Iceland Tour with Horseback Riding
Rating 4.51 / 5 [336 ratings]
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Bucket list experience:
For the more adventurous-minded, racing across icy wilderness, surrounded by nothing but mountains and fresh powder, is a heart-in-the-mouth thrill.
Snowmobiles (also known as a skidoo) are surprisingly fast (you can hit speeds up to around 45mph/70kph), and they enable you to reach remote areas inaccessible on foot.
Vatnajokull is the best glacier for snowmobile adventures, with large expanses of ice and snow to race across, and several offshoot glaciers in addition to the main ice sheet. Its size means it can accommodate a number of different operators, all of who offer slightly different routes. Trips onto Vatnajokull can easily be arranged in Skaftafell and the surrounding areas.
Langjokull, the ‘Long Glacier’, is another great place. Tour companies like Arctic Adventures combine a snowmobile trip with a visit to one of the glacier’s many ice caves.
Myrdalsjokull is a glacier on the south coast, often used for day trips from Reykjavik. Snaefellsjokull on the Snaefellsnes Peninsula also has tours.
If you want to see the infamous Eyjafjallajokull volcano up close (or at least as much as you can see of it, since it’s buried under ice), the easiest way to do it is by skidoo. South Adventure offers a couple of possible trips.
Trips onto Vatnajokull can easily be arranged in Skaftafell and the surrounding areas.
Most tours last half a day, while others take up a full day, and combine the snowmobiling with glacier walks or ice cave visits. Generally you’ll be in a small group of between three and eight other riders.
You’ll need to wear warm base layers, but the snowmobiling company will supply the other necessary equipment.
Note that you will need a driving licence to be able to drive a snowmobile. Children over 6 can sit on the back of your snowmobile but obviously are not allowed to drive their own.
Snowmobiling tours theoretically are possible year round, but it does depend heavily on location and seasonal conditions – some glaciers (e.g. Vatnajokull) are often too extreme for beginners to explore safely in winter. Langjokull and Myrdalsjokull are ordinarily accessible most of the year, but do enquire ahead when you book.
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From volcanoes and glaciers to black beaches, geothermal pools and the Northern Lights, Iceland is one of the world’s wildest, weirdest destinations. A paradise for adventurous travellers.