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Hosted By: Tom Hanson
KELOLAND TV News Anchor
Discover Iceland’s best-known national treasures, mystical northern lights, ancient sagas, and unique traditions. Iceland is a land of fire and ice with ancient volcanoes and grandiose glaciers. Tour the “Golden Circle,” packed with jaw-dropping landscapes and natural wonders including Gullfoss Waterfall, Geysir Hot Springs, and Thingvellir National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Cruise Breidafjordur Bay and taste shellfish picked from pristine waters. We also visit the famous rejuvenating geothermal spa, Blue Lagoon, tour the capital of Reykjavik, stroll the halls of the National Museum of Iceland, learn about the northern lights and how to photograph them at Aurora Reykjavik, and search the night sky for magical auroras.
You can earn a $100 Travel Show Credit good for your next trip with Holiday Vacations by simply clicking the photo to watch the online travel show! The show is about 10 minutes long and at the end, you'll have the ability to submit your contact information and receive a travel credit which can be applied to this or any Holiday Vacations tour. Get started now!
October 7th, 2023 - October 13th, 2023
Price Per Person
Final Payment Date: 07/04/2023
Day 1 : Fly to Iceland
Depart the USA for a restful overnight flight to Iceland.
Day 2 : Arrive in Iceland
Our flight arrives early morning. After breakfast, we view the stunning Harpa Concert Hall, whose glassy exterior features a facade of geometric shapes that change color with the angle of the sun. Take in beautiful views of Reykjavik and the surroundings from the Perlan (the Pearl) observation deck. Tour the National Museum of Iceland before we check in to our hotel. Tonight we reconvene for a Holiday Vacations Welcome Dinner where you will have time to get to know your traveling companions.
Day 3 : Reykjavik
After breakfast, we enjoy more city sites of Reykjavik. Though one of the smallest capital cities in the world, it is brimming with adventures. We learn about the aurora borealis at Aurora Reykjavik where the northern lights are always on display. We view Parliament and enjoy panoramic views from the city’s best-known landmark, Hallgrimskirkja church. Next we descend under Whale Bay through an undersea tunnel to Akranes. At the Folk Museum view a vast collection of architecture, maritime exhibits, and artifacts. See Europe’s most powerful hot spring, Deildartunguhver, which provides water and geothermal heat for much of the area. We end the day visiting two incredibly unique waterfalls: Hraunfossar, a collection of several creeks cascading down a wall of lava rocks creating a spectacular display of ever-changing colors; and Barnafoss Waterfall, cutting deep through a narrow canyon and steeped in mystery and folklore. Our hotel for the next two nights is the perfect location to hunt for luminescent green northern lights dancing above.
Day 4 : Breidafjordur Bay
Following breakfast, we travel to Stykkisholmur, a gateway city to several islands in Breidafjordur Bay. We embark on a maritime escapade passing by hundreds of tiny islands. Experience Viking sushi, where a large selection of shellfish is pulled straight from the pristine waters for tasting. View quaint fishing villages as we make our way through the bay. At Arnarstapi we can walk along the Bookshelves of God, made out of stacked columnar basalt rock formations. The serenity of Snaefellsjokull National Park leaves lasting memories of a variety of landscapes, from moss-blanketed lava fields to jagged cliffs and pebbled beaches. We bid the bay farewell before we head back to our hotel. Tonight we have another opportunity to discover the mysterious aurora borealis.
Day 5 : Golden Circle of Natural Wonders
Our day is packed with history and natural marvels. Experience the power of Gullfoss Waterfall as glacial water thunders more than 100 feet down a rugged canyon. When the sun is shining you can often witness a bright rainbow over the falls. The Geysir Hot Springs area is packed with bubbling mud pits and explosive geysers including Strokkur, which spouts water 100 feet into the sky every few minutes. The highlight of our Golden Circle tour is Thingvellir National Park, bursting with a storied history and incredible landscape. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is the world’s oldest ongoing parliament, beginning with an annual assembly established by Norse settlers in 930 AD. The area offers dramatic landscapes as it visibly displays how the North American and Eurasian continental plates meet, creating geological phenomena such as bulging lava fields and glacial pools. En route to Hveragerdi we stop at Efstidalur dairy farm and enjoy regional delights, including homemade Skyr, an Icelandic yogurt dessert from the days of Vikings. Our geothermal adventure continues as we enter the Hot Springs Capital of the World at Hveragerdi. Not only is the town brimming with countless hot springs and clay foot baths, but also a large concentration of greenhouses. Residents here provide the country with a vast majority of its homegrown produce, including tropical fruit such as bananas and papayas, thanks to the geothermally heated climate. We stay in the Hveragerdi region this evening and gaze upward for views of the aurora borealis.
Day 6 : Reykjanes Seacoast & Blue Lagoon
Rise and shine for a spectacular coastal drive along Reykjanes Peninsula, a UNESCO Global Geopark. Here we witness the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, the only place in the world it is visible above sea level. Our last day of adventure begins with a relaxing morning at Iceland’s most popular attraction, the Blue Lagoon. Mineral-rich seawater fills the large lake at a constant 102°F. Soak in the lagoon or enjoy the mystical views from the sauna. Don’t miss out on the included silica mud mask or experience the geothermal massage waterfall. We leave the Blue Lagoon feeling refreshed, energized, and silky smooth. Stop for lunch in the fishing town of Grindavik, then see Lake Kleifarvatn, uniquely filled entirely by underground water. We return to Reykjavik and enjoy a Holiday Vacations Farewell Dinner.
Day 7 : Fly Home
KELO TV Pickup Locations:
Rapid City, SD - Rapid City Regional Airport
Sioux Falls, SD - Sioux Falls Regional Airport
Tom Hanson is South Dakota’s most experienced television news journalist. He currently anchors KELOLAND News at 5 p.m. Along with Sioux Falls, he has worked at television stations in Salt Lake City, Colorado Springs, and Rapid City.
He is the recipient of several EMMY awards, including the Silver Circle. The South Dakota Broadcasters Association honored Tom with the Tom Brokaw award. In 2020, the mayor of Sioux Falls named a day in his honor. He has been awarded fellowships from The National Press Foundation, The Carter Center, and the Poynter Institute. Tom is also on the South Dakota Board of Directors for the Alzheimer’s Association.
He grew up in Mitchell and often spent time in Huron and Miller, where his grandparents lived. His wife, Carmen, is originally from Parkston.
Join Tom and KELOLAND viewers on this amazing tour!
Tour days tend to be shorter in length, at a relaxed pace, and include lots of unscheduled time for leisure. Expect standing and walking for extended periods of time on flat surfaces, mostly low altitudes, and consistent temperatures.
Tour days usually move at a leisurely pace. Some days’ scheduled activities last longer than others. Expect standing and walking for long periods of time on occasionally uneven terrain. You may experience changes in altitude or temperature.
Tour days tend to be long, move at a consistent pace, and may include long travel days. Expect standing and walking for long periods of time on uneven surfaces. Some destinations may have changes in altitude and/or temperature.
Tour days tend to be long, move at a brisk pace, and may include lengthy travel days. Expect long periods of walking and standing on uneven surfaces. Scheduled activities may require physical effort or have distinct changes in altitude or temperature.
Tour days tend to be long, move at a vigorous pace, and may include lengthy travel days. Expect long periods of walking and standing on rough surfaces. Scheduled activities may require physical effort or have distinct changes in altitude or temperature.