This post was last updated on July 22nd, 2016
Home to the Northern Lights, a history of Vikings, and jaw-dropping scenery, Iceland is one country that should be a must-see for every photographer, adventure-seeker, and traveler alike. Iceland has an array of places to see and things and do, but no matter how you choose to fill your days, make sure not to miss out on an Ice Cave Tour. Guide to Iceland offers a variety of tours so you can choose the route and time that best works with your schedule. Pick a tour that features one of these incredible Iceland wonders:
photo via Jonathan on Flickr
Wander on down to Vatnajokull National Park and you’ll find Jokulsarlon, a remarkable glacier lagoon. Jokulsarlon was covered in thick glacial ice until the 1930’s when the glacier started melting. Today it covers an expanse of nearly 7-square miles, and with more than 300 feet of ice still breaking away each year, the lagoon is constantly being reshaped. The freezing-cold water contains a mixture of salt and freshwater that gives it a stunning blue-green color. The blue ice caves are unique to Iceland and are one of the most beautiful natural phenomena in the world. To top off this incredible find, there’s plenty of wildlife to see around the lagoon, such as the hundreds of seals that make their home in the sand of nearby Breiðamerkursandur.
photo via Andres Nieto Porras on Flicr
Vatnajokull covers a whopping 8% of the island of Iceland, making it the largest glacier in Europe. Vatnajokull National Park is saturated with diverse and stunning sights—endowed by many as the most beautiful place on Earth. Here you will find Iceland’s highest peak, Hvannadalshnjukur, its most active volcano, Grimsvotn, and breathtaking waterfalls such as Svartifoss and Dettifoss, Europe’s most powerful waterfall. Not to mention beautiful canyons such as Jokulsargljufur and Asbyrgi, and none other than Jokulsarlon, that gorgeous glacier lagoon we mentioned above.
The Vatnajokull glacier itself covers a surface area of about 100 km2, with the thickness of the ice around 400-600 meters! Under the glacier are valleys, mountains, and plateaus, as well as active volcanoes. You’ll also find the volcanic mountain island, Esjufjoll, surrounded by the glacier on all sides. The area around the glacier is diverse and filled with gorgeous sights. There is a highland plateau in the north, which is divided by glacier rivers. There are also several towering volcanoes, such as Askja, Herdubreid, Kverkfjoll, and Snaefell. Go up to the north a bit to find the Hljodaklettar caves and the horse shoe-shaped Asbyrgi canyon. A little to the East, you’ll find gorgeous broad wetlands, as well as, the Eyjabakkar oasis–one of the largest nesting places in the world for pink-footed geese. This is a photographer’s paradise with majestic mountain ridges, and nearby columnar basalt formations. To the south lies the vast sand desert, Skeidararsandur, that reaches all the way to the sea, and to the west of Vatnajokull is the origin of the famous Eldgja volcanic chasm and the Lakagigar craters of the 18th century. Vonarskard pass, in the northwest, is a richly-colored geothermal area that connects the North and South of Iceland.
Seljalandsfoss one of the most sought-after waterfalls of its time. Seljalandsfoss has a narrow cascade and towers nearly 63 meters high, making it Iceland’s highest waterfall. This waterfall will surely take your breath away, and if you’re daring enough, you can even walk behind the cascade of water!
The crater Thrihnukagigur, east of the Blue Mountains, has been dormant for the last 4,000 years—making it safe to enter and explore all the way to the bottom! Through the crater’s opening, you will enter a humongous magma chamber. Reminiscent of a citadel and boasting vibrant colors, some consider it the most amazing natural phenomenon of its kind.
First mapped in 1992, Leidarendi Cave is about 900 meters long and situated within a lava field.The cave’s name translates as “End of the Journey” after the carcass of a dead sheep which lies at the end of the cave.
The Blue Lagoon Geothermal Spa
photo via Christine Zenino on Flickr
Take a long relaxing bath in the famous geothermal spa of the Blue Lagoon. The warm waters are rich in minerals such as silica and sulfur and water temperatures average 98–102 °F. The Blue Lagoon is believed to help some people suffering from skin diseases, in fact, attached to the spa is the Blue Lagoon Clinic, an internationally recognized psoriasis treatment centre, and the Blue Lagoon Research and Development center that helps find cures for skin ailments using the mineral-rich water. Perhaps the health benefits of this spa are the reason why it’s the single most popular attraction in Iceland! Even if you don’t need the healing power of this lagoon, the minerals are sure to add a little shine and beauty to your skin! Finish off your rejuvenating afternoon at the spa by eating at a romantic restaurant right off the lagoon!
Between the never ending lists of must-sees in Iceland, why not take an Ice Cave Tour and get the most out of your trip? It’s hard to imagine anyone being disappointed with any of these options.