This activity tour takes you safely on Vatnajokull, Europe's largest glacier, with an expert glacier guide among the crevasses and glacier sculptures of Falljökull glacial tongue in Skaftafell nature reserve. You'll be totally surrounded by the majestic scenery and experience the power of the living glacier. It's a fairly easy to moderate walk with real ice crampons attached to your hiking boots.
Duration: ~3.5 hours
Group maximum: 15 per guide
Available: All year
Age limit: 8 years
- Vatnajökull National Park
- Easy glacier hike
- Falljökull or Svinafellsjokull Glacier
- Licensed glacier guide
*Departures: We have a few departures every day. See booking engine for details.
Meeting point: Skaftafell booking office (South East Iceland). Click here for a map.
Included: Guiding services, glacier gear and safety equipment (ice crampons, ice axe, helmets). The glacier walk takes place either on Falljokull or Svinafellsjokull, depending on conditions and season.
Bring with you: waterproof warm clothing, and hiking boots (hiking boots may be rented from us). You need real hiking boots for the glacier hike, that have a thick sole and cover your ankle. We provide the ice crampons, and they cannot be attached to normal shoes.
Reviews on TripAdvisor
"Amazing experience. My fiance and I were the only ones that booked the 10am hike so it was essentially a private tour. Our guide "Siggy" filled us with amazing information about the glacier and Iceland. He has his PHD in mountain rescue so we felt very safe. This tour is for someone who wants to experience the beauty of walking on a glacier without ever feeling unsafe and I highly recommend it if you are on a budget."
Iceland is the type of place that makes you feel small and fragile – even powerless, when immersed in all this surreal nature and truly spectacular scenery. So let's take it up close and personal, feeling and understanding the strongest shaping force on earth - glaciers.
Before we start on the hike we need to gear you up. It's vital to have the correct footwear for glacier hiking. We’ll have the hiking boots ready for those who have rented such, and we provide ice crampons and teach you how to attach them to the boots. Crampons make it easy to walk on the ice so that there's no worry of slipping. Other security items include helmets and ice axes.
This glacier tongue is an outlet of the immense Glacier Vatnajökull, Europe's largest glacier, and the ice is 1,000 years old.
Glaciers are made up of fallen snow. They are not frozen water, as some might think. But how does it turn into ice then? Simply by compression due to the weight of the snow as it keeps accumulating. It's just like taking a handful of fluffy snow and squeezing into a hard snowball and keep doing so for hundreds of years.
The ice eventually gets so compressed that most of the air is forced out of it. This is what causes glacial ice to appear blue.
A glacier is a river of ice. It flows. That's because the highly compressed layers of ice are very flexible. At locations where a glacier flows rapidly, giant cracks called crevasses are formed. This is why it's so dangerous to walk on a glacier - the crevasses get sometimes covered over by snow. Your guide may show you with the ice axe spots that may look like solid ice and snow but are in fact a steep drop just covered in a light dusting of snow.
Are you not coming by car? Consider our multi-day tours that include glacier hiking here in Skaftafell:
List of tours to Skaftafell..
Image Gallery: Hiking on Glacier Svínafellsjökull
GPS location: 64.015999, -16.966754
Map - (click to enlarge)
Read customer reviews
Ultimate Icescape - Rated 4.8/5 based on 17 customer reviews
Great5 by Raul Martin 2018-04-11
Amazing trip!5 by Zac Spowart 2018-05-06
Very safe and Tons of fun!5 by 5 2018-05-18
Great Experience - Spectacular Views5 by Dennis 2018-05-20
Glacier hiking tour5 by Josco de Vor 2018-05-25
Fabulous tour guide, very fun!5 by Elizabeth Zurn 2018-05-25
Once in a lifetime trip5 by Dave C 2018-06-03
May 20185 by Amy 2018-06-05
Great guide, amazing tour5 by Danny Chang 2018-06-09
My experience with Extreme Iceland4 by Ewa 2018-06-13
Great tour. !!5 by Dave Shiffer 2018-06-17
Great experience5 by Jane 2018-06-26
Super cool experience4 by CARLOTA 2018-06-26
An exciting tour5 by SDUAN 2018-06-29
My Glacier Hiking tour5 by Yan 2018-07-02
Serious and efficient4 by Simon 2018-07-03