“I will be in Iceland to discover this beautiful country. I heard a lot of good things about it. 2 of my friends went to Iceland. One went there for an expedition and the other one to visit the country. Both of them had a wonderful trip and I want to to try it out. I want to go around the Island and mostly stay close from the coast for 1 week.”
Chris McCarty, a local specialist from Iceland, helped this traveler put together a customized itinerary based on 8-Day Ring Road Itinerary: Explore Iceland’s Top Places Along Its Most Famous Road.
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Trip planning highlights
Trip planning conversation
Hi, welcome to kimkim!
I'll help you create a custom trip itinerary for your trip to Iceland. Do you have your flight already or are you still finalizing your dates?
Ok great! If it doesn't ask you a lot of time, I'd like to see a plan trip that makes the circle of Iceland. Do you think that with 1 or 2 more days I could have a good trip to make the circle of it?
On your first day, you will have about 4:40 hours with the sun in the sky, and around 5:20 by the time you leave. That doesn't mean it will be completely dark outside of those times.
okok got it. If I say to you that It is the only time that I go in Iceland, do you think it Is a 'must' to make the circle of Iceland?
I mean is there some really nice places to go on the other side of the island?
Here's an idea of what you can do:
1/7: Land, Hike to Glymur Falls, Stay Borgarnes
1/8: Southern Snaefellsnes Peninsula
1/9: Northern Snaefellsnes, drive to Akureyri
1/10: Akureyri, Godafoss, Lake Myvatn (geothermal and volcanic area)
1/11: Lake Myvatn to Egilsstadir
1/12: East fjords: Egilsstadir to Djúpivogur
1/13: Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon, Skaftafell, Svartifoss Falls
1/14 Vik and south coast: waterfalls, black sand beaches, canyons
1/15 Golden Circle, Reykjavik
1/16 Reykavik Morning, fly out
This will give you a great overview of places, you may have to skip a few things each day, but each day you will still see a lot.
This wouldn't cover the Westfjords area, Husavik (Whale Watching Capital), and some of the interior.
That said, Westfjords is a bit tougher in Winter anyways because some roads are closed and it's one of the darker areas because the sun is behind some of the mountains. And Interior is harder to do with your own rental car anyways due to snow.
You can time some of the driving in the dawn/dusk so that you maximize the daylight hiking and seeing the sights.
If you like this direction, here are the next steps:
1) Based on your feedback (take a look at some of the articles), let me know what sights / activities you are most excited about, and I can concentrate the itinerary more around those
2) Once you like the direction, I can give a quote for the trip which would include car rental (with proper winter tires) and accommodation
3) If you like that, we would ask for a deposit of the kimkim service fee ($250 usd)
4) I will make all arrangements for you and package everything together so that you have a day-by-day guide of where you'll go and all the things to see along the way, along with restaurant recommendations and other optional detours that you may like.
ok great! thanks a lot. how much will it cost at the end?
It depends on the type of accommodation you want. Are you comfortable with guest houses that have shared bathroom facilities?
Ok. Prices are dependent on availability, but a rough estimate would be around $1,200 usd. That is based on a similar trip I just helped someone with that was 8 days, but that person stayed in a few hostel dorms as well, so those nights were less expensive. That price included the rental, accommodation, and service fee (gas and meals were the only things not included)
okok perfect. I looked a bit for the car. I think it would cost around 400$ canadians dollar for 8 days. Do you think it's too much?
I can check a few things. I can make all the arrangements for car and hotel for you if you decide to book the trip with kimkim.
if i take the trip with kimkim, how much will it cost?
Our service fee covers the cost to put together the custom trip plan, make all arrangements, and put together a package with all the information you will need each day about the best things to do and restaurant recommendations.
Are you comfortable with a manual car or do you prefer automatic?
Between me and you, who already discovered this place, is it better for me to plan it on kimkim or by myself? For the cost I mean**
Ok, I found 2 options for car rental:
365 CAN if you pay upfront
440 CAN to pay when you pick up (free cancellation)
Includes collision insurance, winter tires, unlimited miles
If you use kimkim, you won't have to do all the research and planning yourself, so you won't need to look up different places to go, the top things to do at each place and how to budget your time between them, or to spend time looking for the best places to stay and eat on your trip. For many people, the time saved and personalized recommendations is worth the cost of the service fee.
Alright, but if i book up with you, you think it will cost around 1200 USD? ok for the car ill take the first option(upfront)
That 1200 was a guess based on a similar trip. If you liked the 9 day plan I listed above, I can find prices for those places for you to get a better quote.
Oh, one question, what will your age be by the start of the trip? Some rental companies have a restriction or surcharge.
I'll be in Russia from the 26 decembre to the 7 january. I planned to leave the 7 for iceland, but i can leave the 6 if you think it'll make the trip way easier.
Ok, let me re-price the car rental. Most places have an age requirement of 20, but some do not (but they may have a surcharge)
-Hvalnes Nature Reserve
-Fjallsarlon Glacier Lagoon
-Dyrholaey Arch and cliffs
-Crashed DC-3 Plane on Solheimasandur Beach
-Hidden waterfall at Rauofeldsgja gorge
-Dommuborgir lava formations
-Grjotogja Lava Cave and geothermal spring
-Hverarand Mud pits and steam vents
-Krafla/Viti crater hike
-Jarbodin Nature baths
-Dettifoss and Selfoss Waterfalls
Here are the destinations I'd like to discover.
Heimaey Island would be a bit tough because the schedule is pretty packed as it is. and in Winter the road to Dettifoss and Selfoss Waterfalls isn't plowed. But everything else you would pass with the itinerary I sent.
And in my opinion there are many other great things you will visit that arent even on that list.
oh great! I didn't took all of them, but I would like to see all of those. It looks so awesome!
If there's anything that you would change or add in my trip it would be really appreciated!
It's fine for the Island and the waterfalls, no problem.
For the car rental, the cheapest I can find that will rent to someone 19 is about $635 CAN for the 8 days, which already includes the surcharge for younger driver. Almost every other place has a minimum age of 20.
You will see many other waterfalls on the trip as well.
I can look for cheaper accommodations in some place to try to offset it.
Ok perfect! I have a 2200$ CAN budget for the entire trip, if it can help you.
Ok give me a little bit and I'll price it out for you. I'll list a few places where you could save money on cheaper accommodation where I feel the quality is still good, but may be a little less convenient. I'll give you my recommendation for each situation.
I'm really athletic, I love to move. So if there is any places that you think I should see with a hike or something like that, It would be great
Yes, there are a few hikes I would definitely recommend, and I can include all that info in the final package.
that would be perfect!
Ok, here's what I found:
- 9 Nights accommodation (2 nights in dorms, the rest private rooms)
- Rental car for 8 days (including young driver surcharge)
I can reduce the price a bit by switching one more night to a dorm, and for paying one room at the non-refundable rate.
The only activity that you listed which requires an entrance fee are the Jarbodin Nature baths, everything else is free to hike to and explore.
And could actually save a bit more by moving one of the nights from Vik to a smaller town about 50 min before it. It would mean a little bit of a longer drive the next day.
Ok perfect I'll take the dorm and the smaller town 50 mins before Vik
Ok I'll make those changes.
I can make all arrangements in the next couple of hours for you if you like.
Once you add your payment information here I can begin reserving it all.
Can you show me the trip before I pay? Like the places i'll go and where will I sleep?
Hi, I made the updates by removing the extra night.
Since I have been putting in quite some work already, and we’ll put in more work to book everything we ask that you confirm that you would like to book your trip with kimkim by submitting your payment details and agreeing to the kimkim service fee. I can go through all accommodations with you and I will only book accommodations and activities that you agree to.
Alright perfect. I'm going to confirm
I will create a proposal now that will be attached to this conversation
I'd really like to see a confirmation or something that shows me everything will be fine
Yes, I will send confirmations for everything.
You can also take a look at many of our reviews here from other happy customers: https://www.kimkim.com/trip-reviews
Yeah I read a couple of them already,but just want to be sure.
I will make the deposit for the service fee now (that's the proposal I just added to the conversation). I can go through each accommodation with you to make sure you are OK with it, and you will receive all confirmations via email.
That's perfect! thank you very much for understanding! the trip looks really nice too!
I'm glad that you like it
do you know when will the payment for the rest of the trip will be done?
Yes, most accommodations won't charge the card until arrival (or the day before). I will let you know if any of them charge sooner than that.
Ok perfect. Thanks again.
If it's alright with you, I will make all reservations for the hotels as I can cancel them without charge. That way I will secure them for you and if you want any changes we can still cancel and make them.
Some of the places only have 1 room left for the dates.
That's fine with me I let you do what you can do :)
Here are all your confirmations (You should have received emails as well). I will also put this together with more information for things you will do each day, but wanted to send this portion of it now.
Here's the car rental confirmation, with a few things to be aware of:
- Unlimited Free Kilometers Included
- Rental fees are due at pick up.
- Car rental companies require the driver to supply a credit card in his/her name in order to pick up the car.
- Additional restrictions and fees may apply based on driver's age. (online it says 12 Euro/day)
- Additional charges may apply for required insurance, optional items, or additional drivers. These services can be purchased from the rental car company at the time of rental.
I need a little bit more time to but together all the information on the best things to see/do each day, but I can send that in the next day or so.
Wow great! I looked at the confirmations on my gmail account. the places looks great! Thank's a lot Chris! really appreciated!
You're welcome! You're going to have a great trip. I did a very similar loop about 2 months ago and it was amazing.
oh great! Can I communicate with you when I'll be in Iceland?
if I have a question or anything that'd like to know
Our timezones will be a little off, but if you have some questions I would be happy to answer them when I see them. I'll try to provide plenty of details in the packet as well.
All good! thanks!
Chris did an awesome job and answered whenever i had a question!