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Things to do in Akureyri

Our most recommended things to do in Akureyri

Akureyri: 3-Hour Classic Whale Watching Tour

1. Akureyri: 3-Hour Classic Whale Watching Tour

Experience the majestic beauty of the Eyjafjord's humpback whales and other marine life in their natural habitat on a cruise trip from Akureyri. Listen to your guide's commentary and discover how the warmth of the summer sun brings vibrant life and plenty of food for the larger-than-life mammals.  Benefit from the services of specially-trained whale watching guides who are experts at spotting the animals. Listen as they tell you about the behavior of the whales and answer any questions you may have. Journey aboard the only specially-modified, high-speed whale watching ship in Iceland. Capable of carrying 200 people, it provides spectacular views from its cinema-style viewing platforms. Relax aboard the boat and enjoy the ample indoor and outdoor seating. Purchase drinks and snacks along the way from the onboard bar and cafeteria. Experience a pleasant and comfortable ride, even at speed, and share your adventure live on social media with free Wi-Fi.

Akureyri: 2–Hour Whale Watching Express by RIB Speedboat

2. Akureyri: 2–Hour Whale Watching Express by RIB Speedboat

Enjoy a 2-hour whale and bird watching tour starting from the floating pier in Akureyri. Experience and get close to the incredible humpback whales of the Eyjafjord, starting from the capital of North Iceland, Akureyri. With only 12 passengers on each boat, take part in an adventure of a lifetime on an intimate whale watching tour.   The specially made RIB boats allow you to get closer to the whales and wildlife than any other boat can offer. The RIBs are fast and small boats that will also get you quicker to the whales and cover a bigger area as you search for the wild life. This means a bigger chance of spotting whales, dolphins and bird life with out disturbing them in their natural habitat. If you have a passion for nature and love for adventure, this is the tour for you.

From Akureyri Port: Lake Mývatn Shore Excursion

3. From Akureyri Port: Lake Mývatn Shore Excursion

Benefit from pick-up from your cruise ship in Akureyri Port, and then drive to Lake Mývatn and the surrounding wetlands area near Krafla volcano. Stop at Goðafoss waterfall and hear about its important role in the history of Iceland. Continue to the pseudo craters of Skútustaðagígar, formed when hot flowing lava met with ice-cold water from the lake. See the lava fields of Dimmuborgir, rich in mythical sagas and stunning to look at for the lava pillars and rock formations.   Discover the thermal waters of an underground river at Grjotagja, where you will stand on the continental rift between Europe and America. End with a look at the boiling mud pools of Hverir and gaze in awe at the steaming fumaroles and sulfur pits. Return to Akureyri Port at least 1 hour before your ship’s departure for the end of the tour services.

Akureyri: Day Trip to Goðafoss, Lake Mývatn & Nature Baths

4. Akureyri: Day Trip to Goðafoss, Lake Mývatn & Nature Baths

Explore the natural beauty of Iceland during a day tour of Goðafoss Waterfall and Lake Mývatn. Visit a local hot spring and bathe in the soothing water of the nature baths. Leave Akureyri and drive along the scenic coast of Eyjafjordur, one of the longest fjords in the country. The first stop will be Goðafoss, a breathtaking 39-foot-tall waterfall, located in the Skjálfandafljót River. Next, head to Lake Mývatn, whose landscape is dominated by volcanic landforms due to a lava eruption 2,300 years ago. Continue on to the cave of Grjótagjá and stop at the hot spring area at Hverarönd in Námaskarð. Take advantage of the opportunity to relax in the steam baths and geothermal water of Mývatn Nature Baths. On the way back to Akureyri, see the unique lava formations of Dimmuborgir and the pseudocraters of Skútustaðagígar. The last stop will be in Eyjafjordur where you will have time to take plenty of photos with the fjord as your backdrop.

Akureyri: 3-Hour Northern Lights Tour

5. Akureyri: 3-Hour Northern Lights Tour

After being collected from your nearby hotel, you will drive out to the countryside or up to the mountains, away from electric glow and city sounds. Out here you will be able to enjoy the beautiful night sky at the best possible situation, of course depending on the weather. Also called Aurora Borealis, the Northern Lights are a natural phenomenon visible only in the far northern hemisphere. They are a unique display of light caused by a particle collision in the magnetic field of the polar caps. Your goal is not only to find the right sights for best photograph, but also to take your time to enjoy this fragile single moment that will never come again, but you may well remember for the rest of your life.

From Akureyri: Lake Mývatn & Goðafoss Waterfall Day Trip

6. From Akureyri: Lake Mývatn & Goðafoss Waterfall Day Trip

Explore the natural beauty of Iceland during a day tour of Goðafoss Waterfall and Lake Mývatn. The tour starts with a drive and photo stops along the scenic coast of Eyjafjordur, one of the longest fjords in the country. The first stop will be at Goðafoss, a breathtaking 39-foot-tall waterfall, located in the Skjálfandafljót River. From Goðafoss Waterfall the tour continues to Lake Mývatn driving around the lake stopping at Pseudo Craters, Lavafields, Geothermal mud pools and the Divergent Plate Tectonics. A lunch stop at a local restaurant before continuing the sightseeing around the Lake Depending on the Cruise Ship's departure time from Akureyri Port an additional option can be to stop at the Myvatn Nature Baths for a relaxing soak in the geothermal pool.

From Akureyri: Lake Mývatn and Goðafoss Shore Excursion

7. From Akureyri: Lake Mývatn and Goðafoss Shore Excursion

A great tour around the lake Mývatn area where we see how the power of nature has formed the country and how it's still working beneath our feet. We explore beautiful spots and enjoy the stunning scenery along the way. We start our tour in Akureyri and drive east towards the beautiful Goðafoss waterfall, where we'll make our first stop. The waterfall is a place of significant historic value connected with when Icelanders took Christianity. We continue east from Goðafoss; we'll pass through the valley of Reykjadalur and head to Skútustaðir, where we see the pseudocraters. Our next stop is the stunning lava formations at Dimmuborgir. Dimmuborgir were formed about 2300 years ago when a partly cooled lava lake drained out and left magnificent basalt pillars and sculptures. After a short walk in Dimmuborgir, we'll travel to Grjótagjá, which was a popular underground bathing cave until the volcanic eruptions at Krafla 1975-1984. Those eruptions heated the water in the cave, so now it's too hot to bathe there. We now continue through the Námaskarð pass and go to the Hverarönd fumarole fields, a spectacular area showing the earth's inner power. After this, we'll be heading back towards Akureyri; if time, weather and conditions allow, we'll find some good places to stop for pictures

Akureyri: Northern Lights 4WD Day Trip with Hot Chocolate

8. Akureyri: Northern Lights 4WD Day Trip with Hot Chocolate

Increase your chances of seeing the northern lights with this guided tour that includes hotel pickup and drop-off in Akureyri. Travel to areas where there are peak viewing conditions in a comfortable minibus and a climate-controlled, all-terrain vehicle.  Hop aboard a mini bus and transfer to a jeep or super truck. Go out of town to the countryside, away from the bright lights of the city so that the Northern Lights can be seen in all their beauty and colors.  Listen as your local guide shares Icelandic tales during the journey on this magical tour. Sip on a tasty and warming cup of hot chocolate while you soak up the Icelandic night. Return to your accommodation in Akureyri at the end of your tour.  Skip the stress of missing the northern lights, on a tour that offers a complimentary second try tour on the following night if no lights are spotted. 

Reykjavik: Winter 8-Day Small Group Circle of Iceland Tour

9. Reykjavik: Winter 8-Day Small Group Circle of Iceland Tour

Your 8-day Icelandic adventure begins with pickup from Reykjavik, then sets out along the Golden Circle, passing by Gullfoss Waterfall, Geysir, and Þingvellir National Park. As you admire the hot water spouting from the earth, learn about the history of Iceland from your expert guides. On day 2, visit the waterfalls of Skogafoss and Seljalandsfoss where you can walk behind the cascades, and hike on an ancient glacier. The highlight of the day is a trip to the world-famous black sand beach at Reynisfjara. Explore Skaftafell National Park on day 3 and marvel at the white sheets of ice as they contrast against the stark black sand. Afterward, explore an Ice Cave and blocks of ice floating in the glacier lagoon of Jökulsárlon. Spend the evening looking out for the stunning Northern Lights, a truly once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. On day 4, follow your guides through the East Fjords in search of native wildlife such as wild reindeer. As you pass by Lake Lagarfljót, where a monster is said to live, learn about the culture and way of life in the nearby small villages. After a cozy night’s stay in a sleepy Icelandic village, explore the geothermal region of Lake Mývatn and see the lava pillars of Dimmuborgir. Then continue to the Námaskarð Pass where the earth boils and bubbles in front of your eyes. On day 6, visit the fjord of Eyjafjörður, spend some time getting to know local farmers at Kaffi Kú, and stop by Hauganes for a Whale Watching Tour. Try some Icelandic delicacies if you fancy it, then stay overnight in Borgarnes. On day 7, explore the capital of the north at your own leisure, before heading out to the Saga Trail to visit Reykholt where the medieval poet Snorri Sturluson lived. On day 8, see the incredible Snæfellsjökull glacier on Snæfellsnes Peninsula and marvel at the breathtaking scenery that surrounds you. Enjoy an optional underground tour of the Vatnshellir Lava Cave. In the evening, you’ll return back to Reykjavik, where your 8-day adventure ends.

From Reykjavik: Winter 6-Day Small Group Tour of Iceland

10. From Reykjavik: Winter 6-Day Small Group Tour of Iceland

Your Icelandic adventure begins with pickup from Reykjavik and heads out along the Golden Circle. Marvel at the natural landmarks of Gullfoss Waterfall and Geysir and Þingvellir National Park, admire hot water spouting from the earth, and learn about the history of Iceland while you travel. Spend your first night at a cozy hotel on the South Coast. On day 2, visit the waterfalls of Skogafoss and Seljalandsfoss, where you can walk behind the cascades for a truly breathtaking experience. From here you'll embark on a hiking tour to a nearby ancient glacier before heading back to the black sand beach at Reynisfjara. Spend the night in the small village of Vík, and enjoy free time in the evening to explore the local area or mingle with your fellow travelers. On day 3, discover Skaftafell National Park, where glistening white sheets of ice contrast against the stark black sand. Afterward, take a tour of a stunning ice cave and see huge blocks of ice floating in the glacier lagoon of Jökulsárlón. Spend the evening looking for the world-famous Northern Lights, a truly once-in-a-lifetime experience. Day 4 takes you on a wildlife exploration through the East Fjords in search of wild reindeer and other native animals. Next, learn about the culture and way of life of nearby local villages then pass by Lake Lagarfljót, where a monster is said to live! Marvel at the forests of Hallormsstaðaskógur before spending the night at a sleepy village. Explore the geothermal region of Lake Mývatn on day 5 and see the lava pillars of Dimmuborgir. Continue to the Námaskarð Pass to gaze at the earth boiling and bubbling before your eyes, then spend the night in Akureyri, the Capital of the North. Finally, on day 6, wander along the breathtaking fjord of Eyjafjörður and visit Kaffi Kú to get to meet local farmers. You'll stop by Hauganes for a whale watching tour, included in this adventurous getaway. At the end of a busy and exciting 6-day trip, travel back to Reykjavik where your adventure comes to an end.

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What people are saying about Akureyri

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 920 reviews

We had a good experience. Guide was at the port on time and did a good job explaining the stops and moving things along. The guide was friendly and we never felt rushed. First stop, Goðafoss waterfall. I love waterfalls, and Iceland has no shortage of them. I’ve seen a lot of waterfalls in my life and this one is up there. Next, Skútustaðagígar to see the pseudo craters. Many hiking trails around these craters and it was beautiful. Also, we got to taste some authentic lamb stew! At the entrance of the craters, there’s a little Café shop called Kaffi Sel. They sell this amazing lamb stew (unlimited refills) and some local beer. I had lamb stew at some other ports in Iceland, but this one was the best (and cheapest). Next, Dimmuborgir. This area is made of lava fields, with various rock formations and caves. This is one of Iceland’s most popular attractions due to its unique looking rocks, the folklores, and the filming of Game of Thrones. Much more to say but I'm out of space.

We were on that tour with our guide, Sindri. So besides lots of pictures of breathtaking nature, we have returned with a sizeable amount of knowledge in Icelandic History and Present, Sagas and Science. Not to forget all the hilarious stories we have been told, that even forced me to take notes to assure I would be able to repeat! Accommodations were all nice and comfortable, including one really unique experience of a night in a fairytale home of the past. All in all a perfect, unforgettable tour, last but not least thanks to our really fabulous guide!

So so cool! We saw about 20 whales on our visit and one was a super close encounter. Great amenities on board the ship including food, drinks and overalls. Highly recommend!

Super good if you have rented a car and the information is always played automatically. Interesting information.

The tour guide was very interesting and saw different scenery.