Golden Circle Self Drive Tour In One Winter Day

For most tourists who come to Iceland, Golden circles are a favorite destination. Indeed, this is an interesting way to enjoy the beauty of nature. Even if you don't have a lot of time here. Well, on this good occasion, we want to give you a brief guide to golden circle self-drive tour by our rental car. But this is winter. So be prepared to see snow and ice everywhere. This is a short and pleasant one-day road trip.

An important tip, for you, is to use comfortable clothing and protect your body from cold air. The weather conditions during this season can change quickly. The lowest temperature can be under zero point! So, it is very important to keep your body warm. As an example you can use:

  • Wool base layer
  • Fleece mid layer 
  • Down mid layer
  • Wind/waterproof outer layer
You can use it all, and you will be fine. But if you have other experiences with extremely cold weather, maybe you have your own clothing choices.

Self-drive tour from Reykjavik

Because the daytime is quite short, then you are expected to have time discipline so that you can visit some of the main tourist spots in the Golden Circle.

The following is tourist spots (and estimation of time schedule) that you can visit during this trip:

  • Thingvellir at 10.30 AM
  • Geyser at 13.00 PM
  • Gullfoss at 14.00 PM
  • Kerid at 15.30 PM
  • Return to Reykjavik

You can start your trip from Reykjavik around 9 or 10 am. If there is no obstacle, you will arrive at Thingvellir half an hour later. But it also depends on where you stay.

Of course, the above schedule is not absolute, you can adjust it to your needs. We only try to help you.

Thingvellir Area

Thingvellir National Park can be your first destination. As the oldest parliamentary site in the world, this area has an important history when the Atlantic parliament was formed here in 1930. Another thing that makes it extraordinary is its geological features. Because in this area the American and Eurasian tectonic plates meet.

golden circle self drive tour
Thingvellir in winter
The Thingvellir area is not difficult to explore.

Thingvellir signpost make explores easier
Road sign


To be clearer, you can see tectonic plates from the other side of the river. The tectonic plate seemed to line up neatly. Wow, this is amazing. You have to see it right here.

Beautiful landscape of Thingvellir national park
Thingvellir fantastic scene
You can follow the wooden path to continue to enjoy the beauty of Thingvellir.
wood path thingvellir park winter snow
Wooden path Thingvellir
Do you want to give souvenirs to your friends or family? Don't worry, because in this area there is also a visitor center. They sell various merchandise. Also here you can find the general overview of the area.

Geyser

Ok, then you can continue the trip to the geyser. This is a popular place where travelers can see bursts of geysers and many hot springs.

Driving to Geyser from Thingvellir
Road trip from Thingvellir to Geyser
 But during the winter the road may have limited visibility, so be careful when driving.

geyser iceland golden circle
Geyser
But, unfortunately, because at this time the geysers no longer have regular spots. So what you can do is stop your sight and see spouts that occur every five or ten minutes. You can join with other tourists, together when taking pictures or videos.

geyser hot water
Geyser hot water
You can also visit the geyser center here. This place provides various purposes and needs, such as:

  • Food court
  • Souvenirs
  • Clothing stores

So you can see the greatness of the geyser then shop souvenir or go to the cafe. Isn't this fun?

geyser center Iceland
Geyser center
Gullfoss Waterfall

Your next goal is to go to Gullfoss. You have to come here. Because, besides this third destination from the list, this waterfall is the main tourist spot in Golden circles.

Gullfoss waterfall winter
Gullfoss in a winter season
Gullfoss is the most famous waterfall in Iceland. Very beautiful but also has a very powerful water flow.

Gulfoss waterfall in winter season
Gulfoss waterfall
The water itself comes from the Hvítá (White) river. Meanwhile, the river's water comes from the second largest glacier in Iceland, Langjökull. Water that fell 32 meters in two extraordinary stages. Continue to flow to a steep canyon with an extreme height of 70 meters. If you come on a sunny day, you can see a nice rainbow painted beautifully above the waterfall.

Kerid Crater

The last tourist attractions that you need to visit on this self-drive tour, besides the three places above are Kerid.

Many believe that the Kerid crater was formed about three thousand years ago. According to the geological masters, it is a result of the end of the volcanic eruption. The eruption caused the destruction of the magma chamber. Based on the research it happened about six thousand years ago.

iceland kerid crater in winter day
Kerid Crater
When looking at the crater from above, you will feel amazed. Of course, your trip to visit the main tourist spots in Golden Circle will be a valuable experience in your life.


Back to Reykjavik

You can get back to Reykjavik in the evening with all the valuable experiences you find. Not only that, in all the way from Kerid to Reykjavik you will see the impressive scenery. There is no time wasted on your road trip. Thereby, you can prepare the next plan to explore other parts of Iceland that is no less stunning than the Golden Circle.

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