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Journey to the Centre of the Earth

Arnarstapi, Snafellsnes
from £796 7 nights | Year round Exc. flights See price details
  • Departs:
  • Year round


In Jules Verne’s classic sci-fi novel you could descend into Iceland's Snaefellsjokull volcano, meet a few dinosaurs and remerge at the surface through Italy's Stromboli volcano. We can't quite match that adventure. But on this blockbuster self-drive, you’ll still witness the legendary Snaefellsnes Peninsula – and add your very own riveting chapter on the South Coast.


  • Explore the Snaefellsnes Peninsula, gaze on its mighty volcano and hike the rugged coastline between Arnarstapi and Hellnar
  • Drive the South Coast to the spectacular glacial lagoon of Jokulsarlon
  • Walk to Svartifoss waterfall in Vatnajokull National Park
  • Visit the natural wonders of the Golden Circle
  • Embellish your trip with our exclusive digital travel guide - Watch video

Fact not fiction
Professor Otto Lidenbrock missed the point. Instead of attempting a Journey to the Centre of the Earth he should have focused on the natural wonders outside – not inside – Snaefellsjokull. This weeklong self-drive not only loops around the 1,446m-high volcano (which last erupted 1,800 years ago), but it also takes you to the surreal black-pebble beach of Djupalonssandur and the wave-gnawed cliffs and sea arches at Arnarstapi. The Snaefellsnes Peninsula has everything from forbidding cinder plains and troll-like sea stacks to friendly fishing villages and elusive Arctic foxes. You really couldn’t make it up.

The plot thickens...
The second chapter in this self-drive is packed with natural wonders in South Iceland. Another famous volcano (Eyjafjallajokull) is a looming presence as you drive along the South Coast. Iconic waterfalls like Skogafoss pour over ancient sea cliffs, while icebergs drift in the mirror-calm of Jokulsarlon lagoon. And that’s not the end of the story. Driving between the South Coast and Snaefellsnes Peninsula you will also be able to visit the Golden Circle and hike to the mighty Glymur falls.

Contact our Iceland experts now

iDiscover - exclusive to Discover the WorldiDiscover digital guide

If you book any self drive in Iceland with us you will also get free use of our exclusive digital travel guide, iDiscover. Your personalised itinerary will be pre-loaded onto an iPad Air which you will get with your hire car and includes all the information you need for your trip.


Your staff are outstanding in their helpfulness and personal service – I have already recommended you to friends.

Helen Hyde, Journey to the Centre of the Earth,

Itinerary & Accommodation

Day 1: Reykjavik
Fly to Keflavik and collect your rental vehicle. Drive to Reykjavik for an overnight stay, perhaps taking a dip in the world-famous Blue Lagoon en route (at additional cost - pre-booking required).
Day 2: Reykjavik - Skaftafell
Head east over Hellisheidi, past the greenhouse village of Hveragerdi to two of Iceland's best known waterfalls, Seljalandsfoss and Skogafoss. Visit the Skogar Museum or drive to Reynishverfi and stroll along a volcanic sand beach, backed by impressive basalt columns. Cross the eerie, moss-clad lava field Eldhraun, the biggest lava field in Iceland formed in 1783 after the Laki eruption and continue east to Skaftafell. Be sure to take a walk up to the nearby lake of Systravatn, view the delightful waterfall Systrafoss and the eroded basalt columns of Kirkjugolfid. Two nights at Hotel Skaftafell.
Day 3: Skaftafell
Take a hike to either the tip of the Skaftafellsjokull glacier tongue, or Svartifoss, a beautiful waterfall framed by basalt columns. In the afternoon visit the stunning glacial lagoon Jokulsarlon.
Day 4: Skafatfell - Hveragerdi
Make your way back along the south coast past Myrdalsjokull and Dyrholaey with its spectacular rock arch. Visit the Thjorsadalur Valley, including the reconstructed farm at Stong, which dates from the Viking period, and finally Mount Hekla. Spend two nights in Hveragerdi.
Day 5: Golden Circle
A day to explore three of Iceland's best-known natural wonders: the Geysir hot springs area, mighty Gullfoss and, depending on road conditions, Thingvellir National Park for a walk around the ancient assembly site.
Day 6: Hveragerdi - Hvalfjordur
Head north to Borgarfjordur and Hraunfossar and view a waterfall that emerges from under a lava flow to cascade into a glacial river. Visit nearby Reykholt and Iceland's largest hot spring Deildartunguhver. Spend two nights at Icelandair Hotel Hamar (summer).
Day 7: exploring the Snaefellsnes Peninsula
Explore the scenic Snaefellsnes Peninsula, walking among the fantastic coastal formations at Arnarstapi and visit the fjords and fishing villages along its north side. With good weather you may have views of the mystical cone-shaped volcano and Snaefellsjokull icecap.
Day 8: Hvalfjordur - Keflavik
Drive back towards Reykjavik, perhaps taking the coastal road around the magnificent Reykjanes peninsula, before dropping off the vehicle at Keflavik and taking the evening flight home.
  • The weather in Iceland can be unpredictable and therefore can cause substantial delays which can result in the need to re-arrange or extend your holiday itinerary. Whilst we and our contacts in Iceland will do everything possible to minimise any disruption, it is important that you check the details of your travel insurance and allow for some flexibility in your plans.

Accommodation Options

This itinerary is based on the hotels shown below in rooms with private facilities. We offer a wide range of accommodation from farms to self catering cottages, budget hotels to luxury properties, ask our Iceland experts for recommendations.

Hotel Cabin, Reykjavik

  • Grade: Standard
  • Type: Hotel

Superb value for your money, this 252-room hotel is for …

Reykjavik Natura

  • Grade: Standard
  • Type: Hotel

Formerly Hotel Loftleidir, this stylish, 220-room hotel …

Hotel Skaftafell

  • Grade: Standard
  • Type: Hotel

Found only 5km from the Vatnajökull National Park, thes…

Hotel Ork, Hveragerdi

  • Grade: Standard
  • Type: Hotel

Found 45km east of Reykjavik in the 'greenhouse village'…

Icelandair Hotel Hamar

  • Grade: Standard
  • Type: Hotel

Only an hour from Reykjavik, Icelandair Hotel Hamar has …



From glacier hikes to horse riding, river rafting to mountain biking, there are a wide range of optional activities available. These are just a selection of the optional activities you can choose to include on this holiday.

Blue Lagoon

The award-winning Blue Lagoon is one of Iceland’s premier…

Boat Trip on the Jokulsarlon Glacial Lagoon

This popular trip takes you out into the spectacular glacia…

Diving Silfra Day Tour

Possibly one of the most unique dives that guests will ever…

Eyjafjallajokull by Superjeep

This unique superjeep and hiking tour explores the other-wo…

Horse Riding in Snaefellsnes

Enjoy a short ride along the beaches of this spectacular pe…

Horse Riding in the South West

Choose from a range of durations to explore on horseback

Hot Springs and Lava Cave Tour

The tour begins at the famous Hengill Volcano where you wil…

Ice and Fire Sightseeing Flight

A journey by plane, this tour examines Iceland's breathtaki…

Into the Glacier - Ice Cave in Langjokull

Into the Glacier - experience Iceland's spectacular new att…

Kayaking in the South West

Explore the sheltered waters near Stokkseyri on a fun kayak…

Lava Centre

The new Lava Centre offers visitors a full multimedia exper…

Snowmobiling on Langjokull

An exhilarating snowmobile trip on Iceland's second largest…

Solheimajokull Glacier Walk & Ice Climbing

An excursion that takes you out onto the frozen glacial ton…

Superjeep Tour on Vatnajokull Glacier

Explore a glacier by Icelandic superjeep

Prices & Dates

icon aircraftAirfares start from around £100 per person and are quoted separately to the holiday price. When enquiring, our experts are able to provide the best fare possible from your preferred airline / airport.

These are starting prices in £ per person based on 2 sharing rooms with private facilities, unless otherwise stated.

Winter 2017/18

CategoryNov 2017 - Mar 2018Oct 2017 & Apr 2018
D - (IWCD) - Skoda Octavia (4WD) £796 £811
G - (IFNN) - Toyota Rav4 £890 £905
I - (PFBD) - Mitsuishi Pajero £989 £1,004

Summer 2018

B - (CDMN) - VW Golf £1,103 £1,391 £1,252
D - (IWCD) - Skoda Octavia (4WD) £1,179 £1,495 £1,328
G - (IFNN) - Toyota Rav4 £1,250 £1,656 £1,399
I - (PFBD) - Mitsuishi Pajero £1,363 £1,897 £1,512

Winter 2018/19

CategoryNov 2018 - Mar 2019Oct 2018 & Apr 2019
D - (IWCD) - Skoda Octavia (4WD) £848 £880
G - (IFNN) - Toyota Rav4 £975 £1,007
I - (PFBD) - Mitsuishi Pajero £1074 £1,106

Pricing for additional passengers sharing the vehicles is available on request. Please advise if you wish to share accommodation or require additional rooms (triple and single rooms are available at most establishments).

Prices includes accommodation in rooms with private facilities on a breakfast basis based on 2 people sharing; car rental for the agreed period on an unlimited mileage basis (includes semi-comprehensive insurance and no charge for additional driver); use of iDiscover iPad for the duration of the holiday with free WiFi.

Prices excludes flights, travel insurance, fuel, personal expenses, tips and gratuities

Useful Information

Choice of Vehicles

We offer a wide range of rental vehicles for this holiday provided by the local Europcar franchise. Our long-standing relationship with them means that our clients enjoy many exclusive benefits including priority on the newest and best appointed vehicles available on the day.

Alternatively, consider renting a motorhome and use this itinerary as a route outline. You'll have complete flexibility on where you overnight, yet with the support of our excusive digital travel guide, iDiscover.

iDiscover digital guide

If you book any self drive in Iceland with us you will also get free use of our exclusive digital travel guide, iDiscover. Your personalised itinerary will be pre-loaded onto an iPad air which you will get with your hire car and includes all the information you need for your trip.

iceland birdlife arctic tern rth

Tailor Made

If you can't find exactly what you are looking for, let us find it for you.

iDiscover iPad


All Iceland self drive clients will have free use of our exclusive digital travel guide. Your personalised itinerary will be pre-loaded onto an iPad air, which hosts a comprehensive database of places to visit throughout Iceland.

How to book

Book this trip

So that we may send you a personalised quote and confirmation of availability, please click on the link below and complete our Enquiry form. One of our Travel Specialists will then be in touch to complete your booking or answer any further questions you might have.

travel guaranteeWe will always offer the best price available at the time of booking and guarantee no surcharges - see our 100% Guarantee for full details.

View booking conditions

Speak to a specialist: 1-844-584-0668

Book this trip
iceland birdlife arctic tern rth

Tailor Made

If you can't find exactly what you are looking for, let us find it for you.

Our team of Travel Specialists have extensive first-hand knowledge of our destinations and are passionate about travel.

Meet the team

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