Katla Ice Cave Tour | Departure From Vík
Join this incredible super jeep excursion and marvel at the unmatched beauty of an ice cave. These stunning formations only occur during the winter months in a few places in Iceland, so do not let this opportunity pass you by.
You will be picked up from the charming village of Vík from 11:00 AM at winter time and 10:00 AM at summer time, at the local N1 gas station. The Super Jeep is perfectly designed for the bumpy road up to the ice cave, and its seats are limited, ensuring a personal and comfortable trip.
From Vík, your adventure begins. You will leave the black sand coastline behind, and start to ascend the volcano Katla, towards the glacier Mýrdalsjökull.
Katla is a beautiful volcano, and it's easy to immerse in the spectacular views unfolding outside your window.
Once you reach Mýrdalsjökull, the glacier which caps Katla, you will hop out the vehicle, and get into the safety gear provided for you. This consists of a helmet and crampons to strap around your feet to give you stable footing on the ice.
When your group is ready, you will head to the ice cave where dazzling white snow, electric blue ice, and veins of ash swirl together, giving the inside of the cave an otherworldly beauty.
Your guide will show you around the cave, tell you about its formation, and teach you about both the glacier and the volcano it covers. Use the time to ask questions, take pictures, and simply marvel over your surroundings. Depending on your preference, we will spend 30 minutes to 1 hour in and around the ice cave.
Once your group is ready to leave, you will return to the super jeep for the drive back to Vík. No doubt the memories you made here, and the photos you took, will keep a smile firmly etched on your face for the whole return journey.
Don’t wait until the ice caves melt away. Book this tour now for your opportunity to see one of the greatest wonders of nature. Check availability by choosing a date.
- Available: Oct. - Aug.
- Duration: 4 hours
- Activities: Sightseeing, Ice Caving
- Difficulty: Moderate
- Minimum age: 12 years old
- Languages: English
Katla is an active volcano situated under the glacier Myrdalsjokull in South Iceland. It is one of Iceland's most well known volcanoes.
Katla's eruptions have produced many massive glacier bursts, with enormous amounts of water flowing, as the fire melts the ice. Its latest eruption was 1918. That eruption created the spit Kötlutangi, which is the mainland's southernmost tip.
Mýrdalsjökull is a glacier in the south of the Icelandic highlands. It is the country's fourth largest ice cap, covering nearly 600 kilometres squared, and its highest peak is almost 1500 meters tall. It is most well-known for sitting atop the notorious and explosive volcano, Katla.
Photo above from the Katla Ice Cave Tour
Eruptions beneath Mýrdalsjökull
Since 2010, the world has known of the volcano beneath Eyjafjallajökull; few, however, are aware of the much larger volcano right beside it. Mýdalsjökull conceals Katla, one of the country’s most active volcanoes, having erupted, on average, once every fifty years since 930 AD. Because of the glacier above it, these eruptions tend to cause enormous ash clouds.
The last major eruption beneath Katla was in 1918, in which such huge lahar floods occurred that the southern coastline was extended five kilometres outwards. This area is also very susceptible to glacial floods, or jökulhlaups, during eruptions, even those which do not break through the surface of the ice, such as those that occurred in 1955, 1999 and 2011.
Historically, the area was little settled for this reason.
Katla is connected to the same volcanic system as Eyjafallajökull and usually erupts violently a few years after. As the ex-president, Ólafur Grímsson, said in 2010:
Katla is monitored heavily, and roads around it closed when seismic activity increases. All road closures around Iceland can be found on the roads website.
Tours on Mýrdalsjökull
While there are no eruptions immediately imminent, tours continue to run on Mýrdalsjökull, allowing visitors to enjoy the glacier. It is, for example, possible to snowmobile across its surface throughout the year and take ice caving tours beneath it from October to April, with departures from both Reykjavík and Vík.
Considering the ice caves under Vatnajökull glacier are usually only accessible from November to March, this provides a wider window of opportunity for travellers to Iceland outside of the depths of winter. It should be noted that these caves do not have the same blue ice, however.
Tours around Mýrdalsjökull
The best perspectives of the glacier, however, can be found on the popular Fimmvörðuháls hiking trail, which goes between Eyjafjallajökull and Mýrdalsjökull. Part of this hike can be done in a day, or you can take the complete route from Þórsmörk to Skógar on a three-day trek.
Vik in Myrdalur valley is the southernmost village on the Icelandic mainland, located 186 km from the capital Reykjavik.
Vik is important as a service centre for the inhabitants and visitors of the marvellous Reynisfjara beach.
Reynisfjara is widely considered one of the most beautiful beaches on earth (see for example Islands Magazine). This black pebble beach boasts an amazing cliff of regular basalt columns called Gardar, which resembles a rocky step pyramid and out in the sea are the spectaculary shaped basalt sea stacks Reynisdrangar. The area has rich birdlife, including puffins, fulmars and guillemots.
Departure time : 10:00 11:00,
The local N1 gas station in Vík.
Guided Super Jeep tour
Helmet and crampons
What to bring:
Warm clothes, including hat and gloves
Good to know:
Ice caves require the right conditions and temperatures to form and remain stable. If these change, it can compromise the safety of the tour. The tour, therefore, can be cancelled with short notice.
This tour was the best part of my vacation in Iceland. Bessie, the tour guide, was really engaging and made it a ton of fun.
Anna Ymbern Jiménez
Best Iceland experience!! Awesome and gorgeous sights from the top of the glacier, hiking up there passing through the ice tunnel... It just make you astonished, no words couldn't be said. Its absolutely a must!
We had a lot of fun on this tour. It was an off-roading adventure. Our guide was so funny. Unfortunately it had been raining a lot the past few days, so the ice cave had mostly melted. It was still neat to see as you won't see one anywhere else in the summer. The tour had a number of other experiences which made it fun. It was definitely the most adventurous tour we went on out of all of the other ones around the country. My husband and I were the only ones on the tour so that was good too.
Didn't see the ice cave shown in the pictures but some small cave under the glacier, anyway it was a nice tour and our guide David told us a lot about the area and Iceland.
Out of the 9 days I spent in Iceland, this was easily the highlight. Our guide (who we called Thor for short), took us to places rarely explored by others. Each destination was spectacular in different ways, and I can't remember a time in my life when I've had a nicer, funnier, more knowledgeable guide. Thanks, Thor. You made Iceland an unforgettable experience.
This was hands down the most amazing experience and our favorite part of Iceland! Our tour guide was extremely knowledgable and very funny! He had our group laughing and smiling the whole time, and even included a bunch of surprises which we never would have expected! Not only was the ice cave spectacular, but the ride there in the really cool big wheeled SUV was a lot of fun! Our tour guide let us take our time and didn't rush us to make sure we got all the pictures we wanted (even taking some of our groups for us). I would HIGHLY recommend this to anyone going to Iceland, it was truly an amazing experience!!
This was a phenomenal experience. Not only were the sights of the ice cave, the glacier and the landscape out of this world, but our tour guide was very knowledgable, helpful and friendly. Highly recommended!