Absorb the Silver Circle Saga Geopark | Private Tour
Available: All year
Duration: Approx. 10hrs, depending on your time spent at each stop and the duration of any activity added.
Pick-up: From your hotel/accommodation within the Reykjavik Capital Area.
Extra bookable activities: Choose during the check-out process.
- Hvalfjarðargöng tunnel
- Borgarnes town
- Hvítárbrú bridge
- Deildartunguhver hot spring
- Reykholt village
- Hraunfossar cascading waterfalls
- Barnafoss waterfall
- Húsafell woodland oasis
- Grábrókargígar volcanic craters
- Glanni waterfall
- Paradísarlaut hollow
The Borgarfjörður area is rich in Icelandic medieval heritage and has a magnificent diversity of varied geology that is still shaping the area. Moss-grown lava fields, lava fortresses, and hills of birch trees are what make it unique. To get to the Borgarfjörður Saga Geopark, still awaiting approval from UNESCO European Geoparks to become a member of its network, we head to the Hvalfjörður fjord into the Hvalfjarðargöng underground road tunnel, the first underwater tunnel in Iceland which is among the longest underwater road tunnels in the world. Before driving to the remote rural districts of Borgarfjörður, we'll drive over Borgarfjarðarbrú bridge, the second-longest bridge in Iceland, and make a stop in the Borgarnes town for refreshments and restrooms, and stretch our legs after the drive before heading to Borgarfjörður. Moving on, you'll pass beautiful farmsteads which from spring till fall will have a lot of Icelandic sheep and their lambs grazing the fields. The single-lane Hvítárbrú bridge used to connect the northern and southern parts of Iceland before Borgarfjarðarbrú superseded it. It's a beautiful drive to an even more beautiful area of birch and lava fields.
The first stop of the Silver Circle is Deildartunguhver hot spring, which has the highest flow rate in hot springs in Europe. It is used for central heating to heat buildings in the area, with 180 liters of water at 97°C flowing each second. Next, we'll head to Reykholt village, where the greatest literature of Iceland was written by Snorri Sturluson, who lived there in the 13th century and wrote the Icelandic Sagas. He is also believed to have written Heimskringla and the Icelandic Edda - the inspirations to J.R.R. Tolkien for his worlds of the Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit. In Reykholt, Snorri used to bathe in Snorralaug, a hot spring pool built in AD 960 that is the oldest of its kind in Iceland, and he frequently bathed in. Iceland is renowned for being a nation of books and sagas and around 10% of the nation has published a book in their lifetime.
Before visiting Húsafell, we'll stop by two neighboring waterfalls, the cascading Hraunfossar and Barnafoss. Hraunfossar is formed by a series of streams in close vicinity to each other, streaming out of a kilometer stretch across the Grábrókarhraun lava field. Barnafoss races down a narrow valley, its name coming from the sad story of two young brothers who drowned in it, while trying to cross the river over a stone bridge that their mother is believed to have had demolished after. Several viewing platforms offer a great view over Hraunfossar and its surroundings, and a new bridge allows you to walk towards Barnafoss to enjoy its beauty. The historic farm and church estate Húsafell is the next stop. This birch tree-covered lava area is a beautiful oasis, surrounded by mountains and the glaciers Langjökull, Eiríksjökull, Þórisjökull, and Ok jökull, which isn't a glacier anymore since it was deemed the first dead glacier in Iceland in 2019. Ok is the first of the Icelandic glaciers to melt to the point of not being up to the standard of being considered a glacier. Húsafell is completely self-sustainable and a popular summer house area.
Now for even more breathtaking landscapes, your private guide will head to the Grábrókargígar volcanic craters. This scoria cone row belongs to a volcanic system that stretches to the Snæfellsnes peninsula. A footpath leads up to the top of the biggest crater Stóra-Grábrók, for a view over the Grábrókarhraun lava field which flowed from these craters 2,000-3,000 years ago. A short drive away is the last stop of the day; the waterfall Glanni and Paradísarlaut hollow. This small but beautiful waterfall has three side-by-side drops with multiple tiers and its water froths when hitting the rocks down the stream. A walking path leads to Paradísarlaut, a secluded oasis in the middle of the Grábrókarhraun lava field, with a dark green-blueish colored pond in what looks like a lava cup.
When booking this tour, you can choose from our standard tour (for shorter activities to add) or our extended tour (for longer activities to add). The following are the extra bookable activities available to add to your booking during the check-out process (please only add one activity to your booking):
Available to add to the standard tour:
- Háafell Goat Farm visit - The Icelandic Goat Centre (available all year)
- Horseback riding or stable visiting at Sturlureykir Horse Farm (available all year)
- Víðgelmir Lava Tube (available all year)
Available to add to the extended tour:
- Húsafell Giljaböð Canyon Baths (available all year)
- Snowmobile to Into the Glacier Ice Tunnel in Langjökull (available only Jun 1 - Sep 15)
- Into the Glacier Ice Tunnel in Langjökull (available all year)
- Krauma baths (available all year)
- Hvammsvík Natural Hot Springs (available all year)
- Parking fees
- Pickup & drop-off within the Reykjavik Capital Area
- Private transport in an air-conditioned vehicle
- Knowledgeable & experienced English-speaking driver-guide
What's not included
- Food & drinks (your private driver-guide can recommend stops for lunch and refreshments during the tour)
- Extra bookable activities (can be added in the check-out process)
- Entry or admission fees
- Tip or gratuity
What do I need to bring
- Please respect nature - do not throw out trash or walk on any moss.
- For environmental responsibility purposes, you do not need to print out your e-ticket.
- Your private driver-guide can always recommend different restaurants in the area and make stops on the way so you can purchase food/snacks/drinks, but you are also welcome to bring a packed lunch.
- The total duration of this tour is dependent on whether extra bookable activities are added to the booking during checkout.
- Road conditions or adverse weather could make some stops inaccessible during winter, so the itinerary may need to be altered if necessary.
- Dress according to the weather by wearing warm and wind-/waterproof clothing in layers and bring gloves and a hat.
- Wear suitable footwear, preferably waterproof with a good grip, in case of slippery conditions due to ice, rain, or gravel paths.
- We may occasionally need to alter the tour itinerary due to unpredictable weather and road conditions in Iceland, especially during winter. The weather in Iceland can be quite unpredictable.