Iceland – Beyond the Wall

IMG_1295 (Medium)Iceland is an otherworldly place of fire and ice, marooned near the top of the globe, where the mighty forces of nature have created a volatile playground, perfect for a unique adventure riding experience.

Glaciers, lava fields, volcanoes, tundra, geysers, hot springs, waterfalls and fjords form our pristine wilderness landscape, as we explore this island on isolated roadways and stunning coastal routes.  This Iceland Motorcycle Tour is primarily paved road only.  For our mixed on road / off road tour, please go to Iceland – The Arctic Desert.

At a glance

12

Duration (days)

1 7 0 0

Miles Covered

Moderate

Riding difficulty

2%

Unpaved Roads

Small

Culture Shock

At a glance

Duration (days): 12
Miles Covered: 1700
Riding difficulty: Moderate
Unpaved Roads: 2%
Culture Shock: Small

Dates & Prices

Prices shown are based on a rider using their own motorcycle. If you need to rent a motorcycle, there is an additional charge shown.

Date Rider
Shared Room
Single Supplement Passenger
Shared Room
Bike Rental
Aug 9 – 20, 2017 £3,695 £600 £2,495 BMW R 1200 GS: £1,300
BMW F 800 GS: £1,100
BMW F 700 GS: £900

Dates & Prices

Prices shown are based on a rider using their own motorcycle. If you need to rent a motorcycle, there is an additional charge shown.
Date: Aug 9 – 20, 2017
Rider Shared Room: £3,695
Single Supplement: £600
Passenger Shared Room: £2,495
Bike Rental: BMW R 1200 GS: £1,300
BMW F 800 GS: £1,100
BMW F 700 GS: £900
    • Iceland’s Capital, Reykjavik – see the settler building architecture and experience the vibrant downtown bars and restaurants.
    • Ride by Iceland’s geothermal pipeline, an amazing achievement with over 85% percent of houses in Iceland being heated with geothermal energy.
    • Ride past the largest glacier in Europe, Vatnajokull, used by Game of Thrones as a “Beyond the Wall” setting!
    • Cross the spot where the Eurasian and North American Tectonic plates meet in Iceland, literally tearing the island in half at the rate of one centimeter per year
    • Westfjords, the most remote and isolated part of Iceland, where we ride deserted and twisty roads along the fjords. Visit the witchcraft museum and learn about some of the magic of the Westfjords
    • Ride up to the Snaefellsjokull glacier, made famous by Jules Verne in the Journey to the Center of the Earth.
    • Go native with Icelandic cuisine – if fermented shark sounds too extreme, sample smoked puffin, with a shot of Brennivin, an Icelandic Schnapps!
    • Try a dip in geothermally heated pools, as great way to relax after a days ride!

    ROUTE MAP

    Routes show are illustrative and for guidance only – they do not accurately reflect the whole route.

  • Day 1: Arrive Reykjavik
    We collect you from Keflavik Airport and transport you to the Fosshotel in Reykjavik.  Your bike will be waiting at the hotel. There is a Tour Briefing and then we go out for a group Welcome Dinner

    Day 2: Reykjavik to Kirkjubæjarklaustur
    Ride by Iceland’s geothermal pipeline and visit waterfalls, geysers and glaciers along the way.  You will see the original “geysir”, after which all are named and wonder at the mighty Gullfoss, followed by Seljalandsfoss and Skogafoss.  All spectacular, thundering cascades of water.  You’ll also visit the most southern point of Iceland and the Dyrholaey Reserve.

    Day 3: Kirkjubæjarklaustur to Djúpivogur
    Amazing views as you ride towards the largest glacier in Europe, Vatnajokull and the Skaftafell National Park.  Get up close to Svinafellsjokull and hear it cracking and grinding as it moves and melts.  Cross vast glacial plains and head to Glacier Lagoon and Iceberg Beach, where chucks of the glacier break off and float down to the ocean.

    Day 4: Djupivogur to Lake Myvatn
    Stunning, remote landscapes around the north of the island.  Stop off at Hverir, a geothermal spot with mud pots and fumaroles – smell the sulphur!  We detour to Dettifoss, Europe’s most powerful waterfall and then spend the night on the southern shores of Lake Myvatn,

    Day 5: Lake Myvatn to Akureyri
    It is a short riding day to give you the afternoon free to enjoy Iceland’s 2nd city or to take a whale watching tour.  It’s also possible to take a boat trip to Grimsey Island – the only part of Icelandic Territory that is on the Arctic Circle.

    Day 6: Akureyri to Laugarbakki
    Ride along the Eyjafordur, with great coastal views to Siglufjordur, before reaching a perfectly preserved turf farmhouse, Glaumbaer.  You can divert to see the Seal Centra in Hvammstangi, before reaching our riverside hotel.

    Day 7: Laugarbakki to Heydalur
    Now we head to the Westfjords, the most remote and isolated part of Iceland.  There are some small sections of good graded unpaved road on this section, easily done by a road bike.  In Holmavik, you can visit the small witchcraft & sourcery museum and learn about some of the magic of the Westfjords.  We stay overnight on a traditional farm, that has some wonderful “hotpots” to soak in.  You can try horse riding and kayaking here too.

    Day 8: Heydalur to Pingeyrie
    We wind in and out of the fjords and the possibility of spotting whales along the coast.  This is simply stunning coastal riding and we can stop off in Isafjordur for a fish lunch before reaching the tiny town of Pingeyrie.  This is where the paved road stops and is as far as we go. We stop at a simply hotel and have a group evening dinner tonight.

    Day 9: Pingeyrie to Bjarkarlundur
    We retrace our tracks through the Westfjords – such different views in the opposite direction, then head across the peninsula to the remote stop of Bjarkalundur – you can take a small ride out to Reykholar to see the lighthouse.

    Day 10: Bjarkarlundur to Langaholt Snaefellsnes
    Headng south, we rejoin Ring Road 1 to Borganes – stop here to see the wonderful Settlement Centre.  Then ride onto the Snaefellsnes Peninsula and loop round the Snaefellsjokull Glacier, made famous by Jules Verne in the 1865 novel, “Journey to the Center of the Earth”

    Day 11: Langaholt Snaefellsnes to Reykjavik
    We rejoin the road to Borganes and take a loop to Reykholt, where you can visit the Snorrastofa Museum.  Pingvellir – see the continental drift and the ancient place where Iceland’s chieftains first met to create what is now the oldest existing parliament.  Then we head into Reykjavik for our group Farewell Meal.

    Day 12: Depart Reykjavik
    Transfer to airport for flight home.

  • It is important to understand that other than Akureyri (18,000 popn) and Greater Reykjavik (200,000 popn), all other settlements in Iceland are very small. Places marked in large, bold writing may be villages of 200 – 1,500 people. Places marked on a map can look as if they will be towns, but they are only a family homestead or a ranch. Some hotels are on the map in their own right as they consist of a hotel, a restaurant (maybe a petrol pump) and that’s it. Outside the greater Reykjavik area in the South West and Akureryi, everywhere is Iceland is remote and quiet, dominated by farms and fishing activities.

    International hotel chains only exist in Reykavik; outside of this area there are some small Iceland hotel chains such as Fosshotel and IcelandAir (with 8-10 hotels), but after that, pretty much all accommodation is family run and do not have an official star ratings.

    In Reykjavik, we stay at an excellent 4* hotel. However, once we leave Reykjavik, the accommodation varies, but we always aim for it to be an equivalent 3* standard. It has been chosen to reflect the area we are in; sometimes it is the only accommodation available in the area that can accommodate a group of our size. On other occasions the location of the accommodation is stunning and the local food served is excellent, whilst the rooms may be more basic, but clean and tidy.  Sometimes rooms do not have televisions.  Wifi is available at all hotels, but in remote locations, you need to expect it to be slow and not consistent.

    Just a note about the sleeping arrangements and what is the norm in Iceland. Beds are often single beds which are pushed together (for a double bed) or pulled “apart” (for two single beds), depending on the type of bed you have requested. Two single beds for people who are sharing, can still often be pushed close together. Please feel free to pull the beds away from each other! You should also note that it is normal to have two separate sleeping duvets for a couple using one large bed (one large duvet is just not the way it is done in Iceland).

    Rooms will be on a double occupancy shared basis, unless you have booked for a Single Room. Peak season in Iceland means a single room needs to have been requested at the time of making your booking to ensure  availability.

  • Before you go

    • Access to GlobeBusters Team pre-departure to request individual meeting about preparing for the trip
    • Departure Handbook, with maps, daily route notes and GPS information where available

    En Route

    • Airport Transfers at the start and end of the Tour, if you arrive on the official start date and leave on the official end date.
    • Hotel bed and breakfast accommodation on a shared basis (unless Single Room booked).
    • Standard of accommodation is a mix of equivalent standard 3* hotels, with a 4* hotel in Reykjavik.  Some accommodation may be in cabins.  Not all locations have rooms with television.  All hotels have restaurants and bars.
    • 2 evening meals, including your Welcome & Farewell Meal and 1 evening meal in a location which is remote and you have no other choice of restaurants.
    • Local overnight hotel parking charges.
    • Entrances to National Parks are free.

    Support Crew

    • GlobeBusters Tour Leader to accompany the group
    • Specialist Icelandic guide as Support Driver
    • Local support vehicle, with mobile phone, medical kit, water, tools and some spares.

    Motorcycle Freight

    • Sea freight of your motorcycle from UK to Iceland return, with all Customs formalities.
    • In transit marine insurance for your motorcycle during freight, subject to £500 excess
  • What riding experience do I need?
    This is a paved road tour, with short sections of dirt road to reach some overnight accommodation.  Traffic levels are extremely low with good driving standards. Iceland can have changeable weather conditions all year; however July and August are the best times for motorcycle touring.  We recommend this Tour for riders who have toured previously in Europe and are confident road riders.

    How does the motorcycle freight work?
    Your tour price includes the freight of your motorcycle from the UK to Rekyjavik.  You must bring your bike to our shipping depot (close to Grimsby, UK) for sea freight out to Iceland.  The drop off for you motorcycle is normally around 10-12 days prior to the start date.  We will load the container and once it arrives in Iceland we do the Customs procedures and take you bike to the hotel so it is waiting for you.  At the end, we take your bike back to the shipping depot in Iceland for sea freight back to the UK.

    Can I hire a bike?
    If you are not based in the UK and want to take part in this tour, you can hire a BMW GS motorcycle from our local Travel Partner.  Just book this option.

    What about flights?
    We do not include flights in your tour price.  You must book your own passenger flights to arrive / depart Rekyjavik.  From the UK, there are direct flights from London, Aberdeen, Belfast, Manchester with a combination of Iceland Air, British Airways, Easyjet, WOW.  Book your flight to arrive no later than 2pm then send us your flight details and, provided you are arriving on the official start date, we will collect you from the airport and transfer you to the hotel.  We also take you back to the airport at the end, provided you are departing on the official end date. 

    Do I have to ride in a group?
    No!  We do not make you ride in convoy.  We offer you the freedom to decide how you would like to ride.  We give you a road book, GPS co-ordinates and hotel information.  You can use this to self-navigate.  If you prefer to ride with our Motorcycle Leader, then you can do this – just inform the Motorcycle Tour Leader and be ready to ride at the leave time in the morning.

    What is the average group size?
    Our groups are normally 10 – 12 riders (some riders will have passengers).

    Is this ride suitable for a passenger?
    Absolutely.  This is a paved road tour, with a good standard of accommodation.  We have a support vehicle, which can be used by a passenger (but subject to any ongoing emergency, ill or injured party)

    Is there a support vehicle?
    Yes, this tour operates with a local support vehicle and driver.

    What documents do I need?
    You will need your original documents as follows:  Passport, Driving Licence, Motorcycle Registration / Title Document (in the UK, V5, log book), Motorcycle Insurance Certificate.  We will need you to upload copies of these documents to our secure website so that we can make the necessary freight arrangements.  In addition you must have travel/medical insurance. Visas are not required for UK/EU citizens.  For other nationalities, please check with our preferred visa agency www.thevisamachine.com.