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  • Hotels: Standard Class
  • Max Participants: 14
  • 12/26/2019 - 12/30/2019
  • 5 Days / 4 Nights

Most people who visit Iceland go in the Summer, but there’s a whole other side to this place in the Winter months. (It is called “Iceland,” after all.) Hike on glaciers, explore Þingvellir National Park, reflect on life under the Northern Lights, and warm up in hot springs.


What's Included:
  • Standard Hotels (4 nts)
  • 4 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 2 dinners – allow $155-205 for meals not included
  • G Adventures Tour Leader throughout
  • Transport between destinations and to/from included activities using private minivan/bus
  • Lava caving (Leiðarendi Cave)
  • Two nights of Northern Lights hunting
  • Golden Circle sightseeing
  • Geysir Hot Springs
  • Þingvellir National Park
  • Gullfoss Waterfall
  • Southern coast drive, including Skógafoss and Seljalandsfoss Waterfalls
What's Not Included:
  • International air travel
  • Incidentals
  • Travel health and cancellation insurance
  • Applicable visas
  • Tips or gratuities
  • Airport taxes
  • Beverages
  • Meals not mentioned in itinerary
  • Optional tours and admissions
  • Airport transfers

Day 1: ReykjavíkArrive at any time. We recommend arriving a day early to better explore this world-renowned city.

Arrive in Reykjavík at any time. Check into our hotel and enjoy the city. We HIGHLY recommend arriving 1-2 days early to explore this world-renowned city fully. Worthwhile visits near Reykjavík include the Blue Lagoon (40 mins from Reykjavík) and the Bargarnes Settlement Centre (1 hr from Reykjavík).

Check the notice boards or ask at reception for the exact time and location of the group meeting, typically held at 6:00 p.m. or 7:00 p.m. After the meeting, you might take the opportunity to head out for a meal in a nearby local restaurant to further get to know your tour leader and traveling companions. Please make every effort to arrive on time for this welcome meeting. If you are delayed and will arrive late, please inform us. Your tour leader will then leave you a message at the front desk informing you of where and when to meet up.

Day 2: Reykjavik/Álftröð (B, D)Travel from Reykjavík to a lava cave in the Bláfjöll Mountains. Continue to Þingvellir National Park, including Geysir Hot Spring and Gullfoss Waterfall. Hopefully get a view of the Northern Lights in the Golden Circle before returning to Álftröð.

This morning, we leave Reykjavík and travel to a lava cave in the Bláfjöll Mountains. We will go beneath the earth’s surface to discover how Iceland was created. Walk and crawl through the Leiðarendi cave that was carved out by flowing volcanic lava, and marvel at the multi-colored rock formations left in its path.

Next, we stop at Þingvellir (or “Thingvellir”) National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage site, to see the faults created by North American and Eurasian tectonic plates shifting apart. The Oxara River cuts through the largest rift in the valley, Almannagja, and leads to the Oxarafoss waterfall. Iceland’s parliament was also established in the area in 930 AD, and the park was later created to protect the remains of the open-air assembly grounds. One of the most-visited sights in Iceland, the park is an excellent spot for camping, hiking, and SCUBA diving between the tectonic plates.

Afterwards, we discover one of the most impressive waterfalls in Iceland, Gullfoss, and complete the tourist circuit known as the Golden Circle. This massive waterfall cascades over three “steps” before spilling into a large crevice. Fed by a glacier lake, the water passing through the falls can be a dark grey depending on how much sediment gets pushed through the river.

In the evening, we will try to see the Northern Lights in the Golden Circle before driving to Álftröð where we will spend the next 2 nights.

Please note: The Northern Lights are a natural phenomenon, and sightings will be dependent on weather conditions. We cannot guarantee that travelers booked on this tour will experience the Northern Lights.

Approximate travel time: 2.5 hrs in private vehicle

Day 3: Álftröð (B, L, D)Hike around the Reykjadalur area. Take in the stunning landscapes and soak in geothermal hot springs along the route. Step outside for another chance to view the Northern Lights.

Today, we take a hike along the scenic Reykjadalur trail, walking along the rolling hills and pools of bright blue water. This hike varies in length depending on the pace of the group and the route chosen, but can take up to 4 hours. We follow the steaming pools that line the footpath until we arrive at the hot springs – natural pools heated by geothermal activity. Jump in and enjoy the healing effects of one of Iceland’s simplest pleasures.

This evening, step outside for another chance to view the Northern Lights.

Approximate travel time: 1-2 hrs on foot

Day 4: Álftröð/Reykjavik (B, L)Travel to Sólheimajökull Glacier and take some time to explore the area. Opt for a stunning hike and an additional glacier hike. Drive the scenic southern coast and visit the Skógafoss and Seljalandsfoss waterfalls on the way back to Reykjavík. Enjoy a final night in the city.

This morning, we travel to Sólheimajökull Glacier and learn about the effects of climate change in Iceland. You will have the option of taking an easy hike through the dramatic glacier valley and along the black sand flood plains to the edge of the ice. Enjoy stunning, panoramic views of the surrounding mountains, glaciers, and the Eyjafjallajökull volcano. The guide will explain the volcanic history of the area and the effects of global warming.

You will also have the option of going glacier hiking (roughly $114 USD). Learn how to walk safely on the ice of the Sólheimajökull Glacier, explore the ice formations and crevices. The ice flows from the larger Myrdalsjökull glacier to Sólheimajökull, an outlet glacier. The icy landscape with bright, blue caves and ridges is a unique hiking experience, one that is rapidly changing due to climate change.

We then drive the scenic southern coast and visit the Seljalandsfoss waterfall. Seljalandsfoss is a 60 m (196 ft) high waterfall located along the popular ring road. Behind the flow of water is a path, allowing visitors to peek behind the curtain of water cascading over the rocks above. Then we visit Skógafoss, one of the largest and most recognizable waterfalls in Iceland. The 60 m (200 ft) high falls forms a constant mist that floats in the air, which, if viewed in the sunlight, can create rainbows. The sound and view of the thundering water cutting through the green hills make the falls a must-see on any trip to Iceland.

We then head back to Reykjavík to enjoy a final night in the city.

Approximate travel time: 4.5 hrs by private vehicle

Day 5: Reykjavík (B)Depart Reykjavík at any time.

Our program ends in Reykjavík this morning. We recommend spending at least an extra day exploring Reykjavík before or after this trip.

Want more adventure? Book two or more GEEO trips in the same year and receive a discount! GEEO will give you 10% off of the lesser value program(s) (up to 3 programs).

If you don’t see a program that interests you that pairs with this trip but still would like to extend your time abroad, let us know. We will work with you to find a non-teacher trip from our tour operator’s much larger catalog. Even better, if you are an educator, we can still offer you a discounted price on the trip you choose!

Frequently Asked Questions

Please click here to go to our general FAQ, which has essential information that applies to all of our programs. 

Terms and Conditions

It is very important for you to visit our Terms and Conditions page before signing up for this program.

Cancellation policy

All cancellations must be submitted to GEEO in written form by emailing your request for cancellation to If you do not receive a confirmation that we have received your written cancellation request, please call us at 1-877-600-0105. Verbal cancellation requests will not be honored.

  • If you cancel 60 days or more prior to departure, all your program fee payments will be refunded besides your $350 deposit which is kept on file for future use
  • If you cancel between 30 and 59 days prior to departure, you will receive a 50% refund and your deposit is kept on file for future use
  • If you cancel within 30 days of departure, you will receive no refund, but your deposit is kept on file for future use
Trip Notes
  1. NORTHERN LIGHTS: The Northern Lights are a natural phenomenon, and sightings will be dependent on weather conditions. We cannot guarantee that travelers booked on this tour will experience the Northern Lights.

  2. WEATHER: The landscape of Iceland is unique and unlike most things you’ve seen. So is the weather. It is unpredictable and prone to fast changes, so be prepared to experience a variety of conditions during your time in Iceland. It’s not uncommon to experience rain, sun, wind, and snow all in the same visit, so please pack accordingly. Make sure you pack rain pants and a good waterproof raincoat!

  3. BLUE LAGOON: If you wish to visit the Blue Lagoon, please know that this activity must be done before or after your tour. As this activity is very popular and limits admission, we recommend booking it online well in advance.

  4. HOLIDAY HOURS: Some churches and stores will be closed during the holiday season.
Group Leader Description

All GEEO/G Adventures group trips are accompanied by one of G Adventure’s group leaders, which they refer to as Chief Experience Officers (CEO). The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. They will provide information on the places you are traveling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues, and introduce you to our local friends. Our itineraries often have plenty of free time to explore on your own.

While not being guides in the traditional sense, you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the countries visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious, and social aspects. We also use local guides where we think more specific knowledge will add to the enjoyment of the places we are visiting – we think it’s the best of both worlds.


Fitness Level

This trip includes light walking and optional moderate hiking that is suitable for most fitness levels.


Single Travelers

Half of the people that travel with GEEO are traveling by themselves, so please don’t worry if you have no one who can join you on your trip. Our pricing is based on double occupancy or, in other words, two people to a room. You never have to pay for a single room unless you want one. GEEO can find you a roommate of the same gender. Most of our trips have a “My Own Room” option, also known as a “Single Supplement,” which is an extra fee that will allow you to have a room to yourself. If you want to room alone, please email jesse@ To see the price for the “My Own Room” option, please click here where you can look up your trip in the extra services spreadsheet.


Joining Instructions

Day 1 is an arrival day, and no activities have been planned. Upon arrival to the city on Day 1, or earlier if you have booked pre-accommodation with us, please make your way to the joining hotel. Please note: Check-in time will be in the afternoon. Once you arrive at the hotel, look for a note at reception from your tour leader. This note will give the details of your Welcome Meeting on Day 1, usually between 6:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m., at which you will get a chance to meet your tour leader and other travelers, as well as learn more about how the tour will run. If you don’t see a note, please ask reception for details!

If you miss the Welcome Meeting, your tour leader will leave a note at reception for you with any information you may need and with instructions for the next morning.

Upon arrival at the airport, you will see a big service desk marked BUS TICKETS where you can buy a shuttle ticket to your hotel in Reykjavík. The transfer company is called Iceland Excursions, and they have airport express coaches running frequently from the airport to the city center both day and night. A one-way transfer to the city from the airport costs roughly 2,200 ISK per person and takes about 45 minutes.

Alternatively, you can get a taxi located just outside the arrivals exit. The taxi ride from the airport to the city center costs around 16,000-18,000 ISK.

Emergency Contacts

Should you need to contact G Adventures during a situation of dire need, it is best to first call their local G Adventures office. If for any reason you do not receive an immediate answer, please leave a detailed message and contact information, so they may return your call and assist you as soon as possible.

G Adventures UK office (manned UK 8:00 a.m.-8:00 p.m.)
+44 (0) 2072439878

If you are unable for any reason to contact the local office, please call the numbers listed below, which will connect you directly with the 24-hour Sales team, who will happily assist you.

Toll-free, from calls within North America only: 1 888 800 4100
Calls from within UK: 0844 272 0000
Outside North America and the UK: +1 416 260 0999

For absolute emergencies after office hours please contact +44 7817 262559
If for any reason you do not receive an immediate answer, please leave a detailed message and contact information, and your call will be returned as soon as possible.

Packing List

Please read this article on GEEO’s blog for our staff’s suggestions on the best gear to pack for your upcoming travels. You must be prepared to carry your own bags and be comfortable carrying them up and down stairs, on and off transportation, and to hotels. As a rule we try not to have to walk more than 15-20 minutes with your bags, which is why we recommend keeping the weight of your bags between 22-30 lb. Most travelers carry a backpack or rolling bag of small to medium size. No XXL bags please! A daypack is also essential for carrying everyday items. Space is limited on transportation, so there is a limit of one main piece of luggage per person plus a daypack per person.

 Suggested Checklist
  • Rain coat or waterproof shell jacket
  • Winter coat
  • Personal clothing for cold weather in the high 20’s- low 40’s F – we recommend packing 6 outfits so you don’t have to do laundry
  • Warm gloves, hat, scarf
  • Waterproof pants
  • Long john (thermal underwear) tops and bottoms for layering
  • Sturdy walking, hiking, or running shoes
  • Daypack
  • Sunblock
  • Sunglasses
  • Sun hat
  • Water bottle
  • Watch or alarm clock
  • Toiletries – Important: Some hotels will not provide soap and shampoo
  • Camera
  • Insect repellent 
  • First-aid kit, including: lip salve, aspirin, bandaids, anti-histamine, Dramamine, Imodium or similar tablets for mild cases of diarrhea, electrolyte powder, extra prescription drugs you may be taking
Optional Checklist
  • Bathing Suit
  • Travel pillow
  • Money belt
  • Phone/Tablet for internet – most hotels have WiFi
  • Chargers for electronics as well converters/adapters, if needed
  • Packing cubes
  • Ear Plugs
  • Snacks – packing a few granola bars is a good idea; you can buy snacks when you get there too, so don’t go crazy here
  • Ziplock bags
  • Reading/writing material
  • Hand sanitizer/Baby wipes
  • Gloves for when you are on the glacier
Document Checklist
  • Passport (with photocopies)
  • Travel insurance (with photocopies)
  • Airline tickets (with photocopies)
  • EUR/USD cash
  • Credit or debit card
  • G Adventures vouchers, pre-departure information, and dossier
  • Any entry visas or vaccination certificates required
  • GEEO Classroom action plans for your group – this is sent 10-30 days before departure

We recommend bringing enough clothes so you don’t have to do laundry during the trip. You won’t be sweating much, so it should be pretty easy. 

Passports and Visas

All GEEO trips require that the participant have a valid passport.  Please see our general FAQ for information on obtaining a passport. As with all of our trips, we try to provide the most accurate information we can, but governments sometimes change visa rules. It is your responsibility to double check the information we provide below by searching here.

Americans do not need a visa for travel in Iceland. Non-American participants should check with their government or nearest Icelandic Embassy to find out if they need a visa.


Money Exchange

Iceland uses the Icelandic Krona (ISK) as its currency. As currency exchange rates fluctuate, we ask that you refer to the following website for daily exchange rates: ATMs are also widely available that distribute the local currency and this is what we recommend as your primary source of cash while traveling. Please make sure you bring at least $200 USD in cash as emergency money, just in case you have trouble with the ATMs or lose your bank card. Major credit cards are accepted in most shops, but they may charge a 2-4% transaction fee. Visa and MasterCard are useful for cash advances in an emergency situation. Please note that, if you are carrying U.S. Dollars, they should be in good condition (i.e., not torn, wrinkled, or marked on in any way) and printed recently.


Tipping in Iceland is not customary. In many cases, a service charge is added to the bill, which means that it is not necessary to add a tip. If you wish to express your satisfaction with the service in a bar or restaurant, then a gratuity of 10% or to round up the amount of the bill is perfectly acceptable.

Tipping during the tour program is similarly not expected, but it can be a way to express satisfaction with the persons who have assisted on your tour. Recommendations for tipping local guides would range from the equivalent of $3-5 USD per day depending on the quality and length of the service. Ask your tour leader for specific recommendations based on the circumstances and culture.

At the end of each trip, if you felt your G Adventures Tour Leader did an outstanding job, tipping is appreciated. The amount is entirely a personal preference. As a guideline, $30-$40 USD per person can be used.


You do not need any vaccinations to travel on this program.


We often find the best prices for purchasing flights is 60 days before departure, but of course this varies greatly from route to route and year to year. You must wait until this trip is confirmed with the minimum number of required participants before you book your flights. Typically, we reach the minimum number needed at least 90 days before departure. GEEO and G Adventures bear no responsibility for any flights purchased before the trip is confirmed. You can find out whether this trip has been confirmed here.

Your trip begins and ends in Reykjavík. Please double check our itinerary for the date by which you must arrive in Reykjavík. You can arrive at any time of the day you choose, but we strongly urge you to arrive by 6:00 p.m. on Day 1 for our group meeting. You can depart from Reykjavík any time on the final day of the trip.

Plugs and Converters

There are two components to provide external power to your device: adapters and transformers. The adapter is the plug, adapting the prongs on a standard U.S. two to three-pronged power cord to match the prongs required by the local outlets. The transformer changes the local voltage to that required by your device.

Iceland uses a European-style two circular prong plug. Their voltage is 220-240 Volts. U.S. outlets are 120V. Most new devices (phones and laptops) can handle the different voltage rates, but some devices only work on the U.S. standard of 120V. Check your device to see what voltage range it handles. Most transformer blocks will have an “Input” line that defines its voltage capacity. For example, “Input: 100-240V” means that it will work on voltages from 100V to 240V. If your transformer can’t handle the different voltage, you’ll need to purchase a voltage converter. You can find world regional voltage converters power packs at various vendors.


Before you decide on traveling with GEEO, it is important that you read all of the information about the program you are considering. Remember, our programs are quite adventurous.

  • The purpose of the accommodation is to provide a safe, well-located place for you to sleep. Sometimes you will be pleasantly surprised, but do not expect luxury as we are trying to keep these trips as inexpensive as possible.
  • You must be able to easily carry or roll your luggage, so do not over-pack.
  • Please make sure you have thoroughly read the itinerary and can handle the group activities, which sometime include day hikes with your daypacks.
  • We recommend always carrying snacks with you. Meals can sometimes be far apart.
  • Please make sure you understand the role of your tour leader on this trip as they are not the traditional “guide” you may be expecting. While our trips are educational, they aren’t study/lecture trips. We want you to learn through exploring, and much of your experience will be based on how active you choose to be in acquiring knowledge and interacting with locals.

Hopefully this is the kind of adventure you are interested in!


Itinerary Disclaimer

While it is our intention to adhere to the routes described on our website, there is a certain amount of flexibility built into the itinerary and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable, to make alterations. The itinerary is brief, as we never know exactly where our journey will take us. Due to our style of travel and the regions we visit, travel can be unpredictable. The information on our website is a general guide to the tour and region and any mention of specific destinations or wildlife is by no means a guarantee that they will be visited or encountered. Additionally, any travel times listed are approximations only and subject to vary due to local circumstances.


Weather and Geographic Conditions

December is a very special time in Iceland. Far from being dreary and cold, the cities and towns are alight with holiday lighting and festivities. Adding to this, there’s a palpable buzz from the anticipation of one of the country’s most popular times, Christmas. For those planning a trip to Iceland in December, here’s what you can expect from the weather and length of days.


Just like everywhere in the Northern Hemisphere, the shortest day of the year is in December. In 2019, the Winter solstice is on December 21st. However, because of Iceland’s high latitude, its shortest day is only 4h07m long! At the beginning of December, the length of day is 5 hours. So from December 1st to the Winter Solstice, almost an entire hour of daylight is lost. Compare this change with a lower latitude city like Los Angeles, which has almost 10 hours of daylight all month long, only losing around 15 minutes from December 1st to the Solstice. The length of day is probably the biggest thing you’ll notice in Iceland during this time of year.


As for the temperatures, you can expect average low to be approximately 28 F and the average high temperatures to be 40 F – probably not as cold as you thought. Iceland’s temperatures are mitigated by the gulf stream, which brings relatively warm water up from lower latitudes. Without this, Iceland would be much colder. Many people who visit Iceland, experience much colder temperatures back home.


The average rainfall in Reykjavík is approximately 32 mm (1.25 inches) in December. This precipitation can come in all forms, depending on temperatures. You may get snow, rain, or sleet. Or, given Iceland’s famously capricious weather, you could get rain, snow, sleet, and blue skies all in one day! These averages aside, you can expect fairly windy conditions, persistent cloud cover and light precipitation in some form.

There you have it. And, as Sir Ranulph Fiennes said, “There is no bad weather, only inappropriate clothing.” So, bring lots of warm clothing and enjoy this most special time in Iceland.



Please keep in mind this trip offers some free time to pursue activities that interest you. Make sure you look over all of the optional activities and note these additional costs when deciding whether you can afford this program. The prices below are in U.S. Dollars, unless otherwise noted, and are rough estimates so you can budget your trip.

Tour Company Fee

See our price in the top right corner

Non-Educator Fee

$100 USD (GEEO program fee for Non-Educators)

Educators do not have to pay this fee.

Optional Activities

$0-$300 USD

International Airfare from USA

Roughly $600-$1,100 USD
If you require assistance in booking your international airfare, we would be happy to help you. 


$25-$200 USD
Please note: It is mandatory for all of our travelers to have Emergency Medical insurance that covers both emergency evacuation and repatriation to the sum of $200,000 USD. We also strongly recommend purchasing cancellation insurance as well.


We recommend $30-$40 USD for your G Adventures tour leader. Budget another $10 for tipping local guides and your driver.

Meals Not Listed in the Itinerary

$155-$205 USD

Laundry, Drinks, Phone Calls, etc.

Make sure you budget for these types of expenses


Variable. At your personal discretion.

Optional Activities

Most optional activities are booked and paid for locally in the local currency. You do not have to decide in advance for which activities you would like to sign up. The prices listed are based on the latest information we have received from our participants and G Adventures. They are not guaranteed to be accurate. Please feel free to use them as a guide for budgeting your trip.


Blue Lagoon Ticket: 5,800 ISK (depends on type of ticket purchased)
Hallgrímskirkja Tower: 700 ISK (line can be long) – entrance to the ground (main) level of the church is free
Saga Museum: 2,000 ISK
National Museum: 1,500 ISK
Reykjavík 871±2: The Settlement Exhibition: 1,300 ISK


Glacier Hiking on Sólheimajökull- $114