Iceland's Golden Circle

The Ultimate Self-Driving Guide To Iceland’s Golden Circle

“Get ready for an adventure in Iceland’s Golden Circle! From beautiful waterfalls and geysers to beautiful scenery and lovely village, this route has everything to see for tourists.

If you’re just looking for inspiration, our latest tips are yours. Join us as we take you on a journey of discovery through some of the most beautiful places in the world.”

Iceland’s Golden Circle is a popular travel route that includes some of the most beautiful and iconic places in the country. Thingvellir National Park includes Gullfoss waterfalls and geysers.

The drive can be done in one day, or you can spend a few days exploring the area. There are many activities to do along the way, such as hiking, horseback riding, and traveling.

I’m planning to drive to Iceland Golden Circle

drive to Iceland's Golden Circle

Assuming you’re traveling from Reykjavik, the first step is to figure out which route you want to take.

The Golden Circle can be done as a loop that starts and ends in Reykjavik or as a single route from Reykjavik to Egilsstaðir or Höfn.

If you’re planning other activities in Iceland (like visiting Vatnajökull National Park), it makes more sense to take the Golden Circle as your route so you can continue without going back to your next destination.

Once you’ve decided on your route, it’s time to start planning your parking lot. The most popular tourist attraction in the Golden Circle is undoubtedly Thingvellir National Park, where you can walk between the North American and Eurasian plates.

Other stops include Haukadalu’s geothermal field, Gullfoss waterfall, and Kerið crater lake.

Of course, there are many more lesser-known but equally beautiful sights along the way, so don’t limit yourself to the classics!

There are a few things to remember when it comes to logistics. Firstly, while the Golden Circle can be paid in one day if time is limited, we recommend that you take your time and spend at least 2-3 days on this route.

This will give you plenty of time to explore all the stops.

Golden Circle Driving Tour: Things to See and Do

There is a lot to see and do during the Golden Circle tour of Iceland. Some of the highlights:

  • Thingvellir National Park: This national park is home to the Althing, the oldest palace in the world, founded in 930 AD. The park is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is popular for hiking, camping, and fishing.
  • Geysir Hot Springs: The geothermal field around Geysir Hot Springs is one of the most important in Iceland. Visitors can see gushing geysers, steaming hot springs, and bubbling clay pots.
  • Gullfoss Waterfall: This massive waterfall is one of Iceland’s most popular tourist attractions. It is fed by the glacial river Hvita and splits into two levels, each falling over 20 meters (65 feet).
  • Kerid Crater Lake: This crater lake is located on the western side of Iceland’s Golden Circle. It is surrounded by red volcanic rocks, and the ocean is dark blue.

Iceland Directions

  1. Drive slowly and be mindful of your surroundings. Iceland’s roads can be confusing and dangerous.
  2. Make sure you have a complete map of the area before you go.
  3. Prepare for any weather. Iceland’s weather can change very quickly, so it’s important to be prepared for any eventuality.
  4. When driving in Iceland, always give way to oncoming traffic.
  5. Take care of the animals on the road. There are lots of sheep and other animals in Iceland, so be careful when passing around them.

Locations on route

There are many different places along Iceland’s Golden Circle. Here are some of the most popular options:

Hotel Rangá

This hotel is located in the town of Hella, about an hour’s drive from Reykjavik. With beautiful views of the surrounding mountains and valleys, Hotel Rangá is the perfect choice for those who want to be close to nature.

Hvítarvatn Cottages

These homes are located in the town of Hvítárvatn, about two hours’ drive from Reykjavik. With beautiful views of the nearby lake, Hvítárvatn Cottages is a great and comfortable base to explore Iceland’s Golden Circle.

Fosshotel Núpar

Fosshotel Núpar in iceland

This hotel is located in the town of Selfoss, about an hour’s drive from Reykjavik.

Offering modern facilities and accommodation, Fosshotel Núpar is the perfect choice for those seeking a more luxurious experience around Iceland’s Golden Circle.

Eating and drinking on the go

Eating and drinking on the go is one of the best ways to experience Iceland’s Golden Circle. Whether for a quick bite or a sit-down meal, there are many places to stop for a snack or a drink.

Our favorite places to eat and drink along the way:

  1. Geysir Center is a great place for lunch, with lots of options for adults and children. Be sure to try the famous Icelandic hot dog!
  2. Gullfoss Waterfalls – There is nothing better than enjoying a cup of coffee or tea with the magnificent view of Gullfoss Waterfall.
  3. Thingvellir National Park If you are looking for something a little more relaxing, there are many restaurants in the park where you can enjoy your meal.
  4. Hvítárvatn Lake – A great place to dive after hiking in the area. There’s also a cafe if you need to pick me up.
  5. Reykjavik – Of course, no trip to Iceland would be complete without spending some time in the city! There are many good restaurants and bars here for all tastes and budgets.

Other tips and advice

  1. Get a 4×4 vehicle: A 4×4 vehicle is required to access many of the Golden Circle’s best attractions, including the famous Geysir geothermal area and Thingvellir National Park.
  2. Bring a map: While most routes in Golden Circle are clearly marked, a map can help you plan your stops ahead so you can get the most out of your trip.
  3. Dress for the weather: Iceland’s weather can be unpredictable, so be sure to pack a few layers of clothing that you can easily add or remove as needed.
  4. Take a break at gas stations: Gas stations are few in Iceland, so it’s important to fill up with as much gas as possible. This will help you avoid gas while on the road.
  5. Be prepared for rocky roads: Many roads in Iceland are rocky, and driving can be difficult if you are not used to them. Take your time and drive carefully to avoid accidents.
  6. Watch out for wildlife: Iceland is home to many beautiful animals, including reindeer, sheep, and birds. Make sure to keep an eye on them while driving!
  7. Take a photo: The Golden Circle is one of the most beautiful roads in Iceland, don’t forget to take a photo!


Exploring Iceland’s Golden Circle is the best way to experience the best of this country.

With our latest tips, you should now have everything you need to make your Iceland trip memorable. So grab a friend and hit the road – it’s time to experience all the surprises awaiting you on a trip to Iceland’s Golden Circle!

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