I love snow, highlands, frozen rivers and lakes. I love all the fun activities you can do during the winter season and how the colours of the mountains change depending on the sunlight. I have explored many cold places in the north, from Canada, to Norway, to Finland, and now Iceland. But this trip was something special. It was the entrance into a different world, a new winter wonderland that I could never have imagined exploring, but “Into the Glacier” makes it possible!
The World’s Largest Man-Made Ice Cave & Hidden Gems of Iceland
After we got picked up in Reykjavik, we were heading north while following the beautiful coast and then continued towards north-east through the totally different scenery of the country side. We first stopped at the powerful hot spring Deildartunguhver which has the fastest rate flow of European hot springs, about 180 litres per second! We continued to the gorgeous waterfalls Hraunfossar and Barnafoss.
After we enjoyed our lunch in Husafell, we received our tickets for the Into the Glacier tour, as well as snowsuits and waterproof shoes to put over our normal shoes if needed. The crew welcomed us after everyone found a seat in the huge Monster Truck. Depending on the road conditions, our driver could adjust the pressure of the tires automatically while driving. The landscapes on the way to the glacier are amazing! It takes about 1 to 1 ½ hours to get to the entrance of the tunnel, but it felt like 15 minutes as I highly enjoyed the view. The Monster Truck tour is great fun, a real adventure!
The ice tunnel is located on the second largest glacier in Iceland, called Langjokull which basically means Long glacier. The glacier covers an area of about 950 km² and is more than 1400 m high. Our wonderful tour guide introduced herself to the group, her nickname is Ragga. The wind was whirling up the snow; hence the visibility was very low but everyone had fun taking pictures with the completely white shining background.
We finally entered the new wonderland through a big tube that led us right into the ice tunnel. We followed the chain of lights and everyone was fascinated about the scenery right away. After we put on our crampons we went further into the glacier. The 500 m long tunnel has an average temperature of 0 °C and is therefore warmer than outside.
I have never seen so many shades of blue before. Walking through this tunnel is incredible. Everyone had great fun to take pictures of themselves in this stunning location deep beneath the surface.
Ragga was a wonderful tour guide, motivated, humorous and passionate about her job. She explained to us by whom, when and how this first and biggest man-made ice cap glacier ice cave was built.
Moreover, she explained the different layers from normal snow to glacier ice to our group, which have been formed over time. Additionally, she pointed out special events that can be found within the layers, such as the ash from the volcanic eruption in 2010.
Ragga showed us the little chapel which is located within the ice tunnel. In my opinion, an extraordinary location for a wedding and only two weddings have taken place here so far, which makes it even more special.
We also got to see some moulins and Ragga explained in an easy way how they are created. By the way, the water from the moulin is delicious, you should try it!
The deepest point of the ice tunnel is about 30 m underneath the surface of the Langjokull glacier. The sound here is wonderful and in let the group experience it, Ragga sang an Icelandic song for us. Her lovely voice echoing from the ice walls enchanted all of us for a moment.
Into the Glacier describes their tour as a “once in a lifetime experience” and it definitely is!