Have you ever fantasized about exploring the mystical landscapes of Iceland but felt overwhelmed planning the trip? Fear no more! We at Reykjavik Cars have curated the perfect 9-day Iceland itinerary for you.
With a well-established name in the industry and a flawless Google Review rating, we're your dependable, knowledgeable buddy in this adventure. From the contrasting beauty of fire and ice to the serene fjords and vibrant city life, our itinerary is designed to ensure you witness the magnificence of Iceland in all its glory.
Let's embark on this once-in-a-lifetime journey together!
Overview of Iceland
Let's kick off your 9-day Iceland itinerary with a quick dive into what makes Iceland a bucket-list destination. From its unique geography to the ideal time to visit, we've got you covered!
What's So Unique About Iceland's Geography?
Iceland's landscape is as diverse as it is breathtaking, making it a geological wonderland. The island boasts vast lava fields, towering glaciers, dramatic cliffs, and geothermal pools. From the black sand beaches in Vik to the rugged fjords in the East, every region has its own unique charm.
What Is Iceland's Climate Like?
Understanding Iceland's weather and climate is crucial to your Iceland 9-day itinerary planning. Despite its chilly name, Iceland's summer can reach a pleasant 20°C (68°F), while winter temperatures hover around 0°C (32°F). Each season offers different experiences, from the midnight sun in summer to the dancing Northern Lights in winter.
When Is the Best Time To Visit Iceland?
Visiting Iceland offers unique experiences year-round. However, your best time to visit Iceland largely depends on your interests. Summer (June to August) brings mild weather and extended daylight hours, perfect for a 9-day exploration of Iceland's landscapes. Conversely, winter (December to February), with its short, darker days, offers an unrivaled view of the Northern Lights, adding a magical touch to your 9 days in Iceland.
The Ultimate 9-Day Iceland Itinerary
Ready to dive into the meat of the matter? Brace yourself as we unravel our meticulously planned 9-day Iceland itinerary that promises excitement, relaxation, and awe-inspiring landscapes. Let's do this!
Day 1: Reykjavík
Welcome to the capital of Iceland, Reykjavík, the starting point of your Iceland itinerary for 9 days. Your day starts at 9 a.m. with a classic whale-watching tour, where you'll spend 3 hours exploring the wonders of Faxaflói Bay and its majestic marine life.
As you return ashore, a Reykjavík walking tour at 5 p.m. awaits. This 2-hour stroll through the city will take you to landmarks like the Harpa Concert Hall, Hallgrímskirkja Church, and Reykjavík Harbor, interspersed with stories of Icelandic mythology and local culture.
Alternatively, you can prepare for some fun as you roll around downtown on an e-scooter excursion, exploring the city's vibrant streets and historic buildings at 4 p.m. Lastly, don't forget to pick up your Reykjavík City Card, a 48-hour passport to the city's best attractions, and public transportation, making your exploration both convenient and enjoyable.
Day 2: The Golden Circle
Embark on the second day of your 9 days in Iceland adventure, exploring the enchanting Golden Circle. Begin your journey with a visit to Þingvellir National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, where you can witness the meeting point of the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates.
Next, at 11:45 a.m., indulge in a delightful 30-minute rye bread tour at Laugarvatn Fontana, where you'll experience a traditional Icelandic geothermal bakery and savor the earthy flavors of freshly baked rye bread paired with smoked trout.
Continue your exploration of the majestic Gullfoss waterfall, marveling at its powerful cascades. End your day at 5 p.m., unwinding in the serene, geothermal waters of the Secret Lagoon, soaking amidst the splendid landscapes of Flúðir. Just book your Secret Lagoon tickets in advance to avoid long queues.
Day 3: South Coast
Embark on an exhilarating Day 3 of your Iceland 9-day itinerary, exploring the awe-inspiring South Coast. Your adventure begins at 10:15 a.m. with the zipline ride, where you'll soar over the stunning Black Canyon and conclude at the scenic Reykjadalsá River, experiencing Iceland's diverse landscapes from a thrilling perspective.
At 2 p.m., delve into the geological wonders at the LAVA Centre, exploring interactive exhibits, watching a captivating volcano cinema, and soaking in panoramic views from the observation platform. After the LAVA Centre, head to the enchanting Seljalandsfoss and Skógafoss waterfalls, where the cascading waters create a mesmerizing spectacle against the rugged Icelandic landscape.
End your day by strolling along Reynisfjara Beach, where the black sands, powerful waves, and the Reynisdrangar rock formations will leave you in awe. Don't forget to grab a bite at the Black Beach Restaurant, savoring delicious Icelandic cuisine while taking in stunning views of the beach.
Day 4: Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon
Embark on a frosty adventure on Day 4 of your 9-day Iceland itinerary at the Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon, a mesmerizing blend of ice and water bound to leave you spellbound. Begin your day by delving into the icy heart of Vatnajokull, Europe's largest glacier, at 11 a.m.
This 2.5 to 5-hour ice cave tour will immerse you in a world of crystalline blue ice caves, offering a chilly but enchanting subterranean spectacle. After emerging from the frosty depths, head on a scenic boat tour at Jokulsarlon at 3:30 p.m. Over the duration of 35 minutes, you will navigate through colossal, drifting icebergs and perhaps spot some seals.
Don't forget to explore Diamond Beach, where ice chunks scatter the black sands, and the nearby Fjallsárlón Iceberg Lagoon, offering yet more icy vistas.
Day 5: East Fjords
Begin Day 5 of your 9 days in Iceland journey with a venture into the enchanting East Fjords. Your day commences with a visit to Petra's Stone Collection at 8:30 a.m., where you can marvel at an impressive accumulation of Icelandic minerals.
Following this, treat your senses to the breathtaking views of the fjords from the Vattarnes cliff. After lunch, prepare for an invigorating hike to Hengifoss Waterfall, Iceland's 3rd highest waterfall, famed for its captivating red clay striations.
At around 3 p.m., you'll experience the charming fishing village of Seyðisfjörður, taking in its vibrant art scene and rich heritage.
Day 6: Dettifoss & Myvatn
Kickstart Day 6 of your Iceland 9-day itinerary with a visit to the enchanting Stuðlagil Canyon, renowned for its stunning basalt columns and the vibrant blue river that carves through it. After soaking in the serene beauty of the canyon, proceed to witness the sheer power of Dettifoss, Europe's 2nd mightiest waterfall.
Next, at 1 p.m., embark on a heartwarming and thrilling dog sledding tour with Siberian Huskies, starting at Vallholt, Laugar, lasting 1 hour and 30 minutes. Glide through the stunning landscapes near Lake Mývatn, feeling the crisp air as your new furry friends lead the way.
Later, at 5 p.m., immerse yourself in the geothermal bliss of Mývatn Nature Baths. Spend 3 hours unwinding in the mineral-rich waters, and perhaps indulge in a light meal at Café Kvika, all while soaking up the stunning views. Book your tickets in advance to secure a spot at this popular hot spring.
Day 7: Akureyri
Embark on a delightful Day 7 in Akureyri, often called the 'Capital of the North,' during your Iceland itinerary for 9 days. Begin your morning by exploring the charming town of Akureyri, where you can stroll through the botanical gardens, visit the Akureyri Church, and enjoy a coffee in one of its cozy cafés.
The town offers a range of museums and is known for its vibrant arts scene, providing plenty to explore in the morning. At 1 p.m., set sail with a classic whale-watching tour, where you'll have the chance to witness the majestic Eyjafjord Humpbacks in their natural habitat and possibly even catch a glimpse of seals.
Later, at 5 p.m., unwind at the Forest Lagoon, a geothermal spa nestled in Vaðlaskógur forest, just a short drive from Akureyri. End your day with a delicious dinner at one of Akureyri's renowned restaurants, such as Rub23 or Bautinn.
Day 8: Snaefellsnes Peninsula
Embark on a day of exploration and adventure on Day 8 of your 9-day Iceland itinerary, discovering the enchanting Snæfellsnes Peninsula. Begin your morning at 9 a.m., visiting the iconic Kirkjufell Mountain, a picturesque landmark and one of Iceland's most photographed spots, offering breathtaking views and photo opportunities.
At 11 a.m., delve into the underground wonders of Vatnshellir Cave, a lava tube formed over 8,000 years ago, exploring its ancient corridors during a 50-minute guided tour. After emerging from the depths, head to the striking Djúpalónssandur Beach. Here, try lifting the historic lifting stones, once used by fishermen to test their strength.
In the afternoon, marvel at the rugged beauty of the Lóndrangar Sea Stacks, and finally, conclude your day with a serene walk along the Arnarstapi-Hellnar sea cliffs, a bird-watcher's paradise, immersing yourself in the tranquil and mystical aura of the region.
Day 9: Return to Reykjavík
Wrap up your 9 days in Iceland with a vibrant Day 9 back in Reykjavík, ensuring your adventure ends on a high note. Begin exploring Laugavegur Shopping Street, renowned for its various shops and boutiques, perfect for those last-minute souvenirs and gifts.
Next, wander to the Reykjavík Old Harbor, where the scent of the sea and views of distant mountains create a tranquil backdrop for a mid-morning coffee. By early afternoon, delve into the nation's rich history at the National Museum of Iceland, exploring its vast collection of artifacts.
At 5:30 p.m., join the Reykjavík Folklore Walking Tour, immersing yourself in tales of elves, trolls, and ghosts intertwined with the city's history. Finally, at 7 p.m., relax and reflect on your journey in the geothermal bliss of the Blue Lagoon, a fitting finale to your Icelandic adventure.
How to Get Around Iceland During Your 9 Day Iceland Itinerary
For navigating with ease during your 9-day Iceland itinerary, you have a few options:
- Rental Car: Offers the most flexibility and convenience. Experience the freedom of setting your own pace while exploring the breathtaking landscapes of Iceland. Check out our extensive range of cars.
- Bus: Limited routes and fixed schedules, but a cost-effective choice if sticking to main tourist areas.
- Flybus: Primarily used for airport transfers. It's reliable but not suitable for comprehensive exploration.
Navigating Accommodation Options in Iceland
During your Iceland 9-day itinerary, you have various accommodation options:
- Hotels: Offering a range of luxury to budget options, hotels provide a comfortable and often centrally-located base with amenities that cater to diverse needs and preferences.
- Guesthouses: Experience Icelandic hospitality in guesthouses, offering a cozy, home-like environment, often with the opportunity to interact with locals and savor homemade meals.
- Camping: Immerse yourself in pristine nature by opting for camping in Iceland. With numerous campsites across the country, enjoy the freedom to connect with the enchanting landscapes while maintaining a budget-friendly adventure.
A Budget Guide For 9 Days in Iceland
Planning your 9-day Iceland itinerary on a budget? Here are the key areas to consider:
- Flights: Prices fluctuate depending on the season. Booking early and being flexible with your dates can lead to significant savings.
- Accommodation: Options range from budget hostels and guesthouses to affordable hotels. Consider sharing a room if you're traveling in a group.
- Rental Car: A compact or economical car can be more cost-effective. Check for any inclusive deals that might be on offer.
- Activities: Many natural attractions in Iceland are free to visit. For paid activities, book in advance to secure discounts.
- Food: Eating out can be expensive. Consider self-catering options, dining at local bakeries, or trying out street food for a more budget-friendly experience.
Essential Travel Tips for Your 9-Day Iceland Itinerary
Making your 9 days in Iceland memorable requires a pinch of planning, a dash of daring, and a sprinkle of savvy. Here are some essential tips:
- Book flights and accommodation early; the early bird catches the best rooms (and fares)!
- Rent a car if you fancy channeling your inner Viking explorer.
- Dress in layers; Iceland's weather has more mood swings than a teenager.
- Expect road closures due to snow or ice; Mother Nature doesn't always play nice.
- Camera? Absolutely necessary. You'll want to prove that the stunning landscapes weren't just a dream!
A Retrospective Of Your 9 Day Iceland Itinerary
Your one-stop-shop guide to conquering a 9-day Iceland itinerary is complete without the stress of planning! We've wrapped all the must-visits, from geothermal spas to icy adventures, into a neat little travel package.
And remember, renting a car in Reykjavík is non-negotiable unless you want to trade breathtaking landscapes for bus stops. So, buckle up, channel your inner Viking, and prepare to be awestruck at every turn. Iceland isn't just a destination; it's an epic saga waiting to be lived!