Ice Climbing & Glacier Hike from SkaftafellCome on this comprehensive ice climbing and glacier hiking tour, perfect for those seeking that extra bit of thrill. The only thing you need to bring is patience and endurance to climb to the top of a glacial ice wall on Vatnajökull, Europe's largest glacier. Your glacier guide will introduce you to the basics of ice climbing and much more!
Book this tour
✓ Guided Glacier Tour,
✓ All Necessary Equipment,
✓ Hiking boots,
✓ English Speaking Certified Glacier Guide,
… and more
✓ Hike on Vatnajokull, Europe’s Largest Glacier,
✓ Climb an Ice Wall,
✓ Views of Ice Formations,
✓ Small Group Experience,
… and more
~ 4 Hours
Are you ready for the ultimate Icelandic ice-cold icy ice climbing adventure? This comprehensive tour is a combination of a glacier hike and ice climbing. It is perfect for everyone as our experienced guides can adapt it to all needs and expectations. Challenge yourself while traveling to Iceland and climb an ice wall with an experienced glacier guide and create memories and photos you can always remember.
We will take you to an outlet glacier part of the largest glacier in Europe, Vatnajökull glacier where you will be able to experience the breathtaking views to the ice covered highest peaks of Iceland rising more than 2,000 metres (6,500 ft) over your helmet. These glaciers and their spectacular landscape has been scenery for dozens of movies like James Bond, Interstellar and Game of Thrones. Follow the footsteps of Pierce Brosnan, Matt Damon, and Jon Snow.
Your highly qualified glacier guide will welcome you the Skaftafell Visitor Centre and he will provide you with all the equipment you need: crampons, ice axes, harnesses and helmets. Then you will enter the troll bus and drive for about 10 minutes to the parking of the glacier. From there it’s only a 15 minutes walk to the edge of the ice where your guide will show you how to put on the crampons, steel frames which are tied to your hiking boots.
You will stay 150 to 180 minutes on the ice itself and see lots of beautiful features. Since the glacier is impermanent and ever changing your guide often has to scout out a new crevasse or moulin for climbing each time. With this strategy we will be flexible and avoid the crowds on the glacier as well. Your guide will install massive ice screw and attach a rope to them before you climb up the ice wall or even rappelling into a crevasse and climb down again. This will be the adventure of your lifetime.
Never been on a glacier walk before? Never used crampons or ice axe? No worries!
Our certified guides will teach you all you need to know and have you walking safely on the glacier. Safety equipment and briefings are provided before each tour. And if you still have some questions, you can read our article about the basics of ice climbing by clicking here.
Book this tour by selecting a date.
✓ 4 hours
✓ All year
✓ Certified glacier guide
✓ Small group: 6 persons max
✓ Mountaineering boots and crampons
✓ Glacier equipment: ropes, helmet, harness, and ice axe
What you need to bring
• Warm clothes (first layer)
• Waterproof clothing (second layer)
• Gloves and hat
• 12 years
Good to know
• This tour is suitable for both single travelers and families
• If you are driving in the area, check Hotel Skaftafell for accommodation and/or dinner. You can also try flying over the glacier with Atlantsflug/Flightseeing
We will see you at our meeting point, 30 minutes before departure time at our meeting point. Please note that if you arrive after departure time, your place on the tour can’t be guaranteed or refunded.
Attention: From May 1st, 2019: The meeting point will be at Skaftafell Terminal Tour Center by the main road. You can look up “Skaftafell Terminal” on Google Maps to find the exact location and driving directions.
Driving time to Skaftafell from Reykjavík is around 4 hours and 30 minutes. If you arrive early, you can visit Skaftafell Terminal Tour Center which offers free parking and has restrooms.
Click on the map for the exact location and directions. Driving time from Reykjavík is around 4 hours.
- Note that Until April 30, 2019 our meeting point was our marked trailer 150 meters South from Skaftafell Visitor Center.
What should I wear for glacier tours?
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 our trips as they become very heavy, cold and uncomfortable to wear when they get wet.
Do I need hiking boots?
Yes, 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.
How difficult are glacier hikes?
We offer glacier hiking tours in Skaftafell and one in Sólheimajökull. Both locations either 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.
If I am pregnant, can I join a glacier hike?
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.
What if it’s raining or snowing?
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.