Kjolur riding holiday in Iceland - Far and Ride
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Kjolur, Iceland




Programme


• Kjolur Trail

 

Horses



Type of horses:

Icelandic

Nature of horses:

Healthy, fit and forward going

Height of horses:

12-14hh

Weight limit:

110kg

Tack type:

Specific Icelandic tack. Saddles are similar to dressage saddles with a relatively flat seat which is either plain or quilted. Cruppers may be used to keep the saddle in place. Stirrups are usually kept long but the riding style is similar to English. Bridles are normally simple snaffles with detachable nosebands and clip on reins.

 

Travel Advice



Please ensure you read the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) advice before you travel.
 

Ride Description

Step back in time and ride along the ancient Kjolur Trail as Icelanders did over the centuries when travelling to the annual summer parliament at Thingvellir, first held in 930 AD.

Travelling from south to north (or vice versa) right across the heart of Iceland you will find yourself traversing sandy deserts and lava fields before reaching the lush green valleys of the north. You'll pass between the mighty Langjokull and Hofsjokull glaciers and visit the geothermal area of Hveravellir in the highlands.

This tour also includes the 'golden circle' highlights of Gullfoss and Geysir. If you want to see as much of the unspoiled Icelandic highlands as possible then this tour is the perfect choice. It has been running since 1983 and is probably the most well-known trail in Iceland.

Throughout the ride you'll have a herd of horses running with you. This means you can change horses regularly throughout the journey - each horse gets a rest and you get to ride a fresh horse. This means that a decent pace can be maintained and larger distances can be covered each day. Riding with the herd is a thrilling experience and you'll leave with a multitude of fantastic memories.

See Programmes.

 

Food & Accommodation

Your first and last nights are in guesthouses with rooms containing 2-4 beds.

For most of the trail you stay in mountain huts which may contain up to 25 bunks in one room. You will need to bring a sleeping bag!
On some nights there are showers and/or hot tubs, but not on all nights. There is always at least one toilet.

During the ride full board is provided. The menu consists of a large breakfast and traditional Icelandic meals (fish or lamb). Vegetarian meals are available if requested when booking. All riders make their own packed lunch from the breakfast table.

Alcoholic drinks are not included and are sometimes difficult to source, so we recommend buying them at the Duty Free store on arrival at Reykjavik airport and carrying them with you.

 

Activities

This is a riding tour with some long hours in the saddle.

 

Further Details

Languages: English

Health requirements: General good health and fitness

Tuition: No

Included: Shared accommodation, all meals, rain mac, water bottle and saddle bag, riding helmet, transfers from Reykjavik bus station

Not included: Flights, bus to Reykjavik, alcoholic drinks.

 

Travel Information

You are collected from Reykjavik bus station so will need to take a shuttle bus from the airport - these are easily booked in advance or when you arrive.

Extra nights in Reykjavik are not included but we can advise you if you wish to spend extra time or make the transfers more relaxed.

Airport: Reykjavik

 

Programme


Kjolur Trail



The epic ride between the Glaciers! If you want to see as much of Iceland as possible, then this trail across the heart of Iceland on the ancient Kjolur route is the one.

Day One: Reykjavik - Myrkholt

You'll be collected from the BSI bus station in Reykjavik at 17:30 and transferred to Myrkholt Guesthouse where you'll meet your guides and horses. After an introductory meal you can relax and prepare for the adventure ahead.

Day Two: Myrkholt - Gullfoss - Fremstaver

Set off riding towards the majestic glacier Langjokull and take your first stop at the beautiful waterfall of Gullfoss before visiting the hot springs at Geysir. Your ride then leads to the mountain Blafell where you overnight at Fremstaver Mountain cabin.

Riding c. 25km

Day Three: Fremstaver - Arbudir

Continue riding along the slopes of Mt Blafell. This area was once roamed by outlaws! Cross the river Hvita and admire the view to the glacier-fed lake Hvitarvatn. Overnight at Arbudir mountain cabin on the banks of the Svarta river.

Riding c. 35km

Day Four: Arbudir - Hveravellir

Ride along the glacier-fed river Fulakvisl and through the huge, rugged lava fields of Kjalhraun where you'll hear the tragic story about two brothers who froze to death in October 1780 on their way to Skagafjordur with a flock of sheep. During the ride you'll also have magnificent views of the Langjokull glacier. Continue into the world of Thjofadalir, or Valley of Thieves, a grassy valley surrounded by high mountains and a true oasis in the wilderness. Your destination today is Hveravellir, a unique geothermal area between the glaciers of Hofsjokull and Langjokull. In this rough but beautiful area the outlaw Fjalla Eyvindur survived for many years. Overnight at a mountain cabin with a natural hot pool which invites you for a dip.

Riding c. 50km

Day Five: Hveravellir - Afangi

Continue riding north over the beautiful river Seydisa and enjoy the soft paths of this highland area with your herd of loose horses. Pass the mountains Sandkulufell and Saudafell until reaching your destination Afangi mountain hut, which is named after the hill Afangafell which offers great views of the glaciers behind you and mountains ahead of you. Up until mid-July the sun hardly ever sets in this part of the country.

Riding c. 35km

Day Six: Afangi - Vatnsdalur Valley - Forsaeludaular

Ride over the Audkuluheidi Moor towards the fertile valleys of the north with their fields and vegetation. As you ride down into Vatnsdalur Valley, the canyon of the Vatnsdala river appears with its many waterfalls. Your horses stay at Forsaeludaulur farm, which is the first farm you'll reach in the valley, whilst you transfer to Hvammur guesthouse to overnight. Hot tub available for relaxation in the evening.

Riding c. 35km

Day Seven: Forsaeludalur - Hvammur

Fast riding this morning along great riding tracks beside the Vatnsdalsa river. This is one of the most beautiful valleys in Iceland and the setting for one of the ancient sagas, Vatnsdaelasaga. You'll hear tales from Icelands heroic past of conflict, revenge and love. Upon reaching Hvammur farm you release your horses to rest in the green of the valley and celebrate with a farewell dinner, storytelling and singing.

Riding c. 20km

Day Eight: Hvammur - Reykjavik

Say goodbye to the farmer and your guides before transferring back to Reykjavik, aiming to arrive at c. 14:00 (2pm). Accommodation is not included this evening but we can advise if required.

**Please note that this itinerary also runs in reverse on alternate weeks**



Minimum group size: 1
Maximum group size: 20
Ability description: You should be a competent rider, fit and in control in all paces across varied terrain. You will swap horses often and will be riding with a herd of loose horses.
Type of ride: Mobile trail
Total riding time: 7 nights / 6 riding days
Departure dates: 2020: 20-27 June* (FULL), 27 June-4 July, 4-11 July, 11-18 July, 18-25 July, 25 July-1 August, 10-17 August, 17-24 August (FULL).

*Low season
 
Pricing: 2020:

Low season: £1939 per person sharing
High season (27 June-20 August): £2032 per person sharing

Note: All programmes and itineraries are weather dependent; in the face of adverse, or unexpected, weather conditions reasonable attempts will be made to provide equivalent riding.

All programmes are accurate at the time of writing. However, the team may adapt or modify details, whilst aiming to provide a similar experience.