Summer school
"Biosignatures and the Search for Life on Mars "
Iceland, 4 - 16 July 2016



Travel

Access by air
This is far the most convenient and (due to still rather advantageous flight prices) most economical way to reach Iceland. Travelling by boat is only reasonable if you come with your own vehicle and would like to stay for a holiday before/after the summer school.

Reykjavík has two different airports: The City Airport (airport code: RVK) close to the Centre is only for domestic flights (including most of those to Akureyri)and flights to Greenland. Almost all international flights arrive at the Leifur Eiriksson International Airport at Keflavik (about 40 km southwest of Reykjavík at the Reykjanes peninsula, airport code: KEF). Many direct flights arrive there daily from Europe and America. Check one of the search engines like Momondo or Skyscanner for cheap flights.

Transfer from Keflavik airport to accommodation
After arrival of most flights, Flybus and Gray Line Airport Express depart from Keflavik airport to the city centre. For timetables and further informations follow the links above. Travel time is 50-75 minutes to hotels and guesthouses in Reykjavík. You can actually buy transportation directly to your accommodation by Flybus od Gray Line Express, so there is no need to take a (quite expensive) taxi. Sometimes, however, you will have to change buses at the central station BSI to do so. However, if you are a party of 3 persons, a taxi might be an alternative. Summer school participants who will live at Laugardalur Youth Hostel should inform the driver about the full name of the hostel(since they are 3 in Reykjavík). The simple ticket only will get you to BSI central bus station. If you want a relaxing dip in the Blue Lagoon after your flight: Flybus offers several tours per day from Keflavik airport to Reykjavík City Centre that include a stop-over in the spa. If you have a very early return  flight from Keflavik or a late arrival in Iceland, you might wish to stay at an airport Hotel. Alex Guesthouse offers cheap dormitory and comfortable room or (very nice) camping hut accommodation including free transfer to and from Keflavik airport. Other airport hotels can be found here.

Access by car

Directions to Grand Hotel
From Reykjavík Keflavik International Airport (KEF) follow direction to Reykjavík. Follow Reykjanesbraut road and drive through Hafnarfjordur and Kopavógur untill you arrive in Reykjavík and turn to left at Miklabraut road. Then you turn to right to to on Kringlumýrabraut road, cross one traffic light and you can see Grand Hotel Reykjavík right ahead of you.

From other places in Iceland follow directions to Reykjavík Center. You will emerge on Miklabraut road. Then you turn to right to to on Kringlumyrabraut road, cross one traffic light and you can see Grand Hotel Reykjavík right ahead of you. There is no cost for parking for guest vehicles.

Directions to Akureyri
Participants attending the whole summer school will be transported by bus between Reykjavík and Akureyri and do not need to worry about this. Lecturers coming to Akureyri late should take the Flybus from Keflavik airport to Reykjavik Domestic Airport and fly from there to Akureyri (IATA code: AEY). From Akureyri airport it is best to take a taxi to the accommodation.

There are buses from Reykjavík to Akureyri. Travel time is about 6 - 7 hours. Schedules may change until summer, so please check for details under the Sterna and Stræto websites. Stræna buses depart from Harpa Concert Hall (Reykjavík Centre) and Stræto buses from Mjódd station (although there is usually one morning departure from the main bus station).

Access by boat
Smiryl line offers ferries from Hirtshals (Denmark) via the Faroe Islands to Seydisfjördur (East Iceland). As said, taking the ferry only pays if you take your own/car for a holiday to Iceland. Stopovers at the Faroe Islands may be possible.

Travelling in Iceland on your own

In Reykjavík and surroundings
Schedules, line maps and other facts about public transport in Reykjavík and to many other places in Iceland can be obtained from the website of the website of the Strætó company, which runs these services. Daily and longer tickets can be bought at the Laugardalur Youth Hostel. Information about hotels and other accommodation in Reykjavík can be found here. Since we will visit Iceland in the main tourist season, early booking of accommodation is very advisable.

Around Iceland
The trips necessary for the excursions will be booked by the summer school organisers and paid by the event sponsors. If you travel on your own before or after the summer school: Air Iceland offers domestic flights to various Icelandic destinations from Reykjavík City and Akureyri Airport. Reykjavík Excursions offers round trips (with possibilities for stopovers) as wall as day excursions. Other Tour operators and schedules are also offering tours.For further information contact the Icelandic Tourist Board.

Please note: Since the programme of the summer school is quite tight, there will be little room for touristic activities during course time. People who want to engage in sightseeing and other holiday pursuits should allow some time before or after the summer school.


Hverfjall cinder cone Barðabunga lava field Kerlingarfjöll hot spring area