10 Unique Activities Around Iceland

Iceland, with its breathtaking landscapes and otherworldly beauty, is a haven for adventurers seeking unique experiences. From exploring volcanic craters to kayaking through glacier lagoons, this land of fire and ice offers a plethora of activities that promise to ignite your spirit of adventure. Here are 10 extraordinary adventures around Iceland that will leave you awe-inspired and craving for more:

1. Inside the volcano

Inside the volcano in Iceland

Descend into the heart of Thrihnukagigur volcano for a once-in-a-lifetime experience. This dormant volcano offers a rare opportunity to explore its colorful magma chamber, which has been dormant for over 4,000 years. As you journey deep into the belly of the earth, marvel at the vibrant hues of the cavern walls, a testament to Iceland’s fiery past.

The adventure begins with a scenic hike across rugged terrain, surrounded by breathtaking views of Iceland’s volcanic landscape. As you approach the volcano’s crater, anticipation mounts, knowing that you’re about to embark on a journey few have experienced.

Upon arrival at the volcano’s base camp, you’ll be greeted by the awe-inspiring sight of the crater’s gaping maw. A custom-built elevator awaits to transport you safely down into the depths of the volcano, where a world unlike any other awaits.

As you descend, the temperature drops, and the air grows cooler, a stark contrast to the fiery origins of the volcano. Descending 120 meters (nearly 400 feet) below the surface, you’ll emerge into the heart of Thrihnukagigur’s magma chamber—a vast, otherworldly cavern adorned with vibrant hues of red, orange, and gold.

Marvel at the sheer size and beauty of the chamber as your guide provides insights into the geological forces that shaped this underground wonder. The sheer scale of the chamber is humbling, reminding you of the immense power of nature.

Standing in the belly of the volcano, you’ll have the rare opportunity to connect with Iceland’s volcanic past in a way that few ever will. Take in the sights, sounds, and sensations of this subterranean world, knowing that you’re witnessing a natural phenomenon that has remained dormant for thousands of years.

After your exploration inside the volcano, you’ll ascend back to the surface, filled with a sense of wonder and awe at the beauty and power of Iceland’s volcanic landscape. This immersive experience is sure to leave an indelible mark on your memory, offering a glimpse into the incredible forces that have shaped our planet for millennia.

  • Available from May – October
  • Minimum age: 8 years
  • Location: Reykjavik area

2. Glacier Lagoon Kayaking

Solheimajokull glacier lagoon kayak

Paddle your way through the ethereal beauty of Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon, surrounded by towering icebergs and majestic glaciers. This guided kayaking tour allows you to get up close and personal with nature while navigating through the tranquil waters of one of Iceland’s most iconic destinations.

Located on the southeastern coast of Iceland, Jökulsárlón is a stunning glacial lake dotted with icebergs of all shapes and sizes, creating a mesmerizing landscape that is truly out of this world.

As you glide across the crystal-clear waters of the lagoon, you’ll be surrounded by towering icebergs that have broken off from the nearby Breiðamerkurjökull Glacier. The surreal beauty of your surroundings is sure to leave you breathless as you paddle through this icy wonderland.

With each stroke of your paddle, you’ll navigate through a maze of icebergs, marveling at their intricate shapes and vibrant blue hues. Keep an eye out for playful seals that often make an appearance in the lagoon, adding to the magic of the experience.

As you kayak further into the lagoon, you’ll be treated to panoramic views of Vatnajökull, Europe’s largest glacier, looming in the distance. The sheer scale of the glacier and its surrounding landscape is awe-inspiring, offering a glimpse into the raw power of nature.

  • Available from May – October
  • Minimum age: 14 years
  • Location: Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon

3. Snorkeling in Silfra

Snorkeling in Silfra, Snorkel in Iceland, Snorkel between the tectonic plates in Iceland, Snorkel in Thingvellir National Park

Dive into the crystal-clear waters of Silfra and embark on a snorkeling adventure like no other! Located in Iceland’s Thingvellir National Park, Silfra is a fissure between the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates, offering a unique opportunity to snorkel between two continents.

Entering the water, you’ll be immediately struck by the clarity and purity of the water, with visibility reaching up to 100 meters (328 feet) on a good day. The underwater scenery is nothing short of spectacular, with towering rock formations, vibrant green algae, and otherworldly landscapes stretching out before you.

Snorkeling through Silfra, you’ll glide effortlessly along the fissure, marveling at the stunning shades of blue and turquoise that surround you. The sensation of weightlessness and the tranquility of the underwater world create a sense of calm and wonder, allowing you to fully immerse yourself in the beauty of your surroundings.

  • Available all year
  • Minimum age: 12 years
  • Location: Thingvellir National Park

4. Glacier Zip Line

Experience the thrill of soaring above Iceland’s majestic landscapes with Glacier Zip Lining on Vatnajökull, Europe’s largest glacier! Located in the breathtaking wilderness of southeastern Iceland, this exhilarating adventure offers a unique opportunity to zip line across vast expanses of ice and snow, surrounded by stunning panoramic views of glaciers, mountains, and volcanic terrain.

Launching from specially constructed platforms, you’ll zip line across the glacier, gliding effortlessly through the crisp mountain air. Feel the wind in your hair and the thrill of speed as you soar above crevasses, ice formations, and rugged terrain, taking in the awe-inspiring beauty of your surroundings.

The views from above are nothing short of spectacular, with endless vistas of pristine ice fields stretching out as far as the eye can see. From the towering peaks of nearby mountains to the vast expanse of the glacier below, every moment of your zip lining adventure offers a new perspective on Iceland’s breathtaking wilderness.

This tour is combined with an ice cave visit during winter time and a glacier hike during summer time. Professional photographers will be with you on the tour and you will receive edited images after the tour. 

  • Available from all year
  • Minimum age: 13 years
  • Location: Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon

Katla Ice Cave (Available all Year):

Ice Cave Tours, Katla Ice Caving Iceland

Discover the enchanting beauty of Katla Ice Cave, a natural wonder tucked away amidst the rugged landscapes of Iceland’s southern region. Carved by the powerful forces of nature, Katla Ice Cave offers visitors a mesmerizing glimpse into the icy heart of the country’s majestic glaciers.

Located near the formidable Katla volcano, after which it’s named, this ice cave showcases the stunning interplay of light and ice, with shades of blue and white creating a magical ambiance unlike anything you’ve ever seen. As you step inside the cave, you’ll be transported to a world of ethereal beauty, where time seems to stand still amidst the frozen walls and ceilings.

One of the most remarkable features of Katla Ice Cave is its ever-changing landscape. Each year, as temperatures fluctuate and the glaciers shift, the cave undergoes a transformation, creating new formations and textures that make each visit a unique and unforgettable experience.

Exploring Katla Ice Cave is like stepping into a fairy tale. As you wander through its icy corridors and chambers, you’ll encounter towering ice formations, glittering icicles, and mysterious crevices that seem to beckon you deeper into the heart of the glacier.

The play of light within the cave is truly mesmerizing, with sunlight filtering through the ice to create dazzling displays of color and shadow. Photographers and nature enthusiasts alike will find endless opportunities to capture the beauty of this natural marvel from every angle.

  • Available all year
  • Minimum age: 6 years
  • Location: Vík

6. Into the Glacier (Available all year - no minimum age):

Into the Glacier Ice Cave Tunnel

Embark on a captivating journey deep into the heart of Iceland’s icy wilderness with the extraordinary Into the Glacier experience in west Iceland. Nestled amidst the rugged landscapes of Langjökull, Iceland’s second-largest glacier, this immersive tour offers a rare opportunity to explore the icy depths of an ancient glacier.

The adventure begins as you board a specially modified glacier vehicle, designed to traverse the icy terrain with ease.

Inside the glacier, you’ll discover a world unlike any other, with towering ice walls, intricate formations, and glittering icicles creating a mesmerizing spectacle at every turn. The temperature drops, and the air grows cooler as you delve deeper into the icy depths, a stark contrast to the warmth of the outside world.

Guides provide fascinating insights into the geological forces that have shaped the glacier over millennia, offering a deeper understanding of its significance and importance. From the formation of ice caves to the impact of climate change, you’ll gain a newfound appreciation for the wonders of the natural world.

As you emerge back into the daylight, you’ll be filled with a sense of wonder and awe at the beauty and power of Iceland’s glaciers.

There is no minimum age for this tour so this one is ideal for everyone! Kids will also have crampons and they also offer sleds for the kids. 

  • Available all year
  • No minimum age
  • Location: Húsafell

7. Black Beach Horse Riding in Vík:

South Coast & Black Beach Horse Riding Tour

Experience the raw beauty of Iceland’s southern coast with a thrilling horse riding adventure along the famous black sand beaches of Vík! Nestled between steep cliffs and crashing waves, Vík’s black sand beaches are renowned for their dramatic scenery and unique geological features, making them the perfect backdrop for an unforgettable equestrian experience.

After a brief safety briefing and introduction to your horse, you’ll saddle up and set off on your adventure along the black sand beaches of Vík. As you ride along the shoreline, you’ll be mesmerized by the contrast of the dark volcanic sand against the turquoise waters of the North Atlantic Ocean.

The sound of hoofbeats mingles with the rhythmic crash of waves as you traverse the sandy shores, feeling the salty sea breeze on your face and the sun warming your skin. Along the way, keep an eye out for seabirds soaring overhead and the occasional seal basking on the rocks, adding to the magic of the experience.

Your journey will take you past towering sea stacks, natural arches, and hidden caves carved by the relentless power of the ocean, each one a testament to the forces of nature that have shaped this rugged coastline over millennia.

Whether you’re an experienced rider or a novice, horse riding along Vík’s black sand beaches promises an unforgettable adventure filled with breathtaking scenery.

  • Available all year
  • Minimum age: 10 years
  • Location: Vík

8. Húsavík Whale Watching:

Husavik Whale Watching - Book Whale Watching in Iceland

Set sail on an unforgettable adventure amidst the breathtaking beauty of Iceland’s northern coast with a whale watching tour in Húsavík! Known as the whale watching capital of Europe, Húsavík offers a prime opportunity to encounter majestic cetaceans in their natural habitat, surrounded by stunning landscapes and pristine waters.

As you embark on your whale watching expedition, anticipation builds, knowing that you’re about to witness some of the most magnificent creatures on Earth. Boarding your vessel, you’ll be greeted by knowledgeable guides who will provide insights into the marine life of the area and ensure a safe and enjoyable experience for all.

As your boat sets sail from the harbor, keep your eyes peeled for signs of marine life on the horizon. Húsavík’s rich waters are home to a variety of whale species, including humpback whales, minke whales, white-beaked dolphins, and even the elusive blue whale, the largest animal on the planet.

As you cruise along the coast, your guides will share fascinating facts about the behavior, biology, and conservation of the whales you encounter, enriching your experience with their expertise and passion for marine life.

Suddenly, a spout of water breaks the surface ahead, followed by the majestic sight of a humpback whale breaching the waves. Cameras click, and excited whispers fill the air as you marvel at the sheer size and beauty of these gentle giants. From playful breaches to graceful fluke dives, each encounter offers a glimpse into the awe-inspiring world of whales.

But the magic of Húsavík’s whale watching tours doesn’t end with the whales. Along the way, you’ll also have the chance to spot seabirds soaring overhead, including puffins, guillemots, and arctic terns, adding to the diversity and wonder of the experience.

  • Available from March – November
  • No minimum age
  • Location: Húsavík

9. Glacier Snowmobile

Iceland Snowmobile Tour, Snowmobile Iceland, Snowmobiling in Iceland, Snowmobile on Myrdalsjokull glacier in south Iceland

Embark on an adrenaline-fueled adventure amidst the icy expanse of Iceland’s Myrdalsjokull glacier with a thrilling glacier snowmobiling experience! Located in the southern region of Iceland, Myrdalsjokull is one of the country’s most iconic glaciers, offering a pristine playground for outdoor enthusiasts seeking an unforgettable adventure.

Mounting your snowmobile, you’ll feel the exhilaration of the powerful engine beneath you as you set off across the vast expanse of snow and ice. The crisp mountain air fills your lungs as you accelerate, leaving the world behind and immersing yourself in the natural beauty of your surroundings.

As you navigate the glacier’s undulating terrain, you’ll be treated to panoramic views of snow-capped peaks, rugged valleys, and distant volcanic landscapes. The sheer scale and beauty of the glacier are awe-inspiring, offering a sense of freedom and adventure that is truly unparalleled.

With each twist and turn, you’ll feel the rush of adrenaline as you carve through the snow, weaving between towering ice formations and sparkling blue crevasses. The sensation of speed and freedom is exhilarating, as you embrace the challenge of conquering nature’s icy playground.

  • Available all year
  • Minimum age: 8 years
  • Location: Myrdalsjokull

10. Þórsmörk Super Jeep Tour (Includes River Crossing):

Þórsmörk in the highlands of Iceland

Embark on an epic off-road adventure through the rugged landscapes of Þórsmörk (Thórsmörk) with a thrilling Super Jeep Tour! Located in the southern region of Iceland, Þórsmörk is a stunning nature reserve nestled between towering glaciers and volcanic mountains, offering a pristine wilderness just waiting to be explored.

Climbing aboard your specially modified Super Jeep, you’ll feel the excitement mount as you set off along rugged mountain trails and river crossings, leaving civilization behind and immersing yourself in the raw beauty of nature.

With each bump and dip in the road, you’ll be treated to breathtaking views of snow-capped peaks, deep valleys, and lush green landscapes stretching out as far as the eye can see. The sheer scale and beauty of Þórsmörk are awe-inspiring, offering a sense of freedom and adventure that is truly unparalleled.

One of the highlights of the Super Jeep Tour is the exhilarating river crossings, where your skilled guides will navigate the powerful currents and rocky terrain with ease, allowing you to experience the thrill of off-road adventure in safety and comfort.

Throughout your journey, there will be plenty of opportunities to stop and explore the stunning landscapes of Þórsmörk on foot, whether it’s hiking to hidden waterfalls, exploring volcanic craters, or simply taking in the panoramic views from a scenic lookout point.

Þórsmörk Super Jeep Tour offers not only a chance to experience the thrill of off-road adventure but also an opportunity to connect with nature in a profound and meaningful way, leaving you with a sense of wonder and awe that will stay with you long after you’ve returned home.

  • Available all year
  • Minimum age: 6 years
  • Location: Hvolsvöllur

In conclusion, Iceland’s diverse landscapes and unique geological features provide the perfect backdrop for unforgettable adventures. Whether you’re exploring volcanic craters, kayaking through glacier lagoons, or soaking in geothermal hot springs, each experience offers a glimpse into the raw and untamed beauty of this land of fire and ice. So, pack your bags, and embark on a journey of discovery as you uncover Iceland’s hidden gems and create memories that will last a lifetime.

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