Northern Lights Spectacular

Exploratory winter adventure holiday in Iceland`s Frozen North





From $2,260 Land only

Book this holiday

Holiday Overview


  • Snowshoe hiking in a winter landscape sculpted by fire and ice
  • Winter holiday in search of the Northern Lights - aurora borealis
  • Take a dip in the amazing hot pools of the `Nature Baths`
  • Experience the dramatic coastal scenery of the Troll Peninsula

Just a short flight from the Icelandic capital of Reykjavik, the lake of Myvatn provides one of the best places on Earth from which to view the Northern Lights. Here, we will start our holiday with an afternoon's excursion to the fantastic Troll Peninsula, a rival for Norway's Fjordland, with its pretty villages and snow-cloaked mountainsides tumbling down into the North Atlantic. Then, from Akureyri, we will make the short drive to Myvatn and our comfortable accommodation beside the lake. A 2-day programme of exploration, probably using snowshoes (provided), will allow us to explore a winter wonderland of volcanic landforms made even more special by the snow and ice of the winter season. We will hike via boiling mud pools, lava fields and volcanic craters and take a dip in the sublime Nature Baths, northern Iceland's version of Reykjavik's Blue Lagoon - but an altogether more natural and less crowded experience with the very real chance of seeing the Aurora Borealis, if the skies are clear. Throughout our time in Iceland we will be keeping a close eye on the Northern Lights activity forecast and our guide will be primed to wake us at any hour if there is a chance of witnessing what is one of nature's most alluring spectacles. A chance to fish for Arctic char through the Myvatn's lake ice is another possibility and we will also visit the ice-shrouded waterfall of Godafoss and take a tour around the old part of Akureyri, before returning to Reykjavik. This is a great winter highlights of Iceland adventure with a real chance of seeing the Northern Lights.

Is this holiday for you?

This short winter holiday includes 2 days during each of which there will be the opportunity to complete a longish hike, possibly using snowshoes (and trekking poles) which are provided. On the first of these days, from Dimmuborgir to Grjotaga, we will walk for up to 12 kilometres and on the second, when crossing the Krafla caldera, we will cover around 10 kilometres. Each of these walks will take between 4 and 5 hours. Apart from these 2 walks, we will have a full programme of sightseeing, with additional walks and activities. The climate in northern Iceland in winter can be challenging and you should make sure you read our equipment list and take appropriate clothing. If conditions dictate, we will use snowshoes and no previous experience is required for this.

Brief Itinerary

View in full
  • Day 1
  • Day 2
  • Day 3
  • Day 4
  • Day 5
  • Day 6
Tue 01 Dec - Sun 06 Dec Code INL /04/15/ Adult$2,260 Status Available Book now
Tue 19 Jan - Sun 24 Jan Code INL /01/16/ Adult$2,260 Status Available Book now
Tue 16 Feb - Sun 21 Feb Code INL /02/16/ Adult$2,260 Status 2 more to guarantee Book now
We sell this holiday on a Land Only basis and recommend that you book your flights to Reykjavik (Keflavik) Airport Please refer to the 'Joining Arrangements and Transfers' section of the trip dossier for further details.

Flights SHOULD NOT be booked until you have received your booking confirmation and the trip is showing 'Guaranteed to Run' or 'Limited'.

If flying from the UK, there are a number of low cost airlines offering flights to Reykjavik. These include Easyjet, who have flights from Gatwick, Stansted, Luton, Manchester & Edinburgh, WOW Air (and Iceland Express), who have flights from Gatwick and Flybe who have flights from Birmingham

Click on the 'Flight Information' link below for further information on booking low cost airlines. Alternatively, if you would prefer to book a 'Flight Inclusive' package using scheduled airlines from the UK please contact our flights department for a quote. Whilst flight prices are likely to be more expensive you will benefit from full financial protection.

BOOK WITH KE CONFIDENCE - No surcharge guarantee*

* Against Land Only services.

Map & Itinerary

The Route

  • airport
  • point
  • trip direction
  • transfer
  • trek
  • internalflight

Holiday Itinerary

  • Day 1

  • Day 2

  • Day 3

  • Day 4

  • Day 5

  • Day 6

Holiday Information

  • A professional English speaking Icelandic guide
  • Internal flights Reykjavik to Akureyri and return
  • All transfers and transport mentioned in the itinerary
  • All accommodation as described
  • Meals as detailed in the Meal Plan
  • Provision of Snowshoes on Days 3 and 4

  • Travel insurance
  • Transfers between Keflavik International Airport and Reykjavik are not included
  • Some meals as detailed in the Meal Plan
  • Miscellaneous expenses - drinks and souvenirs etc

For each holiday there is a minimum number of participants required to enable it to go ahead. Once the minimum number is reached, the trip status will change from 'Available' to 'Guaranteed to run'. You can check the trip status for each departure in ‘Dates and Prices’ table. Other than in exceptional circumstances, we will not cancel a trip once it has achieved this guaranteed to run status and so you are free to proceed with your international flight booking and other travel arrangements.

Transfers between Keflavik Airport and Reykjavik are not provided. The Flybus provides the best airport transfer service. The Flybus ticket office is situated just inside the terminal and is clearly signposted. When you buy your ticket let them know which hotel you need to be dropped of at. The Flybus leaves the airport following each incoming flight, 30 - 40 minutes after each arrival. The Flybus will take you to the bus station in Reykjavik and you will need to ask the bus driver which bus takes you on to your hotel (the cost of this 'second' bus is included in the Flybus ticket). For the return journey to the airport, your guesthouse reception will assist with booking your ticket and advising you where you will board the bus. For more information please visit ( the cost is around £15.00 each way.

This is a holiday at low elevation where we do not expect any problems with altitude acclimatisation.

During this trip the group will spend 2 nights at a guesthouse in central Reykjavik. There will also be a night at a hotel in Akureyri and 2 nights at a hotel beside Lake Myvatn. All accommodation is based on twin sharing in en-suite rooms. It may be possible to book single rooms at additional cost. Additional hotel nights in Reykjavik can also be booked. For hotel prices and single supplement costs please refer to the dates and prices page of the trip on our website. Hotels are subject to availability and prices may vary.

View the gallery below for images of the style of accommodation used

Dinners are eaten either at a restaurant of your choice in Reykjavik (2 nights) or at our hotels in Akureyri (1 night) and at Myvatn (2 nights). Where KE is providing the food (at Akureyri and at Myvatn, a 2-course meal, main course and dessert is served, followed by tea or coffee. Local specialities predominate, including excellent sea-fish or local Arctic char, as well as Icelandic lamb. Breakfasts are ‘continental’ with juice and tea and coffee, as well as cereals, bread, jam, sliced cheese and ham. At breakfast, snack items and sandwich materials will be made available so that group members can make up their own packed lunches. On Days 3 and 4, you will carry your packed lunch. During the day, the guide will carry hot water, teabags, coffee, and some snack items such as biscuits.

Clients will pay for their meals (other than breakfasts) whilst in Reykjavik. Outside of Reykjavik all meals are included. In practice, this means you will pay directly for your dinner in Reykjavik on Day 1 (unless you arrive late) and on Day 7. You can expect to pay £30 for each dinner in Reykjavik.

Clients will pay for their own meals (other than breakfasts) whilst in Reykjavik. You should allow £50 to £70 to comfortably cover the 2 dinners which you will need to buy whilst in Reykjavik on Day 1 and Day 5. Approximately £150 (or the equivalent in US dollars, euros etc.) should be allowed for miscellaneous expenses, including these meals and the cost (approx. £20) of a potential second visit to the Nature Baths on Day 4 of the itinerary. If you are proposing to buy expensive souvenirs or to spend time in the bar (bar facilities are available at the hotels in Akureyri and at Myvatn) you should budget accordingly. We recommend that you carry your travel money in the form of currency rather than travellers cheques, since you will exchange the majority of this on the day of your arrival in Reykjavik. Credit cards can be used in most places and there are ATM's in Reykjavik and in Akureyri. The Icelandic unit of currency is the Krona (plural. Kronur).

An experienced English-speaking Icelandic guide will lead the trip and there will also be a support vehicle and driver from Day 2 to Day 5.

Your baggage will be carried in the support vehicle. There is no weight restriction other than that imposed by your international carrier. However, we do ask you to restrict your luggage to one main bag and a daysack small enough to travel with as hand baggage. We recognise that for some of our holidays and for some of our travellers, the KE Trek Bag (see below) may not provide the best solution when packing for your trip. A bag with fitted wheels or a holdall with more than one compartment and more than one access zip can, in some circumstances, be more appropriate. Although it can be useful for our tour leaders when all members of the group have similar, identifying baggage, we have no problem if you choose to use an alternative bag.

KE Trek Bag / Free Gift

All KE clients will receive a FREE KE trek bag.  These have been specially made to stand up to the rigours of adventure travel.  Your KE bag will be posted to you when your trip is guaranteed to run or on receipt of your booking if the trip is already guaranteed.  If you have travelled with us before and already have a KE trek bag you can select an alternative free gift in the booking process.

A passport with 3 months remaining validity is required. Passport holders from the UK, USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, or any EU countries do not require a visa. Other nationalities should check with the respective consulate in their own country.

Whilst we keep our information up to date, you should be advised that visa requirements can change. It is recommended that you contact the relevant commission in case of recent amendments.

The following checklist should help you with your packing. As a general rule, you should always try to keep the weight of your equipment to a minimum.

  • You must bring the following items:
  • Approach shoes / trainers (to travel in and for wearing in the hotels)
  • Warm and waterproof walking boots
  • Gaiters
  • Thin inner and thick outer technical socks
  • Long johns (thermal underwear)
  • Casual trousers / pants for travel and evening wear
  • Casual shirt and/or T-shirts for evening wear
  • Trekking trousers / pants
  • Waterproof overtrousers / rainpants
  • Baselayer shirts
  • Thin fleece jacket or jumper/sweater
  • Heavier weight fleece jacket or warm jumper/sweater
  • Warm jacket (down)
  • Waterproof jacket
  • Warm hat
  • Lightweight balaclava or facemask
  • Eyewear- ski goggles and glacier sunglasses
  • Lightweight thermal gloves
  • Windproof and waterproof mittens
  • Daypack c.30 litres capacity
  • Washbag and toiletries
  • Water bottle
  • 1 litre Thermos Flask
  • Head-torch / head-lamp with spare bulb and batteries
  • Basic First Aid Kit
  • Sun protection (including total bloc for lips, nose etc.)
  • Small towel
  • Antibacterial hand wash
  • These items are optional:

    • Ski or mountaineering salopettes
    • Swimwear (for the hot springs)
    • Extra pair of warm mittens
    • Camera, memory cards, batteries
    • Repair kit – (eg. needle, thread, duct tape)

    Snowshoe Equipment:

    • Snowshoes (provided locally)
    • Trekking poles with snow baskets (provided locally)

    We recommend you check if you require an adaptor for your electrical items at:

    Know before you go

    As a reputable tour operator, KE supports the British Foreign & Commonwealth Offices ‘Know before you go’ campaign to enable British citizens to prepare for their journeys overseas, and we recommend that all KE travellers take a look at the FCO Travel Advice for their chosen destination on the official FCO website: North Americans can also check out the U.S. Department of State website: for essential travel advice and tips.

    KE treat the safety and security of all clients as the most important aspect of any trip we organise. We would not run any trip that we did not consider reasonably safe.  Should the FCO advise against travel for any reason, we will contact everyone booked to travel to discuss the situation.  We receive regular updates direct from the FCO and are in constant touch with our contacts on the ground.  If you have any questions about government travel advice, please call our office.

    It makes a lot of sense to spend some time before coming on an active holiday getting some additional exercise. The fitter you are, after all, the more enjoyable you will find the experience. Walking in hilly country is the best preparation for this trip, whilst a regular exercise regime (jogging, swimming etc.) is good for developing cardio-vascular fitness.

    The winter season in northern Iceland extends from December through to March. In early December, the day is quite short, with the sun rising at 1110 and setting at 1510. By mid March, however, there is lots of daylight (the sun rises at 0730 and sets at 1900 approx.). The ambient daytime temperatures that we can expect to encounter are low – generally around freezing or a little below - although it feels warmer as the air is so dry. Night time temperatures in February and March can be as low as minus 15 degrees centigrade. Long, sunny days are quite usual in this season, although it is also possible that we might encounter short-lived snow storms and temperatures well below freezing.

    The Rough Guide to Iceland. Lonely Planet. Iceland, Greenland and the Faroes. The Insight Guide to Iceland. Iceland. Photo Book. Colin Baxter.

    Mal Og Menning. Iceland North East (Nordausturland). 1:300,000 Scale

    The Icelandic maps published by Mal og Menning are good. There are several series, the best of which is at 1:100,000 scale.

    Recent Reviews & Blog Posts