Today we headed into a glacier, with the aptly named Into the Glacier. This attraction just opened up a year ago, in June of 2015. As far as I can tell, a bunch of smart and motivated people decided to drill / mine a tunnel into a glacier, and then take tourists there. But because the ice is always shifting, and more snow is always falling, eventually the caves will collapse. So in … 10 years? … Into the Glacier will no longer exist.
Into the Glacier isn’t really close to anything. It’s a 2 hour drive from Reykjavik, and it seems to be a 2 hour drive from just about anywhere. You have the option to drive all the way to their office, called Klaki Base Camp, or take a shuttle for the last 20 minutes of the ride (for an extra 2000 krona per adult). Why take the shuttle? Here’s what the company says about the roads:
More importantly, here’s what our rental car company, Blue Car Rental (who we like and recommend), says. Note the red right on top:
If you drive on 550, and have a problem, they will fine you 2000 Euros. Yikes. So we stopped at Hótel Húsafell and took the shuttle to Klaki base camp. That means we started on this:
And then transferred to the glacier shuttles:
(Note that you can see the tunnel opening between the two vehicles above,)
Actually we ended up on the little brother of these science-fiction-looking vehicles:
The ride up to the tunnel opening is fairly rough, and we slid around quite a bit. Maybe this is because we were on the smaller truck? But eventually we made it to the tunnel:
They give you crampons to put over your shoes, and you spend about an hour walking around the various rooms that have been created in the glacier.
Then it was back down the hill (with sliding again) and back to the other shuttle to our car. Is it worth it? It was nice that everyone in the family could participate, since kids of any age are allowed. But it was a lot of travel, and you’re not really seeing “natural” glacier formations. I think I preferred the glacier walk we did with Arcanum better:
though that’s only for ages 10 and up.
Close by Húsafell is the waterfall Barnafoss. There were nice flat gravel paths to walk on and explore. Before getting to the main falls, and right next to the parking lot, you get this beautiful view of Hraunfossar:
Then just a minute or two down the path comes Barnafoss:
I feel like I didn’t capture it well, but the water is falling through an arch in the middle. It was an easy walk to a nice waterfall, given that we were already in the area!
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