This break is perfect for the first timer to Iceland who wishes to see the northern lights as well as experience some of its dramatic volcanic wonders.
The Iconic Northern Lights Break
Prepare for an adventure of a lifetime whilst staying at THE place in Iceland to see the northern lights. Local guides will share hidden gems with you, as well as search and chase the auroras with you.
- 2 Nights at Hotel Ranga, famed for its Northern Lights sightings
- Aurora Wake up Call at Hotel Ranga so you don’t sleep through the Northern Lights!
- Choice of off-road SuperJeep Tours in South Iceland; Eyjafjallajökull’s Volcano or Þórsmörk and Waterfalls Tour
- Golden Circle with Pingvellir Rift Valley, Gullfoss Waterfall, Kerid Crater and Strokkur Geyser
- Blue Lagoon visit
- 2 nights in central Reykjavik
- 2 nights accommodation with breakfast at Hotel Ranga
- 2 nights accommodation with breakfast at Alda Hotel
- 1 SuperJeep Adventure Tour
- 4WD Car Hire
A note on flights
While flights are not included in the holiday price, our team will happily provide a quote and arrange them for you. Simply ask one of our Travel Experts for details of the available options.
Day by Day Itinerary
Fly to Reykjavik and drive to Hotel Ranga.
On arrival in Reykjavik, pick up your pre-arranged 4WD hire car and self-drive to Hotel Ranga in South Iceland.
This is a 2 hour trip on Iceland’s main road. Hotel Ranga has an excellent reputation for Northern Lights sightings due to its location in a rural area, with a higher frequency of clear nights. Don’t forget the team at the hotel are also keen to ensure that if the Aurora are out you don’t miss them and so they offer an aurora wake-up service in case they should appear in the depth of the night.
Overnight at Hotel Ranga.
After breakfast adventure out into the unique landscapes of South Iceland – probably the most dramatic Geography field trip you will ever experience!
We work only with local guides who are both passionate about their country and want to share their insights with you but who are also trained as part of the mountain rescue team. They will have fascinating stories to share about the volcanic eruption that occurred in 2010.
We continually receive fabulous feedback on this day from satisfied clients who enjoy this personalised, relaxed guided day experience from enthusiastic local guides who are keen you have an extra special experience.
SuperJeeps take up to 8 people but the norm is for 4 people for a very personal tour. Note, this is in sharp contrast to the coach tours that are available through other companies, who also cannot access many of the areas we take you to.
Choose between the following adventures: EITHER Eyjafjallajökull’s Volcano Tour This tour will take you as close as is possible to the new large crater in Eyjafjallajökull Volcano from the 2010 eruption and to places where no hire car can go. We drive up the slopes of the glacier in a highly equipped SuperJeep and on our way take in the astonishing view over the whole South coast of Iceland with it’s glaciers, and back across the Atlantic including the Westman-Islands.
This tour gives you the perfect glacier experience; an exciting SuperJeep drive in the snow, walk on the glacier and the magnificent view over the south. This is real adventure! OR Þórsmörk Valley Tour . Your guide will take you up between the three glaciers; Myrdalsjokull, Eyjafjallojokull and Tindfjallojokull. In your specially adapted SuperJeeps you will have the thrilling drive of fjording glacial rivers and driving across the flood plain to see the lasting effects and landscape changes following Eyjafjallajökull’s 2010 eruption.
You will be surrounded by an imposing mountain ridge and see spectacular landscapes. Stop at the stunning Seljalandsfoss Waterfall, which you can walk behind and be mesmerised looking back through the falling water. If you wanted to see the “Raw Iceland” this is hard to beat!
Tonight be sure to use one of the outdoor hot tubs if the Northern Lights are out. Lying back in the warm waters, taking in South Iceland’s unique ambience whilst having the Aurora flash above you is one of life’s great experiences! Alternatively, Hotel Ranga have built their own first observatory a short stroll from the hotel in order to minimize light pollution, and they have an expert in there every cloud-free night with two high quality 11 inch computerized telescopes who can teach you about the stars and the Northern Lights if they are out.
View amazing detail on Jupiter, see the rings of Saturn, and details on Mars. During the day you can observe the Sun, including sunspots in great detail and activity such as prominences and filaments. Overnight at Hotel Ranga.
Explore South Coast and Self drive to Reykjavik
Today you have at leisure to explore the south coast before your drive to Reykjavik.
Head off in your car along the South coast with the dramatic Glaciers and Volcanoes of Hekla and Eyjafjallajökull to your left and the Atlantic Ocean on your right.
Continue to the charming small village of Vik to visit the Black Beaches and dramatic rock formations of Reynisdrangar with its famous archway. Visit Seljalandsfoss, one of the most famous waterfalls in Iceland, where you will be mesmerised as you walk behind it and stare out through the falling water across the flat landscape towards the South Beaches.
Also visit the dramatic and thundering Skogar Waterfall – one of the highest in Iceland at 60m and certainly worth a few photos! Time allowing, stop at the Skogar Folk Museum which shares one man’s lifetime collection of Icelandic artefacts gathered since 1949.
The slightly eccentric Thordur Tomasson still runs the museum and is as much of an attraction as the museum itself! We would also recommend a stop at Eyjafjallajokull Visitor Centre, which has a 20 minute film depicting the personal experience of a farmer on the recent eruption which will give you a more intimate insight as to how the Icelanders coped with the eruption.
Onwards drive to Reykjavik to overnight. Alternatively you can drive straight to Reykjavik and explore this quirky town with its unusual shops and museums. For ideas of things to do in Reykjavik.
Golden Circle including Pingvellir Rift Valley, Gullfoss waterfall and Strokkur Geyser
Today explore the “must see” Golden Circle at your own pace using your own 4WD vehicle. The day is packed full of surprising landscapes and Geological marvels.
You will walk in a dramatic mini rift valley created by Tectonic plate movement, gaze at the thundering Gullfoss Waterfall which can totally freeze in winter, and marvel at the Strokkur Geyser which erupts every 5 mins.
We would also recommend you visit the spot where the first democratic parliament was established in 930 AD overlooking the stunning plains of Pingvellir. Evening at leisure to try one of the many excellent seafood restaurants and overnight in Reykjavik.
For our local insider top tips of things to add to your trip when self driving.
Blue Lagoon and Flight Home
This morning drive to the Blue Lagoon, one of Iceland’s most famous sites.
Here you can bathe in the warm bright geothermal waters which are particularly good for your skin. Put Silica mud on your face or try out the Sauna and Steam rooms which are carved into the lava.
Relax for a couple of hours and perhaps have a meal in one of the restaurants with lovely views of the Lagoon. We would also recommend the in-water massage treatments which are just heavenly!
Afterwards drive the 20 minutes to the airport for your flight home. If this wasn’t quite perfect for you why not consider the Northern Lights Paradise break
We have an extensive Northern Lights Information Hub if you need further information
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Where You'll Stay
Alda Hotel, Reykjavik
Discover the Alda Hotel Reykjavik, a lifestyle hotel nestled on Laugavegur, Reykjavik’s main shopping street. This boutique-style accommodation is designed to offer a peaceful haven amid the bustling city, allowing guests to absorb and reflect on their Icelandic adventures. Situated on the quieter upper stretch of Laugavegur, we are approximately a 15-minute stroll from the city center.
While our location places us in proximity to shops, cafes, and restaurants, we are strategically positioned away from the central nightlife hub, ensuring a tranquil stay. Experience the perfect blend of a fantastic location and a harmonious atmosphere at Alda Hotel Reykjavik.
Hotel Ranga offers luxury and relaxation in Iceland’s countryside. There are 51 luxurious and cosy rooms in this serene setting without external lighting interference to spoil the Northern Lights. It is Iceland’s only member of the “Special Hotels of the World”, and is also a member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World.
Its gourmet restaurant has an excellent reputation offering typical Icelandic dishes, as well as a few unusual surprises. We would highly recommend you take a drink and sit in the outdoor hot tubs and watch the skies for the Northern Lights. A splendid way to pass the time.
Although there is never any guarantee, this is one of the best places in Iceland to see the Aurora Borealis. They have also recently built an observatory so you can view the stars and Northern Lights up close. An expert is in there to guide you through the use of the computerised telescope on clear nights.
Hotel Ranga also has the most incredible range of themed suites. Take your choice from 2 levels with the themes being Africa, Asia, North America, South America, Australia, Antarctica, Royal Suite.
Please fill out the enquiry form below to receive a quote for this package.
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See what our clients say
Thoroughly enjoyed the trip. The Abisko Mountain Lodge was fantastic, every member of staff was friendly welcoming and charming. Accommodation, upgraded room was excellent. The food in the lodge definitely deserves the high reviews. Good breakfast, great hime made lunch soups and extremely tasty evening dinners.
The included trips were great. The only let down was the camera night, couldn’t see the lights no one fault, but we were walked through thigh high snow to be left on a frozen lake for the duration of the trip. There was no warning of the difficult walk and we had a 91 year old with us and I have hip problems! That said the guide was great, as were the ones on the skimobile and husky rides. We went up to the sky station in a snow storm with high winds, added to the experience!
Would go back in a heart beat.
We had little communication with Weekend a la carte, no need as all communications were clear and contained all the information we needed. Very informative emails
Would use again if going back
This was a bucket list trip. The company are specialists and I’ve valued their advice. Everything from the when to go for the best opportunity to see the lights and equipment needed and provided.Our activities included, the Ice Hotel, night photo shoot, snowmobiling, guided walk and the sky station meal. All excellent and well run by knowledgeable experts and guides. The Abisko Lodge is warm comfortable and relaxing the food is excellent and the staff welcoming, friendly and very helpful. I would highly recommend if you’re looking for a different and exciting experience.
An excellent holiday which was enjoyed by all. The super jeep ride on the second day to the Eyjafjallajokull volcano was memorable and thanks to our driver Margaret who proved to be a really good guide. We thoroughly enjoyed the facilities in the hotel Ranga. The staff were very helpful and we managed to see the Northern Lights. The Hotel Reykjavik Centrum was very nice with amazingly helpful staff. All in all, the whole holiday was brilliant.
This vacation has without without doubt, has been the best experience we have ever had. The organisation from the minute we landed in Kiruna until we departed at the close of our trip was second to none. The transition between hotels was always seamless and punctual. Everywhere we stayed was beautifully clean and the meals were top quality. Every driver was polite, entertaining and very knowledgeable, furnishing us with invaluable information about Sweden and the activities in which we were to participate. The snowmobiling was wonderful giving access via our guide, to stunning panoramic views of the mountain whilst viewing reindeer in their natural habitat.
Our guide demonstrated how to use the snowmobile safely he was pleasant and informative. When visiting the reindeer on the Sami reservation; we found the brother and sister team who hosted lovely. Again they were so hospitable and helpful and feeding the reindeer up close was a wonderful experience.
They provided additional activities for us to try and we were treated to a traditional Sami lunch in their hut. They provided us with invaluable information appertaining to their culture and caring for their reindeer. The reindeer were in superb condition and happy in their environment. Similarly, when out with the dog sleds the experience was magical. Two hours of beautiful scenery, and frozen lakes, finishing with a one-on-one experience massaging the dogs. Magic! We were so impressed with the care that was placed upon ensuring the dogs were comfortable, well-nourished and so loved by their owners/handlers.
Now to the photographic experience. A large group of us were treated to a demonstration of how to operate some serious camera equipment with tripod. Each of us was loaned the camera and given assistance setting up the camera on a frozen lake in preparation for the appearance of the Northern Lights. We were taken to this lake on large wooden sleighs pulled by a snowmobile. We cannot speak too highly of the two young men who accompanied us on this experience. They could not do enough for us. They were there to offer assistance with our cameras throughout the two-plus hours we were on this beautiful lake.
They advised where to position the camera and when the Lights appeared, what a performance. We had a two-hour display of this most breathtaking phenomenon. We were so fortunate to be able to experience this once-in-a-lifetime occurrence for which we are so grateful. We will never forget this memorable holiday and cannot thank you and everyone who assisted in making a lifetime dream come true. Karen & Andrew Adamson
Fantastic trip with great hosts & made even more special by seeing the Northern Lights twice!!
1. Gourmet Cabins was excellent and Johan was a friendly and knowledgeable host. The food, cabins, hot tub and sauna were brilliant.
2. Dog sledge was a fantastic experience and we were given the opportunity to drive our own sledge
3. Snow Mobile – really got off the beaten track and into the spectacular mountains
4. Saw the Northern Lights twice in two days. There is no description that can really do them justice
Superb holiday to Iceland, well organised, advice regarding trips informative and far exceeded our expectations (Glaciers and ice Cave) run by South Coast. Hotel Ranga is a lovely hotel, perfect to see Northern Lights (which we did see on our 3rd night), very comfortable, food excellent, staff helpful and informative. SouthCoast Adventure tour company were excellent, guides knowledgeable, and clearly very experienced.
Fantastic service, with every detail taken care of and communicated to your agencies and hotels. Would definitely recommend and will be using again.