Traveling from Iceland's famous Golden Circle to the wildly scenic South Coast is an endeavor best done by self-driving to maximize your time spent exploring. Arranging for a private driver is an option as well, however, more expensive. The 225-mile (362 km) journey from Geysir to Jökulsárlón is full of stunning landscapes and opportunities for outdoor pursuits.
After taking in the sights of Thingvellir National Park, Geysir geothermal area, and the impressive Gullfoss waterfall, you may want to venture a bit off the tourist track before adventuring on the South Coast. This article has ideas for experiencing the Golden Circle like a local.
Duration: 10-12 hours
Depending on which attraction you're departing from on the Golden Circle route, a direct drive to Jökulsárlón, the end of the south coast region, it would take approximately five hours. However, it's wise to allow for plenty of extra time to explore as this is one of the most scenic drives in the country.
There is an option to take either Route 35 south to the Ring Road (Route 1), or Route 30 south to the Ring Road (Route 1). They both take about the same time, however, the first option passes by Kerid Crater, and the second option passes by the natural hot spring, Hrunalaug.
For a more detailed look at some of the major attractions on this route, check out the Best of Iceland's South Coast & Golden Circle. Taking some of the ideas from this itinerary will bring you up close and personal with the well-known waterfalls, Seljalandsfoss and Skogafoss, marveling at Dyrholaey, and stepping on Reynisfjara black sand beach, (in addition to the Golden Circle).
By Group or Private Transfer
Duration: 8-10 hours
It would be possible to hire a driver and make the journey on a private tour within a full day if based near one of the Golden Circle highlights, but spreading it out over two days would be a little more relaxed for optimal enjoyment. Since most group tours depart from the airport in Keflavik, or downtown in Reykjavik, it wouldn't be possible to start and end in the Golden Circle.