Experience the sheer beauty of Iceland in a single day with the Best Golden Circle Tour from Reykjavik. Dive into history at Thingvellir National Park, marvel at the raw power of the Gullfoss Waterfall, and witness nature's fury at the Geysir geothermal area. Expert guides, coupled with convenient transfers, make this tour a must-do Icelandic adventure!
Uncover Iceland's Natural Wonders: The Ultimate Golden Circle Tour
Embark on a captivating journey through the heart of Iceland's awe-inspiring landscapes with our comprehensive Golden Circle Tour. This full-day adventure takes you across the central and southern region, stopping at some of the most iconic and beloved attractions that Iceland has to offer.
The Golden Circle, a popular tourist route in southern Iceland, is often favored for day trips due to its close proximity to Reykjavik and its stunning natural beauty. The 300-kilometer loop encompasses several iconic Icelandic landmarks, including the Gullfoss waterfall, the Geysir geothermal area, and Thingvellir National Park.
These attractions offer visitors a chance to immerse themselves in the raw, untouched beauty of Iceland's landscapes, from erupting geysers to thundering waterfalls and historic sites. The ease of access and the opportunity to witness such unique geological phenomena within a day make the Golden Circle an ideal choice for those seeking a quick yet enriching Icelandic adventure.
Þingvellir National Park, one of the most significant historical and geological sites in Iceland, stands as a testament to the country's rich cultural heritage and dynamic natural beauty. Located just 49 km east of Reykjavík, this UNESCO World Heritage Site is an essential stop on the world-renowned Golden Circle tour.
Historically, Þingvellir (translating to "Parliament Plains") served as the site where the Althing, an open-air assembly representing the whole of Iceland, was established around 930 AD. This assembly, which initially met annually, saw lawmakers from all over the country - the South Coast, the Westfjörds, the North, and the East - congregating to set laws and settle disputes. This tradition continued for centuries, marking Þingvellir as the birthplace of Iceland's democracy and making it a place of national importance.
The park is also a haven for geology enthusiasts. It sits in a rift valley caused by the separation of two tectonic plates – the North American and Eurasian plates. Visitors can walk between these two continents, experiencing the slow but constant process of continental drift. The Oxarárfoss waterfall and the beautiful Þingvallavatn, Iceland's largest natural lake, add to the park's scenic charm.
Read More: Complete Guide To Thingvellir National Park
Nestled in the heart of the Hvítá river canyon in southwest Iceland, Gullfoss Waterfall, affectionately known as 'The Golden Falls', offers a spectacle of nature's grandeur and power that is simultaneously humbling and inspiring. As part of the famous Golden Circle route, this iconic waterfall is a must-visit destination for any traveler exploring the natural wonders of Iceland.
Gullfoss is not just a single waterfall but a series of two cascading falls. The upper one drops 11 meters, while the lower one plunges 21 meters into a rugged canyon, whose walls reach up to 70 meters in height. This dramatic descent of water creates a mesmerizing display of raw power and beauty, culminating in a rainbow-filled mist on sunny days - a sight that rivals even the renowned Northern Lights.
Located approximately 107 km from Reykjavík, or about a 1.5-hour drive, Gullfoss is easily accessible for a day trip. The journey carries you through some of Iceland's most stunning barren countryside, immersing you in the country's unique landscapes.
The significance of Gullfoss extends beyond its natural beauty. The waterfall stands as a monument to one of Iceland's most impactful environmental protests. In the early 20th century, plans were underway to harness the waterfall for hydroelectric power. However, Sigriður Tómasdóttir, the daughter of the waterfall's owner, fought fiercely to preserve the site. Her determination led to the preservation of Gullfoss for future generations to appreciate.
Don't Miss Out: Golden Circle Classic and Northern Lights Mystery
Our Golden Circle Iceland tour concludes at the geologically vibrant site of the infamous Geysir hot spring, also known as Strokkur. The Geysir Geothermal Area, part of Iceland's illustrious Golden Circle route, is a marvel of natural phenomena that invites visitors to witness the raw power and beauty of Earth's geothermal activity firsthand.
Situated 100 km away from the capital city of Reykjavík, the area spans approximately 3 km² (1.1 sq mi), with most of the springs aligning along a 100 m (328 ft) wide strip. This vast geothermal field lies in the Haukadalur Valley, a location renowned for its geothermal activity, making it a must-visit destination for any Icelandic tour.
At the heart of this geothermal valley is the Great Geysir, a famous hot spring that has lent its name to all other geysers worldwide. Although Geysir is currently dormant, it was known to spout water every third hour up to the beginning of the 19th century. Today, while the Great Geysir may be idle, its sibling, Strokkur, steals the show by reliably erupting every 6-10 minutes, shooting boiling water up to 20 meters into the air.
The geothermal field is situated at the northern edge of the southern lowlands, at an altitude of 105-120 m above sea level. It rests on the slopes of the Laugarfjall lava dome, which is also home to the Strokkur geyser, located about 50 meters south.
Visiting the Geysir Geothermal Area provides a unique opportunity to experience and appreciate the dynamic forces that shape our planet. The geysers' eruptions, the bubbling mud pots, and the steam vents create a landscape that seems otherworldly, a testament to Iceland's moniker as the 'Land of Fire and Ice.'
Yes, you can absolutely do the Golden Circle in one day. The Golden Circle tour from Reykjavik usually takes about 4 hours to reach your destination and the round-trip is only about 3 hours driving time. This makes it very feasible to complete in a single day.
The best time of year to go on a Golden Circle tour really depends on what you want to see. If you want to see the magnificent Gullfoss waterfall frozen, winter is the best time. But if you want to walk between the Eurasian tectonic plates in the Thingvellir National Park Geysir geothermal area, summer would be the best time.
The best stops along the Golden Circle include Thingvellir National Park, Geysir Geothermal Area, and Gullfoss waterfall. These are all the main attractions that have a rich history and showcase the natural beauties of the country. Other attractions that are worth visiting include the Secret Lagoon and Langjökull Glacier.
It's possible to do the Golden Circle and Blue Lagoon in one day, but it would be a full day with a lot of driving. It's best to start early and plan your day accordingly. It's also important to note that while the Golden Circle can be done with a small group or even solo, the Blue Lagoon usually requires a booking in advance.
When going on your Golden Circle tour, it's important to dress warmly and bring a waterproof jacket, as the weather in Iceland can be unpredictable. Also, don't forget to bring your camera to capture the breathtaking scenery!
The Blue Lagoon is a world-famous geothermal spa located in southwest Iceland. The lagoon is fed by water from the nearby geothermal power plant, which is rich in minerals such as silica and sulphur. These minerals are said to have beneficial effects on the skin, and many visitors come to the lagoon to enjoy the spa's renowned mud masks. Some versions of the Golden Circle tours in Iceland include the Blue Lagoon visit.
I would do it again & take more time at the geyser & the Fontana Thermal baths.Restroom / WC stops at all locations.Food & snacks too.Geyser, National Park Falls & Thermal Spa were all top notch & bucket list items.Just no chain hotels close, except for school during the summer, or yerra we saw on the way 99 minutes outside of Reykjavik to get back to hotel.
Franklin from Your Day Tours drive and guided all day today, and it was an amazing and enjoyable moment. Great job Franklin. Much appreciated
Professional tour operator with comfortable bus and also expert tour guide. I highly recommend you to visit Golden Circle as your first priority on your Iceland tour.It took less than 8 hours and it will be great if you finish your day by swimming in Sky lagoon.
This tour consists of 3 natural splendors namely Thingvellir National Park,Gullfoss Waterfall and Iceland Geysers. This tour is worth the time and money spend. Highly encourage this tour on your next visit to Reykjavik in Iceland.
Really well put together tour, the Geysors, waterfalls and the history behind the two tectonic plates
Great service and an even better stay.
Great service and an even better stay.
Great service and an even better stay.
Why should you?