- A special experience for outdoors and horse lovers
- Enjoy riding Icelandic horses and experience the flying pace, or the "tölt"
- Celebrate a successful round-up with the traditional “réttardansleikur” (ball)
Day 1 1: ARRIVE IN REYKJAVIK - No ridingFlight to Reykjavik and overnight in Reykjavik, ready for your early morning departure the next day (these services are not included but we can book these for you on request).
Day 2 2: Reykjavík – Hvammur – Sveinsstaðir – Hvammur Farm - 25km ridingThe meeting point is the BSI central bus station at 8:30 a.m. Transfer by bus from Reykjavík to Hvammur Farm, where you meet the horses and guides. Visit a factory outlet with woollen goods on the way.
Your first ride will take you through Vatnsdalur valley, the setting of the Vatnsdæla-Saga. You will ride along the banks of River Vatnsdalsá before crossing over to the western side of the valley. Your ride ends at Sveinsstaðir Farm and you return to Hvammur Farm for the night.
Day 3 3: Sveinsstaðir – Dæli – Hvammur - 40km ridingGear up for a long and exciting day in the saddle! Today takes you alongside the Hóp and across the Gljúfurá River, through the countryside of Vestur-Hóp and into the beautiful Víðidalur valley. You follow Víðidalsá River to Dæli Farm where you will leave the horses.
Return to Hvammur farm for the night. The outdoor hot tub is waiting, as well as a hearty dinner.
Day 4 4: Dæli – Kolugil – Víðidalstungheiði – Hvammur - 32 km ridingStart the ascent towards the highland plateau Víðidalstunguheiði and meet the horses coming down from their pastures in the highlands.
Enjoy a warm lunch at a mountain shelter before you join the farmers in driving the herd down from the mountains. Before ending your ride at Dæli Farm, you will stop at Kolugili Farm for refreshments. (32 km, about 8-9 hours including lunch and coffee breaks).
Back to Hvammur farm for the night.
Day 5 5: Víðidalstungurétt – Lake Hóp – Hvammur - 30km ridingYour day starts at the round up place Víðidalstungurétt, where horses are sorted out. An auction is held right on the spot and you can join the farmers in their joyful singing, celebrating the return of their horses. In the afternoon, you join up with your horses close to Borgarvirki and ride towards Lake Hóp. Feel the excitement of the horses as they reach the open plain. The trail leads you right across Lake Hóp, Iceland’s fifth biggest lake, on a safe track across the water. Ride past Thingeyrar, a place of great historical importance and into Vatnsdalur valley. It is time to say good bye to the horses and return to Hvammur. (30 km)
Optional (not included in the tour price):
“Stóðréttardansleikur” dance at Víðihlíð, where everybody relaxes after the excitement of the day and celebrates yet another successful round up.
Day 6 6: REYKJAVIK - HOMEDeparture from the North and return to Reykjavík. Approx. arrival at the BSI at 14:00.
Self-transfer by Flybus to the airport for your flight home (Flybus or international flight not included).
Dates & prices
- Rates are per person, based on riders sharing a 2-4 bedded room. No single supplement and you must be prepared to share.
- Groups consist of 6 to 20 international riding guests plus guides.
- Hotel nights in Reykjavik, and transfers to and from Reykjavik airport are not included in the price for the trip. See https://www.re.is/tour/flybus/ for more information on how to get from the airport to the city centre.
The itinerary may be modified at anytime for security reasons, meteorological or events beyond our control such as blocked roads, rivers in flood, drought, strikes and local holidays. Equus Journeys, our local partners and their local guides will always strive to find the best solution and will alter the itinerary as needed.
The names of the hotels and accommodation are given for information only and depending on availability, they may be modified without notice and replaced by another of a similar standard.
Icelandic expedition leaders
Equipped Icelandic horses
Sleeping bag provided
Tourist sites fees included in the program, except the visit in option on day 5.
Price doesn't include
Meals in Reykjavik
Guide & local team
Minimum riding ability
Minimum riding ability
Rider weight limit is 110kg/17,3 st/242lb
Tacking ability and participation
Trip conditions and Requested experience
Experience of riding a trail over several days would be an advantage but is not essential. Riders who do not ride regularly would need to get back into the saddle before joining this ride.
Hard hats are mandatory. We recommend our riders to wear a helmet to the correct standard and you should bring your own to ensure a proper fit.
You will be provided with a raincoat but should still bring your own warm coats to wear underneath.
Please understand that accommodation in the highlands is always basic, with little privacy, small rooms and limited showers.
Number of rooms: 6 rooms
Number of beds: 2 – 4 beds in each room, altogether max 19
Outdoor jacuzzi: Yes
Number of showers: 2
GSM connection : Yes
Made up beds: Yes
Number of WC: 2
You prepare your own picnic lunch at breakfast time.
Alcoholic beverages are not included in the tour price and are hard to get in the highlands. They can be bought at a reasonable price in the Duty Free Store at Keflavik Airport upon arrival.
There are some important packing considerations for a riding holiday in Iceland. The Icelandic horses have had no contact with other equine species and are not vaccinated. They do not have any resistance to diseases which are common elsewhere in the world and so it is important to take precautions to prevent the spread of infections.
- You should NOT take the following products into Iceland: saddles, bridles, halters, saddle pads, whips, brushes or any leather products which have been in contact with a horse.
- Your riding clothes must be thoroughly cleaned at least 5 days before departure (riding breeches, jumpers, coats, gloves) and should be washed in temperatures of at least 40c.
- Items which cannot be washed at 40c, such as riding hats or leather boots must be thoroughly disinfected at least five days before departure:
1. Wash in detergent.
2. Dry thoroughly
3. Spray with a 1% solution of Virkon detergent (10g per litre of water)
For more details please visit the Icelandic veterinary authority website: www.mast.is/english/frontpage/import-export/import/ridingequipment
- A riding helmet is compulsory and we recommend that you take your own to ensure a correct fit.
- Sunhat for when not riding
- Sunglasses - with a cord attached so they don't fly off when riding
- Buff or bandana for protecting your neck and face from the sun, wind or rain
- Warm hat for cold evenings/days
- Thermals in case of cold weather
- Long sleeved shirts provide protection from the sun or extra warmth
- Down jacket or gilet for cold evenings
- Lightweight fleece or jumper
- Warm polar fleece or equivalent (plus a spare in case one gets wet)
- Waterproof jacket - rain can be difficult to predict and it's better to be prepared. In the mountains the weather can change quickly
- Lightweight, comfortable riding trousers or jodhpurs - we recommend riding in them at home before taking them on holiday to ensure they don't rub. Take two pairs.
- Waterproof over trousers
- Casual clothes for the evenings (jeans or walking trousers)
- Thermal trousers
Hands and Feet
- Comfortable riding boots. Boots should be waterproof as river crossings are a possibility.
- Lightweight shoes or trainers for the evenings
- Several pairs of warm socks
- Gloves - your hands are particularly exposed to the sun, wind or rain whilst riding
- Beds are made up but you may find a sleeping bag liner (silk/cotton/fleece) adds extra comfort
- A small camping pillow
- Slippers (you will have to remove your shoes inside the accommodation)
- An eye mask can help with the 24hr daylight
Other useful items
- Swimsuit - for hot tubs
- Camera and high capacity memory card. Spare battery
- Bumbag for carrying your camera and small items whilst riding
- Headtorch or small torch for moving around at night - bring spare batteries and bulbs
- Water bottle (2 litres or 2 x 1 litre)
- Wet Wipes or equivalent (for when washing facilities aren't available)
- Ear plugs (for light sleepers)
- Sunscreen and lip balm - should be high factor
- Insect repellent
- Any medication you regularly take
- Blister plasters in case of any rubs
- Antiseptic cream, plasters, aspirin, anti-histamine, insect-bite salve etc...
- Spare prescription glasses/contact lenses
- Eye drops
- Imodium or similar anti-diarrhoea medication
- Re-hydration sachets
- Antiseptic wipes
- Handwash gel
- Backpacks cannot be worn whilst riding. We recommend a small bumbag or a coat with pockets so that you can carry small items with you during the day (camera, sunscreen, lipbalm etc)
- We recommend travelling in your riding boots and carrying your hat and some riding clothes in your hand luggage - then if your luggage goes astray you are still able to ride!
- Carry a copy of your passport and insurance documentation with you.
- Travel light. It's a little known fact, but the lighter you pack, the better for the environment as heavy bags will produce higher emissions (when flying a plane or driving a car!).
- Reduce plastic waste. Take your favorite reusable bottle with you. Avoid single-use bags, cups, or straws.
- Preserve nature. Always take your rubbish with you during the ride and recycle them. Leave all the flowers or plants as you found them, and never get too close when observing wildlife. Make sure to use eco-friendly products such as body wash or laundry detergent (if camping) to protect both your skin and the environment.
- Choose your experiences carefully. Respect animal life by not participating in any activities that abuse wild animals (shows, elephant rides, etc.).
- Support local populations. Buy local handicrafts, be respectful of customs, and learn about the culture of local communities.
- Share! Raise awareness among your family and friends about sustainable tourism.
Did you know?
Did you know?
The ancient tradition of the horse round-up is very much kept alive in Northern Iceland. Every autumn, before the cold Icelandic winter sets in, farmers need to bring the herds of young Icelandic horses down from the highlands and back to the farms. This centuries-old tradition takes place every year, and is always a very special occasion for both local farmers and international riders. You ride for long hours and watch farmers sort horses in the corrals before enjoying well-deserved celebrations on the last evening.