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Starting From 11 DAYS

Grand Winter Photo Tour around Iceland

Visit all the major sights around Iceland and see them in a winter mode.

Scheduled departure: January 21- 31 2018

 

About the tour:

During this tour, you will experience Iceland through various weather conditions and have the opportunity to photograph extreme landscapes in ever changing colors. Despite the winter, Iceland is not always covered in snow, and due to the low sun and varied weather conditions between North and South Iceland, the island displays exceptionally beautiful light and contrasts, which give way to plenty of variety in your photographs. We will take advantage of beautiful winter sunrises and sunsets (when presented) which will play a major role in some of the best locations available. We will take Route 1 with a few detours, stopping at the highlights of Iceland´s natural landscape, subject to weather and accessibility during the winter. A big advantage for photographers at this time of the year is that there are fewer people around compared to the summer. During the evenings, we will keep a lookout for the Northern Lights.

The main sights on this tour are the Snaefellsnes Peninsula, the Lake Mývatn area in northeast Iceland with its lava formations, craters and geothermal areas, the glacier lagoon and Vatnajökull Glacier in the southeast with the possibility of exploring some ice caves, the black sand beaches in the south, numerous waterfalls along this 1,600 km route in all their shapes and winter forms, fishing villages with their old houses, the Icelandic horse and anything else that we may come across that looks interesting. Sometimes nature allows you to experience all of listed above, but sometimes it does not. We may experience strong winds, snowstorms, sand blizzards, hail and fog. Winter in Iceland is sometimes all of that, but at the same time, it can offer the most amazing photo opportunities.

We will stay at farm hotels and guesthouses that offer personal service and home cooked food.  All rooms have private bathroom facilities. Some days we will take packed lunches with us which allows us more freedom in the field when needed. Driving around Iceland in wintertime is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you are going to get.

 

Group size 4-7

Price per person: double occupancy is ISK 860.000
Price per person: single occupancy is ISK 945.000

 

DAY 1 - West Iceland – Borgarfjordur and Snaefellsnes Peninsula

We will pick you up from your hotel around 8:00 am and drive to Hvalfjordur-Fjord and from there toward Borgarfjordur Fjord. We will visit Hraunfossar Waterfalls (Lava Waterfalls) and another spectacular waterfall close by, Barnafossar (Children’s Waterfall according to folklore). We will visit Snaefellsnes and photograph its beautiful coastline; cut bays and cliffs like Arnarstapi and Þúfnabjarg. Snaefellsjökull Glacier rises above. Accommodation: Hotel in the area

DAY 2 - Snaefellsnes and Kirkjufell Mountain in Grundarfjordur fjord

We will spend the day in the beautiful area of Snaefellsnes photographing the coastal line, beautiful vistas, horses and whatever we find interesting while moving to the north side of the peninsula. We will stay overnight in the area of Kirkjufell Mountain and Kirkjufells Waterfall in Grundarfjördur. Accommodation: Hotel in Grundarfjordur

DAY 3 - West to north; Vatnsnes Peninsula and Hvitserkur Sea Stack

We leave Snaefellsnes behind and head back to the Ring Road of Iceland, this is a bit of a driving day, but we will be at the Vatnsnes Peninsula in the early afternoon where we will spend rest of the day photographing the Hvítserkur Sea Stack among other things. Accommodation: Country hotel in the region

DAY 4 - Skagafjördur Fjord, Icelandic horses and secret waterfall

After a hearty breakfast, we will drive further north toward Skagafjordur valley. Once we arrive in Skagafjordur Fjord/Valley we will visit Glaumbaer, one of the few turf farms still standing, with its grassy roofs and small windows intact. This region is famous for horse farming so this is a good spot to photograph horses since they are kept outside in the winter. Accommodation: Hotel in Mývatn area

DAY 5 - Godafoss waterfall and Lake Mývatn area

We will be at first light at Godafoss, one of Iceland's top waterfalls to photograph. We will spend other half of the day around Lake Mývatn. By the lake are various lava formations like Kálfastrandavogar Lava Rocks that rise out of the lake and near by the Hverfell Volcano. Accommodation: Hotel in Lake Mývatn area

DAY 6 - Hverarönd geothermal area and Mödrudalsöraefi highland road

We will be at first light at the geothermal area at Hverarönd where there are mud pots and steam vents hopefully making interesting contrast with the sky. In the afternoon we drive from north east to east on the highland road of Mödrudalur where you see nothing but hills and mountains as far as your eye can reach. Drifting snow over these hills can often be challenging to photograph. Accommodation: Near Egilsstadir

DAY 7 - East Fjords

The east coast boasts of long, narrow fjords with steep sides and jagged mountain peaks as well as picturesque fishing villages. Accommodation: Breiddalur valley

DAY 8 - East Fjords and Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon

We will head further south and make stops both at random and at planned locations along the east coast until we get to the glacier lagoon in the late afternoon. In the evening, we will look out for the Northern Lights and hope to get to photograph them by the Glacier Lagoon Accommodation: Hali Guesthouse

DAY 9 - Glacier Lagoon and Vatnajökull National Park

At first light, we will drive to the Glacier Lagoon and the beach below for the ice bergs. Seals are often to be seen at this time of year resting on the ice at the lagoon. We will be photographing around Vatnajökull glacier and its outlets all day long. After dinner, if weather permits, we will head out for Northern lights hunt at the Glacier Lagoon area. Accommodation: Hali guesthouse.

DAY 10 - Ice cave visit, Lómagnúpur mountain to Hrifunes

We start the day by an Ice cave visit with a local guide. Ice caves change every year in size and shape so we never know what to expect but we always hope for the amazing blue color. In the afternoon we will photograph our way to our next overnight lodging, stopping at places like majestic Lómagnúpur mountain and an old sheep house ruins. Accommodation: Hrifunes guesthouse.

Day 11 - First light at the Reynisdrangar sea stacks, cape and cliffs

Final day. We will leave Hrifunes early for first light photography at the beach of Reynisfjara where you find columnar basalt formations and the Reynisdrangar Rocks standing in the sea. We will drive along the south coast towards Reykjavik stopping at various locations: Dyrhóley, Skógafoss waterfall among others. Estimated arrival time in Reykjavik around 18PM.

TOUR FACTS
Name of tour: Grand Winter Photo Tour
Duration: 11days/10 nights
Departure: January 21, 2018
Participants: 4-8
Price per person: double occupancy is ISK 860.000
Price per person: single occupancy is ISK 945.000

Price includes:
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.

Not included:
Cost of flight to Keflavik/Iceland, transportation to and from airport (although this can be arranged) and hotel accommodation in Reykjavík.

more information: info@phototours.is

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
Clothes: 

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)