Things to do In Iceland

Iceland offers a variety of experiences and activities for every type of traveler. Whether you enjoy relaxing, pampered days or exciting adventure, there are plenty of options for you. Options range from taking a trip on your own to employing a tour company to guide you.

1. Go for a hike

There are thousands of amazing hiking trails in Iceland. Travelers can choose from short hikes to several-day-long hiking excursions. They can also choose whether to use one of the several guided tours available or take on the trails on their own. Either way, hikers are bound for adventure and get an up-close view of Iceland’s amazing landscapes. The most popular trails are the Laugavegur Trek, Fimmvörduháls Trails, and Hornstrandir. Shorter, yet equally amazing, hikes include Gjáin, Hveragerdi, and Glymur.

hiking trails Iceland

2. Get on a Bus

There are a variety of bus tours available in Iceland, particularly around its capital, Reykjavík. Their guided tours give travelers an easy way to see the largest, most populated city in Iceland and learn about all its significant landmarks. This would be a great way to spend your first day in Reykjavík if you’ve never been there before. It gives you a sample of everything that is available so you can plan the rest of your stay.

If you’re more interested in natural scenery, the Golden Circle bus tours are the most popular in Iceland. In one full day, you can experience Iceland’s Thingvellir National Park, the Great Geysir, and the beautiful waterfall, Gullfoss.

golden circle tour Iceland

3. Hop on a Boat

Iceland is home to over 20 different species of whales, who are often not shy. There are several boat tours available that are specific to those in search of sighting these giant marine creatures. While whale watching tours are most popular, there are also many tours available that will show travelers the beautiful coasts of Iceland. You can also find tours that include Puffin watching and fishing.

There is also the availability of multiple ferries and boats that travels between Reykjavík and the Westman Islands. Some even take tours around the islands to get a better view of the coasts, as well as Iceland’s famous seabirds, Puffins.

where to see puffins in Iceland

@Ray Hennessy

4. Relax at the Blue Lagoon

For those more interested in relaxing, spa-like days, the Blue Lagoon is the perfect destination. It’s main feature is the large, naturally-warmed geothermal pool. The beautiful blue water is therapeutic to your skin and will guarantee a relaxing day. There are also some great added features, such as a swim-up bar, café, saunas, and relaxation rooms. They also offer treatments such as facials and in-water massages. It’s the perfect place for pampering!

5. Find a Volcano

Iceland has a total of over 130 volcanoes, with 30 of them still active. One of the most popular volcanoes to see is Eyjafjallajökull, which erupted in 2010. The eruption created two new mountains from the lava and there are several hiking tours to get a close-up look at them. If you can get close enough, you can still feel warmth of the lava coming from the ground in certain areas!

Another extremely popular volcano to visit is Príhnúkagígur, the world’s only volcano that you can enter. It’s completely safe, as the volcano has not erupted in over 4,000 years. Once inside the volcano, there are a number of tunnels and caves to explore.

6. Chase the Northern Lights

Iceland’s geographical location on the Earth gives it the great advantage of seeing the Northern Lights more often and clearer than in other areas. The best time to see the Northern Lights is during the wintertime, and Iceland offers a variety of tours to guide you. Tours aren’t a necessity, though. Most travellers can find the lights on cold, clear nights in the winter by venturing just outside city limits, where there is less artificial light coming from buildings.

best time to see the northern lights Iceland


7. See a Waterfall

There is nothing quite as exquisite and breathtaking as a naturally-made waterfall. Iceland has some of the world’s most beautiful waterfalls, easily accessible by travellers. The most popular waterfall to visit is Gullfoss. Those taking the Golden Circle Tour will see this waterfall on their trip, but it is possible to see it on its own. It’s located about two hours from Reykjavík and has been described by many as Iceland’s most beautiful waterfall.

Another popular waterfall is Iceland’s highest one, Glymur. Standing at 198 meters (650 feet) high, it is a spectacular sight. It is not possible to reach this destination by vehicle, though. It takes about a two hour hike, which can be done alone or through a guided tour.

famous waterfalls in Iceland

@Jóhann H. Ragnarsson