North Iceland Aurora Challenge
North Iceland Aurora Challenge– Iceland –8 days / 7 nights, Reykjavik - Akureyri - Eyjafjördur - Lake Myvatn - Namaskard - Dimmuborgir - Godafoss - Skagafjördur - SaudarkrokurExperience Iceland's Arctic North on this new escorted tour of the Aurora Challenge, an ideal combination of nature, Icelandic culture, soft adventures and searching for Northern Lights. Travel to the northernmost town in Iceland near the Arctic Circle. Enjoy a relaxing visit to Myvatn Nature Baths, go snowshoeing in a lava labyrinth, climb a volcano crater, explore waterfalls, travel along scenic fjord routes and visit unique historic folk museums.
|Operation||October 10, 2016 - March 28, 2017|
October 11, 25
November 8, 22
February 7, 14, 21, 28
March 7, 14, 21, 28
|Price||from $3,185 per person in double room
from $3,625 single room
|Included||Arrival & departure airport transfer by FLYBUS Plus shuttle (no guide)
Fully escorted 6 day coach tour
English speaking guide
7 nights hotel accommodation
2 x 2-course lunch, 3 x 3-course dinner & 3 x midnight refreshments
Visit to natural history & seal museum
Horse show, coffee & cake at local horse farm
Visit to herring museum
Visit to local micro beer brewery
Hot steam baked bread tasting
Entrance with towel at Myvatn Nature Baths
Snow shoe hike (or hike if no snow) in lava labyrinth
Admission to Lake Myvatn bird museum
Visit to Christmas house & garden near Akureyri
Visit to Vidimyri turf church, Glaumbær folk museum & turf farm
Visit to tannery in Skagafjördur
Northern Lights program with 5 evenings of lectures,
presentations, film and guided Aurora searches
Use of winter & Northern Lights explorer equipment:
simple non-slip snow & ice grippers spikes for shoes and a flash light that
is helpful when walking in the dark and operating your photo camera at night
|Not Included||International airfare & airport tax
Dinners in Reykjavik, Siglufjördur and Akureyri
Meals other than mentioned
Personal insurance / personal items
$25 Service fee
|Please Note||Maximum group size: 16 persons
Comfort tourist-class hotels with private facilities
Tour start: Arrival in Iceland on Tuesdays and guided bus tour starts on Wednesdays at 09:00
Tour end: The guided tour ends on Mondays between 18:00-20:00 for a last overnight in. Departure from Iceland is on Tuesdays.
In rare cases, change of itinerary might be necessary during winter programs in Iceland, should snow, road and weather conditions not allow to follow the scheduled itinerary, and certain outdoor activities might be cancelled. In this case no refund will be given, but the tour operator will try the find reasonable alternatives where and when ever possible.
Subject to your flight schedule there is little time to see and explore Reykjavik. If you are interested to see Iceland's capital, the famous Blue Lagoon and Golden Circle Route, we recommending adding some extra nights in Reykjavik.
|Tour Options||Private transfers from/to airport - hotel
Additional hotel nights
|More Information||North Iceland Aurora Challenge map|
Contact us to book today!
Day 1 WELCOME to ICELAND Tuesday (50 km/31 mi)
The Flybus shuttle (no guide) brings travelers from Keflavik International Airport to the accommodation in Reykjavik where you spend the night. We provide you with ideas how to explore Iceland's capital on your own, dinner suggestions too! Food lovers will be pleased and perhaps even impressed by the number of diverse restaurants in Reykjavik. Many award winning chefs create delicious Icelandic cuisine that is characterized by an imaginative use of local ingredients such as fresh seafood, organic lamb and wild game; but be sure to try the fabulous Icelandic hotdog and pizza too!
Day 2 VOLCANO CRATER - SEALS - FJORDS - MOUNTAINS (B) Wednesday (400 km/248 mi)
At 09:00 meet your tour guide and travel west, passing the town of Borgarnes and climb the Grabrok volcano crater. We visit a natural history & seal museum and further north we stop at the turf church of Vidimyri. Travel along scenic fjords and over several challenging mountain passes until we reach Siglufjördur, Iceland's northernmost town.
Overnight at the new and beautifully located Hotel Siglo, offering spectacular geothermal hot tubs built into the local fjord. In the evening, if weather permits, we take a little walk or drive to search for the Northern Lights.
Day 3 ICELAND'S NORTHERNMOST TOWN (B, D) Thursday (170 km/106 mi)
In the morning we explore Siglufjördur, Iceland's northernmost town, known as the herring capital of the North Atlantic. In Siglufjördur we visit the herring museum, the largest seafaring and industrial museum in the country.
In the afternoon we drive along Eyjafjördur, Iceland's longest fjord which offers an amazing mountain panorama and explore Tröllaskagi Peninsula. Along the way, we stop at a deserted fjord valley that even most Icelanders have not yet seen. Later we stop at a local brewery and taste one of Iceland's micro-beers. We continue to Lake Myvatn, a winter wonderland, where we stay for 3 nights. Join an evening lecture about Northern Lights and don't miss the chance to search for the magical auroras after dinner.
Join an evening lecture about Northern Lights and don't miss the chance to search for the magical auroras after dinner.
Day 4 SEARCH FOR THE TROLLS & SNOW ADVENTURES (B, L, D) Friday (30 km/19 mi)
This morning we go for a snowshoe trip in a lava labyrinth (or a hike if there is no snow) through the lava formations of Dimmuborgir "the dark castles", hoping to get a glimpse of the trolls who are said to live there. Good hiking boots, winter clothing, hat and gloves are required. Guidance, snowshoes and poles are included!
The afternoon is free at leisure to explore the many pseudo craters or walk along the lake shores. Also available is an optional tour on cross-country skis or snow-mobiles. The trail depends on the snow conditions and number of participants. Winter clothing, hat and gloves are required.
In the evening we take a relaxing soak at Lake Myvatn Nature Baths and get ready to chase the magical Northern Lights.
Day 5 EXPLORE LAKE MYVATN (B, L, D) Saturday (50 km/31 mi)
Lake Myvatn is known for its geological wonders and active bird life, but also for having Iceland's coldest temperatures. We take an easy walk through the bizarre lava formations and landscape with great views to the lake, bird life and trees. Later we explore the hot spring area of Namaskard with bubbling mud pools and steaming solfataras. We taste traditional dark bread baked underground in the geothermal heat.
In the evening enjoy a video presentation about Northern Lights as a part of the Northern Lights educational program. After a delicious dinner, don't forget to keep an eye out for the Northern Lights.
Day 6 BIRDS - CHRISTMAS GARDEN - AKUREYRI (B) Sunday (120 km/75 mi)
We visit the Lake Myvatn bird museum and travel to Godafoss, the waterfalls of the Gods. Next stop is the Christmas Garden, a small museum and shop where you find countless items connected to Icelandic Christmas traditions.
The afternoon is free at leisure to explore Akureyri, the capital of North Iceland on your own. There are some excellent local museums and a great geothermal swimming pool. Depending on weather there is a short excursion into the darkness to hunt the Aurora Borealis.
Day 7 HISTORY & DESIGN IN SKAGAFJÖRDUR (B) Monday (420 km/261 mi)
We travel back west over the mountains to Skagafjördur, known as the valley of horses, and home to many ancient farms. We visit the folk museum and turf farm at Glaumbær. The buildings of the farm date from slightly different periods in the 18th- & 19th-centuries.
Enjoy a guided tour through the only tannery in Europe which makes fish leather. Later we stop for coffee & cake at a horse farm, where we learn about the history and the special gaits of Icelandic horses. Reach Reykjavik depending on weather and road conditions between 18:00-20:00 where you stay one night in Iceland's capital.
Day 8 DEPARTURE REYKJAVIK (B) Tuesday (50 km/31 mi)
Individual transfer by Flybus airport shuttle from your accommodation in Reykjavik to Keflavik Airport.
Note: Subject to your flight schedule there is little time to see and explore Reykjavik. If you are interested to see Iceland's capital, the famous Blue Lagoon and Golden Circle Route, we recommending adding extra nights in Reykjavik.
Total mileage without airport transfer is 1.190 km (738 miles) which is an average of 200 km (124 miles) per day. You spend about 3 hours per day on the bus, depending on road conditions, traffic and daily distances. On some days the driving might be longer than on some other days, such as day 2 and day 7.
NORTHERN LIGHTS: On 5 evenings this programs offers a combination of presentations, lectures, film and guided evening walks or excursions at spots that are likely to offer a glimpse of the Aurora Borealis - the Northern Lights. All hotels outside Reykjavík and Akureyri offer a Northern Lights wake up call for guests that register for that special service at the hotel reception. This tour series is designed to maximize the chances of seeing the elusive Northern Lights, still the tour is dependent on weather and therefore sightings are not guaranteed. The Northern Lights are visible in the northern sky from September through April when the sky is clear and free of clouds. Like many natural wonders, it is an ephemeral spectacle - the Northern Lights may be visible, they may appear for a bit and then be gone (it is not a TV show that you can just turn on and off). But it is worth the patience which is much required. Because they are a winter event, you need to be prepared to wait outside while looking for them. It is best to dress very warmly, in layers, with good footwear, gloves, hats and whatever else makes you comfortable while you await this truly outstanding event.