22 Aug Happy Campers Iceland Road Trip – Part 3: Our Itinerary Day 6-10
The first five days of our Happy Campers road trip around Iceland saw us making our way through the Westfjords and up into the northern part of the island. While there were a few long driving days, we still packed in quite a few adventures, my favorites being the hot pots, seeing puffins and whale watching. For the last five days of our camper van road trip, we continued making our way clockwise around the Ring Road. Here’s the remainder of our Happy Campers adventures!
We ended day five in Húsavík and started our sixth morning out by heading towards the Myvatn Nature Baths. However, before we made it there, we made a quick stop at the nearby Grjótagjá Cave. This cave has a natural geothermal spring inside of it, so we just had to check it out. Signs at the site warned that swimming wasn’t allowed, so instead we climbed around inside and took a few photos. Oh, and we spent quite a bit of time battling the bugs, as well. The tiny little bugs were swarming us as soon as we stepped outside of the van, and they were relentless! Thankfully, they didn’t go inside the cave, so we only had to deal with them outside…and when they snuck into our camper van.
Next up, we drove the short distance to the Myvatn Nature Baths—we had been to the Blue Lagoon on our first trip to Iceland, so we were excited to check out another nature bath this time around. The Myvatn Nature Baths opened in 2004, and the steamy blue water and modern facilities are spectacular. We loved relaxing in the lagoon and gazing out at the landscape surrounding us.
Once we turned into prunes, we set our sights on Krafla to hike around the Viti Crater area. The crater was formed in the 1700’s during an eruption of the Krafla volcano. Now, the crater has a green lake that is around 300 meters. I’m always amazed at the geothermal landscapes in Iceland, and this area was no exception.
The rest of our day was spent driving to the southern coast of Iceland. Unfortunately, due to time, we bypassed the eastern coast and set up camp for the night at the Hornafjordur campground in Höfn.
Day’s driving distance: 404 km / 251 miles
Campsite Location: Hornafjordur Campground
Campsite Fee: 1,500 ISK per person
Campsite Amenities: Toilets, showers (for a fee), kitchen facilities, washing machine (for a fee), electricity (for a fee)
To kick off the morning, we drove over to Stokksnes peninsula to do a little exploring. The Viking Café owns the property in this area, so there was a small fee to access the land. Once we arrived, our first stop was the black sand beach. I spent most of my time there relaxing in the sun, writing and taking photos. The landscape was so inspiring and we saw only a couple other people the entire time we were on the beach.
The other area to explore at the Viking Café was an old Viking village. Apparently, from what I could gather, the village was actually a movie set that was built for a movie a few years ago. They told us that the budget was cut for the movie, so the set hasn’t been used in several years but filming was supposed to resume again next year. I’m not sure what the entire story was, but either way, it was interesting to see. The village was set in a remote field, and even though it was in rough shape, I couldn’t help but imagine a movie crew working their magic.
For lunch, we decided to return to a restaurant we had all visited last time we were in Iceland—the restaurant, Kaffi Hornid was in Höfn just down the road from the campground. I ordered the lobster soup, and Micah had a burger; both fantastic choices.
After lunch, we drove over to the Glacier Lagoon and spent more time doing what we love to do most: taking photos. We watched one of the giant glaciers break off and thunder into the water—it was amazing to see the power of the ice as it fell.
We also walked across the street to the beach near the lagoon. We loved getting a close up look at the glacial ice, and before heading on our way to the next campsite, we spent over an hour marveling at all the washed up ice.
Our campsite for the night was at Skaftafell National Park, not far from where we departed for our glacier hike and ice climb experience on our last trip.
Day’s driving distance: 136 km / 84 miles
Campsite Location: Skaftafell Campground
Campsite Fee: 1,500 ISK
Campsite Amenities: Toilets, showers (for a fee), dishwashing facilities
We woke up in Skaftafell National Park on the eighth day of our road trip, and our intentions were to start the day with a long hike.
We were planning on hiking the eight mile loop trail, but unfortunately we found out that a portion of the trail was closed. Instead, we made our way to the waterfall, Svartifoss, and to a lookout point that offered fantastic views over a glacier.
After returning to our campsite and freshening up with a shower, we continued our drive along the south coast. Fjadrárgljúfur Canyon was our next stop, and we hiked along the canyon edge as far as the trail would allow. It was mesmerizing and a bit terrifying to see the giant drop offs into the canyon and river below, but the scenery and landscape was one of my favorite throughout the entire trip.
For dinner, we stopped at Halldorskaff in Vik where Micah and I shared the breadsticks and a giantess pizza, which was basically a meat lovers pizza. The restaurant was cozy and almost felt like a little house—we all agreed it was a good choice.
Once we were done with dinner, we drove to upper Dyrhólaey for gorgeous views of the sun and landscape below. I could have spent all night on these cliffs if it weren’t for the insane wind that we encountered—it felt as though we were about to get blown right over the edge!
The 24 hour sun really plays tricks on your mind, and before we even realized it, the night was quickly fading away. Our campsite for the night was at Skogafoss, one of the huge waterfalls along the south coast of Iceland.
Day’s driving distance: 173 km / 107 miles
Campsite Location: Skógar Camping Ground
Campsite Fee: 1,200 ISK per person
Campsite Amenities: Toilets, showers (for a fee)
A couple of us walked the short distance to the Skogafoss waterfall in the morning before making our way back towards Vik. On the way to Vik, we stopped at Lower Dyrhólaey to see a different side of the cliffs than we saw the night before.
When we were in Vik we stopped at the Icewears Store where they make wool products and sell souvenirs. I found a wool puffin sweater there that I fell in love with. It was a silly sweater, and at around $100, I couldn’t justify the purchase, but let me tell you—it was pretty spectacular!
We also stopped at the Sólheimajökull glacier to check out the views, and while I always enjoy seeing glaciers, the area was a tad too crowded for me. Nonetheless, it was still really pretty.
Even though it was still fairly early in the day, we made our way to our next campground, which was by Seljalandsfoss. The rest of the afternoon and evening was spent just enjoying camper van life. We stretched our legs, relaxed and played card games.
Seljalandsfoss, the waterfall you can walk behind, is one of the most popular waterfalls in Iceland, and the crowds at the waterfall all evening definitely showed its popularity. There was a steady stream of visitors at the waterfall all evening, so we waited until the crowds died down a bit to walk over Well, the crowds didn’t really die down, but they did get a little more sparse around midnight. Before heading over to Seljalandsfoss, we walked to a more hidden waterfall nearby called Gljúfrabúi. The only way to access this waterfall was to hop along a few stones in the river and make your way back inside of a cliff.
We weren’t sure what to expect when we arrived, but we were absolutely blown away with what we found. The waterfall inside towered above us and it felt as though we had just stepped into a magical world of our own. There was hardly anyone else at the waterfall when we were there, and we couldn’t help but squeal with delight at the amazing sight in front of us. We also climbed up along the outside of the cliff, which provided even more amazing views of the waterfall from above.
After Gljúfrabúi, we finally made our way to Seljalandsfoss, and I have to say we couldn’t have picked a better time. The lighting was stunning, and when we were standing behind the waterfall, I couldn’t believe the gorgeous scene in front of us. It was one of the best views I’ve ever seen in my life—the lighting and landscape were absolutely perfect. We definitely went to bed with smiles glued to our faces that evening!
Day’s driving distance: 29 km / 18 miles
Campsite Location: Hamragarðar Campground
Campsite Fee: 1,300 ISK per person
Campsite Amenities: Toilets, showers (for a fee), kitchen facilities, washing machine (for a fee)
To finish up our Happy Campers road trip, we spent the last day in Reykjavik. Evan, Hilary, Micah and I all met up with Inga from Tiny Iceland. We met Inga on our first visit to Iceland several years ago. Evan and Hilary also know Inga, so it only felt appropriate to have a reunion with her before going our separate ways.
The five of us spent the afternoon walking around Reykjavik and Inga treated us to hot dogs at the Bæjarins Beztu Pylsur and drinks on the sunny patio at the English Pub. A stop at Brauð & Co bakery for fresh cinnamon buns was also in order.
Then later that evening, we all made our way to KOL Restaurant for a delicious dinner. We decided to try the multi course tasting menu, and wow, was it delicious! Some of the dishes we tried were brisket, salmon ceviche, perch, beef and potatoes, a huge plate of desserts, and more. The evening was filled with amazing friends, great conversation and fantastic food—what a way to end the trip!
Day’s driving distance: 121 km / 75 miles
Campsite Location: Inga’s place so we could catch up a bit more!
Campsite Fee: Free
Campsite Amenities: Comfy apartment digs
Technically, we returned the van on day 11, but we just dropped off the van in the morning and made our way to the airport. Evan and Hilary had an early flight home and Micah and I picked up a rental car for six more days of exploring.
We had such a fantastic time making our way around Iceland with Happy Campers–we loved the flexibility our camper van offered us. Plus, we were surprised how roomy and spacious the van felt even after 10 days. Renting a Happy Camper is definitely a great option for road tripping around Iceland!
Stay tuned to learn even more about our adventures in our Happy Campers camper van:
Happy Campers Iceland Road Trip – Part 1: Camper Van Tour
Happy Campers Iceland Road Trip – Part 2: Our Itinerary Day 1-5
Happy Campers Iceland Road Trip – Part 3: Our Itinerary Day 6-10
Happy Campers Iceland Road Trip – Part 4: Cooking on the Road
Happy Campers Iceland Road Trip – Part 5: What to Pack for a Camper Van Road Trip
Happy Campers Iceland Road Trip – Part 6: Logistics, Expenses and FAQ’s
Special thanks to Happy Campers for providing us with a complimentary rental. As always, all opinions are our own.