SUMMER PHOTO TOUR – West Fjords and highlands
July 26 – August 4 2018
10 days / 9 nights
About the tour:
The Summer Iceland photographic tour in July includes West Iceland, the West Fjords, North, the highlands including Kjölur, Landmannalaugar plus other secret places in the interior and The Glacier Lagoon. This tour is aimed at landscape photographers who may also have an interest in bird photography although the focus will primarily be landscape photography. Still, we will get to photograph the most interesting bird colonies in Iceland such as the Puffin colony at the majestic Látrabjarg Cliffs. During this tour, we will see Iceland’s many photogenic waterfalls, beautiful streams and rivers, the largest glacier in Europe in Vatnajökull Glacier National Park, green moss, black sand and rhyolite mountains in the highlands, lava fields and a variety of Icelandic weather—all in all, a grand tour.
The schedule of the trip may be rearranged for the best weather conditions and light at each location, so be prepared to be flexible. This way we can make this tour as successful as possible.
Group size 4-7
Price per person, full board meals, transport and guiding : double occupancy ISK 790.000
Price per person, full board meals, transport and guiding :single occupancy ISK 890.000
Day 1: Snaefellsnes Peninsula - July 26
You will be picked up from your hotel in Reykjavík at 8:00 am. We will head for the Snaefellsnes Peninsula and Snaefellsnes National Park, stopping at Arnarstapi Cliffs and Þúfnabjarg Cliffs in order to explore the Kittiwakes and Fulmar bird colonies among other spots such as the small, black wooden church at Budir. Accommodation: Hotel Hellnar
Day 2: Latrabjarg Cliffs - July 27
We will drive to the north side of the Snaefellsnes Peninsula and head toward the village of Stykkishólmur in order to catch the ferry across Breidafjördur Bay to Brjánslaekur. The ferry trip takes about three hours, so we will arrive in time to check in at Hotel Breidavik, have dinner and go to the magnificent Látrabjarg Cliffs for an evening photography session of puffins, razorbills and guillemots. Latrabjarg Cliffs are extraordinary for photographing the puffins in late evening light. Accommodation: Hotel Breidavik
Day 3: Latrabjarg Cliffs - July 28
We only photograph puffins in the evening, and therefore, we will spend the whole day visiting Arnarfjordur Fjord and the 100 meter high Dynjandi Waterfall, one of Iceland´s most picturesque waterfalls with its many smaller waterfalls. We will head back to Hotel Breidavík for dinner and a rest in preparation for a whole evening of photographing the seabirds again at the Látrabjarg Cliffs. Accommodation: Hotel Breidavik
Day 4: North Iceland - July 29
We leave the remote and peaceful west fjords and have a long drive ahead of us through the southern fjords towards northern Iceland. We will photograph waterfalls and country side in the fjords along the way. We hope for good light to do evening photography at the Hvítserkur sea stack in the Vatnsnes peninsula. Accommodation: Guesthouse in Vatnsnes Peninsula
Day 5: Kjölur Highland route, Hveravellir and Kerlingafjöll mountains- July 30
Kjölur is a well-known route between north and south since the Viking era. On this route we will find Hveravellir geothermal area and the hot spring area in the colorful Kerlingafjöll mountains where steam rises from bubbling hot spring vents. Accommodation: Kerlingafjöll mountains
Day 6: Thjorsardalur and the highlands - July 31
We will drive towards south Iceland making stops at the famous (and touristic) Gullfoss waterfall and Geyser hot spring area. From there we go to Thjorsardalur Valley where we will photograph beautiful streams and waterfalls in Gjain canyon as we go deeper into the highlands again. Accommodation: Hrauneyjar Highland Center
Day 7: Landmannalaugar and the Highland route north, to Hrifunes - August 1
Today we will head to Landmannalaugar highlands where we will photograph colorful rhyolite mountains, the Laugahraun Lava Field and the multicolor Brennisteinsalda Mountain. Be prepared for some hiking (4-We then take the Highland route north towards our next accommodation in Hrifunes. On the route, we will see various landscapes including barren fields of lava and volcanic sand, mossy green mountains, open rivers and wide fields of the highlands surrounded by rhyolite and the majestic hyaloclastite mountains. Accommodation: Hrifunes Guesthouse
Day 8: Vatnajökull National Park and Glacier Lagoon – August 2
We will drive through the Öraefasveit region (the desert county) where we will find the glorious Vatnajökull Glacier National Park on the right-hand side and black sand beaches on the left. We will spend most of the day photographing icebergs and glaciers at the Glacier- and Fjallsarlón Lagoons and Svinafellsjökull Glacier in Skaftafell. Accommodation: Hrifunes Guesthouse
Day 9: Langisjór Lake and Sveinstindur Mountain - August 3
Langisjór Lake lies southwest of Vatnajökull Glacier in a beautiful and picturesque landscape. It is 20 km long and up to 2 km wide. The lake is one of the most beautiful mountain lakes in Iceland with many islands, cliffs and spectacular landscape surrounding it. To the east of Langisjór Lake are the hyaloclastite mountains, Fögrufjöll. Toward the west, you will see Mount Breidbakur, famous for its moonscape, and on the south of the lake is the Sveinstindur Mountain and the glacial river, Skaftá. Accommodation: Hrifunes Guesthouse
Day 10: Final day; Fjallabak south route towards Reykjavik – August 4
We stay away from mass tourism on the south coast and head back into the interior and photograph volcanic landscape with its luminous green moss in amazing patterns. We drive behind Mýrdalsjökull glacier and cross few rivers with great vistas on all sides. Arrival time in Reykjavik late afternoon or early evening.
Name of tour: SUMMER PHOTO TOUR - West fjords and highlands
Duration: 10 days/9 nights
Departure: July 26, 2018
Participants: 4-7 persons
Price per person: double occupancy ISK 790.000
Price per person: single occupancy ISK 890.000
Accommodation: All accommodation costs during the tour.
Meals: Breakfast from the second day until the last day, picnic or light restaurant lunch every day, dinners from day one until the second to last day.
Transportation & guiding: Professional English speaking driver guide and photographer, Vehicle: 4X4 truck (Jeep) and gasoline.
Cost of flight to Keflavik/Iceland, transportation to and from airport (although this can be arranged) and hotel accommodation in Reykjavík.
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Climate and clothing recommendations
The Gulf Stream is what makes Iceland inhabitable, and without it, the whole country would most likely be covered by ice. The winters are fairly mild and summers are cool. The weather can be unpredictable and very windy and rainy at times. A popular saying in Iceland is “if you don’t like the weather right now, just wait five minutes” as you may occasionally experience the four seasons all in one day: sunshine and mild temperatures to windy, cool temperatures with rain or even snow. The average temperature in January is 0 C (32 F) and the average temperature in July is 12 C (54 F)
In the view of the climate description above, we can only advise visitors to be prepared for everything. No matter what time of year you plan to visit Iceland, always pack some warm and water resistant clothes, hats, gloves and good walking shoes.
Practical list, independent of the season of the year
1. Warm underwear
2. Sweater or a warm jacket/coat
3. Wind- and waterproof overcoat and over trousers
4. Extra pair of warm socks
5. Gloves and a cap
6. Hiking shoes (waterproof boots for winter photo tours)
7. Slippers and possibly light trainers
9. Sunglasses (optional!)
10. Electric converter (Iceland uses 220 volts)
11. Torch or headlight (winter photo tours)