Step off the usual tourist trail and do something totally different. You enter Katla´s glacier, Kötlujökull, through a truly magical ‘gateway’ as blue & black ice walls stand like sentinels on either side of you. Inside this ice-dome, you will feel you are in a magical Hollywood scene. This tour is available with transfer from Reykjavik and from our meeting location at Vik in South Iceland.
Kötlujökull, the outlet glacier which is home to this unbelievably stunning ice cave, is part of the majestic and very famous Mýrdalsjökull glacier. The name, Kötlujökull, reminds us that the capricious volcano, Katla, has its home beneath this ice cap.
The twin elements of Mýrdalsjökulls ice and Katla´s infernal fire have combined to create a spectacular wonder of nature. On this fascinating Super Jeep tour, we take you to the biggest and the best Katla Ice Cave. Many people call this ‘Katla´s Ice Cave Dome.’ Stepping in through the glorious but natural entrance, you will understand why.
Arriving at the foot of the glacier, we will take on our crampons and helmets and take a short walk to the ice cave's opening. We might need to climb a few steps on ladders to the cave entrance. As the natural ice cave constantly changes, conditions can differ on each tour. However, the climb is not challenging at all, and anyone in an average physical condition should be able to climb these steps. It might look adventurous, but it is not demanding at all!
The kind of sights that will greet you when we stop at the base of the Kötlujökull glacier is not so easy to portray in words. Your first impression will be of stripe upon stripe of differently colored ice forming stunning layers in the glacial ice. This is a gorgeous and unearthly place. Visiting the Katla Ice Cave is a mesmerizing and also educational experience. Your guide will share the fascinating history of the ice cave with you and some interesting facts about the glacier and the surrounding area.
The drive back to Vík will give you a whole new vantage point on some incredible vistas. In winter, the sun will sink behind the mountains offering an astonishing sunset. On this tour, you should keep your camera to hand!
If you select the pickup from Reykjavik option, our tour guide will pick you up at your chosen meeting location at the time specified in the booking.
If you choose to meet the tour in Vik, our tour guide will connect with you at The Ice Cave Bistro/Restaurant in Vík. By the entrance at the back of the building, you will find our guide holding an “Arctic Adventures” sign or standing by a Super Jeep marked with an Arctic Adventures sign in the window. The tour will start from Vík (approximately 2.5 hours from Reykjavik), where you will join everyone in a Super Jeep for the exciting day ahead.
Warm clothing is absolutely essential! We cannot stress enough how important it is to bring warm and waterproof clothing, warm headwear, gloves, and sturdy shoes, as there is no opportunity to rent any clothing items for this tour.
During the tour, there will be a stop at the gas station where you could buy snacks and drinks.
Due to limited daylight periods, we cannot stop at Skógafoss in the wintertime (from mid-November until mid-February). Only from mid-February until mid-November do we stop at both of the waterfalls on this tour.
The meet-on-location tour (from Vík) does not include any other stops but the ice cave.
Ice caves are constantly changing, so they might not look exactly the same as in pictures or videos. They're still always remarkable!
What our Travelers are saying about Katla Ice Cave Tour
Iceland is known for unforeseeable weather. It is likely that you can see all 4 seasons in one day. Dressing for that kind of weather can always be demanding, so we suggest dressing in layers. 3 or 4 upper layers are highly recommended, for example, a light t-shirt (preferably wool) next to the skin, then a fleece or heavy wool garment topped off with a waterproof windbreaker. Jeans are not recommended for our trips as they are not suitable for the weather conditions, they become very heavy, cold and uncomfortable to wear when they get wet.
Lightweight hiking pants, track pants or long cotton pants are convenient and wear wind/waterproof pants over them. There is high UV and sunlight reflecting off on the glacier so we highly recommend using sunglasses and sunscreen even if it is cloudy. You will need sturdy hiking boots that fit crampons for the glacier hiking tours. If you do not own a pair then we rent out suitable hiking boots as well as a waterproof raincoat and trousers.
This is surely a personal choice, we do not deny pregnant women on our glacier trips but we highly recommend you to take a closer look at our trip description and difficulty ratings, they will hopefully give you a better idea. We also recommend you to contact your physician, as pregnant women’s health can be quite different. If you have any further questions or concerns then feel free to contact us.
Yes, we provide you with all the necessary glacier gear for our glacier hiking tours. Ice axe, crampons, harness, and helmets are provided. This will help you to complete the tour safely. The minimum shoe size to attach crampons is EU 35.
Iceland is known to have a lot of snow and when the snow stays long enough in one place than it turns to ice. Over long periods of time, the ice layers up becoming huge blocks called glaciers. It forms to create ginormous glaciers that sweep across huge masses of land. Iceland is home of the largest glacier in Europe that is called Vatnajökull. The Glacier Guides can tell you more about and everything you need to know about the Glaciers.
Rain is common in Iceland but we never let the rain be in our way to go forward with our tours. That’s why we highly recommend appropriate clothing so you can be warm and dry on the tours. Nature is out of our control and therefore we need to adapt to the weather. Your safety is our first priority so if your safety is compromised by going on the tour then we will cancel it and you will get full reimbursement.
The caves are in a constant change so they might look different from what you see in the picture. Air temperature, sunshine, precipitation, geothermal activity, and many other factors cause significant changes in the formation of the ice caves and this process is exclusively controlled by Mother Nature.
We will visit the best available naturally formed ice cave during this tour and the cave we visit is chosen based on conditions and safety each time.