Highlands of Iceland

Highlands of Iceland

The Highlands form the heart of Iceland   – an uninhabited, ever-changing wilderness forged by the forces of ice and fire.

They are home to some of the most surreal landscapes you can imagine – ancient volcanos, steaming geothermal areas, rainbow mountain ranges, jeweled crater lakes, and majestic waterfalls that are dispersed amongst barren plains of volcanic desert and vast lava fields.

Their remoteness and harsh terrain make them challenging to access, with only skilled drivers in 4×4 vehicles that have experience with glacial river crossings venturing here. This makes them a fantastic destination for photographers who want to experience the raw, rugged, and breathtaking landscapes of Iceland away from crowds.

Join us on this 7 day adventure to explore the Highlands! Aimed at photographers of all skill level – beginner, amateur, or professional – you’ll be sure to come away from this workshop with epic images.

Dates

26 July - 1 August, 2023

Group Size

Maximum of 12 participants

Price (USD)

$4,850 Single Occupancy

Workshop Highlights

  • Improving your Landscape, Drone, and Golden Hour photography skills with our team of master photographers
  • Observing the dynamic nature between ice and fire in Iceland in a region forged through the combined forces of glaciers and volcanic activity
  • The incredible rainbow rhyolite mountains of Landmannalaugar
  • Traveling Iceland’s infamous ‘F-Roads’ to remote areas without crowds
  • Highland jewels – the turquoise waters of the Valley of Tears, and hidden sapphire and emerald crater lakes
  • Learning composition techniques to transform your photos into compelling, creative, and engaging images
  • For beginners, learning technical skills in the field such as setting exposure (ISO, shutter speed, and aperture), and how lens choice and depth of field can be used to capture different compositions and lighting scenarios
  • Introduction to drone photography, assistance with drone setup, and if it’s your first time or in-field instruction for how to fly one and use this new tool for photography
  • Receiving support and mentoring that is personalized to your photography skills and journey
  • Learning how to bring your images to life through post-processing (beginner through to advanced techniques such as exposure blending)
  • Exploring the steaming geothermal area of Kerlingarfjöll
  • Understanding how to create stunning panoramas – from shooting the images in-field to the post-processing workflow
  • A small Photography Workshop Iceland so your experience is truly personal, and you get to know your guide and fellow photographers

Included

  • 7 day workshop with 6 nights accommodation
  • Award-winning, professional Photo Guides who will provide a combination of instruction, masterclasses, and in-field guidance
  • Transportation during the workshop in a comfortable vehicle with ample room for you and your photography gear
  • Post-processing and digital workflow masterclass/es with Photo Guides
  • Access to exclusive discounts on gear from our partners
  • Lots of fun, bragging rights, and amazing memories!

Excluded

  • Flights/Airport Transfers to and from Reykjavik
  • Food and beverages
  • Items of a personal nature including (but not limited to) laundry services, clothing, Wi-Fi, email, or phone charges
  • Personal Travel, Medical, Equipment or Trip Cancellation Insurance
  • Visas (if applicable)
  • Gratuities for Photo Guides, local guides, and/or drivers

Book Now

To secure your spot on this workshop, select from the below to either pay a deposit or in full.
Completing your payment confirms acceptance of the Terms and Conditions as outlined.

Please note that the full amount is due 90 days prior to the start of the workshop.
A 3% charge is added using this service. Please contact us if you prefer other payment options.
Occupancy Type is subject to availability - please refer to Your Accommodation Selection in the Important Workshop Information section below.

Itinerary

You can find more information about what to expect during this workshop below. However, to give you the opportunity to capture the best images possible, this itinerary will be kept flexible.

Our Photo Guides will monitor weather forecasts, road conditions, and any other factors and plan the days to optimize shooting conditions.
Our goal is to put you in the best locations at the right time with the best light so you can capture fantastic images.

Days 1 - 3: Jewels of the South & Central Highlands

We will start our photography adventure by heading off the beaten path and deep into the rugged South and Central Highlands.

Amongst the desolate, rugged deserts and volcanic mountain ranges of the Highlands are areas of exquisite diversity, color, and beauty – many of which rarely see visitors. We will spend our first few days exploring some of these unique sites, including turquoise and emerald crater lakes, volcanic mountains that rise like pyramids out of nowhere, moss-covered explosion craters, colorful river braids, and cascading waterfalls.

Drone enthusiasts will need to be prepared with fully charged batteries, as even though they are stunning from the ground, some of these places are even more incredible with a birds-eye-view of the landscape!

Accommodations: Highlands

Discover the Highlands
Braided Rovers in Iceland

Day 4: Landmannalaugar

We will travel to the edge of the Highlands to Háifoss – one of Iceland’s most spectacular waterfalls. Translating to ‘High Falls’, the waters here plunge 122 meters into a deep gorge in the beautiful Þjórsárdalur valley, resulting in breathtaking panoramic views.

We will then make our way to the valley of Landmannalaugar in the Central Highlands. The landscape here is incredible – a vast, volcanic oasis of rhyolite mountains that are dispersed with rising vents of white steam and natural blue pools, entwined with shimmering streams and surrounded by a contrasting black lava field. The mountains are shaded in colors of yellow, brown, green, blue, and pink – and they continually transform as the light changes throughout the day! This extraordinary site is a photographer’s dream and exploring it will be an experience you will never forget.

Accommodations: Highlands

Haifoss in Highlands of Iceland
Landmannalaugar Iceland

Days 5 - 7: Hot springs and geothermal valleys

Kerlingarfjöll is a young mountain range of volcanic origin wedged between two glaciers – a place where you can truly observe the dynamic nature between ice and fire in Iceland. It is characterized by extremes – mountains with sharp, un-eroded peaks, smooth valleys of steaming vents, snowy ice caps, and boiling rivers. There is a palette of colors – minerals that have emerged from the hot springs color the ground yellow, red and green, while the glacier looming overhead adds shades of blue and white. Many images taken here resemble watercolor paintings! We will take our time to explore the endless composition options.

On Day 7 as we make our way back to Reykjavik, we will explore the Golden Circle including the geothermal area of Haukadalur, with bubbling mud pits, hot springs, and steaming fumaroles. We’ll make sure to capture the extraordinary activity of Strokkur – a geyser that spouts jets of scalding water over 20 meters into the air every 4-10 minutes. It’s a blast to shoot using super-high shutter speeds to freeze the motion as the bubble of water explodes from the ground!

We will arrive in the city early in the evening – with memories to last a lifetime, new friends, and memory cards full of amazing images of Iceland.

Please ensure you have arranged accommodation for this evening as the workshop will not conclude in time for you to fly out of Iceland.

Hiker at Kerlingarfjöll Geothermal Area in Iceland Highlands

Important Workshop Information

A mild to moderate level of fitness is required for this workshop.

Most shooting locations are easily accessible via a short hike.
However, sometimes this may be across rough, uneven, icy or muddy terrain that includes elevation changes. Our Guides will let you know if a photography destination involves a long hike, steep incline or particularly challenging terrain, and provide alternative shooting locations or other options if you don’t feel comfortable.

Participants should also be able to carry their own camera gear while hiking.

Sometimes we may remain in a location shooting for a few hours. Participants should be comfortable outdoors for extended periods of time in various weather conditions such as wind, rain, sun and extremes of temperature. Wherever possible, our Guides will keep the vehicle available nearby so participants can rest and take a break.

All participants should be in good physical shape with no mobility issues. If you have any concerns about your suitability, then reach out to us and we will be happy to discuss the particular location details of the workshop with you.

You must advise Viking International Phototours in advance and in writing to info@vip-llc.com of any illness, injury, or pre-existing medical conditions that might reasonably be expected to affect your participation during the workshop.

Our workshops require a minimum number of participants to proceed.


We will confirm if your photography workshop will be proceeding 90 days before the start date, at which point full payment of any remaining balance will be required.


Viking International Phototours reserves the right to reschedule or cancel workshops due to low participant numbers.


We will do our best to reschedule the workshop within two years of the original date. 
If this happens, we will offer you the choice between:

    • Retaining your spot on the rescheduled workshop;
    • Transferring to the same workshop on a different date if there is availability; or
    • Canceling your spot on the rescheduled workshop: No refund – your funds will be held as credit which can be transferred or used towards our other photography workshops, self-drive packages, or tours for up to 2 years from the date of cancellation.

In the improbable event that a workshop is canceled altogether rather than rescheduled, we will offer you the choice between:

    • Applying your funds towards a different workshop, tour or self-drive experience; or 
    • Receiving a full refund minus a $300 USD fee and any non-refundable fees paid to third parties.

Please note that Viking International Phototours are not liable for travel expenses incurred to reach the workshop destination or any other personal expenses incurred in preparing for your workshop. For this reason, we require that you obtain Trip Cancellation & Travel Insurance after booking with us.


We also recommend you do not book travel or make any trip-related purchases before the workshop has been confirmed.

During this workshop, we will be staying in clean, comfortable accommodations that include hotels, guesthouses, and multi-room apartments.

Workshop pricing is based on single room occupancy, with all participants having their own room.

Each room has a double bed, so if you are traveling with a spouse, partner, or friend and wish to share a room/bed for a discounted price,  please contact us at info@vip-llc.com.

We cannot delay or change a workshop in the event of travel disruptions that cause a participant to arrive late.


If this happens, participants are responsible for arranging their own transport to catch up with the group - which can be a very costly expense. In addition, no refunds will be made for any time missed on a workshop due to the late arrival by the participant.


For this reason, we highly recommend you arrive the day before your workshop is scheduled to start at the latest.
At the very least, you will be more refreshed and relaxed for the start of your adventure.

Participants will be collected from Reykjavik City Hall.

As buses are restricted in large parts of Downtown Reykjavik, we are unable to collect individuals from their hotels.

We recommend you book a place to stay nearby – there are a number of decent hotels and guesthouses within walking distance.

Our workshop's itinerary is subject to change at the discretion of our Photo Guides depending on factors including but not limited to weather, road conditions, transportation delays, and other factors beyond our control. We will check the weather forecasts and road conditions and plan our day to optimize shooting conditions.

We cannot guarantee that we will be able to visit all the locations on the itinerary.

Iceland is stunning from the ground, and just as amazing with a birds-eye-view of the landscape. There are drone-friendly places, so if you own a drone, you are welcome to bring it along to the workshop.


Please note that you are solely responsible for your equipment, and are expected to adhere to all rules and regulations as specified by the Icelandic Transport Authority.


Viking International Phototours and our Photo Guides will not be liable for any injury or damage caused to equipment, environment, or people caused by you operating your drone during our workshop.

Please also note that the wind and weather in Iceland can be sudden and hazardous, so use your judgement and be mindful of conditions.

If you are traveling with a partner/friend who is interested in joining you on this workshop but they are NOT a photographer, we may be able to accommodate them. In some instances, this may be at a reduced price.

Please note that this will be at the discretion of Viking International Phototours – contact us at info@vip-llc.com for information.

Your companion would need to understand that this is a photography workshop and not a typical ‘tourist’ tour – long hours will be spent photographing locations outdoors rather than visiting attractions.

If you are interested in this workshop but would prefer a private experience or to attend with your own group of people, we can arrange that for you – contact us at info@vip-llc.com to discuss.

Please refer to the Terms and Conditions.

Booking with Viking International Phototours indicates acceptance of the Booking Terms and Conditions as outlined.

We know that plans can change, and unforeseen circumstances can happen. 

You need to advise us in writing via email to info@vip-llc.com as soon as possible if you need to cancel your workshop. Your cancellation is not official until you have received a return email confirmation acknowledging your cancellation.

If you cancel and we can fill your spot on the workshop, you will receive a full refund minus a $300 USD fee.
If you cancel and the workshop does not fill, cancellation requests and refunds will be processed according to the following:

    • More than 90 days from the start date of the workshop: Full refund minus $300 USD fee*
    • Less than 90 days: No refund – your funds will be held as a credit which can be transferred or used towards our other self-drive packages, tours, or photography workshops for up to 2 years from the date of cancellation*.

*Please note that some of our workshops with partner companies/third parties may have non-refundable deposits, which will not be refunded or credited to you.

If you have any questions about this workshop, please get in touch with us at info@vip-llc.com.

Highlands of Iceland Image Gallery

Some of our favorite images our Photo Guides have captured from this incredible location!