Which places should I visit in Iceland besides Reykjavik?

It should come as no surprise to anyone – at Your Friend in Reykjavik, we love our home city! Take a quick look at our selection of Reykjavik Walking Tours or Private Reykjavik Walking Tours. You’ll see that there’s no shortage of fantastic sights and attractions awaiting you in Iceland’s capital.

However, as much as we love our city for its history, culture, and cuisine, there’s a veritable treasure trove of natural wonders to be found beyond city limits. Iceland’s landscapes are some of the most dramatic in the world (it’s why Hollywood so often films here), and the country lets visitors see an array of natural phenomena rarely found anywhere else.

Join Your Friend in Reykjavik today as we choose some of our favorite places to visit in Iceland besides Reykjavik.

And if we inspire you to begin planning your dream Iceland trip, but you just can’t find a tour package right for you, consider our custom tours option. Our expert team can craft a trip that suits your travel arrangements.

Iceland Golden Circle Greenary

The Golden Circle

The Golden Circle encompasses a 300km round trip that takes in three of Iceland’s most famous natural attractions: Thingvellir National Park, the Geyser Geothermal Area, and the Gullfoss Waterfall.

It would be worthwhile getting out of the city to explore any one of the three attractions mentioned above, but the Golden Circle allows you to take in all of them in a single day!

The Thingvellir National Park is the site of Iceland’s first parliament (established around 930 AD) and is regarded by many as the country’s spiritual home.

Learn all about the country’s past before walking to one of the most extraordinary natural wonders you’ll ever see: two tectonic plates rising from the Earth’s crust to form a beautiful crevasse you can walk through.   

Meanwhile, the Gulfoss Waterfall (Golden Falls) is one of Iceland’s most iconic waterfalls (and we have many!). Chosen as a filming location for many films and TV shows, the Gulfoss Waterfall is the ideal spot to take some fabulous photos – it looks amazon throughout the year!

Finally, you can visit the geothermal area in Haukadalur. This site is unique; you can watch active geysers blast water high into the air. The smaller geyser, known as Strokkur, can be counted on to erupt almost every ten minutes. 

With Your Friend in Reykjavik, you can visit the Golden Circle as part of a custom tour or join the Golden Circle and Fontana Wellness tour that combines the sites of the Golden Circle with some revitalizing spa therapies.

Ice lagoon on the south coast of Iceland

Iceland’s South Coast

The southern coast of Iceland possesses some of the country’s most magical locations. Steeped in myths and legends for centuries, the landscapes offer unforgettable sites such as black sand beaches and glacial lagoons. Not to mention lots of charming historical villages dotted all around.

Join Your Friend in Reykjavik for our 2-Day South Coast Tour, where you’ll visit the Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon, Skaftafell and Vatnajokull national parks, Seljalandsfoss and Skogafoss waterfalls, and much more besides.

If you’re tight on time, consider our South Coast Sagas Day Tour, which conveniently departs from Reykjavik and will have you back to your accommodation within about ten hours.

Aurora Borealis northern lights in Iceland

The Northern Lights

Okay, so this one isn’t exactly a place, but no trip to Iceland is complete without trying to catch sight of one of Mother Nature’s most beautiful light shows!

Of course, whether you can see the Aurora Borealis will depend upon the time of year you are visiting Iceland. If you’re in Iceland on any date between late August and mid-April, you should make an effort to join a Northern Lights tour or arrange accommodation in a place far from light pollution.

Looking at our Northern Lights Tour, you’ll see we don’t even follow a set tour route. Our guides will use weather forecasts and dedicated aurora forecasts to decide where will be the best place to witness the phenomenon – all part of what makes the Northern Lights such an adventure.

Iceland erupting volcano

Geldingardalur Volcano

Located on the Reykjanes Peninsula in southwest Iceland, Fagradalsfjall is the name of a prominent volcano and broader volcanic system that had lain dormant for over 800 years. That is until 19 March 2021, when a volcanic vent opened at Geldingardalur and began spewing forth molten lava. 

Though the eruption has now ended, the lava is still fresh, smoking, and visible to visitors. On our Private Hike to Geldingardalur Volcano, we’ll pick you up from Reykjavik and drive you out to the lava fields. We will enjoy a leisurely hike there before spending two hours at the volcano.

Snæfellsnes National Park

For Icelanders, Snæfellsnes is often associated with spiritual experiences and folk tales. The landscape here can be positively otherwordly. It glows with Iceland’s unique, mysterious charm. 

The Snæfellsnes National Park has long been popular with visitors because the area seems to showcase Iceland in miniature.

Here you find many quintessentially Icelandic natural marvels – black beaches, majestic mountains, volcanic craters, diverse birdlife, mystical caves, and the most picturesque glacier of them all, Snæfellsjökull (famously depicted in Jules Verne’s Journey to the Centre of the Earth).

If you’re spending a short stay in Reykjavik, consider our Wonders of Snæfellsnes National Park day tour. We’ll pick you up from central Reykjavik and take you on a 12-hour tour to Snæfellsnes to enjoy the site’s highlight features.

Woman relaxing in the blue lagoon Iceland

Blue Lagoon

So…you’ve been enjoying an adventurous stay in Iceland. You’ve been hiking up mountains, bravely exploring caves, walking on glaciers, and filling your belly with lots of traditional Icelandic food and drink. Where to find a little rest and relaxation before your holiday ends?  

There’s no better option than the country’s famous Blue Lagoon. Soak in geothermal waters as you gaze out on a stunning natural landscape. Make use of first-class facilities and book spa treatments for optimal revitalization.

There’s luxury, then there’s Blue Lagoon luxury. There are few places on Earth where you can enjoy wellness therapies in such beautiful surroundings. 

Though you must book entrance tickets to the Blue Lagoon in advance, we offer a stress-free round-trip transfer to the site. Leave the logistics to us and focus on what’s important: pampering yourself in style.

This brings to a close our list of some places we think you should visit outside Reykjavik. We hope we’ve inspired you to begin planning your dream trip to Iceland. If you have any questions about this blog or our tours, please get in touch.

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