The Ultimate Vacation Guide to Golden Circle Tour and Nine Popular Detours

If you ever hear about excursions in the Iceland, then you are likely to hear people talk about travel around the Golden Circle. It always brims the travel list of those that love tripping and is a highlight on the website of every travel organizer. All sites are spectacular and unique in their own way. The best thing is that from Reykjavik, it only takes two hours to reach each of the spots hence you can visit all the three together in one day. Here are the top nine detours and ultimate guide simplified.

The Nine Detours

  1. Geothermal Baths of Fontana
  2. Kerid Crater
  3. Secret Lagoon
  4. Langjokull glacier
  5. Freidheimar Horse and tomato farm
  6. Hvita River
  7. Eco Village of Solheimar
  8. Thjorsardalur Valley
  9. Skalholt
  • National Park of Thingvellir

Usually there are many organizers that make National Park of Thingvellir the last stop. However, this location is dearest to Most Icelanders mainly because of its contribution to the history. This place is also one of the places that is tremendously important and forms a part of the Golden Circle tour which is held by tour operators like discover.is through Golden Circle Private Tours.  This is one of the heritage sites of UNESCO, has incredible geology and visitors learn about democratic roots and earth processes. The trip is held in Mercedes luxury SUV or SuperJeeps that can accommodate a up to 7 persons.

  • Geothermal Area of Geysir

If Thingvellir was your first stop then this Geothermal Area of Geysir shall be your second stop. It takes fifty minutes to reach the place. Moreover, you are likely to find chimneys and steaming vents dotted alongside that are concentrated notably in Laugarvatn village. The volcanic activity only gets more intense on this stop of the Golden Circle Tour.  

  • Waterfall of Gullfoss

One of the most spectacular waterfalls has to be the waterfall of Gullfoss and is ten minutes away from Geysir. It is located in an ancient, plunging valley whereby the falls tumble down. It is not just breathtakingly powerful but on a sunny and rainy day you shall find rainbow thrown across, adding magnificence and drama.

The nine detours

The very famous and popular nine detours include the following:

  1. Geothermal Baths of Fontana: These Geothermal baths open out onto lake where you can feel rising warm water tongues from the surface between the toes. Wading is also possible. It is located in Laugarvatn town.
  2. Kerid Crater: This crate formed some six thousand years ago, is oval completely and has a lake in the bottom.
  3. Secret Lagoon: This is considered the oldest pool for swimming whereby temperature fluctuates between forty to thirty eight degrees Celsius, because of hot natural springs draining their water.
  4. Langjokull glacier: this glacier is mostly popular for snowmobiling and offers fantastic views.
  5. Freidheimar Horse and tomato farm: this place is perfect as a stopover for delicious lunch where you can enjoy the break that is home cooked and tomato soup.
  6. Hvita River: If you love rafting then you can go for it here on this stunning river that also offers opportunities for kayaking.
  7. Eco Village of Solheimar: This settlement nests in nature seamlessly and comprises of everything that visitors can need.
  8. Thjorsardalur Valley: this valley is home to some of the most beautiful waterfalls like Thijofafoss, Haifoss, Hjaparposs and Granni.
  9. Skalholt: This historical town is the first town of Iceland and has a cathedral that is worth visiting.

What Can You See On the Iceland Golden Circle Tour?

Iceland, as a tourist destination is growing in popularity with more and more people from Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the USA discovering its unique charms. For most tourists, one of the best ways to get an all-around experience of Iceland is to arrive here in summer and embark on what is known as the golden circle tour.

The golden circle tour is so named because it covers a sort of circle around the island and some of the finest spots are located on this route. Discover.is offers one of the best golden circle tour Iceland based for first timers and for tourists who return again, enchanted by the island’s attractions. There are several ways to do the Golden Circle tour in Iceland. One is in a 4×4 super jeep with giant wheels and a drive-in attendance. It could be a bit expensive so the next best thing is a tour of the circle in a standard luxury Mercedes minibus in a small group up to 19 passengers on each tour, something most tourists prefer. There are standard attractions and then there are those off the beaten track. Discover Iceland’s guides also offer some hidden and delightful surprises to tourists undertaking the GC Tour.

The most famous and must visit places on the Iceland golden circle tour by discover.is are Thingvellir National Park, The Geysir Geothermal area, Gullfoss Waterfalls and the pseudo red craters at Rauoholar, the black sandy beach and crater Kerio. It can be a pretty straightforward tour starting with Thingvellir. The Park is unlike any others in the rest of the world. For one, it is where the European and American continent landmasses meet and one can actually dive down the Silfra and touch the two tectonic plates. The Park is of historic importance to Icelanders, the site of democratization of the country that goes as far back as 930 AD when the term itself was unheard of. It has been the meeting place of “parliament” since then and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The drive on the golden circle takes tourists to the Geysir Geothermal area and then on to Strokkur, a Geysir that erupts with clockwork regularity every ten minutes. Next on the itinerary is Gulfoss waterfall, a scenic and enchanting spot to watch water cascading down 32 metres. If one joins the right tour there is a chance to go rafting on the river Hvita that feeds this waterfall. The boat ride is an entirely enthralling experience. The hidden facts that not many people know is that Gulfoss is connected with Sveinn Bjornsson who became the country’s first president before which he was a lawyer who handled the case of Sigriour, the daughter of the original owner of the Gulfoss, embroiled in a legal battle to prevent the damming of the waterfall to generate power.

This is just scratching the surface. Discover.is can offer customised tours and detours on the Golden Circle that make it a uniquely absorbing experience.