If you want to get to know the glacier this is the tour for you. A challenging 1 to 1.5 hour hike on Breiðamerkurjökull, an absolutely stunning outlet glacier of Vatnajökull, Europe´s largest glacier will really show you the best of this fascinating ice world.
Your knowledgeable glacier guide will share lots of fun and fascinating glacier facts with you along the way. You will see the sharply ridged crevasses which meander their way through the ice, a little like mysterious labyrinths, the great moulins drilling their way down to the base of the glacier, acting as conduits for meltwater and helping the glacier to move. Even a glacier as weighty as Vatnajökull is always moving and changing, this is an incredibly vibrant place which will leave you feeling very humble in the face of nature.
Your invigorating and really exciting glacier hike will bring you to a magical glacier cave. There is nothing quite like the feeling of standing in an ice cave with ancient glacial ice below you, around you and above you. You really will feel as though Iceland is embracing you with great ‘icy-arms’. Your guide will tell you how ice caves and the stunning features within them are formed, and how blue ice is created by ice compression pushing the air bubbles out. Sometimes those blues are like transparent blue glass, other times they are more opaque. If you have any questions just ask. On the glacier you will hear unusual sounds, the ice cracking and creaking is one, the other sound you will often hear is more human - gasps of sheer awe.
Please note: We strongly recommend that you arrive at least 20 minutes before departure.
Proper hiking boots are absolutely essential, it is not possible to fit ice crampons to any other kind of footwear. For safety reasons people without suitable clothing will not be permitted to participate.
Gaiters are optional but we always recommend that our participants use them. The weather in Iceland can be quite wet so the trails subsequently get wet as well. They are not necessary but being drenched on a hike when conditions are wet and muddy is very unpleasant. Some rain pants have straps at the bottom which serve a similar purpose as gaiters so if you are equipped with those you don’t need both.
Hiking poles are not necessary for this tour. The tour guides will provide you with an ice pick and all other safety equipment on the tour.
The caves are in a constant change so they might look different from what you see in the picture. Air temperature, sunshine, precipitation, geothermal activity, and many other factors cause significant changes in the formation of the ice caves and this process is exclusively controlled by Mother Nature.
We will visit the best available naturally formed ice cave during this tour and the cave we visit is chosen based on conditions and safety each time.
Iceland is known for colourful 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.
Yes, there is a specially trained and certified glacier guide on every ice cave tour that we offer.