DAY 1: REYKJAVÍK, ICELAND
Iceland’s cosmopolitan capital, Reykjavík, was established in 874 AD. Powered by geothermal energy, Reykjavík is widely considered one of the cleanest, greenest cities on Earth. Food, culture, and nightlife abound! The National Culture House preserves treasures like the Poetic Edda, and the Norse Sagas in their original manuscripts. We depart Reykjavík in the evening aboard the Ocean Endeavour.
DAY 2: SNÆFELLSNES PENINSULA
Today we will explore the Snæfellsnes Peninsula, a region known for its dramatic beauty and fascinating geological history. There will also be many opportunities to observe seabirds and marine life as we explore one of Iceland’s most amazing coastlines.
DAY 3: THE WESTFJORDS
Only about ten percent of Iceland’s visitors ever see this region, known for its jagged bird cliffs and multihued beaches. Coastal fjords, immense mountains, and tiny villages can be found here, and a traditional lifestyle is embraced by the region’s inhabitants.
DAY 4: SIGLUFJÖRÐUR AND GRÍMSEY
In its heyday, Siglufjörður bustled with activity as the centre of the herring fishing industry. Today Siglufjörður is resurgent. The Herring Era Museum, which includes re-enactments, is wonderful. Foodies will enjoy visiting the bakery, chocolate factory, and brewery. The folk music centre is a wonderful resource for Icelandic folk music.
Grímsey Island lies on the Arctic Circle. Its small human population shares the island with nearly a million seabirds! These include puffins, guillemots, and gulls. A Zodiac cruise among rock formations is a trip highlight.
DAY 5: AKUREYRI
Iceland’s second-largest urban area, Akureyri, enjoys a relatively mild climate and ice-free harbour. Shops, cafes, and restaurants make for good exploring of the urban kind, along with ten museums to discover and explore.
Akuyeri’s botanical gardens are among the northernmost in the world, miraculously growing several thousand plant species. The view from the steps of the monumental Lutheran church is worth the walk!
DAY 6: HÚSAVÍK
Húsávík, on Skjálfandi Bay, is known as the whale capital of Iceland. Fifteen different whale species frequent the area; we also hope to see dolphins and dozens of varieties of birds. Various museums await exploration, including the Whale Museum, Húsavík Museum, and the Exploration Museum, which houses artefacts from Apollo astronaut training in the area.
DAY 7: SEYÐISFJÖRÐUR
Seyðisfjörður is nestled at the tip of its namesake fjord. The picturesque town of 700 is known for its flourishing art scene, cobbled rainbow road, and excellent handicrafts. There are numerous opportunities for hiking, including a walk up to Tvísöngur sound sculpture on a nearby hill.
Nearby Skalanes Nature Reserve is family owned and operated. The centre for research and interpretation of Iceland’s environment and cultural history is a model for sustainable tourism.
DAY 8: SOUTHEAST ICELAND
The south of Iceland is home to some of the country’s most beautiful natural attractions. Here we have opportunities to explore a unique mix of volcanoes, lagoons, and glaciers—as well as hot springs, geysers, and spectacular waterfalls.
DAY 9: HEIMAEY, VESTMANNAEYJAR (WESTMAN ISLANDS)
Vestmannaeyjar lies off the south coast of Iceland and comprises fourteen islands, numerous rocks, and skerries. Only the largest island, Heimaey, is inhabited. Heimaey rose to global prominence when it was nearly destroyed by the eruption of the volcano Eldfell in 1973. Nearby sea cliffs dotted with massive sea caves offer excellent opportunities for birds, including the much-loved puffins.
DAY 10: REYKJAVÍK, ICELAND
We’ll disembark the Ocean Endeavour in the morning.