Picture yourself standing under the glacier in a room like Elton John’s Ice Palace with tigers at your feet and golden bracelets all over your arms. This post discusses locations and tours which might include Ice-Caves. Tigers are difficult, but we could arrange some gold bracelets.
Ice caves are generally found near glaciers and conveniently they are usually at the edges of glaciers which means that if you have a Jeep with big tyres it can be possible to drive close to them. They are notoriously dangerous and have claimed the lives of many people who have made the wrong decision to enter them. For this reason, our tours always use Highly experienced Glacier Guides who spend many hours accessing the safety of a cave before entering.
On the right you can see an Ice-cave guide asking a group to wait while we finish our photography. Ice caves have become very popular and it is common to have over 30 people at a time.
The majority of icecaves that we visit are under the Vatnjökull Glacier in South East Iceland. It is the shear size of the glacier which enables access to many points along the edge of the glacier. There is a famous ice-cave on the North edge at Kverkfjöll, but due to recent Volcanic activity, this area could be out of bounds for some time. It is normally only accessible in the Summer and these caves have claimed the most lives. Please ask at the mountain hut if access is safe.
Ice caves are forged by glacier rivers and sometimes the rivers can fill the entire cave if there is enough melt water in warmer weather. It is the movement of the river that carve the beautiful scalloped walls in the cave. In the Winter months the glacier river will recede allowing access to the Ice-Caves.
Tours & workshops with Ice-caves (Nov-March)
2 day Jökulsarlon – only if it can be arranged on the 2nd morning.
3 day South Coast & Jökulsarlon – shared & private.
FlyTour – Jökulsarlon – Do it in a day!
3 day mini Jökulsarlon workshops – running every Tuesday (dependent on numbers).
Winter workshop with Tony Prower – Nov, Jan, Feb & March.
Winter workshop with Skarpi – Late Oct & Jan.
Photo tips, take a tripod because some images require long exposures in areas deep in the cave without much light. Think up-side-down in terms of composition and look for the foreground in the walls or ceiling. Polariser filters can have interesting results. Try to include a well placed human to show the scale.
Vatnjökull Ice Caves
The ice caves under the Vatnjökull glacier are the real deal. These are caves sculpted by melt water during the Summer months. The walls and ceiling are carved by glacier rivers. There is no human involvement. These are not machine built tunnels.
Book your ice cave tour directly from Local suppliers.