Special Interest & Educational Tours
Smithsonian Journeys (tel. 877/338-8687; www.smithsonianjourneys.com), affiliated with the Smithsonian Institution, hosts several educational trips focusing on geology, hydro power, and Icelandic culture.
Discover the World (tel. 01737-214-250) lead educational trips to Iceland for schools, with four scheduled itineraries focusing on different topics, such as geography and biology. Ísafold Travel (tel. 544-8866) has educational tours in geology and energy technology.
The Snorri Program (tel. 551-0165; www.snorri.is) provides an opportunity for young North Americans of Icelandic descent to explore their heritage. The main 6-week program (mid-June through July) is for ages 18 to 28, but older visitors can join a modified 2-week program in late August.
Icelandic diets are meat-heavy, but fresh vegetables have become more widely available in recent years, partly because of local production in geothermally heated greenhouses. And, of course, there’s plenty of fish. Pasta dishes are common on menus. The few vegetarian restaurants and health-food stores in the country are concentrated in Reykjavík and Akureyri. Happy Cow’s Vegetarian Guide is a good resource.
Volunteer & Working Trips
Seeds Iceland (tel. 845-6178) sets up volunteer 2-week “work camps” for projects ranging from environmental cleanups and trail marking to preparation for local cultural festivals.
WWOOF connects travelers who want to stay and work on organic farms, usually from a few weeks to a few months. In return, farms offer food and accommodation. Several important Icelandic farms are plugged into the network, including the enchanting Móðir Jörð, just south of Egilsstaðir.
Go Abroad maintains an excellent database of volunteer vacation opportunities, with several options in Iceland.
Canyon Calling (tel. 928/282-0916), based in Sedona, Arizona, leads a cost-conscious 8-day multi-activity trip for women in early July. Activities include sightseeing, hiking, rafting, whale-watching, and horseback riding.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.