Iceland 15 Day Itinerary | Moon & Honey Travel

Iceland Road Trip: The Ultimate 2 Week Itinerary

Last Updated: March 2018

Iceland 2 Week Itinerary

Iceland possesses some of the most dramatic and outlandish landscapes on earth. Broken off icebergs float to sea. Moss-covered lava fields stretch out infinitely. Dried fish heads swing in the arctic air. To fully appreciate the variance and vastness of Iceland’s scenery, we recommend renting a car and driving the Ring Road.

We know that planning an Iceland itinerary can be a challenge. Depending on what time of year you visit, there will be activities you can and cannot do and places you can and cannot visit. We’ve created an Iceland Travel Guide, which will help you answer when to visit, where to go, what to experience, what to eat and drink, and how to save money. Use our guide in conjunction with this itinerary to help plan your trip.

This 2-Week Iceland Itinerary is based on our itinerary. For those interested in visiting in early Spring, you can also read our Traveling to Iceland in April post, which answers all the questions you’re probably asking. If you’re traveling to Iceland in late spring, summer, or fall, you can also use this itinerary.

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Iceland 2 Week Road Trip, A Day by Day Itinerary

Iceland Itinerary Overview

  • Day 1 (Optional): Golden Circle
  • Days 2 – 4: Southern Iceland
  • Days 5 – 6: East Iceland
  • Days 7 – 9: Northern Iceland
  • Day 10: Northwest Iceland + Westfjords
  • Day 11: Westfjords
  • Day 12: Snæfellsnes Peninsula
  • Day 13: West Iceland
  • Day 14: Reykjavik
  • Day 15: Reykjavanes Peninusla
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The Ultimate 2 Week Iceland Road Trip Itinerary | Moon & Honey Travel

Iceland Road Trip Map

All places mentioned in this Iceland itinerary are marked on this map. The map is best viewed on a desktop.
Destinations
  • Golden Circle
  • Southern Iceland
  • East Fjords
  • Northern Iceland
  • Westfjords
  • Snæfellsnes Peninsula / Western Iceland
  • Reykjanes Peninsula
Iceland 15 Day Itinerary | Moon & Honey Travel

Day 1: The Golden Circle

The Golden Circle is a tourist route that leads east from Reykjavik. It’s best tackled in one full day by car. The circuit takes you to some of Iceland’s most dramatic natural attractions. If you’re visiting Iceland for the first time, and you’re based in Reykjavik, the Golden Circle is definitely an option. However, if you’re driving the Ring Road around Iceland, we recommend skipping it. If you choose to drive the route, we recommend the following:

See & Do

  • Thingvellir National Park – Walk through continental plates at Almannagja Gorge, where the North American and Eurasian plates are actively moving apart. From the visitor center, take the footpath to the waterfall Öxarárfoss.
  • Laugarvatn Fontana Hot Springs – Stop here for lunch. This excellent buffet-style lunch offers soups, salads, geothermal bread, local trout, etc.. You can also spend a few hours soaking in their natural hot springs.
  • Geysir – Walk around this active geothermal area and wait for the geysers to erupt. You’ll likely see Strokkur (the Churn) erupt, but might have to wait quite some time to see Geysir (the Gusher) spit its load.
  • Gullfoss (Golden Falls) – Impressive cataract waterfall. 
  • Gamla Laugin – Natural geothermal pool, known as the Secret Lagoon.
  • Kerið – Crater lake. This was our favorite stop. You can walk the rim of the crater and go down to the teal-colored lake. There’s a small entry cost (400 ISK in 2017).
  • Frost og Funi – Eat dinner here. This restaurant and guesthouse overlooks a river and is nestled between active geothermal hills. The solarium-style dining room allows you to appreciate the steaming natural landscape. Reservation recommended. 

Stay in Hveragerði

  • Hjardarból Guesthouse, Hveragerði. Modest, but cozy and clean farm guesthouse. The guesthouse is surrounded by farmland. We stayed here after driving the Golden Circle Route.
  • Guesthouse Frost and Fire, Hveragerði. This restaurant and guesthouse overlooks a river and is nestled between active geothermal hills. We came here for dinner, but we would have loved to have stayed here too. Also, it’s very close to the Reykjadalur Hot Spring Thermal River trailhead.
Iceland 15 Day Itinerary | Moon & Honey Travel

Day 2: Southern Iceland

Hveragerði to Skogar

Southern Iceland is packed with beautiful places to visit. Today, you can hike to hot springs, discover ancient habitations, and visit museums. As you drive along the Ring Road, you’ll see isolated farmhouses dwarfed by mountains. You’ll also see majestic Icelandic horses standing stoically in the bitter wind.

See & Do

  • Reykjadalur Hot Spring Thermal River – This is a 1 hour hike that takes you to a bathing platform, where you can soak in a hot river.
  • Lunch at Kjöt og kúnst (soup buffet and geothermal bread) or Eldstó Art Cafe
  • Seljalandsfoss Waterfall – 65-meter high waterfall. A path leads behind the waterfall. Make sure to wear a rain jacket.
  • Eyjafjallajökull Erupts – Very small museum about the Eyjafjallajökull eruption (2010) . There’s a 20 minute video that chronicles the life of one Icelandic farm family as they rebuilt their lives after the eruption.
  • Rutshellir Caves – Ancient habitation and cave built into and under a rock.
  • Seljavallalaug Pool  – outdoor public pool built in 1923
  • Musée de Skógar – Open-air folk museum
  • Skógafoss Waterfall
  • Dinner at Hotel Skogafoss Bistro Bar – Casual dining area with a great view of the waterfall.

Stay near Skogar

  • Welcome Edinborg, Eyvindarhólar. Small, cozy,  rustic rooms. The highlight of staying here is the surrounding rugged scenery. It’s gratifying to simply look out the window. This guesthouse is close to the Eyjafjallajökull Erupts museum, Rutshellir Caves, Skógafoss, and the open-air folk museum Musée de Skógar.
Reynisfjara Black Sand Beach, Iceland Travel Guide | Moon & Honey Travel

Day 3: Southern Iceland

Skogar to Vík

As you journey further East on the Ring Road, you’ll find that the scenery becomes more dramatic. The main highlight of today’s itinerary is visiting the black beaches around Vík.

See & Do

  • Reynisfjara Black Sand Beach – There are many black beaches in Iceland, but this seems to be the famous one. What makes it really special are the basalt columns on the beach, the view of the Reynisdrangar Cliffs (basalt sea stacks), and the Hálsanefshellir Cave. Dress warmly, because it can be very cold/very windy.
  • Lunch at Black Beach Restaurant – casual, cafeteria style restaurant. They cook up a delicious turnip soup.
  • Black sand beach Vik – another beautiful beach, though less busy.
  • Dinner at Suður-Vík Restaurant

Stay in Vík

  • Guesthouse Carina, Vík. Beautiful rooms, delicious breakfast and communal bathrooms. We loved staying here. The location was perfect and the breakfast was memorable. The guesthouse is located directly in the town of Vík and very close to the beach.
Fjaðrárgljúfur, Iceland Travel Guide | Moon & Honey Travel

Day 4: Southeast Iceland

Vík to Borgarhöfn, or Höfn

Today, you’ll see some of Iceland’s most surreal landscapes. You’ll drive through Eldhaun, a massive moss covered lava field. You’ll walk the rim of a deep canyon and hike to a waterfall framed by basalt columns. You’ll visit two glacier lagoons, where fragmented icebergs float and seals swim.

See & Do

  • Laufskálavarða – This is the only place in Iceland that you can build a cairne (rock stack). There are hundreds here (if not more).
  • Eldhraun – Massive moss covered lava field. You’ll drive through it.
  • Fjaðrárgljúfur Deep Canyon – You can walk the rim to various vantage points. There is an icy blue river that ribbons through the canyon floor.
  • Lunch at Systrakaffi
  • Skaftafell / Vatnajökull National Park – Trailhead to Svartifoss Waterfall and Svínafellsjökull Glacier. This is also a meeting point for glacier hikes, which are run by different tour groups.
  • Fjallsárlón – Glacier Lagoon at the south end of the glacier Vatnajökull. Floating icebergs. In the winter, the lagoon freezes.
  • Diamond Beach – Broken off icebergs from Jökulsárlón float out to sea and land on this black sand beach.
  • Jökulsárlón – Breathtaking glacier lagoon.

Stay in Borgarhöfn or Höfn

  • Lækjarhus Farm Holidays, Borgarhöfn. The rooms are basic, though comfortable. You have access to a kitchen and dining area. This guesthouse is located on a farm. One of our most memorable mornings was exploring the land around the farmhouse.
  • Fosshótel Vatnajökull. Glacier views, comfortable rooms, and excellent breakfast. This hotel is located near the Ring Road close to Höfn. We didn’t stay here, but it’s on our wish list.
15 Day Iceland Itinerary | Moon & Honey Travel

Day 5: East Iceland

Höfn to Egilsstaðir

If there’s one drive in Iceland to experience, this is it! It approaches the realm of magic. Treeless black mountains plunge into the ocean. A viking filmset stands abandoned amidst grazing horses. Reindeer and whooper swans dot the landscape.

See & Do

  • Hoffell Hot Tubs – a slight detour, but a nice way to start the day.
  • Vestrahorn – Photographers love this Mountain. It’s best viewed from Stokksnes.
  • Viking Cafe – You can grab a coffee at this rugged cafe. After parking and paying a fee, you can walk to the black sand beach (Stokksnes) for a view of Vestrahorn mountain. You can also drive to get even closer. When we arrived, we could barely see 5 feet ahead of us, so unfortunately we didn’t see the sand dunes. But, we walked in the direction along the foot of the mountain, and stumbled upon an old film set of a Viking settlement.
  • Stokksnes – Black sand beach, small sand dunes, and view of the mountain Vestrahorn.
  • Lækjavik – Stunning stretch of coastline. Lots of birdlife. Waterfalls everywhere. Mountains plunge into the ocean.
  • Djúpivogur – Coastal town in the East Fjords
  • Lunch at Hótel Framtíð
  • Öxi Mountain Pass – This is a mountain pass. We opted to take this road instead of the 1 because it was faster. It’s unpaved/gravel, so only take this road when there’s good weather. The drive is very scenic. 

Stay in Egilsstaðir

  • Lyngás Guesthouse. Comfortable, clean and “spacious” rooms. You have access to a communal kitchen and dining space. Egilsstaðir (Egilsstadir) is a good base for exploring the East Fjords.
15 Day Iceland Itinerary | Moon & Honey Travel

Day 6: East Fjords

Egilsstaðir to Mývatn

Today, you’ll venture to remote towns in the East Fjords. Venturing to these destinations is probably best in summer when the weather is milder and you have an opportunity to see puffins. When we visited in April, it was very cold and windy. And, it was too early in the season to see puffins. Additionally, all tourist establishments and cafes were closed (winter mode).

See & Do

  • Seydisfjordur – Town at the base of a narrow fjord with bright colored timber houses. It has a strong Norwegian heritage and was settled in the 10th century by a Norwegian. The town has an active fishing and fish-processing center. There are several hikes you can do in the area (Vestdalsá).
  • Borgarfjörður Eystri – Dramatic mountains framing this remote town. Puffin sightseeing area at Hafnarholm. We didn’t see any puffins here in mid-April (a bit too early). Nothing was open. Perhaps, it’s best to come here in the high season.

Stay in Mývatn

  • Eldá Guesthouse. Simple, utilitarian guesthouse with communal kitchen. The location was great for exploring around the lake. The guesthouse is close the geothermal area Hverir, the Mývatn Nature Baths and Grjótagjá cave.
  • Vogafjos Guesthouse (aka Cowshed). We ate three meals here. It’s warm, rustic and charming. If the food is any indication of the guesthouse itself, then this is probably a really nice place to stay.
15 Day Iceland Itinerary | Moon & Honey Travel

Day 7 + 8: Lake Mývatn

Directly on the Ring Road, Lake Mývatn in Northern Iceland offers a lot to see and merits at least two full days. The lake itself was created by a large fissure eruption about 2,300 years ago. In the Middle Ages, the region was referred to as the devil’s piss. To get an idea about the size, it takes 40 minutes to drive around the lake.

When we visited in early spring, we experienced “I can’t feel my face” weather and needed shoe spikes to walk around. Your experience will be impacted by the time of year you visit. Consider the following:

  • Winter/Early Spring:
    • Pros: significantly less people, no flies, northern lights
    • Cons: Snow and cold conditions make exploring difficult
  • Summer:
    • Pros: Birdlife, birdwatching, outdoor activities, more scenic
    • Cons: More people, flies, more expensive accommodations

See & Do

  • Hverir Geothermal Area
  • Krafla Area –  Víti crater lake and Leirhnjúkur lava field  (best in summer, or when there’s no major snowfall).
  • Mývatn Nature Baths (formerly called Jarðböðin) – A man-made lagoon filled up with steamy, warm geothermal water. Great activity when it’s cold. Bring bathing suit, towel, flip flops, water, student ID (discount).
  • Fissure of Grjótagjá (Game of Thrones Love Cave)
  • Dimmuborgir – Large area composed of bizarre lava fields and volcanic rock formations. There are several marked walking routes to choose from. Eat lunch at Kaffi Borgir.
  • Hofdi – Beautiful lava pillars in the water. There’s a small forest along the lake shore.
  • Cowshed (Vogafjós Guesthouse) – Great place for lunch, or dinner. Food is fresh and local. You can watch cows being milked and taste the fresh milk.
  • Optional half-day trip: whale watching in Húsavík

Stay in Mývatn

  • Eldá Guesthouse. Simple, utilitarian guesthouse with communal kitchen. The location was great for exploring around the lake. The guesthouse is close the geothermal area Hverir, the Mývatn Nature Baths and Grjótagjá cave.
  • Vogafjos Guesthouse (aka Cowshed). We ate three meals here. It’s warm, rustic and charming. If the food is any indication of the guesthouse itself, then this is probably a really nice place to stay.
15 Day Iceland Itinerary | Moon & Honey Travel

Day 9: Northern Iceland

Lake Mývatn to Blönduós

Apart from the urban area of Akureyri, Northern Iceland feels fantastically remote and desolate. Some villages seems like the perfect setting for a murder mystery, or tragic love story. Definitely visit the hot pot Grettislaug. It’s a journey to get there, but it’s worth every pot hole. 

See & Do

  • Goðafoss Waterfall – Horseshoe-shaped waterfall. You can access the waterfall from both sides.
  • Akureyri – Iceland’s second largest urban area. We ate a delicious lunch at Kaffi Ilmur. They have a lunch buffet on the top floor.
  • Hofsós – Coastal town. Really loved the remote feeling of this town. Even though nothing was open and we didn’t see any people, it was worth the stop.
  • Skagafjörður – In this town’s harbor there’s a collection of dried fish racks.
  • Grettislaug – Hot pot surrounded by majestic and remote scenery. This is a detour, but worth it! You need a 4WD to get here.
  • Glaumbær – Folk Museum. Well-preserved turf houses.
  • Víðimýrarkirkja – Turf-roofed Church

Stay near Blönduós

  • Hotel Húni. Clean, budget hotel. During winter the hotel building is a elementary school with 53 students. The hotel is located near Hvítserkur.
Iceland Travel Guide | Moon & Honey Travel

Day 10: Northwest Iceland + Westfjords

Blönduós to Ísafjörður

Our original plan was to stay the night in Ísafjörður, but we had to shift our plans due to road closures. We stayed the night at the base of the fjords and ventured to the town of Hólmavík, situated on the east coast of the Westfjords. 

See & Do

  • Hvítserkur – Spectacular rock formation located just off the coast. There are two pathways that lead from the parking lot. One leads to the Hvítserkur lookout point. The other, to the beach. The beach is closely located to a seal breeding area, so it’s likely that you’ll see bobbing heads follow you as you walk the black sand beach.
  • Icelandic Sorcery & Witchcraft – Museum and restaurant. We visited the museum (loved it). After, we ate the seafood soup downstairs (highly recommend it). Something we learned: Most people in the Westfjords can trace their lineage back to someone who practiced wizardry/witchcraft.

Stay in Ísafjörður

15 Day Iceland Itinerary | Moon & Honey Travel

Day 11: Westfjords

Weather permitting, you’ll be able to explore a segment of the Westfjords today. We took a day trip to Patreksfjörður. 

See & Do

  • Birkimelur Swimming Pool – Swimming pool and hot pot. The hot pot wasn’t that warm, but the scenery was incredible.
  • Patreksfjörður – Fishing Village
  • Lunch at Stúkuhúsid in Patreksfjörður – Friendly staff. The owner explained the whole menu to us. We ate the daily fish (Skarkoli) and the homemade cake. Great experience overall.

Stay in Staðarhólskirkja (Base of the Westfjords)

  • Hotel Ljósaland, Staðarhólskirkja. This hotel and restaurant is delightful. The room was beautiful and comfortable. Moreover, the owner is very kind and helpful. He’ll help you plan out your next steps and make sure you’re having a good time. 
15 Day Iceland Itinerary | Moon & Honey Travel

Day 12: Snæfellsnes Peninsula

The rugged Snæfellsnes peninsula in Western Iceland is dotted with small fishing villages, remote farms, and mountains. The peninsula takes its name from the Snæfellsjökull glacier.

See & Do

  • Stykkishólmur – Small coastal town and harbour. You can eat local blue mussels at the restaurant Sjavarpakkhusid. There’s a nice view of the town from the Island Stykkið.
  • Kirkjufellsfoss Waterfall – breathtaking view of Kirkjufell (Church Mountain), which is the most-photographed mountain in Iceland.
  • Skarðsvík – Secluded golden beach surrounded by black lava.
  • Saxhóll – Crater that rises 109 meters above sea level. You can walk to the rim of the crater easily via a iron ladder/footpath.
  • Djúpalónssandur Beach – Gorgeous beach with interesting rock formations
  • Hellnar – Coastal village, rocky beach, bird watching.  Primus Kaffi serves delicious soups and stews.
  • Búðakirkja – Iconic small black church.

Stay in Midhraun

15 Day Iceland Itinerary | Moon & Honey Travel

Day 13: West Iceland

As you make your way South to Reykjavík, you can take some detours to visit waterfalls. Don’t miss out on the vegetarian lunch buffet at The Settlement Center.

See & Do

  • Borgarnes – Coastal town. Grab some baked goods at Geirabakari Kaffihus. Eat lunch at the The Settlement Center (excellent vegetarian buffet).
  • Krauma Geothermal Baths, spa and restaurant.
  • Barnafoss Waterfall
  • Hraunfossar Waterfall
  • Glymur Waterfall – Hike to Iceland’s second tallest waterfall 

Stay in Reykjavík

  • Alda Hotel Reykjavík  modern design and great location. This hotel is on our wish list for future visits.
The Ultimate 2 Week Iceland Road Trip Itinerary | Moon & Honey Travel

Day 14: Reykjavík

Iceland’s capital city is a cozy, colorful and funky place to be. We stayed three nights in Reykjavík, but we think two nights is sufficient, especially after a long road trip.

See & Do

  • Take a city walking tour
  • Visit Hallgrimskirkja Church  Take the elevator to the viewing platform. You’ll have 360° views of the city.
  • Check out the concert venue Harpa – You don’t need tickets to walk in and marvel at the interior.
  • Check out The Settlement Exhibition Reykjavík 871 +/- 2
  • Brauð & Co. – Best bakery in Iceland

Stay in Reykjavík

  • Alda Hotel Reykjavík  modern design and great location. This hotel is on our wish list for future visits.
15 Day Iceland Itinerary | Moon & Honey Travel

Day 15: Reykjavanes Peninusla

Most visitors come to Reykjanes Peninsula with the sole purpose of visiting the Blue Lagoon. However, that would be a mistake, as Reykjanes is a treasure chest of interesting sites. We recommend dedicating at least one day to this southwestern region.

Here’s what we suggest, if you’re driving from Reykjavik to Keflavik Airport. We’ve also included things we wanted to do, but couldn’t fit in (in parenthesis).

See & Do

  • Fish Drying Racks in Hafnarfjordur – If you’re driving south on the 42, the fish racks are on the left side of the road before the 417 juncture. GPS: 64°01’04.7″N 21°56’52.2″W
  • Reykjanesfólkvangur National Park – Moss Lava Fields
  • Kleifarvatn – Lake
  • Krýsuvík / Seltún Geothermal Area
  • (Krýsuvíkurberg – Bird Cliffs)
  • (Bryggjan Café in Grindarvík for Lunch)
  • Gunnuhver Thermal Springs  Geothermal Area 
  • Reykjanestá  – The southwestern-most tip of the peninsula. Here you’ll find cliffs, sea stacks, view of the Island Eldey, the hill Valahnjúkur, and Reykjanesvíti (the oldest lighthouse in Iceland).
  • (Hvalneskirkja – Church)
  • (Garðskagaviti – Lighthouse)

This wraps up your epic road trip trough Iceland. Depending on your arrival and departure times, you can choose whether to drive through the peninsula on your first, or last day.

The Ultimate 2 Week Iceland Road Trip Itinerary | Moon & Honey Travel

Iceland Resources

There are some affiliate links in this travel guide. If you make a booking or a purchase using the links, we’ll get a small commission at no extra cost to you. It’s how we cover the costs of running the blog!

@moonhoneytravelers
  • Üsküdar is rarely a first, second, or third choice for places to explore in Istanbul. There are no trendy cafés, vintage shops, or entertainment venues here. But, we’d argue that Üsküdar delivers a completely authentic experience and gives visitors an opportunity to hop off the tourist track. This Asian-side district has many treasures. We’ve been uncovering them slowly this past week, starting with this mosque. The light-filled interior of Marmara University Faculty of Theology Mosque is poetry embodied. Can’t wait to share more of our finds this week.
  • We’re celebrating our blog’s one year anniversary. It’s filled with travel guides and hiking guides for destinations in Europe and Asia. We’re really proud of what we’ve accomplished. There’s always room for improvement and an endless list of things to do, but today we’re just going to say “it’s pretty damn good.” Have you checked it out? Come say hi! Link in bio, or moonhoneytravel.com
  • We‘ve been traveling almost continuously for 13 months. Being able to travel long term is an incredible privilege and gift. When we started our trip, we were out exploring every day at full speed. We didn’t want to miss anything. And, we felt an immense obligation to see and do as much as we possibly could. But after months on the road and getting destroyed by illness (more on that later), we decided that we needed to change our travel style.

We‘ve been in Istanbul for 1.5 months. Do we want to see more of Turkey? Of course! However, right now it feels right to stay here and soak up the vibe of one of the world‘s greatest cities.

Petsitting has allowed us to slow down and rest on the road and afford long term travel. 
If you’re interested in housesitting, we highly recommend @trustedhousesitters . To join, click the link in our bio. You’ll get 20% off the membership fee. Once you‘re a member, you can search for opportunities across the world. Yay for free accommodation and pets! 😺Photo of Oscar, the cat we‘re taking care of in Istanbul. #notsponsored
  • We’ve been pretty absent here the last week. Honestly, we needed a break. It’s terrifying to see how much time we waste aimlessly scrolling and clicking around on Instagram. We love seeing our friends and favorite bloggers’ updates (@eternalarrival @thesandyfeet @practicalwanderlust @alongdustyroads @lostwithpurpose to name a few), but we don’t want to get sucked in and realize a whole hour is gone. 
We’re curious, do you feel like you spend too much time on the app? And if so, what tools are you using to modify your Insta-behavior?

We tried simply logging out, but as soon as we logged back in, we were back at it. One thing that’s been helpful is the “manage your time” notification that’s actually built into Instagram. If you click the hamburger menu (top right) and then “Your Activity,” you can see exactly how many minutes, or hours, you’re spending on the app each day. Directly below the graph, there’s a manage your time section that lets you enable a daily reminder. You set it to how many minutes you want to spend on the app. When you reach that threshold, Instagram will notify you.

Travel Update: We’re still in Istanbul. We’re pet-sitting for the next 10 days and then heading somewhere we’ve never been before.
  • Another vantage point of our favorite waterside mosque in Istanbul. Doesn’t it look like its floating in the Bosphorus?
  • Ortaköy Mosque (Büyük Mecidiye Camii) is one of Istanbul‘s most memorable sites. Located in Ortaköy along the Bosphorus, this baroque-style mosque has the most dreamy, pink interior to compliment its stunning exterior.

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