The thrill of hiking combined with the mesmerizing sights of Skaftafell Ice Cave – one of the rarest places a human being can lay eyes upon – is what you can expect of this marvelous trip. Encountering some very challenging landscapes and curvatures, you will end your trip with the view of the gorgeous Blue Ice cave situated deep inside of Vatnajökull glacier. This 4-hour hike is structured expertly to fit everything worth experiencing in the vicinity of Vatnajökull glacier. For the admirers and seekers of thrill, Skaftafell ice cave and glacier hike are the most accessible and the ideal way to blow off some steam as you crush the fear and conquer the glacier seldom climbed.
The Skaftafell Ice Cave and the Hike
The thing that makes ice caves so exclusive is that they are ever-changing. There is a fair chance that the formations and structures that you see on your first trip are completely different then what you get to witness on your next trip. The ice caves are a dynamic natural phenomenon that is formed when glacial rivers cut through the glacier and form a cave-like structure in the middle. These are generally accessible during winters only. The blue ice cave forms almost every season while most caves do not. Although the cave doesn’t need to form in the same place every time – they change places along with structure. This means not only the thrill and adventure of the harsh glacier but also the mystery of finding the caves.
Skaftafell blue ice cave is located on the tongue of Vatnajökull, the largest glacier in Europe. It is also home to the tallest peak of Iceland – Hvannadalshnúkur. While the glacier is one of the most accessible glaciers in the country but the blue ice cave of this glacier is one of the hardest to reach in the country. A camera is a must bring for your trip. There is no doubt that you will want to capture every single thing that you witness in the cave.
Your journey will start from the Skaftafell terminal by the main road. Your guide will be introduced to you at this point. Skaftafell is one of the three national reserves of Iceland and is filled with some of the most wonderful sights of Iceland. Your guide will brief you about your trip here and introduce you to the Vatnajökull wonder you will be witnessing on this trip.
Once your guide has told you all about the equipment that you will be using for the hiking and ice caving trip, you will start the trip. The hike will begin once you reach the base of the ice cap and have put on all the essential equipment which includes ice cleats, harness, ice axes, and helmets.
- Professional & Certified Glacier Guide
- English Speaking Tour Guide
- Glacier Hike on Europe’s largest glacier – Vatnajokull.
- Visit to a natural ice cave.
- A taste of pure glacier water.
- Glacier Equipment: helmet, harness, crampons & ice axe.
- All safety equipment.
What to bring
- Hiking boots
- Warm & Waterproof clothes.
Good to know
- This tour is operated in small groups.
- No glacier hiking experience is required for this tour – it is perfect for beginners as well as those with experience.
- This tour is suitable for both single travelers, groups and families.
- The duration of the tour is 3 hours in total, including gearing up and getting to the glacier. You will be spending around 1.5 hours on the glacier.
- The meeting point is at Skaftafell Terminal by the main road. You can look up “Skaftafell Terminal” on Google Maps to find the exact location and driving directions.
Interesting locations in the area
Hotels & Restaurants
Most frequent questions and answers
The meeting point is Skaftafell Terminal by the main road. You can look up “Skaftafell Terminal” on Google Maps to find the exact location and driving directions.
We will see you at our meeting point 20 minutes before the departure time stated on your ticket. Please note that if you arrive after departure time, your place on the tour can’t be guaranteed or refunded.
Driving time from Reykjavik to Skaftafell is around 4 hours and 30 minutes. If you arrive early, you can visit Skaftafell Terminal which offers free parking and has restrooms. There are also a lot of interesting locations to explore in Skaftafell.
We encourage bringing hiking boots for glacier tours. They have to hard on the sole and tight around the ankle. If you don’t have them, we have them for rent in all sizes in Skaftafell or Sólheimajökull. You can add them to your reservation at the time of booking or rent them on location pay with cash or card. The price is ISK 1,500 per pair. For ice climbing tours, boots are included in the price.
Weather in Iceland is very unpredictable. For tours during winter: warm clothing as first layer, waterproof jacket with a hoodie, hiking boots with ankle protection and hard sole, a hat and gloves are ideal. For tours during summer, bringing a light rain jacket or a soft shell with a hoodie is in most cases enough protection. Icelanders often say, “If you don’t like the weather, just wait 5 minutes”. Jeans are not recommended for the tour as they become very heavy, cold and uncomfortable to wear when they get wet.
It rains a lot in Iceland, but we do not let rain stop us from going out and enjoy nature. All we need to do is choose our clothing wisely, which is why we recommend wearing waterproof clothing as the second layer. Of course, safety is our #1 priority. In case of extreme weather conditions, we will cancel our tours and do our best to reschedule. In these cases, you’ll receive a full refund.
This is a personal choice. We have had pregnant women on our glacier hikes and we always recommend you read the description of the activity to get a better idea. In any case, feel free to contact our Service Team for further questions and concerns.
Glacier Hikes in Skaftafell are easy or moderate in difficulty. Our tours are considered to be safe for anyone in good physical condition. If you are fit to walk for about an hour on an uneven surface a glacier hike is for you. Longer tours will be more challenging in endurance and some areas of the glacier. We also recommend you remember that we offer all the safety equipment necessary and you will be hiking with a professional and certified glacier guide. If you have specific questions regarding one of our glacier tours, feel free to email us.