Why Choose a Golden Circle Tour?
Of all the landscapes in the south of Iceland, it’s perhaps the Golden Circle that most captures visitors’ imaginations. On this route, a stone's throw from the capital, Reykjavík, you’ll have the chance to explore the very essence of Iceland.
What do we mean by that? Here, you’ll see the natural variety and power—and discover the history—that has made Iceland the place it is today.
On a Golden Circle tour from Reykjavík, you’ll explore the best-known sites for the route.
Unforgettable Natural Wonders
First, there’s Geysir, where magnificent torrents of boiling water are forced from the Earth by geothermal pressure. In an area rich with volcanic activity, it makes for an unforgettable display. Then Gullfoss, one of the most powerful waterfalls in Europe, will take your breath away with its thundering torrent and atmospheric mists.
Visit Iceland Ancient Parliament
Finally, you’ll have the chance to explore the UNESCO World Heritage Site, Þingvellir (Thingvellir) National Park, once the meeting place of Iceland’s ancient parliament. Among other wonders, the park is home to Silfra, a trench between two continents where you can swim.
But Golden Circle tours can show you more. At Icelandia, we offer visitors to the Land of Ice and Fire the chance to get off the beaten track and combine the classic sights with other wonders.
Discover the Golden Circle Combo Tours
Want to see the Golden Circle before unwinding in Iceland’s spas? Book a Golden Circle and Blue Lagoon tour—or a Golden Circle and Sky Lagoon tour.
Prefer to add some extra thrills to your visit? Why not try a snowmobile Golden Circle tour, exploring the sights in winter? Or else combine your trip with a monster truck tour of the Langjökull glacier.
There are so many options to choose from—from Golden Circle day tours to longer trips across the south coast. Explore your options today.
The cost will depend on which tour you choose. Each package is priced individually, depending on what’s included, how long it lasts, and any other extras.
Check out the individual tour pages for up to date prices.
Most visitors explore the Golden Circle while staying in Reykjavík. As the city is such a short distance away—and as it boasts a range of high-quality accommodation—it might be the best option for you too.
There are opportunities for walking at each of the destinations in the Golden Circle. And while you don’t have to walk too much if you don’t feel up to it, a little bit of walking is to be expected.
For example, at Gullfoss, you’ll need to walk for about 10 minutes from the carpark to reach the waterfalls. You’ll have to walk for a few hundred metres to reach Geysir too.
At Þingvellir, you can walk as far or little as you like, but you’ll need to go further than at the other sights. For example, the main highlights can be covered in a 40 minute walk. But if you want to see more, a longer walk takes about an hour and a half.
The most famous sights on the Golden Circle are Þingvellir National Park, Gullfoss Waterfall, and Geysir—a trio of true natural wonders. However, there’s a lot more to see if you put the time aside.
For example, there’s Friðheimar greenhouse and restaurant, an innovative agricultural project serving up incredible locally grown cuisine. Or there’s Sólheimar, the eco-village and artistic community.
Don’t miss other sights, such as Kerið crater, the stunning bowl with a lake in the bottom. The Langjökull glacier is another great place to see while you’re on the Golden Circle route too. Many people explore on a snowmobile or monster truck.
While they’re not technically on the Golden Circle, make sure you visit the Sky Lagoon or the Blue Lagoon too.
The journey to the Golden Circle from Reykjavík takes about an hour. But you should also expect some travel between sights.
Overall, the Golden Circle route is about 230 kilometres (140 miles), between Þingvellir, Gullfoss, and Geysir. You will be travelling for a minimum of three hours.
While the Secret Lagoon is located in the same region as the Golden Circle, it’s not typically part of the classic itinerary. That said, if you would like to visit the Secret Lagoon, it’s very easy to add it to your trip!
That depends on how long you’ve got and what you want to see.
Most people explore the Golden Circle in just a single day, usually from Reykjavík. But you can add extra experiences to your tour, taking you to ice caves, Jökulsárlón, and even to the north coast.
You can take as long as you would like to see the Golden Circle in Iceland. There are a range of tours available to best suit your needs.
The most popular Golden Circle tour is the day tour from Reykjavík. You’ll leave the city in the morning and be dropped back in the evening—giving you the day to explore the sights.
If you’re short on time, you can do it more quickly. For example, express tours show you the main destinations in just over six hours.
Or, take it more leisurely. Combine your Golden Circle visit with a stop at the Blue Lagoon, the Friðheimar greenhouse and restaurant, or other sights in the area. Many tours can involve overnight stays, too.
One of the most popular ways to see the Golden Circle is with a day tour from Reykjavík. It’s a really convenient option to see some of the most famous sights in Iceland while keeping a base in the capital.
You can join us at the BSÍ bus station in Reykjavík in the morning (or we can pick you up from your accommodation) and we’ll drop you back in town at the end of the day.
The Golden Circle is one of Iceland’s most famous destinations, and it’s definitely worth a visit when you’re in the Land of Ice and Fire.
Where else would you see geysers shooting water into the sky above your head? Or walk in the great trench between Europe and North America?
If there’s one thing you should do while in Iceland, it’s this.
The Golden Circle tour doesn’t include the Blue Lagoon as standard. Typically, visitors to Iceland choose to visit the Blue Lagoon separately.
However, it’s very easy to combine the two sights. With a Golden Circle tour and Blue Lagoon package, you can visit both on the same day.
No matter the season you’re visiting in, the first thing to know about Iceland is that the weather is very changeable. That means that when you’re visiting the Golden Circle—or joining any tour in fact—you’ll need to be prepared for any weather.
Generally, we suggest you wear warm layers, sturdy shoes, and a waterproof and windproof jacket. It’s better to be prepared, even if you don’t need it.
We always recommend that you wear hiking boots—or at least sturdy, reliable shoes—when visiting the Golden Circle. You’ll be outside in the Icelandic outdoors, after all, and the terrain can sometimes be challenging.
For example, throughout the day, you’ll be walking on rocks, grass, and paths in a national park. It’s sensible if you wear shoes that can handle these changing environments.
What’s included in your Golden Circle tour will depend on which tour you book. However, as standard, you can expect transportation to the sites plus admission. On every tour, you’ll also benefit from expert guidance and local knowledge.
If you want to add other destinations or experiences to your tour—for example the Blue Lagoon or glacier snowmobiling—these will be covered in the cost too.