Iceland is a land of rugged beauty and unspoiled nature, where the elements form a space of contrast. From high glaciers to bubbling geysers and black sand beaches to sparkling waterfalls, this island nation is a wonderland waiting to be discovered.
And what better way to do it than by driving along the famous Iceland Ring Road? In this guide, we will take you on an unforgettable tour of Iceland’s natural wonders – so buckle up and let’s go!
Directions Iceland Ring Road
If you are planning a trip to Iceland, the best way to see the country is to take the Ring Road.
The Ring Road is an 828-mile highway that circles the island and takes you through some of Iceland’s most beautiful places.
Driving on the Ring Road is one of the best ways to experience all that Iceland has to offer. You’ll find everything from glaciers and waterfalls to black sand beaches and hot springs.
And since Iceland is a small country, it’s easy to do the whole circuit in just a few days.
Whether you are looking for adventure or fun, driving on the Ring Road is an unforgettable experience. So pack your bags and hit the open road – you’re on a great journey!
What is it like to drive around Iceland?
Assuming you are using the Ring road clockwise, you will start your journey to Reykjavik. After leaving the city, you will head to Thingvellir National Park.
This UNESCO World Heritage Site is one of Iceland’s most popular tourist destinations and is home to the country’s national flag.
From Thingvellir, you will continue to the geyser, where you can see the eruption of the world’s first geyser. Then you will go to Gullfoss, Iceland’s most famous waterfall.
After Gullfoss, you will go to the south coast of Iceland. Here you will find some of the most beautiful black-sand beaches in the country. Be sure to stop at Reynisfjara Beach and Dyrholaey before continuing.
Heading east, you come across Vatnajökull National Park, home to Europe’s largest national park and Iceland’s largest glacier. From there, it’s a short drive to Lake Myvatn, one of Iceland’s most beautiful places.
When you get to the Ring Road, you will return north to Akureyri. This is Iceland’s second-largest city and is often referred to as the country’s capital. It’s a short drive from Akureyri to Godafoss Waterfall, then west to Husavik.
Planning Your Ring Road Trip
There are a few things to keep in mind when planning your Iceland Ring Road trip.
- The first is the distance you will go. The Ring Road is 828 miles (1332 km) long, so be sure to leave plenty of time for the journey.
- The second is the weather. Iceland’s weather can be unpredictable, so be sure to check the weather before you leave.
- The third thing is something you should have with you. Make sure you have a map and plenty of fuel, as well as food and water for the trip.
- Finally, don’t forget to enjoy the scenery along the way!
Must-See Attractions Along the Ring Road
The Ring Road is Iceland’s highway that circles the island for 828 miles (1,332 km). On the way, you will see some amazing natural landscapes in the world.
Here are some of our favorites:
1. Dettifoss – Europe’s strongest waterfall
Dettifoss is located in northern Iceland and is said to be Europe’s strongest waterfall. The waterfall is 100 feet (30 meters) high and nearly 500 feet (150 meters) wide.
Visitors can take a short hike near the falls or admire the falls from many viewpoints.
2. Geysir – Private Geothermal Area
Geysir is a hot spring area in southern Iceland. The name “geyser” actually comes from here, as it was the first geyser discovered by Europeans.
Today, visitors can see several geysers, including Strokkur, which spawn every 5-10 minutes. There are also many hiking trails and other activities to explore in the area.
3. Thingvellir National Park – History & Nature
Thingvellir National Park is located in South Iceland and is a history and nature community. The park is located at the site of Iceland’s first peak and is also where the two plates meet – making it a popular spot for diving and snorkeling.
Freeway Driving Tips
- Drive carefully: It’s not easy for animals to travel in Iceland. Watch out for sheep, horses, and even reindeer.
- Prepare for extreme weather: Iceland’s weather can be unpredictable, so make sure you’re prepared for it.
- Remember your map: The Ring Road is winding and sometimes difficult to navigate. Make sure you have a good map so you don’t get lost.
- Take your time: There’s no need to rush on the Ring Road. Take in the scenery and spend your time exploring all that Iceland has to offer. Where to stay?
There are a few things to consider when deciding where to stay along the Iceland Ring Road. The first is whether you want to stay in a hotel, hotel, or campground. Each option has advantages and disadvantages.
Hotels are the most expensive option, but they offer the best facilities and the most comfort.
Guesthouses are a good middle ground – they’re usually cheaper than hotels but still have some amenities like private bathrooms and breakfast.
Camping is the cheapest option, but you have to work harder. The next thing to consider is location. You should make sure that you are close enough to the main attractions you want to visit.
For example, if you plan to spend time in Vatnajökull National Park, you will want to find accommodation nearby.
Some tips on where to stay along the route:
- Reykjavik: Hotel Borg or Hotel Holt
- Hvolsvöllur: Lava Hostel or Volcano House
- Egilstaðir: Hótel Eastfjords or camping 4 – Lava Lava Campground or Myvatn Nature Baths
- Akureyri: Hotel Kea or Gamli Baukurinn Guesthouse
Safety Considerations When Traveling in Iceland
It is important to be aware of the following road hazards when driving in Iceland. Some safety tips to remember:
Iceland’s roads can be icy and slippery, especially in winter. Always drive slowly and carefully, and always give yourself time to stop.
In rural areas, watch out for sheep and other animals on the road. They have the right of way, so be prepared to stop if you see them crossing the street.
Because the country is remote, it’s important to plan your route ahead of time and make sure you have enough fuel to get to your destination. It’s also a good idea to let others know about your emergency travel plans.
If you go to Iceland in the summer, be aware that flooding can happen. Do not cross knee-deep waters, and do not attempt to cross streams or rivers.
Finish Driving on Iceland’s Ring Road is an experience you’ll never forget. From admiring the natural beauty to enjoying the Icelandic culture, this tour offers travelers a truly unique experience.
With our guide at hand, we hope you have all the information you need to plan your fantastic journey around Iceland’s beautiful Ring Road and discover its incredible wonders. Let’s explore!