10 day South Iceland and Snæfellsnes Workshop

10 day South Iceland and Snæfellsnes Workshop

Duration: 1 week and 3 days / Difficulty: Easy

Join us on this 10-day Winter Landscape Photography Tour, as we seek some of the best light and impressive landscape that Iceland has to offer. We will travel in comfort on a spacious bus and a modified super jeep to cover the iconic frozen landscapes of Snaefellsnes peninsula, such as Kikjufell mountain. black church Budir, amazing coastline, etc, and the South Coast for the ice caves, glacier lagoon, ice beach and waterfalls. This is a great opportunity to photograph ice and the Northern Lights while learning new techniques as we take your photography skills to a higher level..

  • Open to all skill levels
  • Led by award-winning instructors
  • Easy to moderate in difficulty

The highlights of our photography workshop:

Northern Lights Photography

Iceland is one of the best places to capture the amazing coloured patterns of lights dancing across the dark Arctic sky. Aurora, often called northern lights, is driven by the energy coming from the sun as it often produces mass ejections of charged particles that get trapped by the Earth's magnetic field. Guided by the magnetic field, the particles then flow toward the Earth's poles where they collide with nitrogen and oxygen in the upper atmosphere producing the green, blue and red lights on the sky. However, witnessing this magical phenomenon is not guaranteed because there are other factors which can have an impact on the visibility of Aurora such as dark, clear skies and pleasant weather conditions. And since the weather can be varied from different locations, we will keep a keen eye out for chasing the Northern Lights during our workshop as we offer you the chance to photograph this wonderful phenomenon.

Ice Caves Photography

The ice caves will give you the feeling of being in a different world filled with alluring lights and different shapes and patterns of the shiny blue ice. The same reason why a picture inside the ice caves brings this surreal world into a higher level. This photo of the stunning blue ice caves was taken at Vatnajokull, the largest and most voluminous ice cap in Europe. However, the location, condition and structure of the caves change every year as they are impermanent and differ in density because glaciers are constantly moving. So, we will be accompanied by a professional ice cave guides who will drive us for approximately 20-30 minutes, lend us protective gears and walk us inside the caves with utmost caution.

Jokulsarlon and the Ice Beach

As we will be staying close to the magnificent Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon, the large glacial lake on the edge of Vatnajökull National Park, we will have a great deal of chances to photograph the massive icebergs on the lagoon and the chunks of ice that break away and drift towards the ice beach. The reflection of the icebergs on the water makes this a wonderful opportunity for stunning winter photography. And with luck, this scene will be more intensified by a brilliant display of the Northern Lights. Meanwhile, the scene from the famous ice beach includes the interplay of light, dark sands, glistening ice and movements of the waves which make this location a photographer’s playground, making every shot magical and monumental.

Snaefellsnes peninsula

Snaefellsnes peninsula is one of the best places in Iceland to view and photograph the Northern Lights. This area is a wonderland, especially in winter, stretching as a vast mountain ridge with active volcanoes. The mountains themselves are furthermore incredibly diverse. At the end of the peninsula is the legendary Snaefellsjokull glacier, around which is a national park. There are beautiful beaches in the area, incredible lava and rock formations, multiple caves of various kinds, as well as craters and stunning lava fields. The area also features prominently in the sagas. All this, coupled with the Northern Lights, is a photographer‘s dream.

Visiting the towns and villages, and farmsteads of the peninsula, such as Bjarnarhofn, Stykkisholmur, Rif, Hellissandur, Olafsvik and Grundarfjordur is pleasant in itself. Above Grundarfjordur rises my favorite mountain to shoot in Iceland, the beautiful Kirkjufell. From the right angle it resembles a nature-made pyramid and always always seems to offer something new and interesting.


Day 1 - Arrival

On your first day in Iceland, you will land at Keflavik International Airport and then take the flybus towards your hotel in central Reykjavik. We‘ll meet up at 7:00 in the lobby and then go to a nearby restaurant and get to know each other.There you will also get know more about the adventures awaiting you. You will then spend the night at your Reykjavik hotel.

Day 2 - Snaefellsnes

On your second day in Iceland, you will be picked up from your hotel at 9:00 for two days at the Snaefellsnes peninsula home, to some of the most photogenic scenery in all Iceland. Awaiting you are the wild coastline of Snaefellsnes, the columnar basalt and spectacular cliffs at Arnarstapi, the charming black church at Budir, the Budahraun lava field and the impressive and peculiarly shaped sea stacks of Londrangar. Snaefellsnes also happens to be one of the best places in Iceland to seek one of nature‘s absolute wonders, the Northern lights, ak.a. Aurora Borealis, so keep a good look-out and have your camera ready. You will spend the night at Snaefellsnes.

Day 3 - Snaefellsnes

On your third day in Iceland, we will be exploring and photographing the sites that were left from the previous day. You‘ll cover the rugged coastline, see several charming villages and the mighty mountains that divide the northern and western part of the peninsula. A particular highlight is mount Kirkjufell by Grundarfjordur, with its peculiar pyramid shape, when seen from the right angle. This is one of the most photogenic mountains in Iceland, and a personal favorite of mine, as it always offers something new and exciting in terms of angle, light and shape. Nearby is a beautiful waterfall, Kirkjufellsfoss and the combination of the two with the further contrast of the village and fjord makes for some great pictures. In winter, further clarity will be added by glistening snow and ice and we‘ll still be seeking the aurora, their which lend a particular grace to this stunning area. Your night will then again be spent at Snaefellsnes.

Day 4 - Seljalandsfoss, Skogafoss, Reynisfjara, Vik

On this day we‘ll be heading towards the south shore of Iceland. We‘ll visit two of Iceland‘s most picturesque and beloved waterfalls, Seljalandsfoss and Skogafoss. The former is a narrow one, but falls from 63 meters and has the rare distinction of one being actually able to walk behind it. The other fall is well known as one of Iceland‘s most high and beautiful and can be shot from the top, as there is a pathway leading there and then further on towards other amazing falls. Skogafoss is also known to produce a spectacular double rainbow when the light is right. 

Later on, we‘ll be travelling towards the mainland‘s southernmost point to witness the dramatic scenery of the famous Reynisfjara beach. The Reynisdrangar sea stacks, the black sands of the shore, the waves of the North Atlantic Ocean, the basalt column pyramid of Gardar and the rich birdlife all result in this being one of the most photogenic sites of all you will encounter on your journey. This is also some of the most amazing scenery you can ask for to photograph the Northern Lights in, should they appear. Your night will then be spent at the charming nearby village of Vik. 

Please note that the waves of the sea at Reynisfjara are highly unpredictable and we thus urge uttermost caution and following safety instructions to the fullest.

Day 5 - Vatnajokull National Park

On this day we will head towards Vatnajokull National Park, home to Europe‘s largest glacier. The park and the Snaefellsnes peninsula share the trait of really offering a little bit of everything in terms of Icelandic natural wonders. Focusing on the park‘s southern and eastern part, we will witness mighty glaciers and glacier tongues, dark sandy beaches, stunning waterfalls such as Hundafoss and the famous Svartifoss, with its dark basalt columns, both of whom are located at Skaftafell, ice-riddled glacier lagoons and much more. 

Adding to this fantastic scenery, our Northern Lights hunt continues, lending further otherworldy feel to the scenery. This is a particularly good time for photographing the aurora, as the lighting is particularly clear and soft. Accommodation for the night will be found in the nearby area.

Day 6 - Vatnajokull National Park

On this day we‘ll have plenty of time photographing the stunningly beautiful Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon, at the eastern part of Vatnajokull National Park. Massive icebergs from the Breidamerkurjokull glacier riddle the lagoon and more of those may be found by the beach. The amazing view, the display of light, multiple reflections and glistening ice and snow which are then contrasted by dark sands, all combine in making the area a photographer‘s dream. 

Still more wonders await you as you will have the unique experience of shooting photos within a subglacial ice cave deep below the massive Vatnajokull glacier. Here you‘ll find phenomenal natural sculptures and cavities of crystal-clear blue ice, as we stand in awe against nature and feel as if time had stopped. Wide-angle lenses are recommended here for shooting unforgettable photos. Afterwards, we‘ll keep a lookout for the Northern Lights, which particularly complement this wonderful area. Your accommodation for the night will be near the lagoon.

Day 7 - Vatnajokull National Park

On this day you will have ample opportunity to shoot the mighty Vestrahorn mountain, rising at 454 meters above the black lava beach of the Stokksnes peninsula. The mountain , made of unstratified plutonic rock (gabbro and granophyre) is a marvel to photograph and is very interestingly shaped. It consists of several steep peaks, the most oddly formed of which is the Brunnhorn outcrop, which stretches all the way eastwards to the sea. The wild waves of the North Atlantic Ocean make the scenery all the more photogenic and sunset and sunrise are particularly recommended for great photos. Aurora may then further grace the sky at nighttime, blazing their multicoloured trail across the arctic sky. Your night will be spent in the Vatnajokull area.

Day 8 - Skaftafell, Vik

On this day you‘ll be photographing the beautiful scenery of Skaftafell, a preservation area within the larger Vatnajokull National Park. The main attraction here is Svartifoss, with its dark and dramatic hexagonal basalt columns and the sharp rocks that have broken from them and lie at the base. These columns were also an inspiration for the look of Reykjavik‘s most distinctive landmark, Hallgrimskirkja church, as well as the roof of the National Theater (same architect) and for Richard Scerra‘s Milestones sculpture at Videy island, off the shore of Reykjavik. Hundafoss is another beautiful waterfall not far off, well worth photographing in its own right. The area is further graced by the Kristinartindar volcanic peaks, stunning glacier lagoons and the majestic glacier outlet Svinafellsjokull. 

After visiting Skaftafell you will get more time to shoot the fascinating area of Reynisfjara. Evening photography at this site, by the rays of the setting sun, is sure to result in some particularly amazing pictures, as well as great further opportunities for aurora photographing. Your night will then be spent at Vik.

Day 9 - Golden Circle and return to Reykjavik

On your last proper day in Iceland, you‘ll visit “the big three“ of Icelandic natural attractions, considered essential for all visitors of the country, the Golden Circle of Thingvellir National Park, the Geysir geothermal area and Gullfoss waterfall, all located in South Iceland. 

A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Thingvellir National Park is one of Iceland‘s most important sites. It was here that the old national assembly was founded, and the current parliament in Iceland, Althingi, still bears its name. The area is situated in a rift valley and evidence of the movement of the tectonic plates may be seen at the impressive Almannagja gorge, into which the beautiful waterfall Oxararfoss falls. The park is certainly one of Iceland‘s most picturesque sites and we also recommend photographing the surrounding mountain ring and lake Thingvallavatn, Iceland‘s largest lake, and its islets. 

The famous spouting hot spring Geysir in Haukadalur valley lends its name to geysers all over the world and the surrounding geothermal area is also widely known simply as the Geysir geothermal area. This is our next destination. Geysir seldom erupts anymore, but its neighbour Strokkur does so with gusto, spouting water as high as 15-20 meters. Also of interest are the geysers Smidur and Litli-Strokkur. To the north colourful fumaroles may be found and to the south is a range of mudpots. They may boil or steam according to weather. Nearby is an old natural pool. It can be entered but is still very fragile, so visitors need to take extra care not to disrupt it. There is also nice foresty in the area, a tree museum and a charming old wooden church, all well worth checking out. 

Finally there is the“golden waterfall“ Gullfoss, widely held to be the most beautiful waterfall in Iceland and certainly the most sought after by nature photographers and nature lovers alike. Gullfoss belongs to the Hvita glacier river and falls thunderously at a drom of 32 meters into the narrow river gorge. Snow and ice are likely to once more add an extra touch of splendour to the scenery, the sun may even lend it a rainbow and you may feel the spray of the fall on your face. 

After visiting “the big three“ attractions of the Golden Circle and indeed having seen many of Iceland‘s greatest natural wonders, you‘ll head back to Reykjavik for your final night in Iceland. This day will also be your final chance of the tour for Northern Lights photography, so keep a lookout and keep your camera ready.

Day 10 - Transfer to Keflavik Airport

This is the day of your departure, as you will take the flybus from your hotel back to Keflavik International Airport, bringing with you photos and memories of an extraordinary adventure.

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