Hiking Iceland in our 60s

  A couple visited Iceland in September 2017

“See as much a s we can on a limited budget. We don't mind staying in guest houses, b&b's.
We are in our 60's and enjoy hiking and seeing the beautiful country.
Not sure if 2 weeks is too long?
Our time is flexible,
We have yet to decide whether to come via london”


Chris McCarty, a local specialist from Iceland, helped this traveler put together a customized itinerary based on 2-Week Ring Road Self-Drive Itinerary: Highlights of Iceland and the Remote Westfjords.

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Trip planning highlights

71 messages exchanged
1 trip plan version shared
Travelers completed their trip! Read traveler review

2-Week Extended Ring Road Trip

Day 1: Arrival and Downtown Reykjavik
Day 2: North to Glymur Falls, Borgarnes, Snaefellsnes Peninsula
Day 3: Snaefellsnes Peninsula
Day 4: Snaefellsnes Peninsula to the Westfjords
Day 5: Southern Westfjords
Day 6: Isafjordur
Day 7: Isafjordur to Akureyri
Day 8: The North: Godafoss, Whale Watching, and Big Waterfalls
Day 9: Geological Wonders of Lake Myvatn
Day 10: Scenic Eastern Fjords
Day 11: Seydisfjordur to Djúpivogur
Day 12: Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon, Diamond Beach, Skaftafell
Day 13: Waterfalls, Black Sand Beaches, and start of Golden Circle
Day 14: Golden Circle

Trip planning conversation

Chris

Hi, welcome to kimkim! I'm Chris and I will be your kimkim travel specialist for your trip to Iceland.

Chris

Here's an idea for a 2 week ring road trip which would be great in August since you will still have very long days. There are great hikes all around this route and I can give you more information on them as well

Chris

Take a look and let me know what you think. I can then put together a more custom itinerary based on your feedback and where you prefer to spend more of your time.

Traveler

Wow, this looks wonderful, our kind of holiday. How many kilometres would we be driving? Is the driving easy?

Chris

A few sections are gravel roads (not much), and the driving is pretty straight forward, with the longest day from Isafjordur to Akureyri, which is 550km and takes about 6.5 hours total (it's very scenic and you can stop in several places along the way to take in all the views. If you want, I can also break that day up a bit more into 2 days.

Chris

This total route is about 2,200-2,400km, 30-32 hours total depending on the number of optional detours you take.

Traveler

6.5hours is fine, just one day. Thanks, Chris

Chris

You're welcome. Once you know your exact dates I can get you a better estimate of the prices for accommodations and rental car as well as some optional activities like whale watching, lava cave, hiking tours, and a boat tour of Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon.

Chris

To set expectations, once you are happy with the custom itinerary, we would ask for a down payment of the kimkim service fee. Then I will make all arrangements and I will put everything together with detailed day by day info on stops, sights, and some optional detours, and I'll also include restaurant recommendations for all the areas you will visit.

Traveler

Hi Chris, we have been delving into Iceland travel and believe hiring a motor home will give us greater flexibility and by doing our own cooking and staying in national parks we will be able to save our funds for other things. We have found the hire of a motor home is very costly and are wondering if you will be able to find a more competitive price? Would we be better staying in alternative accommodation? Hoping you can help.

Chris

I can look into options for you. Do you prefer an automatic transmission or is manual acceptable as well?

Traveler

Manual is acceptable, diesel preferrable, toilet and shower. if you can get us a good price it would be much appreciated and we will be very happy to pay the service fee for your advice.

Chris

Many of the motor-home options are more like converted vans with a mattress and cooking space. Those do not have bathrooms and showers, but some of the campground areas do. If you prefer motor home with bathroom included I can look for those options as well, but they are not as common (and more expensive). One option is to go with the smaller van approach and then stay at a few guesthouses along the route to break it up a bit so that you can sleep in a real bed and have a bit more space some of the nights.

What do you think about those options?

Traveler

I think we prefer the shower, toilet option so we can stay off road anywhere without cost but if it's if it's that much cheaper in a smaller van with cooking facilities we might consider that.
We traveled Canada in a Motor home and love the freedom it gave us.

Thank you

Chris

Ok, here's what I found:

Motorhome for 40,500 ISK/day, or $355 USD

Here's what it has:
- Unlimited km/miles
- Seats for 6 people
- Bed for 6 people
- Linens, pillows, duvet, towels (optional)
- Crockery, cutlery and kitchenware
- Sink with running water
- 3-way Refrigerator 100 litre cubic capacity
- Cooker with gas hob. 3
- Drinking water tank 100 litre
- Waste water tank 100 litre
- Toilet with separate shower
- 2 camping chairs + 1 table (optional)
- Webasto heating system
- Radio/CD
- GPS and extra driver (optional)
- CDW Insurance included

Traveler

Any chance for something a bit smaller, we only need to sleep 2, or is it the same price?

Chris

That is the smallest motorhome option that they have. The smaller camper vans don't include toilets and showers in them.

Traveler

If we push it back a week so we are in the off season, say from August 21 to September 4?

Chris

The total for those dates would be 3.632,76 USD

Traveler

Sorry it's taking a while to get back to you but I'm having a three way conversation with my husband! The price is very expensive when converted to $AU, so we may have to go with your suggestion of a small van and occasional stop over is guest house, keeping the later dates

Chris

Ok. Here is a rental service we can use, it lists the different van options and prices for different seasons: http://www.kukucampers.is/prices/

Please let me know it's that's more in line with your expected budget.

Traveler

Hi Chris, I have looked at most of the motorhome/camper rental companies for Iceland, and was wondering whether kimkim have any relationships with any of them. I have looked at Kuku and they may be a bit too casual for us, so we are still looking at possibly motorhome.

Chris

Hi, another popular option is http://www.campervaniceland.com/camper-van-iceland

I understand that Kuku has a unique style that may not be the best fit for everyone (not sure if you watched their intro video, but it's a bit unique)

Traveler

Yes Chris, that was the word I was looking for, unique. And the video is certainly unique. We are more your caravan types than tent types. I have also looked at campervaniceland, and therefore was wondering whether kimkim gets better deals with these companies or should I just investigate the best deals available.

Chris

We do not currently have any discount deals with these companies, but I am happy to make the reservations for you as well as a few nights of hotels/guesthouses, and to put together detailed information for all sights, stops, and detours along the ring road.

Traveler

Thanks Chris. We will need to decide what we want to do. Whether we go for the convenience of a motorhome but at the additional cost or your suggestion of a camper with a few nights of hotels/guesthouses or full accommodation at hotels/guesthouses with just a car, and the overall cost of the different options. Do you have an idea of an approximate cost for the last option of full accommodation and a small hire car?

Chris

Based off of another similar trip along the Ring Road in July, the car rental was about $55-60/day average, with guesthouses with shared bathrooms around $180-200 average.

Traveler

Thanks Chris for those figures, it gives us a chance to compare apples with apples and it just up to us to compare the cost of eating out when staying in guesthouses and the cost of purchasing and cooking our own food.

Chris

You're welcome. I'll be here when you have had some more time to think about it and settle on your final dates.

Traveler

Hi Chris, we have decided to have you do a custom itinerary and I have sent my payment details.

We look forward to working with you.

Chris

I look forward to working with you as well. I'll get started and we can make some adjustments based on your feedback.

Chris

Here's what I put together for your 2 weeks in Iceland. For most of the nights, I list the nearest town/village because there may be some more options to grab food there, but if you prefer to stay outside of the villages you can do that as well, just let me know.

Please let me know what you think, and I can of course make some more changes.

Traveler

Thanks Chris.

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Traveler Review

What an amazing country and a well planned trip! Plenty to do and see.

Only issue was a few rough roads which could have been avoided that weren't really appropriate for an RV. In particular the road north of Detifoss. Best to approach from the south which is bitumen.