Fantastic Roadtrips on Your Campervan Holiday
As Iceland only has one major road that circles the island, it isn’t the place to come if you enjoy long stretches of wide roads with well signposted attractions and convenient stops at regular intervals. It is, however, great if you get lost easily and can’t work out if you are going north or south, because as long as you keep going you’ll be right back where you started!
Of course, there is more than one road, the roads leading off the main road aren’t all dirt tracks either, so here are a few places which are great to visit what ever type of vehicle you are driving.
The route between Reykjavik and Akureyri is just under 340km and passes all kinds of incredible sights, including hot springs, volcanoes and some very pretty farmland. Spend your first couple of nights in Reykjavik and see all the sights that the capital has to offer and then head north into the Borgarfjörður Valley. In this area you can experience waterfalls, hot springs and historic sites before hitting Highway 1.
Take the highway to the Snæfellsnes Peninsula, a beautiful area with some unique fishing villages such as Stykkishólmur. From here you have an incredible view of Snæfellsjökull a glacier covered volcano, and weather permitting, you can take a trip to the top.
Travelling north again you reach the ‘Valley of the Horses’ at Skagafjörður. This is a place where there are more horses than people, so why not use a different type of horsepower to explore the nearby valley, or if you enjoy getting wet there are some fantastic places for white water rafting here too. Continue through the town of Siglufjörður, which has particularly charming buildings and a historic church, before arriving at the second largest town in Iceland and your destination, Akureyri.
The Golden Circle is a circular route which takes in three of Iceland’s most popular attractions. This route can take you as long as you like, and there are a number of good sites for you to stay a night or two in your motorhome rental or campervan hire.
Leave Rejkavikbehind and head for Thingvellir. This was the site of the first parliament in Iceland, and today its home to the Thingvellir National Park.
Next head towards Geysir. The original Geyser at Geysir now only displays once or twice a year, however when it does it shoots a jet of steam 200 feet into the air. At nearby Strokkur you are pretty much guaranteed to see a geyser in action, although not quite as spectacular, with a jet of just 100 feet every five minutes. This area is also covered with some good walking paths which lead past some colourful, mineral, mud features and steaming vents.
Next stop on the Golden Circle tour is Gullfoss. Gullfoss means “Golden Falls”, and this is where you will see the 105-foot double-cascade waterfall of the Hvita glacial river, the largest in Europe. This has to be one of the tour’s highlights, on a sunny day the area is surrounded by rainbows, and in winter the freezing water makes some incredible shapes around the edges.
There’s a lot more to see on both these trips, and some great views for visitors with campervan hire or motorhome rental, and if you take a 4x4 take a look at some of the place to visit in ‘off the beaten path’