5-Day Iceland Itinerary: The Perfect Trip for First-Timers

Iceland Itinerary for 5-Days

blog authorBy Johanna Sigurðardóttir shield verificationVerified Expert

Have you ever considered exploring the land of fire and ice? Crafting the perfect Iceland itinerary for 5 days can be a bit of a puzzle, but oh, the adventures awaiting you! We at Reykjavík Cars have been guiding travelers to Iceland's most secluded spots since 2013, ensuring they have everything they need for a memorable stay.

From geysers to glaciers, Iceland's treasures are endless. So, are you ready to discover what makes this Nordic gem a bucket-list favorite? Dive in with us as we embark on a whirlwind adventure, and trust us, by the end of it, you'll be itching to book your next flight back!

Advice on How To Get Around Iceland in 5 Days

Navigating your way through Iceland for 5 days without a rental car? Good luck with that! Now, while there's public transport available, it's not quite cut out for this whirlwind itinerary we've got planned for you. Seriously, the advantage of renting a car in Iceland is like having a golden ticket to Willy Wonka's chocolate factory.

You get the freedom to roam wherever your heart desires without being shackled to those oh-so-punctual tour schedules or waiting for that one bus that seems to run once every blue moon.

And with our wide and reliable range of vehicles, you won't just be driving; you'll be cruising in style. Just a heads-up: Iceland's driving laws aren't mere suggestions, so do give them a glance before you channel your inner speed demon.

car rental Iceland

Day 1: Diving Into the Charm of Reykjavík

  • Distance 6.4 km/4 mi

Kick off your journey by immersing yourself in the charm of Reykjavík, Iceland's capital. This vibrant city is brimming with eclectic architecture, historical landmarks, and a buzzing culinary scene. From the awe-inspiring Hallgrímskirkja church to the bustling Old Harbour, Reykjavík promises an enchanting start to your 5 days in Iceland.


Begin the morning of your 5-day trip to Iceland by visiting the iconic Hallgrímskirkja Church, which stands 74.5 meters (244 feet) tall. Climb up to the top for a panoramic view of the city that's sure to leave you breathless. Afterward, head towards Reykjavík's Old Harbor, an area bustling with life and history.

Here, treat yourself to a whale-watching tour or a puffin tour if you're lucky enough to visit in the right season. Witnessing these magnificent creatures in their natural habitat is an experience you'll cherish forever on your Icelandic adventure.

iceland itinerary 5 days


As you continue your Iceland itinerary for 5 days, make a stop at the Sun Voyager, an iconic sculpture by the sea, representing a dream of hope, progress, and freedom. This steel structure presents a perfect photo opportunity with the backdrop of the sea and mountains.

Next, visit the Harpa Concert Hall, an architectural marvel known for its distinctive colored glass façade inspired by the basalt landscapes of Iceland. The building's magnificent design and grandeur will leave you in absolute awe, affirming Iceland's commitment to art and culture.


As evening descends on your 5-day tour of Iceland, Reykjavík's vibrant pulse beckons you to Laugavegur Street. This bustling thoroughfare is more than just a shopper's paradise; it's a sensory delight.

Wander through quirky boutiques showcasing local crafts, and let the aroma of Icelandic delicacies guide you to cozy eateries. Whether you're indulging in a traditional lamb stew or trying fermented shark (for the brave-hearted!), Laugavegur ensures your taste buds get a slice of Iceland, too. It's the perfect way to wrap up a day of exploration with flavors and memories to cherish.

Reykjavik, Iceland

Day 2: Experiencing the Golden Circle

  • Distance: 194 km/120 mi

On the second day of your Iceland itinerary for 5 days, brace yourself for the thrilling spectacle of the Golden Circle. It's a popular route that showcases the country's stunning natural wonders, including geysers, national parks, and awe-inspiring waterfalls. This day promises unparalleled experiences and unforgettable vistas.


Embrace the beauty of Iceland at Þingvellir National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, on the second morning of your Iceland itinerary for 5 days. This unique location marks the rift between the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates, offering a remarkable landscape of fissures, lava fields, and historical sites.

Following this, head towards the Geysir Geothermal Area. Be ready for an awe-inspiring show as you witness the Strokkur geyser erupting every few minutes, jetting water up to 40 meters high (130 feet). 

5 days in iceland


In the afternoon of your second day experiencing Iceland in 5 days, prepare to be mesmerized by the sheer majesty of Gullfoss Waterfall, one of Iceland's most iconic cascades. Its thunderous roar and misty aura epitomize the raw, untamed power of Iceland's natural landscape.

Following this, take a scenic drive to Kerid Crater Lake. This vibrant volcanic wonder, with its stark red rocks and deep blue waters, offers a distinct contrast to the surrounding greenery, creating a quintessentially Icelandic surreal tableau. Both sites further enrich the tapestry of unique experiences woven during your 5-day Icelandic journey.


On the final leg of your second day of a 5-day driving tour of Iceland, unwind at the Laugarvatn Fontana Geothermal Baths. Surrender to the calming warmth of the geothermal pools and let the tranquil aura of Laugarvatn envelop you. 

Here, you can soothe your senses and rejuvenate your spirit amid the ethereal beauty of the Icelandic landscape.

It's a quintessential Icelandic experience that marries the natural wonders with a sense of relaxation. After soothing your senses, head to the quaint town of Hveragerði for a peaceful sleep, making it a perfect end to another enchanting day in Iceland.

Golden circle, Iceland

Day 3: South Coast Adventure

  • Distance: 478 km/297 mi

Embark on a South Coast Adventure on the third day of your Iceland itinerary for 5 days. The day promises a thrilling exploration of Iceland's dramatic coastal landscapes, boasting a blend of black sand beaches, quaint coastal towns, and towering waterfalls.


Start the morning of your third day on your 5-day trip to Iceland by visiting the captivating waterfalls of the South and Skógafoss. These natural wonders are a testament to Iceland's diverse and powerful landscapes.

Seljalandsfoss, known for its rare walk-behind waterfall feature, offers a unique perspective on the raw power of nature. A short drive east takes you to Skógafoss, a spectacular waterfall with impressive height and power.

Next, venture to Reynisfjara, one of the most famous black sand beaches in Iceland. Its beautifully stark landscape, punctuated by towering basalt sea stacks, offers a unique coastal beauty that will leave you in awe.

iceland in five days


Your 5-day Iceland tour continues in the afternoon with a visit to the serene landscape of Fjaðrárgljúfur Canyon. This deeply carved and winding river canyon offers breathtaking views and a tranquil atmosphere that is a stark contrast to the dynamic energy of the waterfalls from the morning.

The journey then takes you to the mesmerizing Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon. Gaze in awe at the floating icebergs and watch for seals frolicking amidst the icy spectacle. There is also a boat tour that will take you even closer to the majestic icebergs.


As your third day on the 5 days in Iceland itinerary comes to a close, head to the charming coastal town of Vík. This quaint village is the southernmost in Iceland and offers picturesque views of the nearby Reynisdrangar sea stacks.

Explore the local shops and enjoy a delightful dinner at one of the many welcoming restaurants. Before night falls, head back to Reykjavík, this way, you can rest and recharge to tackle our day 4th of exploration.

Vik, Iceland

Day 4: Snaefellsnes Exploration

  • Distance: 119 km/74 mi

On the fourth day of your Iceland itinerary for 5 days, prepare to discover the tranquil beauty of the Snaefellsnes Peninsula. This region, home to secluded fishing villages, and abundant wildlife, offers untouched landscapes and breathtaking views, ensuring a day filled with exhilarating exploration and unique encounters.


Kick-start the fourth morning of your 5-day road trip in Iceland with a visit to Arnarstapi and Hellnar, renowned for their dramatic coastal cliffs and abundant birdlife. The natural beauty and rich avian biodiversity here provide a unique opportunity for bird-watching enthusiasts.

After immersing yourself in this idyllic coastal scenery, head towards Djúpalónssandur Beach. Known for its distinctive pebble shoreline and eerie shipwreck remnants, this site offers a glimpse into Iceland's maritime history and the relentless power of nature. This morning's journey reveals an exciting blend of natural wonder and historical intrigue.

5 days in iceland itinerary


The afternoon of your fourth day of the Iceland 5-day road trip invites you to explore the splendors of Snæfellsjökull National Park. The park is home to the mighty Snæfellsjökull glacier and offers the thrilling experience of glacier hikes and intriguing lava caves. For a unique adventure, consider taking a 3-hour snow cat tour of the glacier.

This tour lets you experience the glacier's grandeur up close and personal, offering unparalleled views of the surrounding landscapes. After immersing yourself in the ethereal beauty and untouched wilderness of the park, head towards Kirkjufell Mountain, the most photographed mountain in Iceland.


The final segment of your fourth day in the Iceland 5-day tour invites you to explore the picturesque town of Stykkishólmur. Known for its beautifully preserved old houses and the iconic Stykkishólmskirkja church, this town exudes an enchanting charm. Enjoy the local cuisine at one of the seafood restaurants before taking a leisure stroll around the harbor.

As night falls, the town offers a serene setting for northern lights viewing, capping off an adventurous day. Retire to one of the cozy guesthouses in Stykkishólmur, providing a comfortable stay and preparing you for the exciting finale of your Iceland adventure.

Snaefellsness, Iceland

Day 5: A Relaxing Finale in Reykjavík 

  • Distance 106 km/66 mi

On the final day of your Iceland itinerary for 5 days, unwind and explore the vibrant city life in Reykjavík. This city's rich culture, art, and history provide a relaxing contrast to the previous days' natural adventures, perfectly rounding off your Icelandic journey.


Start your final day of the 5 day Iceland trip by immersing yourself in the vibrant culture of Reykjavík and choose to embark on a captivating walking tour

Explore the city's rich historical and artistic tapestry while strolling through its charming streets. Alternatively, opt for a folklore tour to delve into Iceland's enchanting mythical heritage.

Don't forget to visit the Grótta Island Lighthouse, a peaceful haven situated just on the outskirts of the city. This serene escape offers stunning panoramic views, making it a perfect addition to your morning itinerary.

5 day iceland road trip


On the afternoon of your final day on the 5-day tour of Iceland, indulge in the rejuvenating Blue Lagoon Geothermal Spa Experience. This iconic attraction, known for its milky blue waters rich in silica and algae, offers a soothing retreat. Immerse yourself in the warm, mineral-rich waters, and let the spa's therapeutic properties invigorate your senses.

Due to its popularity, we highly recommend booking your tickets in advance to secure your spot. It's the perfect way to relax and unwind, reflecting on the incredible journey you've had exploring Iceland's diverse landscapes.


Cap off your Iceland 5-day trip with a leisurely evening in Reykjavík. Embark on a last-minute souvenir hunt, exploring local shops for unique reminders of your adventure. As the day winds down, indulge in a farewell dinner with a Reykjavík food tour.

Savor the finest Icelandic cuisine, from fresh seafood to traditional delicacies, whilst absorbing the vibrant atmosphere of the city's dining scene. This engaging culinary journey serves as a fitting conclusion to your memorable journey through Iceland.

Blue Lagoon, Iceland

Making the Most of Your Iceland Itinerary in 5 Days

So, you've made it to the end of this whirlwind Iceland itinerary for 5 days! Do you need any more convincing? Honestly, why are you still at home? Get over here and witness the magical, jaw-dropping, and sometimes utterly confusing charm of Iceland. You won't be disappointed, we promise...unless you dislike unparalleled natural beauty, then you're on your own!

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