← Close menu

Into the Glacier - Ice Cave & Glacier Hiking Tour

Visit a Naturally formed Ice Cave & Hike on Europe's Largest Glacier

Explore the extraordinary ice caves of Iceland

Glacier hiking and ice caving adventure in Vatnajökull glacier departing from Skaftafell. A grand tour on Europe's largest glacier.

Glacier-Hiking Ice-Caving
Iceland-map-destinations
EXCELLENT
4.8 rating based on 24 ratings
24 REVIEWS
BEST PRICE GUARANTEE
INSTANT BOOKING CONFIRMATION
TRUSTED TOUR OPERATOR

This Ice caving and glacier hiking adventure tour takes place on the mighty Vatnajökull, Europe’s largest glacier.  Ice caves are naturally formed and are for that reason ever changing, making them even more charming and unique. The cave you visit on this tour is located quite high up on the glacier so a glacier hike is needed in order reach it adding even more value to the whole glacier experience giving you two activities in one. This is truly an awe-inspiring adventure, visiting a glacier and its ice cave on the volcanic island of Iceland.

  • Availability

    Oct. - Mar.

  • Duration

    ~ 4 hours

  • Duration Overwrite

  • Level

    Moderate

  • Pickup

    No

  • Meet on location

    Yes

  • Min. Age

    8 years

  • Ratio

    1:12

  • Departs from

    Skaftafell

  • Departs from Overwrite

  • Price from

    13.990 12.591 ISK

Tour highlights
Small Group Experience
Vatnajokull - Europe's Largest Glacier
A Visit to a Natural Ice Cave
A Guided Glacier Hike
Included
English Speaking Licensed Adventure Guide
Crampons and Other Necessary Glacier Gear
All Required Safety Equipment

The tour starts at the Glacier Guides booking office in Skaftafell. It’s a perfect tour for those looking for a shorter but stunning guided glacier walk with a visit to a mesmerising natural ice cave on the way- a fantastic all-around experience!

We start by hiking in a magnificent scenery, heading to one of the glacier tongues of the Vatnajökull ice cap. Your informative guide will explain the history and geology of the area along the way. It takes about an hour to reach the glacier where we gear up and get safety instructions from our skilled guides before setting foot on the ice. Afterward, we continue our hike over the glacier, through an adventurous landscape of rugged ice.

After a short walk on the glacier, we will explore a beautiful natural ice cave where we spend up to 30 minutes.  Ice caves are very popular during the winter- we may see other people there at the same time. A natural ice cave is definitely a must-see for anyone looking for a unique experience in Iceland!

The ice cave we visit is selected based on actual the conditions each time. We will spend about 1,5 hours on ice, including the glacier hike and the ice cave exploration. This tour is suitable for individuals who are able to comfortably walk for 3 hours outdoors across easy terrain.

If you are looking for a more extensive glacier hike in this area then the Glacier Explorer might be more suited for you.

Ice caves are ever-changing natural phenomena that are only accessible during winter when the temperature drops well below zero so the water from the rivers that run underneath the glacier freezes and leaves us with this phenomena to explore. Each year new caves are formed in different locations. We will visit one naturally formed ice cave during this tour and the cave we visit is chosen based on conditions and safety each time.

This tour is highly dependent on conditions (including temperature, safety, and accessibility). Ice caves must be treated with the utmost respect in regards to the ceiling being supportive along with other factors.


What to bring: Warm clothing,  waterproof jacket and pants, hiking boots, head-wear and gloves.
What if I don’t own all of these clothing necessaries?
Don’t worry, you can always rent the necessary clothing in the booking process.

If you are looking for an ice cave tour that includes transportation to/from Reykjavik please have a look at our South Coast Ice Cave and Jokulsarlon Ice Lagoon 2 day tour.

If you are looking for other options that include glacier exploration and transportation to and from Reykjavik please check out the Blue Ice tour or Glaciers & Waterfalls.  Please note that these are not ice cave tours.

Please note

You must arrange your transportation to the meeting point of the tour (Skaftafell is 4 hours east of Reykjavik). The bus schedule during the winter is very limited so it is highly recommended to rent a car and to stay in the area either the night before or after your tour. Driving times can be greatly affected by winter conditions so please be sure to give yourself enough time depending on winter road conditions.  Find out more about road and weather conditions.

Due to limited daylight, the last departure of the day will be done partly in the dark during the darkest months.

How far are Skaftafell and the Glacier Guides sales office from Reykjavik?

Skaftafell is located about 330 kilometers from Reykjavík. See map for directions.

What is the difference between the Into the Glacier tour and Crystal Ice cave tour?

The Into the Glacier tour departs from the Glacier Guides booking hut in Skaftafell National Park and is up to 4 hours in duration. It involves hiking for approx. 2 hours, upon Skaftafellsjökull Glacier visiting a beautiful ice cave/ice tunnel along the way. During the tour, participants go higher up on the glacier than the Crystal Ice cave tour and therefore the ice is thicker in the cave making it a little less blue.

 

Your guide will take the time to explain to you the scenery that you are seeing and tell you all there is to know about glaciers.

The into the Glacier tour is a combination tour of glacier hiking and ice cave exploring.

 

The Crystal Ice Cave tour departs from Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon and is up to 3 hours in duration. A large off-road jeep will take you to a relatively large ice cave located on the bottom of Breiðármerkurjökull Glacier. This tour offers you the chance to venture inside the crystal ice cave and take photos of its picturesque crystal surroundings for up to 40 minutes. You will then jump back on the jeep which will return you safely to the same location that you started at.

 

This tour doesn’t include any hiking, it includes exploring the ice cave and offers you the opportunity to take photographs from inside the cave for up to 40 minutes. The ice cave is very beautiful, which makes it very popular with many other operators and tourists, for this reason very reason it is therefore likely that you will be sharing the location with other groups.

 

If you are looking for a tour that combines a visit to an ice cave with glacier hiking then Into the Glacier is the tour for you.

If you are looking for a tour that will take you directly to an ice cave for some great photo opportunities inside an ice cave then the Crystal Ice Cave tour is the tour for you.

What does meet on location entail?

Meet on location means travelling to the location of the tour yourself and then meeting our tour guides rather than being picked up and taken to the location.

How is it best to be ready for a pick-up for a tour with Arctic Adventures?

This is a great question. We ask all participants to be ready from the start of the pickup time indicated. This is because you may well be the first pick up of the day. Please be at your assigned location at the start time that you chose when booking the tour.

Here you should wait for your guide.

Have your email and phone number listed with us so we can contact you if we run into any trouble finding you.

View our pick-up locations in Reykjavík.

Can I drink alcohol before or during Arctic Adventures tours?

Before and during activities on the multi-day tours consumption of alcohol is prohibited. If we suspect that a participant is intoxicated, we will prohibit them from joining the activity.

After the activities of the day are finished, you are welcome to have a drink and relax.

Do you offer any family friendly tours, for younger children?

Yes, we do. Langjökull Ice Cave is a magical experience, the tour has no minimum age and is a wonderful option for the whole family. Whale Watching with our partner company Special Tours, has been a favourite with families traveling with young children, these guys have a great success rate in seeing whales (upwards of 98% in the summer time).

Another option would be the Landmannalaugar Safari on this tour you get to explore parts of the Icelandic highlands and bathe in natural hot springs. Most of our jeep tours are also suitable for children over the age of 6 years old. If you would like a nice and relaxing experience we would also recommend the Golden Circle & Secret Lagoon tour.

Can the itinerary for the tour change?

Your safety is our number one priority! Keeping this in mind, Arctic Adventures reserves the right to adjust the itinerary and/or take different routes depending on conditions. Please read more information in our cancellation policy.

Is there a guide on each Arctic Adventures tour?

Yes, there is a specially trained and certified guide on each of our tours. The only exception to this is for our self-drive tours.

All of our tours are guided in English.

What type of power outlets are used in Iceland? Do I need to bring an adapter?

The standard in Iceland is 230V and 50Hz and we use F-type power sockets and plugs, so you might have to bring an adaptor if you are visiting from UK, USA, Canada or other countries using a different voltage, Hz or plugs.

How are the tours rated in terms of difficulty?

Our tours are split into four different categories that help participants to understand what to expect from the tour. The categories are Easy, Moderate, Challenging and Demanding. Each tour is rated making it easier to find tours that suit you.

For further information about the difficulty ratings and descriptions.

 

What should I wear on our glacier trip in Iceland?

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.

Do I need to bring a backpack on a glacier trip in Iceland?

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.

Can I bring my camera along on a glacier tour?

You can bring your camera along, and you should definitely bring one since the setting on the tour is full of amazing, scenic views.

I am pregnant, can I still join a glacier hike?

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.

Do I need to bring a lunch with me on the glacier tours?

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).

What are crampons?

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.

Is there a guide on each Arctic Adventures glacier tour?

Yes, there is a specially trained and certified glacier guide on every glacier tour that we offer.

What equipment is provided when taking part on a Glacier Hike?

When glacier hiking you will be provided with an ice axe, harness and helmet. This will help you to complete the tour safely.

Why are there glaciers in Iceland?

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.

What if it is raining?

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.

Where can I find more information to prepare me for my Glacier Hiking tour?

This guide to Glacier Hiking includes all the information you might need when preparing for a glacier hike.

Does the ice cave always look exactly the same?

Ice caves are ever-changing natural phenomena that are only accessible during winter when the temperature drops well below zero, so the water from the rivers that run underneath the glacier freezes and leaves us with this phenomena to explore. Each year, new caves are formed in different locations. 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.

What should I wear on our glacier trip in Iceland?

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.

Do I need to bring a backpack on a glacier trip in Iceland?

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.

Can I bring my camera along on an ice cave tour?

You can bring your camera along, and you should definitely bring one since the setting on the tour is full of amazing, scenic views.

I am pregnant, can I still join a glacier hike?

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.

Do I need to bring a lunch with me on the ice cave tours?

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).

What are crampons?

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.

Is there a guide on each Arctic Adventures ice cave tour?

Yes, there is a specially trained and certified glacier guide on every ice cave tour that we offer.

Where can I find more information about Ice Caves?

The Ice Caves in Iceland are truly magical. If you want to learn more about them this information page on Ice Caves will be a great help.

Disclaimer
All our tours are undertaken on the responsibility of its participants. Arctic Adventures does not assume any responsibility for accidents that are caused by its customers or can be traced to their own actions. Participants have to sign a waiver before undertaking all trips stating that they realize that all outdoor activities carry an inherent risk.

Close

Exclusive Online Discount

Bookings work for travel time 2018/11/01 - 2018/12/19

Save 10% - Discount added at checkout

Promotional code: NOV2018

Book this tour

Price from: 13.990 12.591 ISK per person.

FREE CANCELLATION
BEST PRICE GUARANTEE
NO ADDITIONAL FEES - BUY
DIRECTLY FROM THE OPERATOR
FAST & SECURE PAYMENT

Loading booking data...

Into the Glacier - Ice Cave & Glacier Hiking Tour | Average rating: 4.8/5 based on 24 customer reviews


"Great Experience!" | 5 stars By Bethany Turner 07/04/2018
Our group had a great experience with Bee! She was a fantastic, happy guide with lots of wonderful information to share. We were disappointed that the Crystal Ice Cave tour needed to be switched (water in the cave, unsafe) to the Into the Glacier tour -- but I think ITG was better overall and a lucky switch! We really enjoyed the experience of hiking on ice that likely will not exist in 5 years. It was humbling, heartbreaking and breathtaking. I would 100% recommend these guides and this tour.
"Beautiful Ice Cave" | 4 stars By Ana Maria Andre Jorge 11/04/2018
I really enjoy the experience. It was beautiful to enter the ice cave and drink the water from the glacier. I was just expecting more walking. It felt very short walking so we just stayed in the periphery. I would have preferred to adventure further ahead. The guide was very friendly.
"Our ice cave tour..." | 5 stars By Grace 31/03/2018
Our ice cave tour was cancelled due to the cave flooding so we were moved to the into the glacier tour at no extra cost. The team were incredibly helpful and let us hire shoes at no extra cost. Simon our tour guide was amazing - he’s only been working there a short while but he was very knowledgeable and he taught us all the safety requirements so we felt confident on the glacier. Most of all, he was incredibly friendly, cracked a good few jokes, made sure we got the best out of the experience (that glacier water is really good) and he’s pretty good at taking photos too. Thanks for a great experience
"Must do!" | 5 stars By Dwarakesh Jayaram 31/03/2018
If you are visiting Vatnajokull national park in skaktafell, this is a must do! The guides at Artic adventure/Glacier guides are knowledgeable and patient, helping you along the way. Anybody can do this activity and is super enjoyable. We had an Australian guide. She was awesome and would recommend her, for some reason I can't remember her name. Cheers
"Into the Glacier" | 4 stars By Mohamad Cherry 31/03/2018
As our only tour booked during my recent trip to Iceland I was very pleased with the entire experience. Our guide, Michael, was knowledgeable, funny, and very entertaining during the tour; only downside was the ice cave... As lovely as it was to be inside one of nature’s marvels, I expected more of the cave itself. All in all my brother and I enjoyed our day thoroughly and would definitely use Arctic Adventures in the future.
"Small group experience" | 4 stars By Cherie 30/03/2018
I was hesitant due to price but I'm glad we went. This tour combined glacier walking and ice cave tour and there were many groups but all were small and nicely spaced out so you didn't feel part of a crowd in the glacier. The ice cave was small/short but that's not their fault. Did see lots of blue ice. Be sure to have boots with stiff ankle support or be prepared to rent a pair. Bite the bullet and don't miss this great experience!
"Fantastic experience" | 4 stars By Raga 30/03/2018
Our guide was funny, knowledgeable and showed us amazing locations in the glacier. Highly recommend this tour.!
"Spring break 2018" | 5 stars By Lori Ballinger 28/03/2018
I wanted to give my 10yr old son an educational experience. The tour, guide, and overall adventure exceeded anything he imagined. And that made everything perfect! Thank you
"Wonderful and very fun!" | 5 stars By Sarai Blaschke 08/03/2018
Absolutely loved the Into The Glacier tour. It was very fun and our tour guide was excellent and informative. I did not have the appropriate shoes for the tour and I was able to rent my boots easily. It was all a very smooth experience! Our group was small and we all helped each other along. I plan to do the Crystal Ice Cave tour on another trip to Iceland! Arctic Adventures, you guys rock!
"Glacier walk 4/3/18 Amazing!" | 5 stars By Denika 11/03/2018
Marcus was very knowledgeable about the local area and the glacier itself which made the trip more interesting. He was very clear about the crampon instruction as this is something important and i’d never used them before. We had lots of time on the glacier for pictures and to experience it’s amazing scenery and he was on hand to take pictures too. Overall an amazing afternoon with a great guide! I would highly recommend. Thank you. Denika & Liam (Manchester)
"The best tour ever!" | 5 stars By Gabriela Shaaban 19/03/2018
And the best Polish tour guide ever ;)
"Great Experience!!" | 5 stars By Amanda Fitzgerald 15/03/2018
My friend and I did this tour and were so glad we did! It was a great way to see the glacier and a cave, and probably much more worth it than paying the same amount of money to just see a larger ice cave as many of the other tours in the area offer. The ice cave was small, but still stunning and there was only our small group of 10 in it and we got cool pictures. Our guide, Simeon, was very knowledgeable about the glacier and Iceland. He also taught us some things about mountaineering and ice climbing. The hike was beautiful and I would definitely recommend it to anyone I know who enjoys hiking!
"Must do whilst in Iceland!" | 5 stars By T.Mak 15/03/2018
We arrived at the meeting point on time, and was greeting with enthusiastic staff members. They measure our feet for the crampons and checked that our footwear had adequate ankle protection. We then embarked upon the bumpy ride towards the foot of the glacier where we were assigned Oliver as our guide of the morning. Oliver was charming and friendly throughout the whole walk, he kept the group engaged with his energy and passion! We even had a guest appearance from his raven friends. Before approaching the ice cave, arctic adventure staff communicated well to inform each crew of the cave condition. We felt very safe in their hands. The ice cave was out of this world, it was such an amazing experience! Walking on the glacier was quite an experience too, we were taught how to put on the crampons and how to walk appropriately on the glacier. Oliver made sure each and everyone of us was safe, and encouraged us to go at our pace and he's always there to give us a hand if it was needed. All in all, had an amazing time, with a brilliant guide.
"All staff was efficient and worked together to get us on our tour on-time" | 5 stars By Jillian 20/03/2018
The check-in process was very well-organized. All staff was efficient and worked together to get us on our tour on-time. Our tour guide was great, but I wish there was a more local perspective. I wanted to know more about Iceland--its' history and geography, etc.
"Into the glacier" | 3 stars By Darren 04/03/2018
Tour guide Caroline was fantastic. Very spirited and knowledgeable. The tour was a bit lacking though. Too much time spent posing for fake climbing photos. I wish the trek on the glacier went longer. Its called a hike and this was hardly a hike. Still an amazing experience to be on the glacier though
"breathtaking experience for every level" | 5 stars By Taryn Erickson 05/03/2018
My traveling companion and I were originally booked on the “Crystal Ice cave” tour - we were emailed the day before and advised that our tour was cancelled due to the cave flooding. While initially being disappointed the email continued to read that we were put on the “into the glacier” tour. Which included a hike to a different cave and then to explore the cave. We had the most amazing time!! Our tour guide Ryan was knowledgeable and engaging, making us all feel capable and welcomed on the tour.... What started out as being a tour booked to just experience something new and take some cool pictures - turned into a breathtaking mini adventure. Highly recommend to everyone.
"Awesome experience !!" | 5 stars By Jonathan Flores Uribe 06/03/2018
We had booked the ice cave tour but due to a flooding it got canceled and we were offered the Glacier hike instead. We were amazed at all the beautiful scenery that we saw. Great landscapes and it was a very cool experience to walk on the glacier. We also got to visit a very beautiful ice cave and our guide Mike gave great explanations about everything we were seeing and enjoying. In the end we were very happy to have gone hiking in the glacier as we truly enjoyed it and would recommend people to try it out!.
"Thanks for a great adventure" | 5 stars By Sandra 07/03/2018
The overall experience was great! We've never been on a glacier before and were a little unsure about the hike, but felt very safe and well prepared the whole time. Our guide Chris was funny and yet very professional and answered all our questions competently. We'd recommend this experience to anyone, go see the glaciers of the world, before they're all melted!
"The best tour ever!" | 5 stars By Gabriela Shaaban 09/03/2018
The best tour ever! And the best Polish tour guide ever ;)
"Must-do adventure" | 5 stars By Kelly 22/03/2018
The glacier hike was an experience most do not get to have in their lifetime. It was an incredible experience to walk out onto the ice and climb and see these beautiful sights up close and personal. Walking through the ice cave was beautiful. I felt very safe with our guide and the spiked crampons. Learning about the glaciers and how the caves form and how they’re melting was fascinating. I would absolutely recommend this tour for anyone looking for an amazing experience and adventure. And some gorgeous photos.
"Highlight of Trip" | 5 stars By Dorie 24/03/2018
While Iceland is a land of many wonders, and it's a hard to choose a favorite thing about my trip, this glacier walk and ice cave tour were hard to beat. Our guide was fantastic, we had a small group and the things we get to see were incredible. The ice cave was by far one of the most amazing things I've ever seen. I would totally recommend this company and the into the glacier tour.
"Very professional and fun tour" | 5 stars By Gonçalo 24/03/2018
Everything was great, but if I have to point anything out it would be the way you communicate urgent matters to your customers. In my case, I had my original tour replaced by another one 55km away and I only knew this by reading an email that I got on the previous day. It was only by chance that I had internet access in time of changing my travel plans. My suggestion: if you get no response from your customers using email, then call them. That's why we left our phone numbers with you in the first place.
"Our guide Michael was very entertaining and strict about safety" | 5 stars By Laura Väyrynen 02/03/2018
Our guide Michael was very entertaining and strict about safety (which is a good thing) but in a nice and humorous way. Great tour!
"This tour really exceeded my expectation" | 5 stars By Juan 23/03/2018
This tour really exceeded my expectation, it’s was a very unique experience, small group. Our tour guide Pepe was great very informative and fun to be around.
Book now