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“Highly recommended for first glacier experience” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Icelandic Mountain Guides Day Tours

Icelandic Mountain Guides Day Tours
Bankastraeti 2, Reykjavik 101, Iceland
+354 587 9999
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Certificate of Excellence 2014
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Owner description: Icelandic Mountain Guides is Iceland's premier adventure tour operator. For over 20 years we have been in continuous operation of offering adventures in the wilderness of Iceland and Greenland. The company was established in 1994 by four young mountain and outdoor enthusiasts and pioneers whose aim was to introduce the wonders of Icelandic nature to travelers from all over the world. We started by offering Glacier Walks in Skaftafell and later on Solheimajokull. Hiking, backpacking and other adventures and expeditions in Iceland and Greenland soon followed. Today Icelandic Mountain Guides is a company that offers adventure tours ranging from short day tours to longer multi-day expeditions in the great outdoors in both summer and winter. So whether it is the exploration of the icescapes of glaciers, crossing of impressive highlands, trekking in the extraordinary rhyolite massifs or hiking in fascinating valleys, our aim is to Make Every Moment an Experience.
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Activities for older children
Badajoz, Spain
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Highly recommended for first glacier experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 25, 2013

We did the two hours Blue Ice Tour. It was a lovely approaching to glacier soft and secure trekking on crampons. We enjoyed it. Very experienced and knowledgeable guide. Amazing views.

Visited May 2013

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393 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Top Contributor
61 reviews 61 reviews
21 attraction reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
“Geysers, Gullfoss and Glaciers for a grand day out”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 24, 2013

When I booked my day trips from Reykjavik, I presumed that regardless of which company you booked with, you'd end up on the same bus headed to the same waterfall/volcanon/glacier.

This is not the case. The tour with Mountain Guides was exclusively operated by them, with a small international bunch of participants (German/Canadian/me) expertly led by our guide Arnar.

Arnar picked us up at our various hotels, then we drove to Mountain Guides HQ, where we picked up any equipment that we needed.

I was taking the Golden Circle and Glacier Walk tour, which needs to be taken fairly seriously. A Golden Circle tour is usually suitable for bus loads of limited mobility tourists, but when they say "cotton kills" and please bring hat and gloves, waterproof clothes and sturdy boots, they do actually mean it. If you don't have any of the above, then let them know and they can dig them out of the stores.

Arnar spoke fluent English, and gave us a great commentary on what we were looking at - with particular knowledge of all matters geological, seismic, tectonic, glacial and the like. He also volunteers for mountain rescue and has helped out on TV and Movie filming on location in Iceland.

He also answered any other questions we had about Iceland, from history and legend to economics and politics, natural history and where they get their names from.

The drive covers the Golden Circle with Gullfoss waterfall (spectacular), Thingvellir (which is actually spelt with one of those special Icelandic letters instead of my Th) National Park and Geysir Park - which really does have a geyser that blasts water 30m into the air, and you can stand about 5m away from it while it does. Try to stand upwind if you want to stay dry.

After a snack lunch at Gullfoss visitor centre, we drove further into the mountains through what looked like a desert - when it was eroded in the last ice age, enough of the soil was removed for most plant growth to cease. It's predicted that it'll take thousands of years before the rocks and soil are ready to support serious plant growth again. But the Alaskan Lupin does pop up from time to time.

Eventually reached the shore of a glacial lake, suited up with lifejackets and crossed to the other side in a fast rigid inflatable boat that used to be a RNLI (rescue boat) in the UK. At the other side, we were equipped with ice axes, crampons (strap on boot spikes) for our feet, and given some basic instructions on how to get along on a glacier.

Arnur showed us all those glacial things you see on TV like giant crevasses, and showed us how to assess how much the glacier has retreated (shrunk) over the last few decades.

There is a potential for serious (ie fatal) harm on this sort of trip, so it was reassuring to be led by someone expert in this area, and in a small enough group for him to keep an eye on us all.

Walking on the glacier is moderately strenuous, in so far as walking up a lot of stairs would be. Once you get a fair height up, it's sideways then downhill.

We called in at Geysir Park for tea and toilets stop on the way back and then on to Reykjavik to be dropped off at our hotels. Round trip time was about of 11 hours - 08.30 pick up, 7.40 drop off.

At the end of it, I felt a noble and virtuous fatigue, and had done something very unique, albeit at a very introductory level. I had also seen some of the most famous natural land marks in the country, so all in all a great trip. Now this can be seen as expensive, but it is a fairly unusual thing to do (any number of tour buses will take you to Golden Circle, but we only encountered one other small group on the glacier) and you wouldn't want any corners cut when it comes to hiking up a melting glacier. It's also something that would be difficult to put together yourself without equipment and transport - particularly if you are travelling by yourself.

And after all, if you come to Iceland, surely you want to experience some Ice?

Visited June 2013
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Ipswich, United Kingdom
1 review
“Walk through Ice and Fire”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 23, 2013

We were lucky as we were the only two on the tour. The guide extremely knowledgeable and informative. Having a dip in a hot spring was just fantastic and walking on the glacier was almost like being on another world. We learnt about the island and its geology. Nothing was too much trouble. We had regular breaks and plenty of time to take photos. We never felt hurried. Would recommend this to anyone.

Visited May 2013

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Zomergem, Oost-Vlaanderen, Belgium
Top Contributor
65 reviews 65 reviews
25 attraction reviews
Reviews in 38 cities Reviews in 38 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“Living Ice”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 23, 2013

We did a Blue Ice Experience tour, and our very knowledgable guide showed us the different aspects of glacier formation, how thew grow, move etc...
Although our first impression of the exit glacier we got was a black-and white one, our guide showed us during teh walk very different types of ice and also how these forms and also blue ice originates. During the walk the guide offered plenty of time to take some pictures. He also told interesting stories about the trols and the hidden people... what helped to mistify the moving ice...
We enjoyed the walk very much and can only recommend this.

Visited June 2013
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Geneva, Switzerland
1 review
“Lovely experience of the ice”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 21, 2013

We did the 2 hours "Blue Ice" tour. And while the ice was in fact black, not blue, this was a great way of discovering the ice. The guide was knowledgeable and we saw many aspects of the glacier, the ice, etc.

Visited May 2013

Review collected in partnership with this attraction

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