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Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon is fed by Breiðamerkurjökull, which is an outlet glacier from Vatnajökull, the largest glacier in all of Europe. The glacial lake is getting bigger every year and it is now about 18 km² (7 mi²).

If you go to Jökulsárlón one day, you will find it different when you go back because the landscape is constantly changing. In fact, the glacier tongue is receding very quickly, meaning many ice chunks fall from it every day.  Icebergs float across the lagoon in many shapes and hues, changing from one month to the next. That is exactly why so many tours take place here, allowing visitors to appreciate the beauty of Icelandic nature up close and in person.

Jökulsárlón is one of the most famous tourist attractions in Iceland, definitely a highlight of the South Coast. It is also known as the ‘Crown Jewel’ of the country and is home to some seal colonies, which you just might be able to see on your tour! The glacier lagoon is one of the most beautiful and dramatic spots in Iceland. This area can be explored in one day or as part of a longer tour of South Iceland, such as the 2-Day South Coast Tour.


Zodiac boat tour in Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon

What could be more magical than a boat tour on Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon, navigating between massive icebergs and playful seals? This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience that you will never forget. During the summertime, you can choose between different possibilities to discover and enjoy the beautiful landscapes of the lagoon.


Your first option is to take an amphibian boat tour to visit the natural wonder of Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon from the inside. Aboard this astonishing four-wheel boat, the guide will tell you everything about the history and facts related to this emblematic place of Iceland. This extraordinary amphibian boat will be driven on land to take you into the lagoon. Once aboard, all you have to do is enjoy the view and look around for some seals.


Another option is to join a zodiac raft tour to experience a unique adventure, one that most tourists will never get to enjoy. This speedy inflatable boat will take you all the way to Breiðamerkurjökull Glacier while you take a closer look at the icebergs. This option is optimal for those who want to get closer to the glaciers as the zodiac will be able to reach further into the lagoon than the amphibian boat.


A kayak tour is also a great idea to admire the wonders of Jökulsárlón. Our kayaks are stable and safe for all ages, even for those without any previous kayaking experience. This tour is only available from June to September. Kayaking is the ideal way to navigate quietly on the lagoon, paddling smoothly and feeling part of nature in those calm and deep waters. You will be able to touch the glaciers and discover places which cannot be seen any other way. Kayaking in Jökulsárlón is truly an experience you don’t want to miss and if it is not on your bucket list yet, add it and come check it off with us!


To reach Jökulsárlón, you can join a tour to the South Coast from Reykjavík and make the most out of your trip to Iceland. There are so many things to see in the southern part of the country. Between waterfalls, glaciers, and black sand beaches, you will certainly feel like you have landed in another world.

Icebergs in glacier lagoon in Iceland


If you’re planning to meet our tour guides on location, you’ll need to know how to get to the glacial lagoon. Jökulsárlón is about 370 km (236 mi) east of Reykjavík. It is very close to the Ring Road, and from the Icelandic capital; the drive is approximately 4.5 hours. It is located in the southeastern part of Iceland, on the edge of Breiðamerkurjökull Glacier, in Austur Skaftafellssýsla county. Jökulsárlón is on the southeastern border of the Vatnajökull National Park.


Surprisingly, the cold does not prevent animals from choosing Jökulsárlón as their home. The glacial landscapes of Iceland host a great variety of wildlife. Many seabirds such as the Arctic Terns, Seagulls, and the Great Skuas are present around the glacier lagoon. However, beware of the Arctic Terns as they are very protective of their eggs and may dive-bomb the visitors who are going too close to them. Rich birdlife in Jökulsárlón is due to the rich food supply here. 

Other bigger animals are also often spotted around Jökulsárlón: the seals of course! They love to swim between the icebergs or sunbathe on them, they can also be seen in the waters of the Diamond Beach. As Jökulsárlón has tides, wildlife like seals and fish join the glacier lagoon as water runs into it.

Kayaking tour in Jokulsarlon glacier lagoon

Things to know before your tour

Considering booking a tour to this stunning glacial lagoon? Here are a few things to know before booking your trip to Jökulsárlón.

  • The lagoon is accessible all year round, but boat tours are only in operation during the summertime and are dependent on the weather.

  • Since Jökulsárlón is a glacier lagoon, it can get really chilly. It is recommended to bring appropriate clothing such as warm clothes, a hat, a scarf, gloves, and good shoes even if the sun is shining and you are visiting during summer. Always dress in layers so if you are too warm, you can take one layer off and vice versa.

  • There is a café with restrooms right beside the lagoon. There, you can have a hot drink and snack in a warm place.

  • Wheelchair users can view the lagoon, but many activities on and around the glacier are not suitable for people with limited mobility.

  • It is always better to book your boat tour in advance to be sure to have a seat left, mostly if you are traveling with a group of people or if you are visiting during high season.

  • During the boat tour, you will have the opportunity to taste the ice, which is one of the purest you will have ever experienced.


Find out about our tours to Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon.

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 the Arctic Adventures website then please contact our Customer Care Team.

It’s about 380 km (236 mi) or 5 hours from Reykjavík to the glacier lagoon.

There are loads of activities to enjoy in and near Jokulsarlon. You can hop on a Zodiac boat tour or an Amphibian boat tour. Or slide into a kayak for a more personal experience.

You can’t miss the glacier lagoon! It’s located between Hofn and Skaftafell. It’s right off the Ring Road on your drive from Reykjavík.

Accommodation near Jökulsárlón is pretty sparse, but you can book a countryside hotel near Vatnajokull. Your best bet, though, is to book a room at a hotel in Hof or Geirland.

Yes, it is! As long as you do not attempt to step on the ice or swim in the lagoon or the sea. The icebergs can flip or collapse at any time. The water is extremely cold all year round… cold enough to cause hypothermia in just a few minutes.

Those who purchase a kayaking tour receive safety equipment, life vests, and dry suits. They are also accompanied by a professional kayaking guide.

The surface of the ground is somewhat rocky and uneven around the lagoon and it can be slippery in winter. Walking and getting around might be a little bit difficult for small children and people with reduced mobility. If the ground is icy, place spikes or crampons on your shoes for safe walking. You can buy crampons at larger gas stations along the way or at sports equipment stores in Reykjavík.

Yes, you can! But only via an organized glacier tour, accompanied by an experienced local glacier guide. Glacier hikes are fantastic opportunities to see Iceland’s nature up close and personal. Explore Vatnajökull glacier tongues from Jökulsárlón. You can also combine a glacier hike with another popular activity, like kayaking in Jökulsárlón or horse riding.