Iceland wintertime circumnavation private group trip
- featuring the classic itinerary of the south coast till Vatnajökull glacier region including icecaves and Jokulsarlon icebergs, combined with a Northern Iceland and Aurora Borealis photography tour visiting Myvatn and Akureyri region
Dates: 04 - 16 February 2015 (11 tour days, 11 nights)
all 10 spaces filled, fully booked
$3550 pp USD or Euro equivalent, all inclusive incl. domestic flight
( This trip is split into two segments, and it is possible to attend just 1 of the segements: $1300 for the Feb 05-08 northern Iceland tour segment, and $2400 for the Feb 9-15 tour segment)
This unique 11 full days/11 nights photography tour and workshop covering both northern and southern Iceland, the legendary land of fire and ice, is meant for outdoor photographers and nature-goers who desire to see and photograph Iceland's beauty in winter, including glacier and ocean landscapes, waterfalls, crystal ice caves, icebergs and glacial lagoons, and above all, giving ourselves unparralled chances and locations to view the Aurora Borealis in all regions of the country. Aurora Borealis viewing depends on 2 main factors: solar activity, and clear weather; a long trip like this gives you the best chances to be in Iceland during these periods of solar outbursts and in various parts of the country should cloudy weather persist over a part of Iceland.
During daylight hours, we utilize the low-angle sun to capture magic light even midday, and photograph a plethora of scenic and rural distinations including glaciers, country churches, waterfalls, horses, and iceberg lagoons. Ice caves unique to Iceland are extraordindary to explore and photograph inside, which have stunning transluscent blue colors, which we'll do with a local ice guide for 1-2 days! Then, in the dark hours of each day, with epic glacial backgrounds and in dark places away from any artifical lights, we'll search the skies and wait to photograph the Aurora Borealis - always with phenomenal landscape backdrops and reflection potential. We will be based out of cozy rural guesthouses along the south coast, the spectacular Vatnajökull glacier region, allowing a comfortable schedule yet filling our days and nights with rewarding photography opportunities all around the island.
We also spend time in northern Iceland - some say the best region in the country for viewing the Aurora Borealis, during the height of the spring soltice, which statistically has the most frequent occuring aurora borealis activity. We will especially photograph the famous geothermal areas of Lake Myvatn Godafoss waterfall, as well as the Tröllskagi Peninsula mountains, based in Iceland's second largest town, Akureyri. The Akureyri region is ideal to view the Aurora Borealis due to it's more northerly latitudes perfectly situated under the Auroral Oval region of greatest auroral activitiy. We will be based out of cozy rural guesthouses in Akureyri and Myvatn regions, and the Snæfellsness Peninsula, creating a packed itinerary schedule and filling our days and nights with rewarding photography opportunities all around the region. Included in the trip price is an internal domestic flight back to Reykjavik at the begining of the partial-one-way itinerary.
Photography Instruction: A long itinerary and private group ensures you will receive ample personal photographic coaching in the field from a full time working pro, and provide an small group adventure experience. This photo workshop is all about in-the-field field photography and situational instruction working alongside your leader, although we can also do image critiquing on client's laptops in the guesthouse on a couple evenings. Each day the group will photograph diverse landscapes and natural wonders of Iceland, in the quiet and peaceful setting of the Icelandic wintertime. Then, each evening and night the group will enjoy good restaurant meals and a cozy guesthouse, while always being prepared to go out and photograph the Aurora Borealis should it occur. The chances of us photographing this phenomenon are very high, given that we're out for seven nights, and way away from the city of Reykjavik and the southern coast of Iceland. Photographic topics that will covered while shooting include nighttime and austral photography, Aurora Borealis photography, classic landscape photography composition and technique, HDR (High Dynamic Range) imagery, panoramic photography, adventure and travel photography, tilt/shift focusing, and slow shutter -speed effects. Our full 6 days and 6 nights of photography potential, allow us to see a variety of well-known Icelandic natural wonders around Akureyri, Lake Myvatn, and the Snæfellsness Peninsula, and combined with austral wonderment, enable each participant to get the most out this once-in-a-lifetime trip. In good daytime weather and clear night skies with aurora potential, winter days can long; sometimes our groups are putting in 15+ hour days!
Pro Leader: Johnathan Esper of Wildernesscapes Photography LLC in the USA will be leading the trip, his 20th in Iceland. Johnathan is a full time photographer and international photo trip leader, and has a unique background and an intimate knowledge of Iceland from living out of a car, exploring and photographing Iceland intensively for months at a time, and he specializes in wide panoramic landscapes and adventure photography in Iceland and the Adirondack region in the USA. Johnathan is also very experienced in leading workshops, having led numerous very successful photography workshops around Iceland since 2011 which are often sold-out, and also sometimes works with the very best native Icelandic photographer, Örvar Þorgeirsson. Örvar will join us as a special guest photographer on one of the days or nights which will be a highlight for everyone, and his images are seen on arcticphoto.is.
Trip Details: The cost of this tour is $3550 USD (or Euro equivalent), all inclusive, and begins in Reykjavik on the morning of 05 Feb 2015 and concludes in Reykjavik on 16 Feb 2015. The trip cost includes domestic airfare from Reykjavik to Akureyri at the beginning of the trip . Also included is all photographic instruction and guiding, all ground and 4x4 transportation in a spacious and luxurious Mercedez Benz Sprinter van, ice cave local guide, all meals and food (breakfast served in our guesthouse, lunches sourced from local cafes or bagged lunches, and hot dinners at our places of accomodation and/or restaurants), and accommodation for 11 nights (in Icelandic guesthouses and country hotels, with private bath). Optional accomodation and potential night aurora shooting starts on the evening of 04 Feb 2015, (Alternate: early arrival on 05 Feb) and the trip concludes morning of 16 Feb. A $500 deposit is due at the time of registration, and the remaining balance is due by the trip start. This tour is open to photographers of skill levels, with rural country and landscape and austral photography interests, and a detailed suggested packing list will be provided. We'll be so immersed in the Icelandic countryside for our entire time as a group, that we have left no time to enjoy the sights of Reykjavik, so we encourage you to stay in Reykjavik for a couple days on your own, either before or after the tour. If you have additional questions, the trip leader will be happy to answer them over the phone or email.
|day #||date||itinerary||accomodation location|
|0||04 Feb. 2015||Optional Arrival to Iceland, day in Reykjavik on your own. Optinal aurora night shooting if present.||Reykjavik (not included)|
|1||05 Feb. 2015||Alt. arrival day, early AM from N. America. Included domestic mid-morning flight from Reykjavik to Akureryi. Myvatn lake and craters, Dimmuborgir and other lava formations, Myvatn nature baths spa (included), possible nighttime or aurora photography over Myvatn formations||Myvatn|
|2||06 Feb. 2015||Myvatn, Krafla, and other geothermal areas. Godafoss waterfall. Optional (not included) super-jeep 4x4 adventure to Aldeyjarfoss waterfall. Possible aurora over Godafoss.||Akureyri|
|3||07 Feb. 2015||Longer drive from Akureyri to Snaefellsness Peninsula, with some photo stops. Snaefellsness Peninsula volcanic and ocean sights including Arnastapi, Budir. Possible Aurora over Kirkjufellsfoss||Grundarfjordur, Snaefellsness Peninsula|
|4||08 Feb. 2015||Snaefellsness Peninsula volcanic and ocean sights including Arnastapi, Budir church, and Kirkjufellsfoss. Possible night shoot with special Icelandic guest photographer Orvar Thorgeirsson||Reykjavik 4-star hotel|
|5||09 Feb. 2015||Golden Circle sights of Gullfoss, Geysir, and Bruarfoss||Vik|
|6||10 Feb. 2015||Longer drive to Skaftafell glacier region, with plenty of photo stops at farms, waterfalls, Eyjafjallajokull, and country rural sights. Possible aurora over Svinafellsjokull glacier||Skaftafell|
|7||11 Feb. 2015||Ice caves full day exploration with a local guide||Jokulsarlon|
|8||12 Feb. 2015||Full day at Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon and iceberg beach areas, and other nearby glacial lagoons||Jokulsarlon|
|9||13 Feb. 2015||Eastfjords exploration around Hofn, Heinabergsjokull, and Vestrahorn. Possible Aurora over Stokkness.||Hofn|
|10||14 Feb. 2015||last sunrise photo op at Jokulsarlon. Skaftafell glacier vistas. Vik seastacks and Dyroleay headland area for sunset and possible aurora locations.||Skaftafell|
|11||15 Feb. 2015||Vik seastacks and Dyroleay headland area for sunrise. Skogafoss and Seljalandsfoss waterfalls, and additional farm scenics. Alt. Night shoot with Icelandic special guest photographer Orvar Thorgeirsson||Reykjavik 4-star hotel|
|12||16 Feb 2015||Departure (included airport dropoff)||n/a|