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Vatnajokull National Park

Last updated: 23 April, 2024

If you’re after icy adventures, you won’t want to miss a visit to this immense ice sheet – the largest in Iceland, so huge that it stretches all the way from the south coast to the north.

A weird world of glaciers, crevasses, aretes, canyons and volcanoes, it offers a wealth of activities from glacier walks to snowmobiling, hiking, wildlife spotting, ice climbing and sightseeing flights.

Most visitors visit the southern part of the park around Skaftafell, where most of the activity providers are based.


Price: Free
Minimum age: Any
Age suitable: 13+
Frequency: monthly
When: All year around
Duration: 1 night

Getting there & doing it

Skaftafell is about 325km east of Reykjavik. Many public buses en route to Hofn stop here, and you can also hitch a lift with summer services to nearby Jokulsarlon lagoon and Landmannalaugar.

There is a good visitor centre that provides general information on the national park.

When to do it

Some activity providers only offer expeditions during the summer months, as it’s simply too cold and snowy at other times of year. Inevitably, this means it can get busy in the high season, so it’s worth booking ahead if there’s a particular trip you’d like to do.

Who to go with: organised tours


Our selection of the best Viator tours of this attraction or activity

Vatnajökull Glacier Walk from Hali

  • Hofn

In this glacier walk with a local guide from Hali you experience the wonders of Vatnajökull glacier. Our guide takes you on an unforgettable journey on Breiðamerkurjökull, one of Vatnajökull’s biggest outlet glacier.  The trip starts at Glacier Adventures headquarters in Hali, where your guide drives you to the glacier area, away from the crowds and off the beaten path where you can breathe in the fresh glacier air. The tour can take between 3,5 and 4 hours (1 – 1,5 hour on the glacier), including drive back and forth from our headquarters.  This tour is moderated and can be done by most children and adults.

Price €124

Min age 10

Rating 4.89 / 5 [406 ratings]

Tour supplied by:

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Small-Group 3.5 Hour Blue Ice Experience in Vatnajökull National Park

  • Skaftafell

Explore a spectacular outlet glacier of Vatnajökull on this family-friendly 3-hour glacier group tour, limited to 15 people. Your certified glacier guide will provide you with crampons and ice axes and ensure you are informed on their use before stepping onto the ice. During your tour, learn about the behavior and history of the glacier while your guide safely leads you through an icy wonderland with deep crevasses, narrow ridges, and ice sculptures. Due to its nearby location, expect to spend up to 2 full hours on the ice. This glacier walk is an easy excursion and requires no prior experience to enjoy.

Price $138

Min age 10

Rating 4.88 / 5 [167 ratings]

Tour supplied by:

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Ice Cave Tour in the National Park of Vatnajökull

  • Hofn

Ice caves in Iceland are unpredictable and you never know when, if, where or how many will form. But in the last few years, they have consistently formed by Vatnajökull glacier, which is the largest glacier in Europe. They are beautiful to see and a popular photo opportunity for many travelers. This tour will take you on an exploration of an ice cave inside the National Park of Vatnajökull. Ice caves are a rare phenomena that form naturally, so this tour is a once in a life time experience.

Price $160

Min age 8

Rating 4.23 / 5 [151 ratings]

Tour supplied by:

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Ice Cave tour in Vatnajökull

  • Hofn

Welcome to our ice cave tour to the magnificent Vatnajökull. In this tour we will visit the best ice cave/mulans/carves available each time, but the caves are natural phenomenons so they are always changing within the season. We have max 10 people in a car and our guides are all local and have good knowledge of the area. We are a small company that pride our selves in good and personal service.

Price €151

Min age 12

Rating 4.98 / 5 [141 ratings]

Tour supplied by:

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Website >