Interested in glaciers? This in-depth glacier hike will take you through some history of the glaciers in Iceland, as well as offer the spectacular views of the Mýrdalsjökull and Sólheimajökull glaciers.
Why is it important to learn about the glaciers?
Glaciers are essential to life on Earth, and they influence our everyday lives even if we live far away from them. Glaciers are the “freshwater reservoirs” of the world, storing about 70 percent of the freshwater on the planet. If glaciers disappeared, there might not be enough drinking water to support life.
This tour will let you see how the glacier’s changed with your own eyes. During this tour, you will witness the effect of climate change first-hand and how the glacier has retreated throughout the last decades.
Check out our glacier guide Francesco Li Vigni talking about glacier retreat and the importance of sustainability:
This is a glacier-friendly hike because we care about nature and preserving it for future generations.
What makes this tour “glacier-friendly”?
We will begin our tour in our base camp, where we will put on all the glacier gear needed for our hike. After carefully fitting the equipment, we'll head towards the glacier lagoon. We will spot a new ground appearing from the glacier retreat since 1998. We'll go over the old glacier's borders and get as close as possible to the icebergs coming straight from the glacier.
After that, we'll head towards the terminal face. First, we'll get our crampons on and then explore ice sculptures formed at the terminus by the natural thawing. Finally, we will hike to the top of the glacier tongue to explore the most significant disappearing ice features.
During the tour, we will have breaks and plenty of picture opportunities.
Pick up is at 09:00 am from your hotel or a nearby meeting point in Reykjavík. Picking everyone up can take up to 30 minutes. Your patience is much appreciated. Available pick-up points: Arctic Adventures’s pick-up list.)
Pick up is at 09:00 am from your hotel or a nearby meeting point in Reykjavík. Picking everyone up can take up to 30 minutes. Your patience is much appreciated.
Available pick-up points: Arctic Adventures’s pick-up list.
If you select the Meet on Location option, please meet your tour guide at Sólheimajökull Parking Lot. Please give yourself plenty of time to drive from Reykjavík – there is no way you want to miss this stunning adventure on Sólheimajökull Glacier. In...)
If you select the Meet on Location option, please meet your tour guide at Sólheimajökull Parking Lot.
Please give yourself plenty of time to drive from Reykjavík – there is no way you want to miss this stunning adventure on Sólheimajökull Glacier. In good conditions, the journey takes just over two hours without stops. It is always worth allowing the extra time so you can relax. With poor weather or road conditions, the journey will take longer. The distance from Reykjavík is approximately 158 km (98 mi).
GPS coordinates: 63°31’00.48″N, 19°22’00.12W(WGS84).
Iceland is known for its colorful weather. It can sometimes show you all 4 seasons in one day.
Dressing for this sort of weather can be a challenge so we always recommend dressing in layers. 3 or 4 upper layers are highly recommended such as a light t-shirt (preferably wool) next to the skin, then a fleece or heavy wool garment, topped off with a waterproof windbreaker.
Jeans are not recommended for our trips as they become very heavy, cold and uncomfortable to wear when they get wet.
Lightweight hiking pants, track pants or long cotton pants are best and then wind/waterproof pants over. We also recommend using sunglasses and sunscreen even if it is cloudy due to the high UV and sunlight reflecting off of the glacier.
You will need sturdy hiking boots that fit crampons for the glacier hiking tours. If you do not own a pair then we rent out good hiking boots as well as a waterproof raincoat and trousers.
We recommend bringing your own backpack on our full day or 1/2 day tours. It’s great to carry a small lunch and some extra clothing.
You can bring your camera along, and you should definitely bring one since the setting on the tour is full of amazing, scenic views.
This is, of course, a personal choice, we have often had pregnant women on our trips. We recommend you take a close look at our trip description and difficulty rating, they will hopefully give you a better idea. It is also good to contact your physician, pregnant women’s health can be quite different. Feel free to contact us if you have further questions or concerns.
We do not provide lunch on any of our trips, so we recommend you bring your own lunch (for the longer trips), snacks and a bottle of water (you can refill it on the trip).
Crampons are metal spikes that we attach to the soles of your hiking shoes, these enable you to walk on the glacier ice without slipping. Get to know how to put crampons.
Yes, there is a specially trained and certified glacier guide on every glacier tour that we offer.
When glacier hiking you will be provided with an ice axe, crampons, harness and helmet. This will help you to complete the tour safely. The minimum shoe size to attach crampons is EU 35.
When snow stays long enough in one place it turns to ice. Over long periods of time, the ice layers up becoming huge blocks called glaciers. As there is a lot of snow in Iceland, it forms to create ginormous glaciers that sweep across huge masses of land. Iceland is home to Europe’s largest glacier named Vatnajökull. This Glacier Guide will also tell you everything you may want to know about Glaciers.
Rain is not uncommon in Iceland. However, we do not let the rain stop our tours. This is why having appropriate clothing is very important to keep you warm and dry. Nature is not something that we can control and therefore we need to adapt to the weather. If your safety is compromised by going on the tour, we will cancel and you will be fully refunded.
This guide to Glacier Hiking includes all the information you might need when preparing for a glacier hike.
The first step is to make sure your credit card provider allows you to make payments in Canadian Dollars (CAD) or American Dollars (USD) if you have selected.
In some cases, your credit card company would need to pre-authorize the transaction for you before you can process the transaction online.
If you are still having problems booking through Arctic Adventures website www.adventures.is then please contact our Customer Care Team