ICELAND: WESTFJORDS IN THE AUTUMN—25 SEPT - 5 OCT, 2021

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STYKKISHOLMUR CHURCH, SNAEFELLSNES PENINSULA, ICELAND—IMAGE © JEREMY WOODHOUSE

ICELAND: WESTFJORDS IN THE AUTUMN

The Tour in Brief

​The Westfjords are the oldest part of Iceland. The oldest rock here is around 17 million years old so in geological terms it's still very young. This part of Iceland is one of the least visited and in October tourism has reached its low before many hotels shut down for the winter. The Westfjords therefore have an atmosphere of remoteness with scattered farms and a few small villages. The scenery is all more or less coastal and we'll be photographing coastal features, rock stacks, beaches, old buildings, fjords, valleys and mountains rising steeply from sea level. We'll also be visiting the one major waterfall in the Westfjords, Dynjandi, and once we get to the Snæfellsnes Peninsula at the end of the trip we'll be photographing the iconic Mt. Kirkjufell along with stunning scenery in the Snæfellsjökull National Park, including that from the famous black church at Búðir.

The days are getting shorter in late September with sunrise at around 6.15 and sunset at 18.15, so the working hours for photography are more civilized than in summer, when the days are much longer. October also often offers more drama int the weather, and there could even be a dusting of snow on the mountains. This is also a good time of the year to see the Aurora Borealis.

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AURORA BOREALIS BEHIND KIRKJUFELL MOUNTAIN, GRUNDARFJORDUR, ICELAND


ICELAND IN THE AUTUMN
25 SEPT - 5 OCT, 2021

with Jeremy Woodhouse & Daniel Bergmann
10 Days/10 Nights

Itinerary

Pre-tour: Sept 25 – Arrive Reykjavik
Arrive in Iceland. Get the bus to Reykjavik, check into a hotel and have a day to explore the city.​O/N Reykjavik (TBA)

Day 1 - 2: Sept 26-27 – Reykjavik|Djúpavík
Depart Reykjavik in the early morning and start the journey towards the Strandir region of the Westfjords. This is the eastern part of the fjords and has great mountain scenery. Where we stay in Djúpavík there is also an old Herring factory that has been shut down for decades but provides an opportunity to photograph old machinery plus the very scenic surroundings. We stay for 2 nights at Hotel Djúpavík so that we have a full second day in the area.

O/N Hotel Djúpavík
In 1985 Sigurbjörnsdóttir and Ásbjörn Þorgilsson and their three children moved to Djúpavík. They saw that there were a considerable number of travelers in the area, so they had the idea of ​​opening a hotel. What has characterized the hotel all these years is thewarmth and respect for the "old times". They have always put a great deal of emphasis on keeping the old values.

Day 3 - 4: Sept 28-29 – Djúpavík | Mjóifjörður fjord
We depart Strandir and start travelling west into the large fjord system of Ísafjarðardjúp. This area has countless fjords, or so it seems, and the road winds through one after another. We'll spend two nights at Heydalur, a little gem of a place in Mjóifjörður fjord, and will do excursions from there for sunrise, sunset and something in between.

O/N Heydalur
Discover the Westfjords of Iceland and the valley of Heydalur, a place of great beauty and peacefulness. Appreciate comfort in the middle of wild untouched nature.

Day 5: Sept 30 – Mjóifjörður fjord | Þingeyri
This will be a day of travel. We'll drive the remaining fjords of Ísafjarðardjúp until we come to Ísafjörður, the largest town in the region. After a stop in town we continue to Þingeyri, where we overnight. As on every day we stop for photography along the road.

​O/N Hotel Sandafell
A guesthouse and restaurant located on the coast in the middle of the Westfjords of Iceland in the small town Þingeyri

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DYNJANDI, WESTFJORDS, ICELAND—IMAGE © JEREMY WOODHOUSE

Day 6–7: Sept 30-Oct 1 – Þingeyri | Patreksfjörður
We continue exploring more fjords as we keep travelling west. We'll pass Dynjandi waterfall and the beaches of Arnarfjörður before arriving in the town of Patreksfjörður, where we'll spend two nights at the Hotel West. On our full day in this region we'll visit Rauðisandur and the beaches of Útvíkur, further west and north of town.

O/N Hotel West
Located in the centre of Patreksfjörður, Europe’s most westerly town, with the town´s swimming pool, restaurants, pharmacy and two grocery stores within 10 minutes walk. The fishing harbor is vivid and lively at daybreak and in the early afternoon when boats get back with their day catch, making the fish market active. We offer 17 rooms in our hotel.

Day 8: Oct 2 – Patreksfjörður | Stykkishólmur
We have a morning of photography before getting on ferry Baldur, which transports us over the large fjord of Breiðafjörður. The sailing time will be about 2.5 hours and we'll dock in Stykkishólmur at the northern side of Snæfellsnes Peninsula, where we'll stay for 2 nights.

O/N Stykkishólmur (hotel TBA)

Day 9: Oct 3 – Snæfellsnes Peninsula
We start the day with a sunrise shoot at Mt. Kirkjufell and then explore the national park at the southern side of the peninsula and do a loop around it to arrive back in Stykkishólmur in the evening.

O/N Stykkishólmur (hotel TBA)

Black church at Búðir – Image © Jeremy Woodhouse

Day 10: Oct 4 – Snæfellsnes Peninsula | Keflavík
From Snæfellsnes we journey south to the Reykjanes Peninsula, with a potential stop at Hraunfossar waterfalls (may also stop there at the beginning of the tour). At Reykjanes we will enjoy our last afternoon photography session at the Reykjanestá and then have a final dinner at our hotel in Keflavík

O/N Park Inn by Radisson

Day 11: Oct 5 – Keflavík | Home
This is the departure day and you can leave Iceland at any time, even with one of the very early flights, as the hotel is a short driving distance from the Keflavík airport.

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BLACK CHURCH AT BÚðIR – IMAGE © JEREMY WOODHOUSE

Arrival, Departure & Visa

Arrival & Meeting Place 
Hotel in downtown Reykjavik (TBA) (You will be responsible for this night's accommodation. As your flight arrives in the early morning, you will need to book your first 2 night's accommodation for 24 & 25 Sept so that you can check in when you arrive at the hotel. If you do not mind waiting, and you'd like to save the extra night (24 Sept), checkin is usually at around midday. A shuttle bus is available as you leave the arrival terminal. You can buy a single ticket to Reykjavik letting them know which hotel you are staying at.

​Departure
Transfers will be available from the Park Inn by Radisson at Keflavik. Your accommodation is included in the tour fee. This will take no longer that 20-30 minutes.

Visa
Not needed


Weather 

Late September and October are considered as a transition periods—when days are still warm and long. During October, you get to experience the best of both worlds—a blend of summer and winter. July and August, the summer months, are the busiest in Iceland. The heaviest snow falls in November through February.

February, March, September and October are typically the best time to visit Iceland for the Northern Lights

Language
Icelandic, the official language of Iceland, is an Indo-European language of the North Germanic languages. The language is closely related to Faroese and Norwegian with minor differences resulting from Celtic influence in the ancient Icelandic literature. Most Icelanders speak very good English.

​Currency
The currency in Iceland is the Icelandic króna (ISK). Many places (restaurants, bars, tourist attractions) will take US dollars, Canadian dollars, Euros, Norwegian, Swedish and Danish currencies. Payment: Icelanders usually pay for everything by credit or debit card.

2 SPOTS OPEN

TOUR COST: $6,900
DEPOSIT: $1,000
SINGLE SUPPLEMENT: $750

MAX GROUP SIZE: 8*
*Supplement if the group is 6-7: $700

25 SEPT - 5 OCT, 2021

PAY TOUR FEES


Tour Fee Includes

  • Ground Transportation with local photographer/guide for 10 days
  • All meals
  • Tour accommodation, as listed
  • National Parks entry fees

Tour Fee Excludes

  • Arrival/departure flights
  • Transfers from Keflavik airport on arrival or transfer from Keflavik to the airport on the day of departure
  • Optional scenic flights
  • Travel insurance
  • Alcohol
  • Pre- and post-tour accommodation

Paying by check

If you would like to pay your deposit and/or balance with a check, please make the check payable to: Pixelchrome, Inc and mail it to:

Nicole Woodhouse
Pixelchrome, Inc, 
605 Rouen Drive, 
McKinney TX 75072

Paying by Wire Transfer

If you would like to pay by Wire Transfer please contact nicole@pixelchrome.com for bank account details.

Equipment Checklist

  • Bring you own laptop computer and storage media
  • Camera body(s)
  • Lenses, 16-35mm, 24-70mm zoom and 70-200mm zoom or similar lenses are very good
  • Light bag for easy hiking with camera bodies and accessories
  • Cleaning kit for cameras and lenses
  • Rain/dust covers for cameras and lenses
  • Charger for batteries
  • Spare batteries
  • Spare Memory cards
  • Memory card reader
  • USB key to exchange images

Also good to have

  • Tripod
  • Lens extenders
  • Graduated filter set
  • Filter holder
  • Good quality polarizing filter