Mýrdalsjökull is a glacier in the south of the Icelandic highlands. It’s the country's fourth largest ice cap, covering nearly 600 sq km (232 sq miles), and its highest peak is almost 1500 metres (4,921 ft) tall. It’s most well-known for sitting atop the notorious and explosive volcano, Katla. Driving up onto the ‘island-mountain glacier’ by snowmobile offers a close-up look at this powerful force of nature. You’ll have a chance to examine its structure, ridges and layers, learn about its formation and history, and enjoy panoramic views over the south coast, the interior and the highlands.
After a short briefing on safety procedures, you’ll be fitted with a snowsuit and helmet and set off in ‘a real glacier truck’ for Mýrdalsjökull. Driving up to the snow line, you’ll navigate your way over bumpy tracks through an otherworldly landscape of lava, ash, boulders and ice until you reach the lower slopes of the glacier and the snowmobile base.
Conditions will vary depending on the time of year and amount of snow cover on the glacier, but whenever you decide to visit, driving about on this snowy wilderness is an eye-opening experience. On clear days you’ll get sweeping views of the south coast, into the interior and of the highland peaks. Even on a cloudy day, a visit gives a great sense of the scale of the island’s natural landmarks and the forces of nature that have shaped them.
Exploring the glacier from above gives a totally different view of the surrounding landscape and the dramatic upheavals and geological changes that have taken place here. While driving the snowmobiles can be a thrilling experience, opting to be a passenger gives you more time to examine the formations in the glacier and to enjoy the views while still moving.
In your tour today there will be plenty of time to take photographs and enjoy the serenity that comes with being in such an unusual location.