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Iceland Photography

There are few landscapes in Europe more captivating than those of Iceland. On this incredible tour, you'll spend eight days roaming the Land of Fire & Ice, photographing everything from glacial lagoons and thundering waterfalls to moss-covered lava flows and the dancing lights of the aurora borealis

Iceland-Sep23 ©William Gray-Jokulsarlon 3.jpg

Join a group of like-minded enthusiasts on a small-group photography tour capturing the dramatic landscapes of South Iceland. Accompanied by award-winning photographer William Gray, you’ll spend a week focusing on an incredible line-up of locations – from iconic natural wonders, like Diamond Beach and Vestrahorn to hidden gems, such as Bruarfoss and the Mulagljufur Canyon. 

Stunning photography locations along Iceland’s south coast

• Autumn colours and peak period for northern lights activity

• Full-day super jeep tour into the Thorsmork valley

• Accompanied by professional photographer William Gray

• Small group size of 6-8 people, ensuring plenty of one-to-one tuition

• Transport in a comfortable minibus with local driver/guide

• Run in partnership with leading Iceland specialists Discover the World

Why this trip?

Designed to coincide with the autumn equinox – often peak time for aurora activity – and optimal moon cycle (for dark night skies), we will aim to photograph the northern lights whenever conditions are favourable. Late September and early October in Iceland is also renowned for excellent light during the day, not to mention early autumn colour, some potentially ‘exciting’ conditions for seascape photography, and fewer crowds following the busier summer period.


An exclusive full-day 4WD superjeep tour to photograph the canyons, glaciers and rivers of the Thorsmork valley is included and, depending on volcanic activity, an excursion to photograph a live eruption on the Reykjanes Peninsula is not out of the question. To help you get the most out of your photography, there will be talks and demonstrations by Will, who will always be on hand to offer one-to-one advice during the tour – whether it’s long exposure techniques for waterfalls or aerial photography using your drone. In 30+ years as a journalist and photographer, Will has travelled all over Iceland and has recce’d this trip to compile the best combination of photographic experiences.

  • Day 1: Arrive in Iceland Reykjavik
    After arriving at Keflavik airport, transfer to Reykjavik. At 6pm, the group will meet at our hotel for introductions and a tour briefing, followed by a welcome dinner. There will also be an opportunity for night-time photography at classic city sights, such as the Hallgrimskirkja cathedral and Sun Voyager Viking ship sculpture. Or, if there is ‘tourist-safe’ volcanic activity on the Reykjanes Peninsula, we will arrange a night photography shoot of the eruption. Overnight: Center Hotel Plaza, Reykjavik A stylish hotel, the 200 room Hotel Plaza is found in the heart of the old town, next to a wide selection of restaurants and shops.
  • Day 2: Golden Circle and Hotel Ranga
    Early this morning, our local driver/guide will arrive in a 16-seater minibus to collect us from the hotel. Heading east, we’ll explore some of the lesser-known spots on the Golden Circle (such as Faxi and Bruarfoss) as well as more popular sites like Gullfoss. It’s the perfect introduction to photography in Iceland, allowing you to hone techniques for shooting waterfalls and volcanic landscapes. Lunch will be at one of the cafés in the area (own expense). We’ll arrive at Hotel Ranga, near Hella, after sunset. Once we’ve settled into the comfortable riverside lodge, there will be a talk on the northern lights and technique briefing from Will before dinner, so that we’re well prepared for photographing the aurora borealis if and when it appears during the week ahead. If conditions are good, we will aim to shoot the northern lights at every opportunity. After dinner at Ranga’s superb restaurant, we can also visit the hotel’s state-of-the-art observatory and learn about the night sky from the resident astronomy expert. Overnight: Hotel Ranga Around an hour's drive from Reykjavik, this cosy riverside lodge offers four-star comfort and fine dining in the volcanic heart of rural Iceland.
  • Day 3: Thorsmork Super Jeep Tour
    A fabulous chance to get a taste of the rugged scenery of Iceland’s interior, today’s 8-9hr, 4WD super jeep tour takes us deep into the Thorsmork valley. Exclusive to our group and tailored to suit photographers, with longer stops at each location, we will explore narrow canyons, ford shallow meltwater rivers and walk up to glaciers on the slopes of the infamous Eyjafjallajokull volcano. The photographic potential is superb. A light lunch is included in the tour at Volcano Huts and we’ll also schedule a dusk photography stop at Seljalandsfoss at the end of the tour so that you can tackle the classic shot of the sun setting behind the horsetail plume of the waterfall. After returning to Hotel Ranga, it’s around an hour’s drive to the coastal town of Vik. Overnight: Hotel Kria, Vik Hotel Kria is a 3-star property located in a prime location along the south coast.
  • Day 4: Vik's black-sand beach and Vatnajokull National Park
    Having spent the night in Vik, we’re in prime position this morning for a sunrise shoot at the famous black-sand beach of Reynisfjara, where sea stacks form a striking focal point. After returning to our hotel for breakfast and collecting pack lunches (included), it’s a two-hour drive east along the stunning south coast with stops to photograph the vast, moss-covered Eldhraun lava field and the extraordinary Fjadrargljufur canyon. We’ll aim to reach Svinafellsjokull (one of the outlet glaciers flowing from the Vatnajokull icecap) by late afternoon – perfect for photographing the rich colours of the tundra and deep blues of the ice. Overnight: Hotel Skaftafell The Hotel Skaftafell makes an ideal stopping off point for excursions into the park, out onto the glacier and to the area's iconic waterfalls.
  • Day 5: Jokulsarlon and Mulagljufur Canyon
    Early wake-up and drive 40 minutes to Jokulsarlon for a sunrise shoot at Breidamerkursandur, the famed Diamond Beach where fragments of ice that have drifted out to sea from the glacial lagoon are washed onto a black-sand beach – often polished and sculpted into abstract shapes that catch the dawn sunlight beautifully. We’ll capture this natural spectacle with our cameras, using long exposures to accentuate movement in the waves. After breakfast at the Glacier Lagoon Café (own expense), we have several hours this morning to photograph the surreal landscapes at Jokulsarlon glacial lagoon (just across the road from Diamond Beach), plus details of icebergs and, if we’re lucky, seals and seabirds. In the afternoon, conditions and weather permitting, we’ll embark on a 3-4hr round-trip hike to the breathtaking and little-visited Mulagljufur Canyon. Returning to our hotel, we’ll have a Lightroom session before dinner and a chance to review images taken on the trip so far. Overnight: Hotel Skaftafell
  • Day 6: Jokulsarlon and Vestrahorn
    Another opportunity to photograph sunrise at Diamond Beach, making any tweaks to technique that we learned from our image review last night. We’ll then drive 60 minutes to Hofn, with a detour en route to Heinabergsjokull to photograph another glacial lake and search for wild reindeer. Continuing to Vestrahorn, we’ll scope out viewpoints and compositions, exploring the rich textures of black dunes crowned with golden grasses, and the wonderful reflections cast by the mountains on wet sand. With luck, sunset will reward us with ideal light. We’ll have a snack at the wonderful Viking Café at Vestrahorn (own expense) before venturing back outside at dark to try our luck with photographing the northern lights over the iconic dragon-back peaks. It could be a late drive back to our hotel, 30 minutes away – but well worth it if the aurora has put on a good display! Alternatively, depending on the aurora forecast, we will return to the hotel for dinner, then drive back to Vestrahorn for a late-night northern lights shoot. Overnight: Hotel Smyrlabjorg Set in a rural location west of Hofn and within easy reach of the Jokulsarlon glacial lagoon, this friendly farm hotel offers a wide selection of well furnished, mostly modern rooms, with private bathrooms.
  • Day 7: Return west along coast road towards Vik
    By staying at Hotel Smyrlabjorg we’re half-way between Jokulsarlon and Vestrahorn, so we can decide, depending on weather conditions and the group’s preference, which to visit for our early morning photography today. After returning to the hotel for check-out, we’ll collect pack lunches (included) before driving 2hrs 45mins west, stopping at sites missed on the eastbound leg of the tour due to time or weather – such as Hofskirkja turf church and Lomagnupur mountain. We will aim to reach Vik in good time before sunset to photograph the seascapes at Reynisfjara and Dyrholaey. Final ‘farewell’ dinner and a chance to share and review our favourite images from the trip. If the aurora forecast is good, it’s a short drive (15 minutes) to Gigjagja (the ‘Yoda Cave’) for an interesting take on northern lights and astrophotography. Overnight: Hotel Skogafoss Located in a picturesque area next to one of Iceland's best known waterfalls, Skógafoss,
  • Day 8: Skogafoss and depart Iceland
    This morning, we’ll enjoy a photoshoot at Skogafoss, exploring the traditional viewpoint, as well as from the observation deck above the falls. Time permitting, we will also walk the easy 1.6km trail from Skogar Museum to Kvernufoss, a far less visited waterfall hidden in a ravine nearby. After a memorable week photographing Iceland’s dramatic south coast, the tour concludes with a drive to Keflavik airport in time for afternoon flights. Depending on timings, there may be a chance for a detour to one or two interesting spots on the Reykjanes Peninsula.
Iceland map faded

22 September 2025
29 September 2025

7 nights, 8 days

Group size
Minimum of 6, maximum of 8


From £5,795 per person, excluding flights to Iceland


• Fully escorted tour, accompanied by professional photographer, Will Gray

• Hotel accommodation on a twin-share or single basis, all with en suite rooms on breakfast basis

• 7 dinners and 4 lunches

• Private super jeep tour to Thorsmork tailor-made for group

• Parking and entry fees

• Coffee, tea and snacks on location

• 24 hour emergency assistance from Discover the World

• No surcharge guarantee

• Full financial protection

Not included
• International flights
• Transfers between Keflavik airport and Reykjavik and the start/end of the tour
• Travel insurance
• Photographic insurance
• Meals not specified in itinerary

Photography level
This tour is suitable for complete beginners through to enthusiast photographers. You can bring any camera you like. Find out more about gear.

**By clicking the link above, you will be asked to complete a simple form to register your interest and reserve a place. I will then send you details of how to complete your booking, securely, with my partner Discover the World. If you have any questions you can also contact me directly at As UK-based Iceland specialists, Discover the World provide full financial protection, no surcharge guarantee, Volcano Disruption Protection and expert advice. 

Like the sound of this photography holiday? Please reserve your place by completing the form below and I'll be in touch to confirm details.

By completing this form, you are simply registering your interest in this photography holiday. You don't need to pay anything yet and there's no obligation for you to go ahead with the booking if you change your mind. When I get back to you to confirm your place, I will also give you payment details. You can then confirm your booking and pay for the photography holiday directly 
with Discover the World.

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