Across Iceland on the Highland Routes Kjölur and Sprengisandur

The 4x4 Self-Drive Tour "Across Iceland on the Highland routes Kjölur and Sprengisandur" takes you through the interior, right across Iceland, to

Across Iceland on the Highland Routes Kjölur and Sprengisandur

The 4x4 Self-Drive Tour "Across Iceland on the Highland routes Kjölur and Sprengisandur" takes you through the interior, right across Iceland, to destinations that cannot be reached by a normal car.

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Duration: 8 days / 7 nightsMap - Across Iceland on Highland Routes Kjölur and Sprengisandur
Travel Season: Beginning of July -Middle of September
Highlights:  Highland routes Kjölur and Sprengisandur. National Park Þingvellir. Kerlingarfjöll and Landmannalaugar Rhyolit areas. Eldgjá Canyon. Geysers. Sulphur Mud Springs in Krísuvík. Gullfoss, Goðafoss and Aldeyjarfoss Waterfalls.
- 7 nights incl. breakfast in pre-booked accommodations.
- 7 days 4WD rental car of your choice.
- Unlimited driving, CDW and two drivers.
- Pick-up/drop-off at the International Airport in Keflavík.
- Iceland Road Guide.
- Road Map 1:500 000.
- Detailed and personalised route description.
- Service telephone number while traveling in Iceland.
- VAT and lodging tax.

Esja Travel supports - the Icelandic Environment Association Landvernd with a EUR 5 donation for every traveller booked on a package tour. 

Not included: International flight or ferry, fuel, extra driver (€ 29 per driver/rental), meals besides breakfast, SCDW (add 7 x € 19), road toll (Hvalfjörður Tunnel), entrance fees and activities.

Consider adding day tours and excursions to your self-drive itinerary, see tours by our specially selected partners.

Online Booking

Day 1:   Arrival

Upon arrival at Keflavík International Airport, you pick up your pre-booked rental car. If you arrive in the morning or afternoon, you might want to stop by at the Blue Lagoon on your way into the city of Reykjavík.
If arriving late, you will find your accommodation near the airport.

Day 2:   National Park Þingvellir, Geysers, Gullfoss Waterfall & Geothermal Activity in Kerlingarfjöll

Leave the city in the morning for the UNESCO World Heritage Site and national park Þingvellir. Here you can enjoy a walk in the Almannagjá canyon and explore the old parliament site.
From here, your journey takes you through the village of Laugarvatn to the Geysir geothermal area, where you willl see the very active geyser Strokkur erupting spectacularly every five minutes or so.
Drive further to the impressive Gullfoss waterfall before you start your trip over the interior highland route of Kjölur.   Roughly a third of the way over Kjölur, you take a right turn towards the highland center of Kerlingarfjöll, a marvelous hiking area with geothermal activity.

Day 3:   Kjölur Highland Route with Hveravellir 

Back on the Kjölur route, you drive through the desolate landscape between the glaciers of Langjökull and Hofsjökull until you reach Hveravellir. Here you can take a dip in a warm natural pool or go on a hike.
You can choose between two routes to the Skagafjörður area.  Either follow the Kjölur route until you come to the ring road, or drive through the valleys of Haukadalur and Mælifellsdalur. The second route is somewhat slower, so you need to allow more time for it than the first.
You can visit the folk museum in Glaumbær before heading onwards over the high plateau of Öxnadalsheiði and to Akureyri.

Day 4:   Akureyri & Lake Mývatn

See the sights around Akureyri in the morning before continuing your journey over the Vaðlaheiði plateau to the Goðafoss waterfall. Afterwards you should explore Lake Mývatn and its surroundings, go for a walk along the pseudo craters of Skútustaðir and in the lava field of Dimmuborgir. We also recommend stopping to see the boiling hot mud springs of Námaskarð.
Should you be interested in a boat trip, you can drive to Húsavík and go on a whale watching tour from the harbour.

Day 5:   Sprengisandur Highland Route

Drive through the Bárðardalur valley to the picturesque Aldeyjarfoss waterfall, surrounded by majestic basalt columns. From here you carry on towards the highlands and across the desolate desert of Sprengisandur towards the south.  
You will have to cross several rivers on the way (information on driving in Iceland comes with the more detailed descriptions). Today’s final destination is the Hrauneyjar highland center.

Day 6:   Rhyolite Area of Landmannalaugar & Nature Reserve Fjallabak

Today‘s first destination is the colourful rhyolite mountains of Landmannalaugar, where you can bathe in the warm natural pool and go on a hike.
Drive on over the highland route of Fjallabak and stop in the Eldgjá canyon before reaching the south coast through the great lava field of Eldhraun. Your accommodation lies on the south coast near the village of Vík.

Day 7:   Fishing Villages & Reykjanes Peninsula

Drive along the south coast through the town of Selfoss, then past the fishing villages of Stokkseyri, Eyrarbakki and Þorlákshöfn en route to the Reykjanes peninsula. On the way you might want to stop to see the waterfalls Skógafoss and Seljalandsfoss.
In Krísuvík you come across hot mud springs and on the coast of Selatangar you can see the ancient ruins of fishermen‘s dwellings. Either you drive over Sveifluháls or via the fishing village of Grindavík, with the option of stopping at the Blue Lagoon, to Reykjavík.

Day 8:   Departure

The time of departure determines your plan for the day. If you leave in the late afternoon or the evening you will have time to explore Reykjavík and stop by at the Blue Lagoon on your way to the airport.
If your flight leaves in the early morning you‘ll have to leave Reykjavík early for the airport, where you return your rental car before departure.

You can also add a few days, switch from a normal rental car to a 4WD and head to the highlands of Iceland.
Information available upon request


About the accommodation categories:

Rooms with shared facilities are booked in guesthouses, higher class hostels,l Bed and Breakfasts as well as in farm-guesthouses. In many cases the rooms do have a wash basin.

Rooms with private facilities are booked in middle class hotels, country hotels, higher class guesthouses or farm-guesthouses.

Many of the accommodations do offer their guests access to open-air jacuzzis.



CDW (Collission Damage Waiver), unlimited mileage as well as pick up and drop off at the Keflavík International Airport are included in our package prices.  

Self risk for the categories A, B, C, D and N is € 1.325 and for the categories FG, H, I, J and K € 2.415
Further information about the CDW is availiable on request.

The driver must be at least 20 years old and must have held a drivering licence for at least one year. A valid driving licence must be presented when picking up the rental car.
Please note that a credit card must be presented when you sign your rental car lease agreement (MasterCard, Visa oder Diners).

Liability Insurance and passenger Accident Insurance are included in all packages.

Information about driving in the interior come with your travel documents.



Additional drivers € 29 per rental (two drivers are included in the package prices).

SCDW incl. Gravel Protection - Surcharge for categories A, B, C, D and M € 15 per day – Self risk € 350/ Surcharge for categories M FG, H, I, J and K € 19 per day – Self risk € 650Self risk in case of broken windows and lights (CDW and SCDW) € 170 or € 280 depending on car category.

SADW (Sand- and Ash Damage Waiver) € 15 per day 
Baby- and infant seats € 7 per day or max. € 48 per rental.
GPS Navigation System € 12 per day – Self risk for lost or damaged item € 500
One Way Fee for pick up/drop of at Keflavík International Airport € 31 (included in package prices).
One Way Fee for other rental locations outside Reykjavík for categories A, B, C, N and M € 91 and for categories G, H, I, J and K € 151
After hours Pick Up Fee in the Winter Season (19:00-6:00 Uhr) at the Keflavík International Airport € 54
Cancellation fees for rental categories E, H, I, K:
3 weeks or more prior to arrival 50% of the total rental car price.
3-2 weeks prior to arrival 75% of the total rental car price.
Less than a week prior to arrival 90% of the total rental car price.

Ferry M/S Norröna Smyril-LineSail with one of the newest ships in the North Atlantic. From the deck of M/S Norröna you get an incredible view over the horizon - waves, sea and the sky.

The journey gives you a good opportunity to observe birds, and maybe you'll spot a whale or two. Indoors Norröna has much to offer its guests, and especially in terms of gastronomic experiences. Additionally, there are many different activities for you as a passenger aboard.


Seasons Travel by ferry Norröna Smyrilline to Iceland

Schedule travel by ferry to ICeland Smyrilline Norröna

Basic Package Prices Smyrilline Norröna Ferry Denmark to Iceland

Surcharges for cabins berths Smyrilline Norröna



 All information subject to change.


Esja Travel

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