Icescapes and Northern Lights of Iceland

Tour Intro

Experience the vast volcanic landscape, breathtaking glaciers, seek out the Northern Lights, and hardy Viking hospitality that have been celebrated for centuries in Icelandic sagas. We can’t predict the weather, however, this is one of the most opportune times of year to capture the Northern Lights and hike inside an ice cave. On this unique expedition, view towering volcanic pillars, hike to stunning waterfalls, and languish in ancient geyser springs. From the capital city to remote farms and diverse landscape of the Snaefellsnes Peninsula and the Southern Coast, Iceland has some of the most picturesque landscape. At every turn, the vistas will astound you. Join us on this exploratory adventure of one of our planet’s most fascinating and unique environments.

Join accomplished photographer and guide Ron Rosenstock across Iceland.Join accomplished photographer and guide Ron Rosenstock across Iceland. Ron started leading photo tours in 1967. In those years he has led more than 200 tours to many destinations worldwide. Ron retired from Clark University after teaching photography there for thirty years. His published books include his exquisite black and white photographs: The Light of Ireland, Chiostro (Cloister), and Hymn to the Earth; and color photographs in Journeys. Ron’s work has been featured in over one hundred exhibitions, both in the U.S. and abroad, and his photographs are to be found in the permanent collections of the Fogg Art Museum at Harvard University, the Worcester Art Museum in Worcester, Mass., The Polaroid Collection in Cambridge, Mass., and the International Center of Photography in New York City. Ron’s striking; one-of-a-kind photographs can be seen at www.ronrosenstock.com.

Tour Highlights

  • Eight days with accomplished photographer and tour leader Ron Rosenstock.
  • Tour limited to 12 passengers.
  • Experience the diverse landscape of Iceland with fellow photographers.
  • Includes the breathtaking Snaefellsnes Peninsula.
  • Jokulsarlon Ice Lagoon and an Ice Cave (safety conditions apply)
  • Waterfalls of Skaftafell National Park
  • Capture the photogenic landscapes of Iceland that have starred in many films and television programs.

 

Tour Itinerary

February 12: Home

Photo By: Ron Rosenstock

Photo Location: Iceland

Your journey to Iceland begins with an overnight flight to Keflavik Airport in Reykjavik, Iceland.

February 13-14: Reykjavik – Snaefellsnes Peninsula
Atlantic Puffin

Photo By: Kathy Adams Clark

Photo Location: Iceland

The majority of flights arrive very early in the morning in to Keflavik Airport. If your flight arrives in the afternoon or evening, you will need to leave home a day earlier and overnight in Iceland (Strabo can recommend various accommodations to your liking). Depart the airport and start your tour driving to the Snaefellsnes Peninsula. This will be your first introduction to the vast landscape, yet intimate country, with several photographic stops planned along the way. Check into your harbor side hotel in the fishing village of Stykkisholmur. This is a full day of traveling and photography.

You will have another full day to explore further afield, on the coast of Breidafjordur (Broad Bay). Visiting beautiful places and small villages. Snaefellsjokull glacier is just a short drive away, it is mythically known as a seat of energy and was the fictional starting point for Jules Verne’s Journey to the Center of the Earth. Overnight Hotel Egilsen. (D; B, D) *Please note there will be some picnic lunches during the tour so that we can enjoy full days of photography in the field.

February 15: Interior Farm Stay
Icelandic Horse

Photo By: Lance Keimig

Photo Location: Iceland

Next travel east to the interior of Iceland where the group will spend an evening on a traditional Icelandic farm. The family specializes in cattle farming and horse breeding, they will give you a warm welcome as you immerse yourself in learning about the traditions of their family and business. From this location the group can easily reach the beautiful waterfalls of Bruarfoss, or Barnafoss & Hraunfossar, and capture the beautiful landscapes in this region. Hotel Efsti-Dalur Farm Hotel (B, D)

 

February 16: Skaftafell - Vik

Photo By: Ron Rosenstock

Photo Location: Iceland

If an ice cave is open during your time here (if not available today it may be possible to schedule later in the tour), we can arrange access early this morning, as we travel west to Skaftafell National Park. The park is located by the roots of the Vatnajökull glacier. Europe’s largest icecap - larger than all other glaciers in Europe combined. The next day photograph the waterfalls of Seljalandsfoss and Skógafoss. Overnight Farmhouse (B, D)

February 17-18: Jokulsarlon Ice Lagoon

Photo By: Ron Rosenstock

Photo Location: Iceland

Spend the day exploring photographic stops along the way to south eastern Iceland, where you will stay as close as you can at the fantastic glacial lagoon, Jökulsárlón, where floating icebergs, all sizes and shapes, will blow you away. From Hotel Hali you can also reach the Vestrahorn Mountain region. Hotel Hali (B, D both days)

February 19: Skaftafell - Vik

Photo By: Ron Rosenstock

Photo Location: Vik, Iceland

Vik is famous for amazing coastal features of black sand beaches and picturesque rocks that line the seashore including columnar basalt grottoes, sea stacks, and bird cliffs.  Overnight Farmhouse (B, D)

February 20: Reykjanes Peninsula - Home

Photo By: Ron Rosenstock

Photo Location: Barnafoss, Iceland

This morning you will work your way towards the airport, traveling west on the Reykjanes peninsula coastal road. Relax bathing in the Blue Lagoon and visit the geothermal area in Krýsuvík before you get back to the airport for your late afternoon early evening flights. If your flight departs KEF in the morning please contact Strabo Tours and we can recommend airport hotels with shuttle service the next morning. (B)
 

Photo Leader

Ron Rosenstock
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Ron Rosenstock

Ron started leading photo tours in 1967. In those years he has led hundreds of tours to many destinations worldwide. Ron has retired from Clark University after teaching photography there for thirty years. He has published three books of his exquisite black and white photographs: The Light of Ireland, Hymn to the Earth, Chiostro (Cloister),and his new color book Journeys. Ron’s work has been featured in over one hundred exhibitions, both in the U.S. and abroad, and his photographs are to be found in the permanent collections of the Fogg Art Museum at Harvard University, the Worcester Art Museum in Worcester, Mass., The Polaroid Collection in Cambridge, Mass., and the International Center of Photography in New York City.

Ron is happy to share his vision and insights to all who travel with him. Although he now only photographs with a digital camera, his philosophy of teaching hasn't changed since the early large format film days. He firmly believes that the photograph comes from within, not from without. Meaning you can't buy creativity, however, you have to learn to recognize that creative spirit within. Ron teaches exercises that will help that creative spirit come to the surface. These may consist of: 1) Entry ways to seeing, 2) photographing in the NOW, 3) practical aspects of printing, exhibiting and getting your work out there. During the photo tour he will teach and use a digital projector several evenings. Most people who travel with Ron have a basic understanding of how the camera works, and others who know everything about the camera. He doesn't focus on technical knowledge, rather places the emphasis on a more zen approach. Ron believes it isn't necessary to know all the latest digital technique, but it is necessary to know yourself.

Please feel free to view Ron's website and e-mail regarding any questions.

 

Why do you LOVE nature photography?   by Ron Rosenstock

Let me use some of the same words, Nature photography is LOVE!  Since the very beginning of our species starting to walk upright, we have been recreating nature in various art forms, from cave paintings to digital photography. Technology has changed, but what is most important, hasn’t. The worlds greatest artists have received their inspiration from nature. We are as much a part of nature as nature is a part of us.  For those of us that take the time to smell the flowers, it’s so much more.  Poets but their feelings into words, painters paint and we photograph.  Each image we make is showing us on a deeper level, who we really are. “Listen, my heart, to the whispering of the world.  That is how it makes love to you”  Tagore.

Icebergs remind of Buddhist sand mandalas. Fleeting moments of incredible inspiration.  As our planet warms, there are more and more tremendous icebergs floating by the coast of Greenland, and on to warmer waters only to become part of the ocean once again.

In my humble opinion this was a well run trip that delivered just what it promised.  The pacing worked perfectly for me.  I liked stopping at lots of different locales.  We seldom stayed anywhere that was too short or too long for me.  Can’t think of anything that would have improved the trip for me. I give the trip and Ron Rosenstock a 10 out of 10.
 

E. Clark

Pricing and Details

US Dollars based upon minimum of 10 paying participants. There is a small group surcharge of $800 if 6-9 paying participants. All our program prices are based on double occupancy unless noted in exceptions.

Single rooms are subject to availability. We try to accommodate travelers who request single accommodations, as well as travelers who are looking for a roommate. If a single room is requested, or if we are unable to find a suitable roommate, you will be required to pay the supplement.

Testimonials

On this, our third trip with Ron and Strabo, I observed a dimension I hadn't noticed before: flexibility. Ron (and Ingo) were able to dance with the weather. Then I got to thinking. Flexibility, yes, but against a background of careful planning: accommodations, meals, even catering to allergies. I have done enough "self-guided" tours to appreciate what that means.  As Strabo tourists, we simply sat back and watched the ever-changing scenery. And it was a big plus that both guides had visited sites many times before.

Again, I thank you for your efforts. We have traveled with other tours. Strabo is by far the best for people like us.

D.Wurtzel

This is my second photo tour with Ron and I will travel with him again. He is an experienced leader and teacher who is able to share with his group not only his knowledge of photography but his knowledge of the area being visited. I appreciated the addition of the local guide, his personable knowledge really added to the experience. It was fun to get to know a 'real' Icelander. I liked that we went all around the whole island. I feel like I have, indeed, seen it all, and that 'all' was overwhelming in its beauty and scope.

Ireland tour 2015: I had such a great time with Ron. His tours are always fun. He has a lot to share both photographically and culturally. I value his depth of knowledge on the areas he takes us to. I like the exposure to the people and culture too. I feel like I have actually experienced the country and its people, not just the sights.

Jeanne Procell

A truly enjoyable, enlightening photographic experience. Your guides are absolutely FANTASTIC - knowledgeable, helpful, thoughtful, kind - absolute gems.

J. Gordon

Ron was delightful as a tour guide, he's always careful to make sure everyone's comfortable. Of course, I so enjoy seeing a new country with him. Iceland is so beautiful a country that you can't do it justice. No one realized how a mazing a country Iceland is!!

M. Russo - Iceland

Trip score 20 out of 10!!!

I guess the score tells it all. What an unbelievable asset your guides are.

B. Hayes

Additional Notes

A note from your photo instructor Ron Rosenstock:

You will be astounded by the magnificent landscapes of Iceland! Iceland is an incredible country, a land of waterfalls, rainbows, glaciers, ice floes, sea stacks, and very friendly people who all speak English. It is a MUST for landscape photographers. Imagine photographing an ice cave with sunlight glistening through the sculpted forms, a lagoon filled with ice floes, and the reflections of a glacier at sunrise in a perfectly still lake.

One of the nicest aspects of travel to Iceland is the relatively short flying time from the east coast of the U.S -- less time than traveling to Ireland. Keflavik Airport is the most, user-friendly one I’ve ever encountered. Iceland has the best of what New Zealand, Ireland, and Alaska have all wrapped up in a small country the size of Kentucky.

Terms and Conditions

Unless otherwise noted, this information applies to all tours.

Airfare

Contact Strabo Tours if you would like rates on International Airfare. Please note on your trip application form if you would like us to assist you with your airfare needs, a charge is added for this service. If making your own arrangements, it is important to discuss flight times with Strabo Tours before booking any airline tickets. This will avoid you having to pay airline cancellation penalties. Please contact Strabo Tours for destination airfare estimates, specific flight time arrivals, and departures.

The land cost includes:
  • Group transportation for tour events in the tour van.
  • Accommodations based on two people sharing a room, singles are assigned on a first come, first served basis.
  • Services of driver, English speaking cultural guide (if applicable) and photographic leader, during the tour.
  • Meals as listed in itinerary (B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=dinner).
  • Park entrance fees, day tours and excursions as shown in the itinerary.
  • Extensive pre-departure information and services.
The land cost does not include:

Domestic or International air fare; other airfare if noted in exceptions; air fare tax; airport departure tax; airport transfers; additional transfers or accommodations that may be required by those not traveling with the group; excess baggage charges; meals not included in itinerary; activities taken on your own; passport/visa expenses; personal medical or travel insurance; any expenses of a personal nature, such as room service, laundry, beverages not included with meals, medical expenses, photographic equipment, any activities not specified in tour itinerary or listed as optional, or any items not listed in what is included; fuel surcharges; exchange rate surcharges; upon the completion of your trip, modest gratuities to the local guides and the drivers are customary; tips for meals not included in itinerary.

Fitness and Health

The majority of trips are not strenuous (see exceptions below for particular destinations) and anyone who is reasonably fit should be able to take part in most of the activities. You may experience general fatigue due to the long flights and the change in time zones. You will need to be sufficiently agile to climb in and out of the tour van and be able to carry and manage your own equipment. We will frequently hike trails ranging from easy to moderate. Some hotels do not have elevators or air conditioners.

If you have any special needs or any physical condition that you feel might prevent you from fully participating, please contact Strabo Tours with your concerns (607-756-8676).

You should also be aware that medical services or facilities might not be readily available during all or part of your trip. This could include emergency medical care, presence of physicians, or adequate medication.

Exceptions:

The following destinations require more physical activity. Bhutan, China, Patagonia, Peru, Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands, New Zealand, Scotland, Domestic tours. On the African Safari you will spend many hours in a vehicle on game drives, land travel will sometimes be over very bumpy and dusty roads. Galapagos Cruise accommodations are in upper and lower berths (bunk beds) only.

The following destinations require more physical activity. Bhutan, China, Patagonia, Peru, Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands, New Zealand, Scotland, Domestic tours. On the African Safari you will spend many hours in a vehicle on game drives, land travel will sometimes be over very bumpy and dusty roads. Galapagos Cruise accommodations are in upper and lower berths (bunk beds) only.

Deposits, Cancellations AND Refunds

A deposit of $750 ($500 on domestic tours) per person is required. Specific tours may require an additional deposit due to accommodation bookings or transportation requirements. If applicable these will be noted on your invoice. Payment in full is required when bookings are made less than 120 days before the departure date. Space is subject to cancellation by Strabo if payment is not received when due.

If a passenger wishes to cancel they must send notification in writing to: Strabo International Tour, Co., P.O. Box 580, Dryden, NY 13053; fax 208-545-4119. At the time we receive your notification, the following per person charges apply:

  • 91 days or more before departure: $300 cancellation fee ($150 fee on domestic tours), plus Strabo’ costs, as well as fees that are charged by the suppliers providing the services included in your tour, and/or the airlines providing the air transportation.
  • 61-90 days before departure: $500 ($250 on domestic tours) minimum cancellation fee, plus Strabo’ costs, as well as fees that are charged by the suppliers providing the services included in your tour, and/or the airlines providing the air transportation. Fees may range from 25% to 100% of tour costs.
  • 60 days or less before departure or anytime after departure: NO REFUND.

Refunds for services that are voluntarily not used by you cannot be made.

Insurance

Each participant must be covered by medical insurance that is valid overseas.

We strongly urge you to evaluate your risk and to take out insurance on your trip. It is vital for you to realize that if you experience a delay or find it necessary to cancel or cut short your trip for any reason, you will lose part or the entire sum you’ve invested in it (see the section “Deposits, Cancellations and Refunds” in the trip brochure).

Travel insurance helps to minimize the risk of monetary losses you would incur in the event of a delay of your departure due to weather, airline strike, missed connection, etc., your inability to travel for reasons such as illness, injury, unforeseen financial complications and other personal circumstances, or if you were required to cut your trip short for medical or any other reasons.

There are restrictions and limitations on any insurance program. For this reason, please read carefully the enclosed pamphlet, which outlines their program of trip cancellation, baggage, and medical insurance. Trained agents are available to answer your questions, so don’t hesitate to call the toll free number in their brochure. It is to your advantage to apply for insurance at the earliest possible time, so don’t delay in making a decision.

Subject to Change

Itineraries have been carefully constructed to assure participants the best each destination has to offer; however, should events arise that are beyond our control, activities and hotel arrangements are subject to change without notice. The itineraries summarize typical areas you will explore. Since there is no possible way to visit all of them, your guides will plan each day considering the interests of the group and the weather at hand. Be assured that we will make substitutions that are as similar in quality and interest as possible.

Photo Release

Strabo International Tour Company, Inc. reserves the right and permission to use photographs of individuals on tour for use in promotional and publicity purposes. We also reserve the right to use clients photographs for promotional and publicity purposes, when submitted to Strabo International Tour Company, Inc.

Accommodations

As this is an active expedition with moderate hikes, you should be in good physical condition. While hotels selected are the best available, accommodations are basic with a private bath in each room.

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