Prepare for a life-changing experience when you join this motorbike tour with World On Wheels. Riding through awe-inspiring scenery and enjoying local culture, with the added thrill of living right on the edge, and escaping with World On Wheels on a motorcycle adventure tour is an inspiring holiday you won't ever forget. Take this opportunity and bring these memories home!
World On Tours will provide you with clean, friendly, and mid-range accommodations throughout the tour for your 14 nights' stay.
Day 1 of the itinerary is simply everyone flying into Reykjavik on the same day, probably via several different European / American routes. The airport is quite some distance from the city and World On Wheels’ preferred hotel is right in the heart of town. Most flights seem to take advantage of the long daylight hours, and arrive late in the evening.
Day 2 gives you some leisure time to wander the city center in the morning and mingle with the locals for a while. Then you'll meet with World On Wheels bike supplier in the afternoon because of course you need to do some paperwork for the motorbikes, in preparation for our departure in the morning.
Even though there's something like 22 hours of daylight here, people still tend to keep 'normal' operational hours. For example, breakfast is usually available from 07:00 until 10:00. You'll probably head off at 09:00 (15 minutes after rush-half-hour finishes) and make your way to the south coast.
You'll see steam coming out of the ground, volcanic lava beds, and wonderful waterfalls. On the way, we’ll visit a power station! Yes it may sound humdrum but Iceland of course is preaching the geo-thermal gospel of sustainable energy to the world, and you shall stand in their cathedral. You’ll then continue along the coast a short way to the Skogafoss waterfall, where our hotel is so close you can feel the spray.
This is the volcano you’ll wake up looking at this morning; the troublesome little one which erupted in 2010 and shut down virtually all of Europe's air traffic at ginormous financial cost. You'll ride across the new lava fields which were formed, and past resultant black glaciers as you skirt the southern coastline.
From 100 kilometers away, you'll start seeing first glimpses of Vatnajökull, Europe's largest glacier. You’ll find a glacial lagoon with great chunks of floating icebergs broken off from the main glacier, and you'll stop here a while where you can opt for a short rubber-boat cruise through the bergs. Seals are often spotted fishing in the lagoon. The 007 movie “Die Another Day” was also filmed here.
Then with more breathtaking scenery, you’ll proceed further along the coast to Höfn (pronounced 'hurp'), a splendid little fishing town which is renowned as the lobster capital of the north. You've possibly got time for 9 holes of golf here with magnificent sweeping views of the glacier, and World On Wheels hopes you don't mind but they're going to insist on taking you to a local lobster restaurant for dinner tonight.
You’ll proceed to Djupivogur for morning coffee before heading inland for a while through 'forested hills' in a northerly direction to Egilsstadir in time for lunch. Then you’ll head way off the beaten track to a remote and beautiful fjord called Borgarfjördur for your night’s accommodation. There’s a huge puffin colony here, with a well-constructed boardwalk taking you very close to the comical little birds.
Day 6 sees you heading away from the coast for a while before swinging north to visit Dettifoss, considered to be Europe's most powerful waterfall. Refreshingly, there are no safety barriers or restrictions here; you can walk right up to the edge of the falls for spectacular photos.
You will continue north to visit Asbyrgi, an impressive box canyon made, legend has it, by a hoof print from Odin’s 8-legged horse. And then back to the coast to Husavik, the whale-watching capital of Iceland, and perhaps jump aboard an afternoon departure in search of the gentle giants in the fjord. Humpback sightings are common, as well as Minkes and the occasional Blue. Lots of dolphins, seals and other aquatic life abound as well.
You’re going to take the long way round to Akureyri, the pseudo northern capital, by heading down to picturesque Lake Myvatn. There are some incredible geo-thermal features to visit nearby, including a smaller version of the famous and over-commercialised Blue Lagoon. But be warned now, the lake's name means 'midges' and there are millions of the little blighters. Bring some strong deet repellent.
You’ll have a rest day here in Akureyri, Iceland's only real city (big town) other than Reykjavik. There's good shopping and a motorcycle museum for those inclined; there are restaurants and bars and live music venues and a picturesque waterfront. It's also a good opportunity to perhaps get some laundry done.
You’ll again take the long way, up around the northern coastline and past a few fjords. It's perhaps a little similar to the highlands of Scotland, except for the hundreds of Icelandic horses instead of sheep. In the middle of nowhere, you’ll find a nice little hotel at Hvammstangi, perfectly placed for you at the entrance to the imposing Westfjörds.
You can see coastlines on the way to Holmavik before striking inland over a couple of high passes. Waterfalls and little fishing villages are everywhere and you’ll proceed further into the wilderness until you reach Isafjordur in the far northwest. It's possible up here to ride for an hour and not see another vehicle on the road.
It's a good thing your BMW has heated handgrips, because it might start to get a little cool as you climb across snowy mountains to discover yet more fjords, pass Thingeyri, and past a few more waterfalls on your way to Patreksfjördur. Then you’ll continue right out to the westernmost point of Iceland, and therefore Europe, at Latrabjarg where you can observe puffins coming home to roost at around 21:00. Again they show no fear of us.
Your destination for tonight is Stykkisholmur and it's a long but gorgeous ride around twistier windy coastline with, some fjords. You’ll leave behind the Westfjörds peninsular and regain the 'mainland' so please be careful, the traffic density may double from four vehicles per hour to eight.
Snaefellsnes is the name of the peninsular you’ll find yourselves today and as you ride around it, you’ll find some startling discoveries. The Snaefellsjökull volcano's frequent eruptions have left huge lava flows all over the western half, hiding secrets underground.
Jules Verne's classic book 'Journey to the Centre of the Earth' was made into a film here, both the 1959 original and the 2008 re-make. You can visit a subterranean cavern within the lava flow. You’ll continue on past Borgarnes to Reykholt, to visit an impressive spectacle; a subterranean river emerges to the surface through a volcanic lava wall.
You’ll head away from the coast to visit Iceland's most popular tourist attraction(s), the Golden Circle. The great Geysir has apparently been active here for some 10,000 years; it has given the English word 'geyser' and was the first such geothermal phenomenon ever recorded. It is quite spectacular and well worth the visit.
Then just a few kilometers down the road is the equally impressive Gullfoss waterfall, cascading down several tiered levels. If that's not enough, there is a huge fault line nearby which is actually the continental divide in the tectonic plates; it's possible to stand here with one foot on the North American shelf and one on the European shelf.
At the same location, you can find Thingvellir, location of the world's oldest operating parliament, dating back to 930 AD! In risk of overload, after all of this, you shall back to Reykjavik to complete your lap of Iceland. Back in the capital, you’ll relinquish your bikes, have a cleansing ale or two, then meet for your farewell dinner somewhere in the center of downtown.
You’ll officially finish this tour at breakfast and you're free of course to extend your stay or head to the airport.
These are places you will visit on this tour: Reykjavik, Höfn, Egilsstadir, Husavik, Akureyri, Laugarbakki, Isafjordur, Stykkishölmur, Snaefellsnes, and Borgarnes, Iceland.
Quality of food can obviously be a concern when visiting exotic foreign lands. World On Wheels takes care in selecting clean and reputable establishments for your meals and Iceland is a very modern country with no hygiene concerns whatsoever.
World On Wheels has found the food to be sensational! Even so, an occasional upset stomach cannot always be avoided in remote areas, so World On Wheels advises initial caution and you to carry various medicines to ensure as much comfort as possible.
"Most of all, I remember the smiles. They're a cross-cultural thing, unhindered by language barriers. India is like that. Brilliant. If you want a real experience, get onto Ferris Wheels and get into it. Your grin, like mine, will last much longer than the adventure. "
World On Wheels website, edited
"The thing I’ve liked most about this trip is you’ve got the best of both worlds; the infrastructure and support right there when you need it, but the freedom to just ride and enjoy the mountains on your own."
World On Wheels website, edited
"In the past 25 years, I’ve made over 100 films for Australian television, and my travels take me all over the world in search of adventure. I can tell you that this Ferris Wheels safari is one of the best trips I’ve ever done!"
World On Wheels website, edited