Iceland in Depth

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06.16.24-06.24.24
SH Vega
8 Nights
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Experience the wild and fantastic landscapes of Iceland. Circumnavigate the geologically active island and see the puffin capital of the world! Discover fjords, spectacular waterfalls and never-ending volcanic scenery. Visit Iceland’s oldest houses and meet locals who are proud of their traditional heritage. Hike to thundering waterfalls, duck under the spray of spouting hot geysers, and trek across remote locations where only arctic foxes live.

Trip Highlights

Be awestruck by spectacular volcanic landscape from thermal pools and geysers in the west to lava flows and bubbling mud in the east
Keep your eye out for breaching orca and humpback whales in far-flung icy waters
Listen to the thunderous roar of Dynjandi waterfall and cruise along remote fjords
Spot Atlantic puffins on Heimaey Island, the puffin-watching capital of the world
Learn about the island’s unique geology and history from our team of on-board experts

Itinerary

Reykjavik
Day 1
Reykjavík, despite its small size, is the capital of Iceland. At the top of the town stands the distinctive Hallgrímskirkja church, designed by renowned Icelandic architect Guðjón Samúelsson. The revitalised harbour area features the futuristic Harpa Concert Hall and the Maritime Museum, showcasing the city's cultural heritage A trip to Reykjavík would be incomplete without a visit to the Blue Lagoon, famous for its therapeutic geothermal waters.
Dynjandi Waterfall
Day 2
Considered one of Iceland’s most impressive falls, the thunderous Dynjandi waterfall in the Westfjords region gives the impression of a bridal veil as it spreads down ever-growing cascades. The walk takes 15 minutes passing five smaller waterfalls. Nearby, Hrafnseyri is the birthplace of Jón Sigurðsson, 19th-century leader of the Icelandic Independence movement. The museum includes an Icelandic turf house.
Isafjordur
Day 3
Surrounded by fjords in the Westfjords region, Ísafjördur is a bustling fishing town in northwest Iceland with colourful wooden 18th- and 19th-century houses in its old town, Neskaupstadur. Nearby, Sudavik is home to the Arctic Fox Centre. Iceland’s only mammal, the arctic fox, lives on the lush tundra of Hornstrandir Nature Reserve, the northernmost peninsula in the Westfjords with two of Europe’s largest bird cliffs.
Vigur Island
Day 3
A jewel of the Westfjords, Vigur is the fjord's second-largest island and a thriving seabird sanctuary. Flocks of arctic terns, puffins, guillemots and eider ducks nest atop rocky cliffs. As one of only two inhabited islands, Vigur supports a family farm continuing the centuries-old eiderdown harvest across 3,500 nests. This remote pillar also houses Iceland's sole windmill, its tiniest post office and a 200-year-old, still-seaworthy rowing boat.
Grimsey Island
Day 4
Grímsey is a remote island located 40 km off Iceland’s north coast. Many people travel here for the purpose of setting foot in the Arctic Circle, the only place in Iceland where you can. The island is also home to fewer than 100 people, but over one million seabirds. Birdlife thrives here thanks to the lack of egg predation and the well-stocked surrounding seas. Grímsey has one of Iceland’s largest tern nesting sites and largest puffin colonies.
Hrisey Island
Day 4
Hrisey Island is a small island in the Eyjafjordur fjord in northern Iceland. It is home to various wildlife, including puffins, seals, and whales. Hriseyjarfjall Mountain is the highest point and offers views of the surrounding landscape and the vast expanse of Eyjafjörður fjord. Despite its size, Hrisey Island possesses a rich cultural heritage. Traditional Icelandic crafts, such as hand-knitting and woodworking, preserve the island's identity.
Akureyri
Day 4-5
Home to some 18,000 residents, Akureyri stands proud as the Land of Fire and Ice’s ‘Capital of the North’. It’s the gateway to some natural wonders including the Myvatn region, Dettifoss waterfall, Godafoss waterfall and Asbyrgi canyon. But before you rush off, take some time to explore: Iceland’s winsome second city is colourful, cosy and utterly enchanting – even the red traffic lights are cute. Instagrammers will adore heart-shaped stop signs. Enjoy the quaint harbourfront; climb the steps to the towering Akureyri Church; stroll around Lystigardurinn, the city’s Arctic botanical garden; visit the Laufás Turf Houses; get in the festive spirit early at the Christmas House (Jolahusid); admire the exhibits at the Akureyri Art Museum or the Hof cultural centre; or take a dip in the outdoor, geothermal swimming pool.
Seydisfjordur
Day 6
Brightly painted wooden houses line Seyðisfjörður’s port, regarded as east Island’s cultural hub with a lively arts scene disproportionate to its size. Seyðisfjörður has attracted writers and artists and hosts a summer arts festival. Surrounded by incredible nature, the nearby Skálanes nature reserve is known for its diverse wildlife with over 47 bird species, as well as 150 plant species. Reindeer, seals and porpoises often populate the area.
Djupivogur
Day 7
With Viking-era origins, Djupivogur, a tranquil fishing village with fewer than 500 residents, is renowned for its unhurried pace of life and the art installation 'The Eggs at Merry Bay,' featuring 34 granite eggs representing local bird species. Nearby, Vatnajökull National Park, covering 14 percent of Iceland, offers a wild expanse with Europe's largest ice cap, Vatnajökull Glacier, thundering glacial rivers and active volcanoes.
Heimaey, Westman Island
Day 8
Ten million Atlantic puffins make Heimaey, a 13-km square island in the Westman Islands off southern Iceland, the largest puffin colony in the world. Despite a population of 4,000 people, puffins have even been spotted in the town of Vestmannaeyjar. The fascinating Eldheimar museum charts the story of the town’s devastation by lava from Eldfell volcano in 1973. Nearby, Vestmannaeyjar Bird Cliff is home to puffins, guillemots and razorbills.
Reykjavik
Day 9
Make sure there is sufficient timeto explore this diminutive but dramatic capital city. Despite its small size, you won’t be short of things to see and do. To get your bearings, take the elevator to the top of Hallgrímskirkja. This church, designed by famed Icelandic architect Gudjón Samuelsson is one of the most distinctive buildings in town. When you return to earth, visit the city’s other renowned building Harpa Concert Hall, located at the heart of Reykjavík's regenerated harbour – also the home of the Maritime Museum. Speaking of cultural spaces, tour the National Museum to learn the story of Iceland from past to present. The Reykjavík Art Museum houses an impressive contemporary collection including eye-catching pieces by Erró. And, of course, just 50 kilometres outside the city lies Thingvellir National Park, the site of Iceland’s original Viking parliament.
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