By Dana Perkiss
Iceland's Golden Circle is a popular tourist route that takes visitors to some of the most popular attractions in Iceland's southwest region. The route is roughly 300 kilometers long and typically takes a full day to complete if you want to explore in depth.
If you're planning a trip to Iceland, the Golden Circle should definitely be on your itinerary. Here are some of the top sights to see on the Golden Circle:
Thingvellir National Park
This park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site located in a rift valley where the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates meet. It's a stunning landscape of dramatic cliffs, awe-inspiring waterfalls, and crystal-clear lakes. The park was also the site of Iceland's first parliament, which was established in the 10th century.
Geysir Geothermal Area
A fascinating geothermal park in Iceland, this is where you can witness the famous Geysir Strokkur erupt a plume of boiling water more than 20 meters into the air every few minutes. The area is also home to many other hot springs and bubbling mud pots.
This massive waterfall is one of the most iconic natural wonders in Iceland. It cascades down two tiers and drops over 100 feet into a jagged canyon below. The glacier meltwater hits its peak in the spring and summer months but is always a spectacular sight.
This 3,000-year-old volcanic crater is brimming with milky blue water and surrounded by red volcanic rock. It's one of the most visually stunning geological sights in Iceland and is the perfect place for a hike thanks to an easy circular trail around the area.
Kjolur Highland Route
If you're up for a scenic drive in Iceland, take the Kjolur Route (also known as Route F35 or Kjalvegur). This approximately 125-mile road connects the south and north of Iceland and offers gorgeous views of glaciers, mountains, and highlands.
Hveragerdi Hot Springs
Located just a short drive from Thingvellir National Park is the geothermal area known as the Hveragerdi Hot Springs. It's a wonderful spot to soak in the hot springs and relax after a day of exploring. It also offers a hot springs river trail which is one of the most popular hiking trails in Iceland.
Now that you know some of the Golden Circle's best highlights, are you ready for a trip to Iceland? View our affordable vacation packages to Iceland below, many of which include Golden Circle tours!