Katla Ice Cave

Dragon Glass Ice Cave


Useful Information

Location: Near Katla volcano.
Metting point: Katlatrack, Austurvegur 18, Vík
Open: All year based on conditions.
Best time to visit NOV to MAR.
[2020]
Fee: Adults ISK 29.900.
Minimum age 12, 2-12 participants.
[2020]
Classification: SpeleologyGlacier cave
Light: bring torch
Dimension:
Guided tours: D=4h.
Photography: allowed
Accessibility: no
Bibliography:
Address: Katlatrack, Austurvegur 18, 870 Vík Mýrdal, Tel: +354-849-4404. E-mail:
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.

History

2009 Katlatrack founded.

Description

Katla Ice Cave is one of the most recently discovered ice caves of Iceland. It was named after Katla volcano, one of the most active volcanoes in Iceland which erupts usually every 40–80 years, last time in 1918. 16 eruptions have been documented since the year 930. The glacier covers the caldera of the volcano, which has a diameter of 10km. It is called a black ice cave, a term which was dubbed in Iceland for caves with ice with a strange black colour. This was probably the reason why this cave was used as a location for Game of Thrones and became quite popular as Dragon Glass Ice Cave.

The ice on Iceland can be of any color ranging from white, opaque, translucent, transparent, blue, crystal violet, and even black. But black ice caves are pretty rare even for Iceland. The black colour is caused by volcanic ash which is falling on the snow while the ice is formed, and it forms only where frequent eruptions cause frequent ash falls.

The Kötlujökull glacier is the Katla outlet glacier of famous Mýrdalsjökull (Mire Dale Glacier), the fourth largest glacier in Iceland. To reach the cave it is necessary to cross the glacier on a 15 minute walk with crampons.

The best way to visit the cave is by a guided four hour tour, because it is hard to find, difficult to reach and dangerous to visit. While we list normal caves for self guided visits, we strongly recommend to visit glacier caves only with a guide! In this case it is also impossible to reach with a rented car so you must walk or rent a 4WD.

The trip starts at Vik, driving up on the “no man” road in a super jeep. It includes three different glacier caves and the Film Set of Star Wars Rogue One. And of course numerous waterfalls.