River Tours

River Tours

Iceland has many beautiful river systems all over the country. River tours provide exciting ways to experience them, like rafting, angling, super jeep crossings, and more.
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Frequently asked questions

What rivers in Iceland are best for rafting?

Hvita river is the most rafted river in West Iceland and is best suited for beginners and offers a mix of scenic vies and exciting rapids. In North Iceland, the Jokulsa river system is widely considered the best. The most challenging river, however, is Austari-Jokulsa (also known as ‘the Beast of the East’) in northeast Iceland, which offers stunning canyon scenery and a mix of calm stretches and thrilling rapids.

What is a river tour in Iceland?

A river tour in Iceland is a guided excursion that takes you along one or more of the country's picturesque rivers. These tours can involve activities such as rafting or fishing, offering an exciting way to explore Iceland's stunning landscapes and natural beauty.

Are river rafting tours in Iceland available year-round?

The river rafting season in Iceland lasts between May and September. Outside of that period, it is too cold and dark for safe river rafting.

What should I wear on a river rafting tour in Iceland?

Although you will be provided with a dry suit, you will get wet. So be sure to wear warm inner layers such as fleece, wool or synthetic materials, but not cotton or denim. Wear warm socks and bring a change of clothes to put on after the tour.

What type of rapids can I expect in Icelandic rivers?

Iceland’s rafting rivers are graded between 2 and 4 on the international river rafting scale. There are no rivers in Iceland graded 5 or higher on the river rafting scale. Hvita river, which is relatively close to Reykjavik, is graded between 2 and 3, whereas Austari-Jokulsa, in northeast Iceland, is graded 4 and has a minimum age requirement of 18 years.

Are river tours in Iceland suitable for beginners?

Yes, many river tours in Iceland cater to beginners, with experienced guides providing instruction and ensuring your safety throughout the tour. However, choosing a tour that matches your skill level and comfort zone is essential. We recommend this easy river rafting tour in North Iceland which is suitable for beginners.

What is the most extreme river rafting tour in Iceland?

No river in Iceland is graded above 4 on the international river rafting scale, which is considered an advanced level. For example, this extreme 5 hour river rafting tour on Austari-Jokulsa in northern Iceland.

Can children go on river rafting tours in Iceland?

On Vestari-Jokulsa river, six-year-old children can go rafting, such as on this 3 hour family friendly river rafting tour. On Hvita river, the age limit is eleven years, wich can be enjoyed on this 3 hour river rafting tour.

Is river rafting in Iceland dangerous?

River rafting tours are led by experts who know the rivers well. Guests wear helmets, dry suits and life jackets, and the rapids on beginner rivers are not too fierce. Rafting in Iceland is, therefore, a relatively safe activity. It should be noted, however, that all adventure activities can be risky.

How many people are on a single boat during a rafting tour?

The maximum number of people on any boat will be thirteen, including your guide.

What is a glacier river?

A glacier river is a river that is primarily fed from glacial meltwater.

Can I fish in Icelandic rivers?

You need a fishing license to fish in Icelandic rivers. We recommend participating in a fishing tour to save you the trouble of obtaining the license. Contact your tour planner for more information.

Is it safe to drink water directly from Icelandic rivers?

Glacier rivers most often contain sand and other sediments which render the water unsuitable for drinking. It is not recommended that you to drink from any river or stream unless a local guide confirms that the water is clean.

Are there any dangerous animals in Icelandic rivers?

No, you will not find any animals that pose serious threats to humans in rivers in Iceland.