Essential Iceland

Workshop Information:

Iceland is a place like no other on earth. In summer the rugged, volcanic landscapes are transformed with lush vegetation and wildflowers, the waterfalls flow abundantly and dazzle with rainbows, wildlife can be found roaming the countryside, and days are long and filled with golden light. 

Join us to experience this photographer’s paradise! Over 4 days we will capture the essentials of Iceland as we explore the landscapes, seascapes and wildlife of the south and east coasts.  

Aimed at photographers of all skill level – beginner, amateur or a professional – you’ll be sure to come away from this workshop with a diverse portfolio of images of Iceland.

Want to explore and capture more of Iceland? Package this together with our 3 day Essential Highlands workshop for a reduced price. Contact us for details.

Highlights:

  • A focus on Landscape, Seascape and Golden Hour photography
  • Experiencing the diverse landscapes and iconic sights of Iceland under the midnight sun
  • The magnificent, powerful waterfalls of the south coast
  • Visiting the unforgettable Diamond Beach
  • Capturing the delightful Atlantic Puffins
  • Vestrahorn & Eystrahorn – the dramatic mountain ranges of the south
  • Learning new skills and advanced photography techniques to make the most of lighting and locations such as bracketing, focus stacking and long exposures
  • A small workshop so your experience is truly personal, and you get to know your guide and fellow photographers

Dates

12-15 August, 2021

Group size

Maximum of 12 participants

Level of fitness

Mild to moderate hiking is required to reach some locations

Price

$2490 Double Occupancy (USD)

Single supplement may be available upon request. Please contact us at info@vip-ehf.com for additional information. Payment plans available. Credit card required.

Included:

  • 4-day workshop with 3 nights accommodation (double occupancy)
  • 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
  • Breakfasts at the hotels during the workshop
  • Post-processing sessions with Photo Guides
  • Complimentary use of boots for the Diamond Beach
  • Access to exclusive discounts on gear from our partners

Excluded:

  • Travel to and from Iceland
  • Airport transfers
  • Single room supplement (contact us for price)
  • Food and beverages (other than breakfast)
  • Items of a personal nature including (but not limited to) laundry services, clothing, Wi-Fi, email or phone charges
  • Gratuities for Photo Guides, local guides and/or drivers
Payment Options:
Please note that the full amount is due 60 days prior to tour start
A 3% charge is added using this service. Please contact us if you prefer other payment options.

Itinerary

Day 1 – South Coast


We will set off early from Reykjavik and start our photography adventure by exploring the South Coast, one of Iceland’s most popular areas due to its array of incredible landmarks. 

Our first stop will be Seljalandsfoss, with its narrow stream of pure glacier water that cascades over a cliff 60 metres below. This waterfall is unique in that is has a path that takes you behind the veil of water – a truly unforgettable experience. 

We will continue to Skógafoss, a waterfall so mighty you will feel the mist before you reach it. If the lighting is right, we will be able to capture a rainbow in the spray! 

In the afternoon we will head to the infamous Reynisfjara Beach – a beach with imposing basalt columns, dramatic black volcanic sand, and towering sea stacks. Legend says that two trolls were pulling their ship into the shore when daylight broke, turning them into these impressive stone towers that are forever frozen into place just off the coast. We will stay here to capture their silhouettes through golden hour as the sun sets behind them on the horizon. 

In the evening, your guides will run post-processing training. Whether you are brand new to editing or have extensive experience, you are sure to learn new techniques for your workflow so that you return home with epic images of Iceland. This session will also be an opportunity for your guides to understand where you may personally benefit from their expertise throughout the rest of the workshop.  

Accommodations: Vik

Day 2 – South Coast

This morning we will visit the promontory of Dyrholaey with its massive sea arch and historic lighthouse.  From here you can capture remarkable panoramic views of the coastline, with the black sand beach stretching endlessly into the horizon on one side and the rugged cliffs and Reynisdrangar sea stacks on the other. 

Not only are the views here spectacular, but this area is also home to a colony of adorable Atlantic Puffins. These comical birds are often called the ‘Clowns of the Sea’ because of their technicolor facial markings and their awkward, clumsy antics. They are incredibly entertaining to watch, and amazing to photograph due to their expressive eyes and their striking colors. They will be sure to capture your hearts and lenses. 

We will then make our way along the Ring Road to the Vatnajökull National Park, whose diverse landscapes are dotted with waterfalls, rivers, lava fields, and mountain peaks. 

For our last shoot of the day we will visit Jökulsárlón. At this beautiful lagoon, icebergs in an array of shapes and sizes break off from the nearby glacial tongue and slowly drift towards the sea. It is a magical experience to see them float by in their palette of colors – turquoise, frosted white, deep blue and even black. We may also spot seals swimming and playing among them. Watching the sunset here is sure to be an unforgettable finish to our day. 

Accommodations: Vatnajökull National Park

Day 3 – Vatnajökull National Park

Our day will start with sunrise at one of the most extraordinary locations in Iceland, Diamond Beach – the final resting place for the icebergs that we saw floating in Jökulsárlón. The icebergs are pounded by waves and smashed into smaller chunks of ice that then wash up onto the black volcanic sand where they lay, glistening like diamonds. We will have plenty of time to photograph this spectacular beach – the memories of watching the ice glow in the golden light will last a lifetime! 

After breakfast we will continue further east to Vestrahorn, the iconic mountain that sits alone on the shore of the wild Atlantic Ocean. Located on the next headland is Eystrahorn – an incredibly steep mountain that has been continuously battered on all sides by wind and waves, creating jagged peaks and rugged formations from the dark lava rock. 

The weather around these mountains is dynamic – it is common to witness clear skies, fog and clouds all within the same hour. The scenery constantly shifts as the light changes – making these mountains a photographer’s dream! 

There are endless composition options at both locations – shallow pools providing reflections, frothy waves making stunning seascapes, wildflowers and undulating black sand dunes. We will spend our day and into sunset exploring these many composition options. 

Accommodations: Vatnajökull National Park

Day 4 – Return to the City

Diamond Beach is undoubtedly one of the most surreal places in Iceland, and it is commonly one of the highlights of our workshops. Every day, under different conditions, the beach is transformed. To ensure portfolios are varied and practice our long exposure skills, we will return for another sunrise. 

We will then start our journey back along the beautiful south coast towards Reykjavik, stopping at several places to capture the incredible vistas. 

One of these will be Svínafellsjökull, an immense glacier tongue almost 800 meters wide that stretches down from the ice cap towards the sea like fingers. You will be able to walk close enough to the sharp ice ridges to hear the otherworldly sounds of the glacier – creaks, fractures and deep cracking. From here, you’ll capture the fascinating textures in the ice made from deposits of black ash and rubble dispersed among the deep blue ice – the scars left by previous volcanic eruptions. 

Along the way, we will keep our eye out for wildlife. At this time of year, it is common to spot herds of wandering reindeer, free-roaming Icelandic sheep, Arctic foxes and the beautiful Icelandic Horses. 

We will arrive in the city 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. Want to explore and capture more of Iceland? Package this together with our 3 day Essential Highlands workshop for a reduced price. Contact us for details.

We will be staying in clean, comfortable hotels throughout this workshop.

Hotel accommodations will include breakfast.

Workshop pricing is based on room sharing in double rooms. For an additional cost you may request a single room - please note this is subject to room availability, and at the discretion of Viking International Phototours based on workshop attendee numbers.

Iceland is extremely rugged and harsh. Strong winds, rain, mud and the terrain are real dangers when photographing on location. You will be expected to follow instructions to ensure you are kept safe and out of harm’s way.

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

The itinerary for our workshop is subject to change at the discretion of our Photo Guides depending on the Icelandic weather, which can be highly unpredictable. 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.

A recommended list of gear will be sent out as soon as you book to give you ample time to prepare for your adventure.

Iceland is absolutely 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 (which can be accessed here). 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.

Please refer to the Booking Terms and Conditions.

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

Meet the Guides

Sigurdur William
David Swindler