling of having reached the end of the world. You will drive surrounded by vertiginous mountains and deep fjords. This stay will allow you to discover superb deserted beaches, magnificent waterfalls, very beautiful viewpoints. You will have the chance to be able to bathe in natural hot springs, observe fauna with seals, whales and in summer, thousands of sea birds… a trip for those who love tranquility outside of mass tourism.
Before arriving in the West fjords, you will have the possibility of traversing the beautiful Snaefellsnes peninsula with various walks, along high cliffs, on pebble beaches or lava fields. Each site is an invitation to leave your vehicle and marvel in front of the landscapes.
You can also extend this trip and visit the Golden Circle and its three must-see sites, Thingvellir, Geysir and Gullfoss, or enjoy the calm of Flatey Island, a paradise for bird watchers. A place that seems to have remained frozen in the past.
The itinerary is given as an indication. We can arrange this self-drive according to the time you have, with a minimum of 8 days on site. A domestic flight is possible between Reykjavik and Ísafjörður, if you do not have enough time to drive back to the capital.
Upon arrival at Keflavik International Airport, you pick up your rental vehicle and drive to your accommodation, located in the vicinity of Borgarnes on the country’s west coast. It was here that some of the first Vikings settled, as mentioned in the writings of the Icelandic Sagas.
For late arrivals, it is possible to stay near the airport, by the coast.
Driving distance about 120 kms.
For this first day, you will head to the Snaefellsnes peninsula, taking the road along the coast which will take you all around the Snæfellsjökull glacier-volcano, gateway to the book Journey to the center of the Earth by Jules Verne. Many stops are possible, at the charming church of Búðir, along the impressive cliffs of Arnastarpi or in the heart of the deserted pebble beaches of Djúpalónssandur. In some places it is not uncommon to spot seals. Your accommodation is located in the town of Stykkisholmur famous for its local gastronomy.
Driving distance about 250 kms.
On this second day on the peninsula, you will be able to observe the many sea birds, which inhabit the high cliffs, located at the end of the peninsula. You can also admire Kirkjufell, one of the most famous mountains in Iceland, due to its very particular shape, and take a whale watching excursion. Finally, the visit to the museum of the fermented shark and the tasting of this very special dish, is only reserved for the more adventurous. Overnight at the same place.
Driving distance about 200 kms.
This morning, you take a ferry across the fjord, to the West Fjords. Then you take a road to the cliffs of Latrabjarg, a privileged place to see puffins. This piece of land, the westernmost in Europe, is home to one of the largest colonies of seabirds in the world with several million animals. With your cameras you’ll be able to capture this unforgettable spectacle, of uninterrupted comings and goings, between the cliffs and the sea.
Overnight in Breiðavík. Driving distance about 140 kms.
For the early birds a must do is to return to Latrabjarg in the morning to see the puffins leaving to fish at sea. Then, it’s time to hit the road towards Ísafjörður. The landscapes of fjords are magnificent. Many possible stops en route, especially to admire the superb waterfall of Dynjandi. You will drive by several vertiginous passes, with superb views of the fjords below. Here and there, you will see a few isolated farms and pass by small sleepy villages, before arriving in the capital of the West Fjords.
Overnight in Ísafjörður’s city center. Driving distance about 200 kms.
You take the road that go pass between sea and mountains with many viewpoints, sometimes looking at a lazy seal. You get in the heart of the Heydalur valley, an idyllic place where the blueberries bushes help foxes to hide easily. You can have a bath in nature and for those who want, horseback riding or kayaking excursion are possible ! You then continue to Holmavik, famous for its witchcraft museum. Overnight in the surroundings of Drangsnes, to enjoy the wild beauty of the landscapes and another hot bath, facing the sea.
Driving distance about 270 kms.
It’s now time to leave the fjords and take the road towards the South and the Reykholt region. The long road passes one more time along the coast. Enjoy the unique spectacle of deserted beaches covered with driftwood, before returning to the landscapes of fertile plains. Visit the Barnafoss and Hraunfossar waterfalls which are home to ancient stories … Overnight in the surroundings.
Driving distance about 250 kms.
You drive back to Reykjavik and return to civilization. Spend the day visiting the Icelandic capital, stroll through the city center, to the small harbor, towards the cathedral, enjoy some shopping and an evening to discover the local gastronomy and enjoy the atmosphere of its bars and cafes. Late flight or overnight in the city center and early drive the next morning to the airport.