Julie Iceland, Itinerary 34 Comments

If you are planning your first visit to Iceland, most likely you want to see the highlights. For many first-timers, Reykjavík, the Blue Lagoon, the Golden Circle, and the south coast tops the list of places to visit. With this Iceland itinerary, you get to visit those, plus a whole lot more.


About this Iceland Itinerary

On this itinerary, you will primarily stay in southwest Iceland. Reykjavík, the Snaefellsnes Peninsula, the Golden Circle, and the south coast is where you will spend the majority of your time. We added in a day trip to Landmannalaugar, a fantastic, uniquely beautiful part of Iceland that I personally think is one of the highlights of this trip.

Highlights of this itinerary include:

  • The Blue Lagoon
  • Reykjavík
  • The Golden Circle
  • The Snaefellsnes Peninsula
  • Kirkjufell
  • Skógafoss and Seljalandsfoss
  • Reynisfjara black sand beach
  • Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon
  • Landmannalaugar

For this itinerary, you will need to rent a car. A 4×4 is ideal, since you will need this to drive to Landmannalaugar. Also, there are several other locations where a 4×4 is recommended but not absolutely necessary (several spots on the Snaefellsnes Peninsula and one or two detours on the Golden Circle).

However, renting a 4×4 is more expensive than renting a standard 2WD vehicle (as much as $25 to $100 USD per day). To save money, rent a 2WD vehicle, skip the few sights and detours that require a 4×4, and take a bus or a tour into Landmannalaugar. There will be more details on how to do this later in this itinerary.

10 Days in Iceland Itinerary

     Day 1: Arrive in Iceland, visit the Blue Lagoon
     Day 2: Kirkjufell & the Snaefellsnes Peninsula
     Day 3: Snaefellsnes Peninsula
     Day 4: The Golden Circle
     Day 5: Landmannalaugar Day Trip
     Day 6: The South Coast
     Day 7: Glacier Hike
     Day 8: Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon
     Day 9: Rekjavík
     Day 10: Fly home

How to Use This Map: Click the tab in the top left hand corner of the map to view the layers (daily things to do and the driving route). You can click the check marks to hide or show layers. If you click the icons on the map, you can get more information about each point of interest.


If you click the star next to the title of the map, this map will be added to your Google Maps account. To view it on your phone or computer, open Google Maps, click the menu button, go to “Your Places,” click Maps, and you will see this map on your list.

Best Time for This Iceland Itinerary

This itinerary can be done year-round, with a few tweaks.

The best time to do this itinerary is from June through September, when the days are long, the weather is warm, and the roads and hiking trails are free from snow.

Late spring and early fall are also great times to visit Iceland. You will have less daylight, but also less visitors. In late September and October it is possible to see the northern lights, a nice bonus!

During the winter months (mid-October through April), snowstorms can temporarily close the roads, so you will need to keep a close eye on weather and road conditions. A 4×4 is recommended during these months. The days will also be very short, giving you only a few hours of daylight (or no daylight all all, during mid-winter). 

Ideally, Landmannalaugar should be visited between mid-June and September, when the roads and the hiking trails are free of snow. However, it is possible to take a Super Jeep tour into Landmannalaugar during the “off-season.”

10 Days in Iceland Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Iceland, Visit the Blue Lagoon

Driving Distance and Time: 22 km, 20 minutes

Flights to Iceland arrive at Keflavík International Airport, which is located on the Reykjanes peninsula. Pick up your rental car at the airport. Lines can be very, very long, especially midday in the summer months. I’m talking an hour wait or longer. If you have any kind of gold member or fast pass status with a rental car company, this can save you lots of valuable time.

Instead of zipping right to Reykjavík, we recommend visiting the Blue Lagoon. From the airport, it takes 45 minutes to drive to Reykjavík but only 20 minutes to drive to the Blue Lagoon. By visiting the Blue Lagoon first, you save a lot of extra time driving and backtracking to and from Reykjavík. Plus, relaxing in the thermal waters of the Blue Lagoon is a great, low-key activity if you have jetlag.

Blue Lagoon 10 days in Iceland itinerary

Blue Lagoon | 10 days in Iceland itinerary


Tyler Kara Blue Lagoon 10 days in Iceland itinerary

The Blue Lagoon is one of Iceland’s most popular experiences, so expect big crowds between 10 am and 6 pm. Book your tickets in advance to get your desired time slot and to avoid waiting in line. A visit here typically lasts three hours or longer.

Click here to visit the official Blue Lagoon website, where you can book your tickets in advance and learn about what to expect during your visit.

Options on How to Plan Your Time Today

If you arrive in Iceland in the morning, you can do one of two things today. You can brave the midday crowds at the Blue Lagoon, and then spend the night on the Reykjanes peninsula or in Reykjavík. Or, spend several hours touring the Reykjanes peninsula and visit the Blue Lagoon after 6 pm, once the crowds thin out. Sleep near or at the Blue Lagoon.

Reykjanes Peninsula 10 days in Iceland itinerary

Reykjanes Black Sand Beach 10 days in Iceland itinerary

Reykjanes Peninsula | 10 days in Iceland itinerary

If you arrive to Iceland in the afternoon, check into your hotel (stay at or near the Blue Lagoon) and visit the Blue Lagoon after 6 pm.

Don’t worry about getting to Reykjavík today. At the end of this itinerary, you will have one full day in the city.

Where to Stay Near the Blue Lagoon:

The Retreat at the Blue Lagoon. Selected by Conde Nast as one of Europe’s top resorts, this is the ultimate in luxury. Rooms are stylish, modern suites and offer views of the lava fields and lagoon. Prices start at $1281 USD so this is big splurge.

Northern Light Inn. This property is located very close to the Blue Lagoon and the prices are much more affordable than the Retreat. This property has an onsite restaurant and free shuttle buses that run to and from the Blue Lagoon.

Motel Arctic Wind. This hotel gets great reviews and offers that can accommodate up to four people at economical prices.


Day 2: Kirkjufell and the Snaefellsnes Peninsula

Driving distance and time Blue Lagoon to Kirkjufell: 220 km, 3 hours. Additional sites on the Snaefellsnes Peninsula will add more distance and time.

Today is the first of two days that you have to spend on the Snaefellsnes Peninsula. From the Blue Lagoon, it is a 3-hour drive to get to the peninsula.

Optional Detour on the Drive to the Snaefellsnes Peninsula

On the drive to the Snaefellsnes Peninsula, you will drive right past Glymur waterfall. This is one of Iceland’s tallest waterfalls. This fun hike can be easily added on to the day. It is 7 km (4.4 miles) round trip and takes 3 to 4 hours of your time.  
Glymur waterfall can also be added onto your Golden Circle day, but this will be a very long day.

Glymur 10 days in Iceland itinerary

Glymur Waterfall | 10 days in Iceland itinerary

Once on the Snaefellsnes Peninsula, you will visit black sand beaches, waterfalls, volcanoes, remote lighthouses, lava fields, street art, iconic Kirkjufell, and some of the most dramatic coastal cliffs in Iceland.

For the best things to do, where to stay and where to eat, read our article Snaefellsnes Peninsula: 20 Epic Things to Do.

Kirkjufell 10 days in Iceland itinerary

Kirkjufell | 10 days in Iceland itinerary


Snaefellsnes Peninsula 10 days in Iceland itinerary

Arnarstapi Coastal Cliffs | 10 days in Iceland itinerary



If photographing Kirkjufell is important to you, I recommend spending the night in the town of Grundarfjördur. From town, it’s just a five-minute drive to Kirkjufell, so you can see it at sunset and sunrise.

If photographing Kirkjufell at sunset and sunset is not important to you, spending the night on the south coast of the Snaefellsnes Peninsula, in Hellnar or Arnarstapi, puts you closer to the main highlights, minimizing how much driving you do.

What We Did: In the morning, we hiked Glymur waterfall. It’s a great hike and I highly recommend it. In the afternoon, we drove to the Snaefellsnes Peninsula, got settled into our apartment in Grundarfjördur, and then visited Kirkjufell. We had a great dinner at Bjargarsteinn. At 11:30 pm, I went back out to photograph Kirkjufell at “sunset.” We were here in July, during the midnight sun. The following day, we drove the Snaefellsnes Peninsula counterclockwise and in the afternoon drove to the Golden Circle.

Where to Stay on the Snaefellsnes Peninsula

GRUNDARFJORDUR: Hellnafell. If you are traveling as a family or a small group, this is a great property to consider. This apartment has four bedrooms and can accommodate up to six people. It has a kitchen and gets great reviews. But the best part is the awesome view. From the apartment, you get an unobstructed view of Kirkjufell. This is a place I would consider on a return visit to Iceland simply for the view alone.

HELLNAR: Fosshotel Hellnar. This eco-friendly hotel offers rooms with private bathrooms that can accommodate up to three people. There is an onsite restaurant.

ARNARSTAPI: Arnarstapi Hotel. Located right in Arnarstapi, you will be able to walk right out to some of the most scenic coastal cliffs on the Snaefellsnes Peninsula. Rooms can accommodate up to four people and all rooms have a private bathroom.

Day 3: Snaefellsnes Peninsula

Driving distance and time: 350 km, 5 hours. This includes driving around the Snaefellsnes Peninsula and ending at Fludir on the Golden Circle.

Spend today touring the Snaefellsnes Peninsula, visiting the places that you did not get to yesterday.

In the afternoon, drive to the Golden Circle. On the Golden Circle, there are several small towns you can choose as your home base. We stayed in Fludir which was very handy for touring the Golden Circle and day tripping to Landmannalaugar.

Here are our recommendations for where to stay on the Golden Circle. You will stay here for three nights.

Where to Stay on the Golden Circle

Arbakki Farmhouse Lodge. This lodge offers rooms that can accommodate up to four people. It has an excellent location, near Reykholt and just a short drive from the Golden Circle sights.

Heradsskolinn Historic Guesthouse. This boutique hostel is located in a former school building. Stay in a private room or a dorm. There is an onsite bistro that serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

Mosas Cottages. Stay in your own “vacation home,” small, detached houses that can accommodate up to six people in two-bedroom cottages. This property is located in Fludir.

Where we stayed: We stayed at Guesthouse Fludir and did not have a good experience. We had two standard double rooms with a private bathroom. What they don’t tell you is that there are two levels of these rooms. If you are on the bottom level, as we were, your view is of a gravel parking lot and all night long you will hear the people above you walking around. The upper rooms are wonderful. For the same exact price, they have a gorgeous view and a balcony, but there is no guarantee that you will get this, as we learned on our visit. It’s not worth the risk of getting stuck on the bottom level. I recommend looking elsewhere.

CAMPSITE & RV PARKING: Laugarvatn Camping

Day 4: The Golden Circle

Driving distance and time: 200 km, 3 hours, not including additional places

The Golden Circle is a loop that connects three of Iceland’s most popular spots: Gullfoss, the Geysir Geothermal Area, and Thingvellir National Park.

Thingvellir 10 days in Iceland itinerary

Thingvellir National Park | 10 days in Iceland itinerary


Gullfoss 10 days in Iceland itinerary

Gullfoss | 10 days in Iceland itinerary

To visit all three of these places, it takes about 5 to 7 hours, depending on how quickly you move. The Golden Circle doesn’t fill an entire day. You can either use the remaining time to relax or add on one or more of these destinations:

Brúarfoss is waterfall that is famous for its sky blue color.


Bruarfoss | 10 days in Iceland itinerary


The Kerid Crater is a 3,000 year old volcanic crater that is filled with water. This is a quick and easy add on to your Golden Circle tour.

Kerid Crater 10 days in Iceland itinerary

Kerid Crater | 10 days in Iceland itinerary

The Secret Lagoon is a hot spring that has become so popular that it’s no longer a secret. But if you like hot springs, end the day here.

Spend the night on the Golden Circle.

Day 5: Landmannalaugar Day Trip

Driving distance and time: 240 km, 4 hours

Landmannalaugar is famous for its colorful rhyolite mountains and epic day hikes. Geothermal hot springs, lava fields, and unique hiking trails attract adventurous travelers all summer long.

If you are a hiker, this will be one of your highlights on a trip to Iceland. But you don’t have to be big into hiking to enjoy this day trip. The landscapes at Landmannalaugar are extraordinary, and to journey into the Highlands of Iceland will most likely be one of the most memorable days of this trip.

Landmannalaugar 10 days in Iceland itinerary

Landmannalaugar | 10 days in Iceland itinerary


Landmannalaugar Hike

To get here, you will need a 4×4. The roads to Landmannalaugar are F-roads which are rough, gravel roads that are only suitable for 4×4’s. If you do not have a 4×4, you can either join a tour or take a bus to Landmannalaugar. Yes, you heard me right, a bus. But this is not your ordinary bus. The off-road buses in Iceland are well-equipped with oversized wheels and high clearance to navigate these roads.

PRO TRAVEL TIP: The best time to visit Landmannalaugar is from mid-June through September, when the hiking trails and roads are free of snow. If you are planning a trip to Iceland outside of these months and still want to visit Landmannalaugar, you will have to take a tour.

Landmannalaugar Itinerary

Read our One Day in Landmannalaugar Guide to get all of the details on how to plan your day trip.

On the drive back to the Golden Circle, there are two spectacular waterfalls to visit.

Sigöldugljúfur is a canyon with a stunning wall of waterfalls. It is located right on F208. You will literally drive right past it, but since it can’t be seen from the road, most people have no idea what they are missing. Park in the small parking lot and it is a 1 km (0.6 mile) flat walk to this viewpoint. This detour adds 45 minutes to an hour onto your day.

Sigoldugljufur 10 days in Iceland itinerary

Háifoss is one of the tallest waterfalls in Iceland. In the early 20th century, it was believed to be the tallest waterfall in Iceland, earning it the name “high waterfall.” Now, it is thought to be the fourth tallest in Iceland.

10 days in Iceland itinerary Haifoss

Háifoss is located off of route 32, on the drive back to the Golden Circle. Turn right onto F332 and drive 7 km to the parking lot for Háifoss. This F-road was one of the roughest roads we drove on in Iceland and a 4×4 is necessary to get here.

Tonight, spend your third night on the Golden Circle.

Iceland Travel Guide

Day 6: South Coast

Today you will tour the highlights of the south coast of Iceland. This is the day where you will visit several of Iceland’s most famous and recognizable spots.

Here are the top places to visit, in order as you drive from the Golden Circle towards Vik:

  • Seljalandsfoss
  • Gljúfrabúi waterfall
  • Skógafoss
  • Kvernufoss
  • Dyrholaey Lighthouse and Arch
  • Reynisfjara black sand beach

For the full list of places to visit, plus tips to have the best experience, read our post 20 Best Things to do on the  South Coast of Iceland.

Seljalandsfoss is a massive waterfall that you can walk behind. Just a short walk away is Gljúfrabúi, a smaller waterfall that is tucked away in a canyon.

Seljalandsfoss 10 days in Iceland itinerary

Seljalandsfoss | 10 days in Iceland itinerary


Gljufrabui | 10 days in Iceland itinerary

Skógafoss is one of Iceland’s most iconic waterfalls. What most people don’t know is that you can hike past Skogafoss and visit 25 more waterfalls. Called the Waterfall Way, this hiking trail, which is also the start of the amazing Fimmvörðuháls hike, follows along the Skógá River, passing 25 smaller waterfalls along the way. The views of the lush, green canyons are gorgeous and just might be one of the best, unexpected highlights of the day.

To see all 25 waterfalls, you have to walk 5 miles upriver (10 miles round trip). Of course, you don’t have to walk the entire distance. Just turn around when you are ready.

Iceland Itinerary Skogafoss

Skógafoss | 10 days in Iceland itinerary


Waterfall Way

Waterfall on Waterfall Way | 10 days in Iceland itinerary

Kvernufoss is another beautiful waterfall to visit. It is much less visited than nearby Skógafoss. Park at the Skógar Museum and it is a 10-minute walk to get to the waterfall.

Kvernufoss 10 days in Iceland itinerary

Kvernufoss | 10 days in Iceland itinerary

Note: This waterfall is located on private property. Stay on the trail and do not litter or leave behind any trash. Even if you do not have plans to visit the Skógar Museum, you will have to pay a small fee to park here.


Reynisfjara black sand beach

The Solheimasandur Plane Wreck makes it onto a lot of Iceland itineraries. However, we think that it is Iceland’s most overrated attraction. To get here, it is a long, boring walk (4 miles round trip, about 1.5 hours) and once here, you’ll most likely see people climbing all over the plane, despite warning signs forbidding this. Skip the plane wreck, and instead, visit Kvernufoss or walk part of the Skogafoss trail.

Iceland Plane Wreck

Tonight, sleep in Vík.

Where to Stay in Vík

Hotel Kria. This nearly brand new hotel offers modern rooms with lots of amenities. This hotel is located right in Vík, within walking distance of the Kronan grocery store. Breakfast is included with your stay.

The Barn. This hostel is one of the highest rated properties in Vík. Rooms range from dormitory style rooms to family rooms that can accommodate up to 6 people. The Barn is located just outside of Vík and a great value for your money.

Black Beach Suites. Located just outside of Vík, this property offers apartments that can accommodate up to four people. Guests rave about the amazing views of the coastline, having a small kitchen in their room, and the remoteness of this property (even though you are just a short drive from Vík).


Day 7: Glacier Hike

Driving distance and time to Skaftafell: 140 km, 1 hour 40 minutes

Glacier hiking was one of our favorite experiences in Iceland. There are a lot of ways to do this, depending on your activity and adventure level. Tours can range from short, 3-hour, easy walks to all day hikes where you use crampons, an ice axe, and even do a little ice climbing.

On the south coast, there are two places to walk on a glacier. Solheimajökull is a popular spot for day trippers from Reykjavík. But for an epic experience, walk on Vatnajökull, the largest glacier in Europe.

To do this, you will drive to Skaftafell and spend the day on the glacier. We did a five-hour tour with Arctic Adventures where we got to spend three hours on Vatnajökull glacier. We walked through crevasses and climbed up and over huge chunks of ice. This was one of our favorite experiences in Iceland.

Glacier Walk Iceland Itinerary


You can add on the hike to Svartifoss, a beautiful waterfall that features black, volcanic basalt columns, to the end of your day (or tomorrow morning).


Svartifoss | 10 days in Iceland itinerary

Tonight, sleep near Skaftafell.

Where to Stay in Skaftafell

Hotel Skaftafell. This hotel is conveniently located in Skaftafell. Rooms can accommodate up to three people. There is an onsite restaurant and a 2nd floor bar with great views of the glacier.

The Potato Storage. This new property, with its interesting name and industrial, modern décor gets exceptional. It tends to get reserved months in advance so make your reservation as soon as possible. It is located just a short drive from Skaftafell.

Fosshotel Glacier Lagoon. This property is located between the Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon and Skaftafell. This is a 4-star property and offers stunning views of the mountains or the ocean.

CAMPSITE & RV PARKING: Skaftafell Camping

Day 8: Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon

Driving distance and time: 440 km, 5.75 hours

In the morning, make the short drive to Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon. This is a beautiful place and hopefully you will have better weather than we did.


You can view the lagoon from the parking lot, but for a better experience, consider joining a kayaking or boat tour of the lagoon.

Just a short drive away from Jökulsárlón is Diamond Beach. Chunks of ice from Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon wash up onto this black sand beach, creating an extremely photogenic spot.

Diamond Beach

Diamond Beach | 10 days in Iceland itinerary


Fjallsárlón glacier lagoon, a lesser known but arguably more beautiful glacier lagoon than Jökulsárlón, is also worth a visit. It’s just a short drive from Diamond Beach and free to visit.



From Fjallsárlón, drive back to Reykjavík. On the way, stop at Fjaðrárgljúfur, a beautiful, photogenic canyon.

Must See Iceland

Once in Reykjavík, get settled into your hotel. You will spend two nights here.

Where to Stay in Reykjavík

Reykjavík Residence Apartment Hotel. Rooms can accommodate up to 6 people in suites, one-bedroom, and two-bedroom apartments. This hotel has an excellent location within walking distance of Reykjavik’s top spots.

House of the Snowbird. This is a historic house located in downtown Reykjavík. Stay in a one-bedroom apartment with a dining area and small kitchen. From here, it’s a bit of a walk to Hallgrimskirkja, but you are close to the waterfront.

Loft – HI Hostel. This highly-rate hostel features a rooftop terrace, private rooms and dormitory-style rooms, and is located in the heart of Reykjavík.

Day 9: Reykjavík

Spend the day exploring Reykjavík. Places to visit include Hallsgrimkirkja church, Harpa concert hall, go shopping on Laugavegur Street, see the Sun Voyager sculpture, visit Perlan Museum, and check out the colorful graffiti.



We had some great meals in Reykjavík. 101 Reykjavík Street Food was one of our favorite spots. Eat stews and fish and chips that are delicious and this is one of Reykjavík’s most affordable, delicious restaurants. Ostabudin and Messinn are also very good.

Sleep in Reykjavík.

Day 10: Fly Home

Drive to the airport, return your rental car, and fly home (or continue on to your next destination).

How to Modify This Itinerary

With Less Time

If you want to visit the highlights of Iceland but don’t have a full 10 days, what should you eliminate?

To make this a 9-day itinerary, remove one day from the Snaefellsnes Peninsula. Visit Kirkjufell and the main sights of the peninsula, which are the most scenic places. Drive to the Golden Circle at the end of the day.

To make this an 8-day itinerary, combine the glacier walk with the sights around Jökulsárlón. It will be a big day. The following day, drive to Reykjavík and spend the remaining time in the city.

To make this a 7-day itinerary, either eliminate Landmannalaugar or the Snaefellsnes Peninsula. It makes the most sense to eliminate Landmannalaugar if you are doing this itinerary from October through May. If you are big into hiking or want to see some very unique landscapes, and journey into the highlands, keep Landmannalaugar and eliminate the Snaefellsnes Peninsula.

Sample 7 Day Itinerary with Landmannalaugar

Day 1: Arrive, Blue Lagoon
Day 2: Golden Circle
Day 3: Landmannalaugar Day Trip
Day 4: South coast highlights
Day 5: Glacier walk and Jökulsárlón
Day 6: Reykjavík
Day 7: Fly home

Sample 7 Day Itinerary with the Snaefellsnes Peninsula

Day 1: Arrive, Blue Lagoon
Day 2: Snaefellsnes Peninsula
Day 3: Golden Circle
Day 4: South coast highlights
Day 5: Glacier walk and Jökulsárlón
Day 6: Reykjavík
Day 7: Fly home

Are you looking for more Iceland itinerary ideas? Check out our post 10 Days in Iceland: 4 Amazing Itineraries for more ideas.

With More Time

If you have one or more days to add to this Iceland itinerary, here are two unique Iceland adventures to add to your trip.

Fimmvörðuháls Hike

This was our favorite day in Iceland and one of the best day hikes we have done in the world. 26 waterfalls, 1 volcano, 2 glaciers, and 3 unique landscapes all combine for one of the most extraordinary hiking experiences on the planet.

Fimm Hike


The Fimmvörðuháls hike is a massive hike. It’s 25 km (15.5 miles) in length and done as a point-to-point hike from Skógafoss to Thórsmörk. It will take up the entire day, but what a memorable day it will be!

At the end of day 6, sleep near Skógar rather than Vik. On day 7, hike the Fimmvörðuháls trail and spend a second night in Skógar. On day 8, resume the itinerary, doing the glacier walk next. This adds one day to this itinerary.


Kerlingarfjöll, located in the central highlands of Iceland, is a geothermal wonderland of steaming vents, boiling mud pools, and rainbow-colored hot springs.

This is another unique hiking destination in Iceland. For many visitors, the Hveradalir geothermal area is the highlight. This is the place to see steaming fumaroles, bubbling mud pots, and the multi-colored mountains.


To get here, you will drive on an F-road into the highlands of central Iceland. You must have a 4×4 and to self-drive to Kerlingarfjöll, this must be done during the summer months.

Add this after the day trip to Landmannalaugar. You can either visit Kerlingarfjöll as a day trip or spend two days and one night here.

Planning Your Trip

Rental Car and Hotel Reservations

For this itinerary, you will need to reserve:

A rental car or campervan. A 4×4 is ideal, since it allows you to drive to Landmannalaugar without joining a tour or taking a bus. Plus, there are many places in Iceland where you will drive unpaved roads that are suitable for a 2WD vehicle. However, these can be rough, with potholes in some spots, and a 4×4 will make this easier.

Renting a 2WD vehicle is cheaper, but you will have to skip Landmannalaugar or take a bus or tour. You will also have to skip several sights on the Snaefellsnes Peninsula that require a 4×4.

Note: A 4×4 is a vehicle that is authorized by the rental car companies to be driven on F-roads. Many of these vehicles are SUV’s with AWD or 4×4 capabilities. For example, we rented a Kia Sorrento through Hertz and this was authorized as a 4×4 that could be driven on F-roads.


Blue Lagoon – 1 night
Snaefellsnes Peninsula – 1 night
Golden Circle – 3 nights
Vík – 1 night
Skaftafell – 1 night
Reykjavík – 2 nights

We have not camped in Iceland, but from what I have read and learned from talking to other travelers is that you do not need to reserve your campsites in advance.

Driving in Iceland

Driving along the south coast of Iceland | 10 days in Iceland itinerary

Average Trip Costs

Here are some estimated costs (all prices are in USD for the summer months):

4WD vehicle: $125 – $200 per day; larger SUV’s, such as Land Rovers and Toyota Land Cruisers, cost up to $300 – $400 per day (and are unnecessary unless you plan to do river crossings)

Fuel: $2 per liter ($7.6 per gallon)

Campervan: $100 – $300 per day
Campsite: $10 – $15

Midrange Hotel, double room with two people: $200 – $300
High end hotel, double room with two people: $300 – $500

Meals can cost $20 to $40 per dish, depending on the restaurant. We typically saw prices averaging around $28 per dish, so for our family of four, we spent $100 to $150 per meal. To save money, we only dined in restaurants once per day and bought groceries at the Kronan or Bonus grocery stores. You will find these grocery stores throughout Iceland.

For more valuable tips about visiting Iceland, including trip costs and driving tips, make sure you read our article Iceland Travel Tips: Things to Know Before You Go

If you have any questions about spending 10 days in Iceland and this adventure itinerary, let us know in the comment section below!

More Information for Your Trip to Iceland

ICELAND ITINERARIES: There are several ways to put together a trip to Iceland. If you have 10 days, here are four different ways to spend your time in Iceland. This two week Iceland itinerary includes the entire Ring Road and main highlights of Iceland.

RING ROAD ITINERARY: With 7 to 10 days, you can drive the entire Ring Road and experience the highlights of Iceland. Learn how to do it in our Ring Road Itinerary.

BEST OF ICELAND: For a list of top experiences in Iceland, don’t miss our Iceland Bucket List. The South Coast of Iceland is jam-packed with wonderful sights to see. You can also photograph waterfalls, explore the Snaefellsnes Peninsula, and take your pick from a long list of hiking trails.

DAY TRIPS FROM REYKJAVÍK: If you are planning a short visit to Iceland with Reykjavík as your home base, here are 10 great day trips to take from Reykjavík.

ICELAND TRAVEL ADVICE: First time in Iceland? Here are essential things to know about Iceland, including driving tips, sample costs, SIM cards, when to visit, and more.

Read all of our articles about Iceland in our Iceland Travel Guide.

More 10 Day European Itineraries

If you are looking for more ideas on how to spend 10 days in Europe, these itineraries may interest you:

For more great itineraries from Europe and around the world, take a look at our Travel Itineraries page.


10 Day Iceland Itinerary and Travel Guide


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Comments 34

  1. Avatar for AC

    you guys are so generous with your time and advice. we used your recommendations extensively in the Dolomites and rest of Italy and are looking forward to your 10-day proposed itinerary in Iceland. If there is a way support you guys in anyway, please let me know. thank you!. best. ac

    1. Avatar for Julie Post

      Hello AC. Just receiving this kind comment is good enough! Thank you so much for taking the time to write in. If you have friends or family who love to travel, you can share our website with them. Have a great time in Iceland! Cheers, Julie

  2. Avatar for Richa


    Your itinerary has been so helpful for us to plan our trip to Iceland and would really appreciate if you could help me on a few pointers. We are travelling with our kid and would really want to reduce and spend more than one night at a destination and less driving and as I have read from your previous comments; you have suggested we can then skip Snaefellness Peninsula and a night at Vik, however we really want to squeeze in Kirkjufell in our itinerary, what route would you recommend we take?

    Currently we are planning,
    Blue Lagoon – 2 nights
    Golden Circle – 3 nights
    Skafrefell- 2 nights
    Reykjavik- 3 nights

    But your suggestion would really help us if we need to change/edit/add any other place instead /or

    Thank you again

    1. Avatar for Julie Post

      Hello Richa. It takes 2.5 hours to get to Kirkjufell from Reykjavik and 3.5 hours to get to Kirkjufell from the Golden Circle and the Blue Lagoon. It’s possible to visit Kirkjufell on a day trip from Reykjavik and that is probably your best option if you want to eliminate staying on the Snaefellsnes Peninsula. On this itinerary, I think it would be too much driving to add it in right after the Blue Lagoon and then on the same day drive to the Golden Circle. It’s doable but it is a lot of driving just to see one thing. So, either visit Kirkjufell on a day trip from Reykjavik or keep the first part of this itinerary the same to have less driving but one more hotel stay. Cheers, Julie

      1. Avatar for Richa

        Thank you, this helps.

        Also would you suggest adding/editing anything from our itinerary that we made with the help of yours to make it more kid friendly.

        Although we are seeing almost every scenic spots but yet if you have any suggestions, would surely love to change.

        Thanks 🙂

        1. Avatar for Julie Post

          Depending on the age of your kids, I think most of Iceland is kid friendly, with waterfalls, short hiking trails, incredible scenery. I don’t know the ages of your kids but I think you shouldn’t need to make any changes to the itinerary. Cheers, Julie

  3. Avatar for Yanet

    Hi Julie! I’m planning to visit Iceland around the end of May or the beginning of June. I’d like to avoid crowds and get good hiking weather but I can’t find the exact week when the tourist/crowded season begins. Do you know if it’s busy in the first week of June, for example? Thank you!

    1. Avatar for Julie Post

      In early June, it shouldn’t be too bad as far as crowds are concerned. However, some areas and hiking trails do not open until mid-June. If you want to avoid the crowds as much as possible (which can be difficult because peak season aligns with time hiking trails are open) go the second half of June and late August into September. Cheers, Julie

  4. Avatar for Gayle Campbell
    Gayle Campbell


    Thank you for all of your wonderful information!! Our plans for next June are very similar to yours listed here. I’m wondering, if we wanted to visit the East Coast as far north as Bakkageroi, how/where would you fit it in? We will have a total of ten nights/eleven days. I’m guessing to add an overnight trip from the Diamond Beach area; what are your thoughts? I basically would like to complete the Ring Road including the Snaefellsnes Peninsula and Landmannalaugar, but I’m happy to skip the North. I’m currently overwhelmed with information from all of my resources so any direct insights you could share would be greatly appreciated!

    1. Avatar for Julie Post

      Hello Gayle. At the end of day 8, continue east and spend the night in Hofn. On day 9, drive to Bakkageroi, spend the night here. From Bakkageroi, it’s actually an hour faster to drive to Reykjavik on the north of the island versus back along the south coast. So, on day 10, drive west, visit Dettifoss and Godafoss and sleep near Godafoss. On day 11, drive to Reykjavik. This allows you to drive the full Ring Road. If you do this you could reorganize the itinerary, saving the Snaefellsnes Peninsula for the end of the trip, visiting it right before you get back to Reykjavik. I know you said you don’t mind skipping the north, and if so, you could drive directly to the Snaefellsnes Peninsula in one day, it would just be a very big driving day.
      So, fly to Iceland on day 1 and day 2 would become the Golden Circle. You would essentially be doing the Ring Road in a counter clockwise direction.
      I hope this makes sense! Let me know if you have any other questions. Cheers, Julie

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