Tips for Doing the Golden Circle, Iceland, With Kids

When you’re in Iceland, the Golden Circle is a must-do activity.  There are plenty of guided tour groups that do the circle, but the only way I would do it is with a rental car so you can stop along the way to explore.  The circle can be done in a few hours and is a short distance from Reykjavik.  Here are some tips for doing the Golden Circle with kids:

Stop #1: Thingvellir National Park

Parliament would meet here to create laws, argue about politics, and even execute prisoners.  They would also throw one heck of a party during their meetings.  Fans of Game of Thrones might recognize it since some episodes were filmed here. The landscape is rugged, dramatic, and gorgeous.

You can also see the beautiful Oxarafoss Waterfall here.

Some Tips about Thingvellir National Park:

-Wear sturdy shoes since some of the terrain may be rocky or wet. 

-There are rest stops before the park that serve food and have bathroom facilities.

-There is no charge to enter the park and there is a parking area.

-On the way there, you might want to talk to your kids about why the park is so historic.  It will be more meaningful if they can paint a picture of the Vikings that met there. 

Stop @2: Geysir

Before you approach the main geyser, you will see lots of bubbling, steaming pools of water.  The smell of sulfur fills the air and you can imagine all the activity that is going on under your feet.

Next stop will be Strokkur…the main attraction.  Just follow the crowds.  This is the big guy everyone comes to see since it erupts every 5-10 minutes into a fantastic display of water and smoke soaring through the sky.

Some Tips about Geysir:

-There is food available at the visitor center.  We had some tasty ice cream here. There was a soup restaurant that looked delicious. 

-There are bathroom facilities here.

-There is no charge to enter the park and there is a large parking area.

-Before you get there, you may want to remind your kids it’s important they stay on the paths since it is dangerous to go on the unpaved areas.

-You may also want to explain to kids what causes the geysers to erupt the way they do.  They will be fascinated to hear the science behind it.

Stop #3: Gullfoss Waterfall

When it comes to waterfalls in Iceland, this one is hard to beat!!  The falls are known as the Golden Falls and they certainly are a treasure.  It is pretty much impossible to get a bad picture here because the view will leave you in awe.  Make sure you take the path to the top section of the falls to get a different perspective.  Just look at how amazing these falls are…

We were even lucky enough to see a rainbow while we were there!

Some Tips about Gullfoss Waterfall:

-You might want a waterproof camera or a protective case for your phone.  If the wind is blowing you may get wet.  You may want a rain coat for the same reason.

-Wear sturdy shoes because the path may be wet and slippery because of the mist.

-Remind your kids of safety rules like ‘stay away from the edge.” There are often a lot less safety requirements in countries outside the US.

-There is no charge to enter the park and there is a parking area.


Leave a Reply