A serene and peaceful island with adrenaline-charged potential; Iceland is a destination of intriguing contrasts.
The most sparsely populated country in Europe, this Nordic territory is characterised by jet black sands, undulating mountains, pristine glaciers and fiery lava fields – giving no end of opportunity when it comes to exploration and adventure.
If it’s an action-packed private Iceland mini-break that you are craving, then you are in the right place: Here we recommend the best ways to spend two days on this exclusive and enticing island to exceed all expectations and get your heart-rate firmly pumping.
Lower yourself into a 700ft magma chamber
Thrihnukagigur crater is a dormant volcano, in the protected area of Bláfjöll Country Park, that hasn’t erupted for 4,000 years. That said, as you descend down the volcanic passage into its magma chamber, in an open elevator, there’s no doubt that your body’s adrenaline release will be erring on its upper levels.
It’s a six-minute journey down to the base of the crater. The unhurried speed giving you an opportunity to fully appreciate the breath-taking scenery that surrounds you. For one, the sheer volume of the crater will astound you. The ground space is the equivalent size to almost three basketball courts and with height enough to safely house a full-sized Statue of Liberty. The vivid coloration is also a sight to behold. The spaces of cobalt blue mark where huge chunks of rock have crashed from the walls and the golden yellow patches show discoloration by sulphur-rich gases.
In our opinion, your private Iceland experience wouldn’t be complete without making this daring descent.
Speed across a volcanic glacier by snowmobile
Continuing on the theme of volcanos, the Eyjafjallajökull Glacier, often referred to as E15, hides a notorious secret under its silky white surface. Beneath its depths are the remains of the Eyjafjallajökull Volcano that last erupted in 2010, sending a large plume of volcanic ash almost ten kilometres up into the sky.
Since the eruption took place, venturesome daredevils have gathered here to race their snowmobiles across the glacier that has since formed over it. Here lies the chance to test your driving capabilities on ice to their limits, while simultaneously experiencing some truly bracing panoramas from the south side of the island.
Quad race to the site of a fascinating plane wreck
With your snowmobile safely stored back in its hut, it’s time to change terrains and head for the black sands of Solheimasandur. Your mode of transport will now be in the form of a high-powered ATV, which you will use to navigate across volcanic beaches with spectacular views of the imposing glaciers around you.
Even the most seasoned of adventurers won’t fail to feel the thrill as you experience gripping river crossings and high-speed volcanic encounters over the black lava sands on your quad bike.
The climax of your ride will take place as you reach the site of the DC-3 plane crash. Here, in 1973, this famous US Navy plane crash-landed here with seven crew members on board. Remarkably, no-one was injured and the although the plane crashed through the ice, it didn’t sink. Today, due to freezing temperatures and tempestuous gales, all that remains is a rusting shell which lies atop of the haunting black sands. It’s the perfect spot for a hot coffee break and a group selfie.
Recharge in a secret thermal lagoon underneath the stars
Due to Iceland’s geothermal nature, you have plenty of choice when it comes to finding a hot basalt pool to bathe in. However, finding a secret spring, away from the masses, is more of an undertaking. We’ve found that some of the very best spots can only be discovered through careful conversation with the locals and carry an Instagram-free code of honour to protect their secrecy!
Many of the best secret pools require a level of hiking to be reached, but, once there, you can strip off and submerge yourself to enjoy a soak quite unlike anything you’ve experienced before. The best time to bathe is on a clear, cool night. And, to top the experience off, we can arrange a private astronomer guide who will alert you as soon as the Northern Lights begin to appear!
Here at Untold Story, we know many of the secrets that Icelanders likes to keep quiet. We make it our mission to befriend the locals and form long-standing relationships with fascinating storytellers who are vital in creating unforgettable vacation experiences.
If you are interested in talking to us about creating a bespoke private Iceland experience, then we would love to hear from you.
Get in contact with us to start writing your own Icelandic story.