Seven days in Iceland will give you enough time to explore the beautiful south coast of the island. You can head all the way to glacial lake Jökulsárlón and back. If you have less time, check out our articles How to Spend One Day in Iceland and The Perfect Three-Day Adventure in Iceland. If you are lucky enough to spend seven days in Iceland, let the following itinerary inspire you while you are planning your stay!
Day 1 – Blue Lagoon and Reykjavík
On the first day, you drive to Reykjavík after your arrival at Keflavík International Airport, with a stop at the Blue Lagoon. The Blue Lagoon is known for its geothermally heated, milky-blue waters with skin-healing properties. Don’t forget to get free mud masks at a special bar inside the lagoon, and to book an in-water massage if you want to go all out! Usually people stay about two hours at the Blue Lagoon. After relaxing at the Blue Lagoon, you drive to Reykjavík. Take a moment to settle in and then head out to discover the downtown area.
Total driving distance: 70 kilometres, 1 hour
Day 2 – Golden Circle
Today, you will see the Golden Circle. It’s not a coincidence that this is one of the most popular tours in Iceland. There are three stunning stops on the way. The stops are Þingvellir, a national park where the Icelandic Parliament congregated between 930 and 1798, Gullfoss, a spectacular waterfall, and Geysir, a geothermal area with an active geyser, guaranteed to wow visitors. Kerið, a beautiful crater in the same area, is a recommended extra stop.
If you wish to extend the tour, it can be combined with a few other activities depending on what you are interested in. You can visit geothermally heated greenhouses, go snowmobiling on Langjökull or swim in the Secret Lagoon. It’s recommended to book accommodation close to Laugarvatn, and a visit to Fontana Spa Laugarvatn in the evening it not to be missed!
Total driving distance: 200 kilometres, 3 hours
Day 3 – South coast of Iceland
Today, you will discover the south coast of Iceland. The starting point is your accommodation close to or in Laugarvatn. The first stop is waterfall Seljalandsfoss. The best thing about this waterfall is, is that in summertime, it’s possible to walk behind it. The path leading behind the waterfall can be slippery, you will have to climb a bit and wearing waterproof clothing is highly recommended, but this is all worth the unique experience of seeing tons of water splash down right in front of you!
After only a 25-minute drive, you reach the next waterfall, Skógafoss. For many, this waterfall is the most beautiful they have ever seen. Walk very close to the waterfall to experience its power, or walk up the stairs next to it to get a view from above!
The next stop is glacial tongue Sólheimajökull. You can either walk up to the glacier, have a look around, and then head back again. Or you can book a glacier walk, a three-hour hike during which a certified guide will take you all the way up the glacier. The views from atop the glacier over the south coast are amazing!
After visiting Sólheimajökull, you drive onward to Dyrhólæy, a small arch-shaped peninsula with a cute lighthouse at the top, overlooking the ocean and black shorelines. You also visit Reynisfjara, where black basalt columns offer the perfect photo opportunity. Just be aware of the sneaker waves in this area, and don’t go too close to the ocean.
After this it’s just a little bit farther to Vík, the southernmost point of the Icelandic mainland and the last stop of the day. From Vík’s black beaches you can see three trolls standing in the ocean. The story goes that these trolls where just pulling a ship onto shore when the sun came out. They hadn’t noticed the sunrise and were turned into stone right on the spot!
Next, you will drive onward to Kirkjubæjarklaustur, a small village mostly known because it’s the only service point between Vík and Höfn on the ring road. It’s good to book your accommodation in this area, so you can do some grocery shopping and fill up gas before continuing your adventures the next day.
Total driving distance: 275 kilometres, 4 hours
Day 4 – Jökulsárlón
On the fourth day, you will continue on your way east. The first stop is at Fjaðrárgljúfur, a canyon that became very popular after Justin Bieber added footage of it to his music video Let Me Show You. Please note that the area is sometimes closed to protect nature. Do not go into the area when it’s closed! You can also stop at Dverghamrar, a natural site with interesting basalt formations.
The highlight of today is glacial lake Jökulsárlón. Jökulsárlón is formed by meltwater of Vatnajökull, Europe’s biggest glacier. The impressive lake filled with icebergs, the black beach with thousands of ice blocks on it and the glacier itself, are among Iceland’s most unique landscapes. If you want to visit Jökulsárlón’s lesser-known relative, head to Fjallsárlón.
It’s recommended to find accommodation close to Skaftafell National Park, because this is where you will be heading tomorrow!
Total driving distance: 200 kilometres, 2.5 hours
Day 5 – Skaftafell
Today, you will go on several hikes in Skaftafell, part of Vatnajökull National Park. In the morning you drive to the entrance of the park and visit the visitor centre. After this, you start with an uphill hike to the waterfall Svartifoss (Black Waterfall), a round-trip of 5.5 kilometres. This hike should take you about 2 hours. Svartifoss is 12 metres tall, and what is so unique about it, is that it’s surrounded by stunning black basalt columns.
A second hike you can do in this area is the one to the glacier Skaftafellsjökull, which is 3.7 kilometres back and forth and takes 1.5 hours maximum. The trail ends close to the glacier, offering an amazing view. Several other hikes are possible in the area, and you will find all the information you need at the visitor centre!
Total driving distance: 10 kilometres, 15 minutes
Day 6 – Back to Reykjavík
It’s time to travel all along the south coast back to Reykjavík. This day is mostly spent driving, but if you missed some sights on the way to the east, you can use this day to visit them!
Total driving distance: 320 kilometres, 4.5 hours
Day 7 – Keflavík International Airport
This is your last day in Iceland. Pack your bags and drive back to Keflavík International Airport. If you have some time before your flight, you can check out Reykjanes peninsula. This peninsula is often overlooked, but is actually really beautiful. The lake Kleifarvatn, geothermal areas Krýsuvík and Gunnuhver, and the lighthouse Reykjanesviti are a couple of nice last stops before you leave the country!
Total driving distance straight to the airport: 50 kilometres, 45 minutes