The road around Iceland is called the Ring Road or Hringvegurinn in Icelandic and is route number 1. It is 1,332 kilometers (828 mi) long which means you could technically drive it all in one day but where is the fun in that?
Ring road: clockwise or anti-clockwise?
The first thing you need to decide is if you are going to drive the road clockwise or anti-clockwise. It does not change anything which way you start to go. It would, however, be bad if you started going one way realizing your hotel or guesthouse was in the other direction, which you will have to book beforehand, especially during the summer months. If you are going to camp, you have more freedom, and there are many camping grounds around Iceland but note that most of them are closed over the winter months, and we do not recommend you camp then.
How long does it take to drive the ring road in Iceland?
Most people drive the ring road in seven days and ten days if they add the West Fjords into the mix. Which we highly recommend. You can, of course, spend more or less time, it all depends on how much you want to see. Note that it takes a lot longer in winter due to weather and road conditions.
For South Iceland, you will be able to stop at the waterfalls Seljalandsfoss and Skógafoss. Also, Reynisfjara black beach, Fjaðrárgljúfur, Sólheimajökull glacier, Sólheimasandur desert with the famous plane wreck and Jökulsárlón. The highlands of East Iceland are spectacular. Especially outside of reindeer season because then you can see them close to human habitation.
In North Iceland, you will find Dettifoss waterfall, Lake Mývatn and the Nature Baths and hot springs. Also, Goðafoss, the town of Akureyri with its many museums. In West Iceland, you will find the Golden Circle, Kerið and Snæfellsnes peninsula.
If you add the West Fjords to your itinerary, we recommend you look at Dynjandi waterfall. Don’t forget Rauðisandur (Red Sand) and Látrabjarg cliff.
These are, of course, only a few of the beautiful and fun places to visit in Iceland.