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9 Day Landmannalaugar Horseback Riding Tour in South Iceland

Skálakot Manor Luxury Hotel, Skálakoti, 861 Hvolsvöllur, Iceland

Iceland Mountain Horse Riding Tour

This horseback riding tour is suited for experienced riders who are seeking for a real adventure far up in the highlands of Iceland! This tour includes some really long days so it won't always be easy, but in the end, you will be proud that you made it and you will never forget this experience! On the way, see a great diversity in nature and get the chance to try different horses. The highlight is the geothermal hot-spot Landmannalaugar; a spectacular area, famous for its multicolored mountains in green, red, and yellow, and a natural hot spring where you get the chance to "cool off"!

Key Information

  • Rider Weight Limit: 264 pounds / 120 kilograms
  • Horse Height Range: 13 to 14 hands
  • Tack Type: English Tack
  • Horse Breed: Icelandic Horse

Highlights

  • 7 horseback riding days
  • Riding time between 6 and 8 hours per day
  • Icelandic highland area experience
  • Riding helmet and rain clothes use are included
  • Roundtrip BSÍ bus station transport in Reykjavik
  • Daily full board meals are provided
  • 8 nights accommodation

Skill level

  • Advanced

Styles


7 days with instruction
Group size: Maximum of 15 participants
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Accommodation

Check-in Time:
17:00
Check-out Time:
12:00

Day 1: Arrival

  • Accommodation: Skálakot dormitory (sleeping bag accommodation)
  • Facilities: Shared bathroom/shower, hot tub, Wi-Fi

Day 2: Skálakot - Fljótshlíð

  • Accommodation: Skálakot dormitory (sleeping bag accommodation)
  • Facilities: Shared bathroom/shower, hot tub, Wi-Fi

Day 3: Fljótshlíð - Emstrur

  • Accommodation: Mountain hut (sleeping bag accommodation)
  • Facilities: No warm water, limited electricity, limited phone coverage

Day 4: Emstrur - Hólaskjól

  • Accommodation: Mountain hut (sleeping bag accommodation)
  • Facilities: Showers, electricity, limited phone coverage, Wi-Fi

Day 5: Hólaskjól - Landmannalaugar

  • Accommodation: Mountain hut (sleeping bag accommodation)
  • Facilities: Shower, no electricity, limited phone coverage

Day 6: Landmannalaugar Landmannahellir

  • Accommodation: Mountain hut (sleeping bag accommodation)
  • Facilities: Shower, no electricity, limited phone coverage

Day 7: Landmannahellir - Emstrur

  • Accommodation: Mountain hut (sleeping bag accommodation)
  • Facilities: No warm water, limited electricity, limited phone coverage

Day 8: Emstrur - Skálakot

  • Accommodation: Skálakot dormitory (sleeping bag accommodation)
  • Facilities: Shared bathroom/shower, hot tub, Wi-Fi

Day 9: Departure

Program

Day 1: Arrival

You will be picked up in Reykjavík at the BSÍ station at 5 p.m. From there, you will be driven along the south coast to Skálakot. You will have dinner and there is a possibility to relax in the hot tub before going to bed.

Day 2: Skálakot - Fljótshlíð (Riding Distance: 30 kilometers)

Start the day with a good breakfast. Before you leave, the guide will explain everything you need to know about the horses and riding with a herd of loose running horses. In the next days, you will always herd loose horses and make several stops on the way to change horses. You will ride from Skálakot along the mountains of Eyjafjöll, passing the waterfall Seljalandsfoss to "Gamla brú", an old bridge over the river Markarfljót, where you will stop to have lunch.

After the lunch break, continue by crossing the old bridge and then head towards Fljótshlíð in the hills of the glacier and volcano Tindfjallajökull. You will pass Stóri Dímon, the lonely mountain, and end your riding day in Eyvindarmúli, where you will keep your horses over the night. You will be driven back to Skálakot for dinner and overnight stay.

Day 3: Fljótshlíð - Emstrur (Riding Distance: 35 kilometers)

Today the adventure really begins! After you've had your breakfast and everyone has packed their bags, drive to where you left the horses the night before. From there, start to ride into the highlands. The way goes between the two glaciers, Eyjafjallajökull on the right side and Tindfjallajökull on the left side.

With a magnificent view over the Þórsmörk valley and the uplands area of Fljótshlíð, slowly start to climb higher into the mountains. Take a lunch break in the beautiful "cave valley", Hellisvellir. After lunch, keep on climbing and pass the special mountain Einhyrningur (unicorn) before you head to Emstrur where you will have your overnight stay in a nice and cozy mountain hut.

Day 4: Emstrur - Hólaskjól (Riding Distance: 60 kilometers)

This day will be the day where you will ride the most kilometers of all days. But since you will mostly ride over flat paths, which are perfect to tölt on, this will not be the day where you will spend most hours in the saddle. From Emstrur, ride on the 30 kilometers long black sand desert Mælifellssandur, located between the two glaciers Mýrdalsjökull and Torfajökull.

Halfway across the black sand area, pass the beautiful green mountain Mælifell. The landscape there is like being on another planet and seeing this from the back of a fast tölting horse is a great experience! After the Mælifellssandur black sand area, cross the river Hólmsá and follow a gravel road. The surroundings slowly start to become greener and hillier again. End the day by riding through a stunning valley before reaching the mountain hut Hólaskjól where you will spend the night.

Day 5: Hólaskjól - Landmannalaugar (Riding Distance: 38 kilometers)

Today, ride to Landmannalaugar! On your way there, stop by the Eldgjá volcanic fissure, which was formed by the enormous volcanic eruption in 938 B.C. and is around 40 kilometers long. After this stop, ride higher up into the mountains where you will make one more stop before you head down again to the valley where you will have lunch.

After lunch, you will start to recognize the colorful mountains around you as a sign that you are reaching the Landmannalaugar area. Just one big river to cross and then you will be there! Leave the horses in Landmannalaugar for the night, while you take a short drive to Landmannahellir (30 minutes), where you will spend the next two nights.

Day 6: Landmannalaugar - Landmannahellir (Riding Distance: 20 kilometers)

This day starts with a drive back to Landmannalaugar to meet up with the horses. Take it easy in the morning where everyone gets some time to go for a short hike or a bath in the geothermal pool. Around noon, gather up for lunch and after that, start riding again! Continuing into the beautiful area Landmannalaugar, ride around the lake Frostastaðavatn and take a break in the valley Dómadalur before you ride the horses to Landmannahellir, the same place where you already stayed the night before

Day 7: Landmannahellir - Emstrur (Riding Distance: 60 kilometers)

Today, wake up early and have a good breakfast because this will be the longest riding day from the tour. From Landmannahellir, ride over Pokahryggur, climbing up to around 1000 meters above sea level. If the weather is good, the view is incredible and you can see from the sea on the south coast to the big glaciers, Langjökull and Hofsjökull, which are in the center of Iceland.

Ride down through the valley Reykjadalur which is known for the steam that comes up from the ground because of the geothermal activity. Here, take a break to change horses and ride along small sheep trails around the mountain Laufafell to a valley where you will meet the car for lunch.

After lunch, ride to the beautiful lake Álftavatn where you will take one more break before the car leaves again and you can continue your way through the beautiful mountains down to Krókur, and through stunning valleys all the way back to the hut Emstrur, where you also stayed after the second riding day. After this long riding day, a well-deserved dinner will be waiting for you.

Day 8: Emstrur - Skálakot (Riding Distance: 62 kilometers)

From Emstrur, ride all the way back to Skálakot where you started your trip. Riding the same beautiful way as you came, seeing it from another perspective. The horses will be willing and happy to go home, so it makes it rather easy to ride. At the end of this day, the hot tub will be waiting for you and of course, a good dinner.

Day 9: Departure Day

Enjoy one last breakfast together before you are brought back to Reykjavík. You will be dropped off at the BSÍ bus station around 12 p.m.

Riding Level 3

You must be a really experienced rider who is in good physical condition. You can ride different horses in all different gaits and in different terrain. You should not be scared of riding fast or riding steep up and down mountains. You must be prepared to spend long days in the saddle.

Are you not sure if your riding level meets the requirements for the tour you want to do? Or are you not sure which tour matches your riding skills? Don't hesitate to send Skálakot an inquiry for more information.

Location

The Landmannalaugar area is one of the best-known highland areas in Iceland. It is a part of the central volcano Torfajökull with a caldera around 130 kilometers squared in size, the largest in Iceland. The last volcano eruption in the Landmannalaugar area was around the year 1477 when the Laugahraun Lava Field by Landmannalaugar formed. The mountains in the area are made from rhyolite and the combination with the geothermal heat affects the color variations in the rocks making them extremely colorful.

Food

Full board meals are included during the tour. The menu consists of a good breakfast and traditional Icelandic meals. Please let Skálakot know if you have any allergies or dietary wishes. Lunch is prepared out of the breakfast buffet.

Skálakot Restaurant

The Manor Hotel Restaurant offers fine dining with a good selection of dishes made with passion from fresh ingredients. The restaurant has a cozy and relaxing vibe with nice surroundings. The Skálakot is also a nice place to step in for refreshments on your way exploring the waterfalls and black sand beaches of South Iceland. Enjoy a rich and healthy breakfast from 8 to 10 a.m., coffee and delicious cakes in the afternoon, or a romantic candlelit dinner.

Restaurant Hours

  • Breakfast from 08:00 to 10:00
  • Lunch - Open on request (Minimum of eight people)
  • Dinner from 19:00 to 21:30

The following meals are included:

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
  • Drinks

The following drinks are included:

  • Water
  • Coffee
  • Tea

The following dietary requirement(s) are served and/or catered for:

  • Regular (typically includes meat and fish)
If you have special dietary requirements it's a good idea to communicate it to the organiser when making a reservation

Things to do (optional)

Here you can find a selection of some of Skálakot's favorite things to do in the area. A perfect way to enjoy the best nature has to offer with volcanoes, glaciers, and black beaches.

Snowmobile Tour

The famous glacier and volcano Eyjafjallajökull is in a short distance from Skálakot Manor Hotel. It is the perfect place for doing an adventure snowmobile tour. The Glacier Eyjafjallajökull is a small ice cap on the south coast of Iceland and underneath the ice is a volcano with the same name. The volcano erupted in 2010 and the ash from the eruption did affect the air traffic in Europe for a few days.

The volcanic eruption lasted for around five weeks. Now the ice has covered the place where the volcanic eruption took place. A glacier is a great place for doing a snowmobile tour. It is only about a 15-minute drive from the hotel to the snowmobile base. There, they will suit you up and drive with you up to the mountain towards the glacier to the snowmobile location.

The drive is from 30 minutes to one hour, depending on the condition on the mountain, it is a fun ride in a super jeep. From the snowmobile location, you will do snowmobiling on the glacier. It always depends on the condition on the glacier and the weather condition where they will take you. On a nice clear day, you will get amazing views over the south coast.

  • Availability: Every day
  • Departures (Meeting time is 30 minutes before departure): 10:00 - 14:00
  • Duration: 2 - 3 hours (1 hour on snowmobile)
  • Location: From Gljúfrabúi Base (Road 249)
  • Price per person: 26,900 ISK (double ride) | 38,900 ISK (single ride)
  • Skill Level: Easy

Black Beach ATV Tour

The black volcanic beach in South Iceland is one of a kind and to be able to ride there on an ATV is amazing. You get to ride in a diverse landscape, crossing rivers and sandhills all the way to the coastline; to see the Atlantic Ocean hit the coast with all its power and beauty. On your way, you will get the chance to stop by the famous airplane wreck where Justin Bieber rolled on his skateboard in the music video "I’ll Show You".

From the Sólheimasandur black sand area, you head towards the foot of the mountains with a beautiful view of the glacier Mýrdalsjökull and the volcano Katla. In spring and summer, you also have rich birdlife and sometimes, there are seals playing in the ocean.

  • Availability: Every day
  • Departures (Meeting time is 30 minutes before departure): 10:00 - 12:30
  • Duration: 2 hours
  • Price per person: 26,990 ISK (double ride) | 36,990 ISK (single ride)
  • Skill Level: Easy

Glacier Walk

Sólheimajökull glacier is the southernmost glacier in Iceland and a part of the Mýrdalsjökull ice cap and the volcano Katla. The glacier has been melting very fast for the last 20 years, about 55 meters on average a year. So the glacier and the surrounding of the glacier is changing a lot from time to time, making the glacier very interesting in many ways for going on a glacier walk.

Underneath the ice cap Mýrdalsjökull is the volcano Katla, one of Iceland's most active volcano, as well as being one of the most powerful in Iceland. The glacier walk gives you a good idea of how glacier forms and how they developed through time and you are able to see amazing formations on the glacier-like holes and crevasses.

  • Availability: Every day
  • Departures (Meeting time is 30 minutes before departure): 09:30 - 12:30 - 13:00 - 15:30
  • Duration: 2 to 2.5. hours
  • Location: Sólheimajökull glacier (Road 221)
  • Price per person: 8,490 ISK
  • Skill Level: Easy

What's included

  • 7 horseback riding days
  • Daily full board meals
  • Waterproof clothing and riding helmet (if necessary)
  • Transport from and back to the BSÍ bus station in Reykjavík
  • 8 nights accommodation

What's not included

  • Flights to and from Iceland
  • Airport transfers
  • Alcoholic beverages (When staying at Skálakot you can order alcoholic drinks at the hotel bar. When staying in the mountain huts, it is possible to buy beer/wine for a fair price. You can also bring your own alcoholic drinks with you if you want.)
  • Additional activities

How to get there

Recommended Airports

Arrival by airplane

You can fly to Keflavík International Airport (KEF). From this airport, you can take the fly bus to the main bus station in Reykjavík (BSÍ) where Skálakot Manor Luxury Hotel will pick you up at 5 p.m.

Cancellation Policy

  • A reservation requires a deposit of 50% of the total price.
  • The deposit is non-refundable, if the booking is cancelled.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid 29 days before arrival.
9 days / 8 nights
from --

Availability

Arrival: Thursday July 15, 2021
Departure: Friday July 23, 2021

Pricing information

The price per person is 2760 EUR. If you are a group of more than 6 people, please send Skálakot Manor Luxury Hotel an inquiry for more information.

Special Discount

Kids between 10 and 14 years old get a 10% discount.

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