best active volcano tours iceland 2023

Best Active Volcano Tours in Iceland – 2024 Eruption UPDATE February

The volcano in Iceland on the Reykjanes peninsula near Grindavik has been active again in 2024. We compiled the selection of the best volcano tours that are actively operating right now – in 2024.

Grindavik volcano is currently experiencing periods of “flowing lava” and periods of “pauses,” switching irregularly in between each other. This is expected to continue for a longer time. However, when the eruption with bursting lava is on, volcano helicopter tours are quickly selling out. This is the safest (and often the only) option to see the volcano.

As of February 2024, it’s forbidden to visit the eruption site on your own! The only way to see the active volcano is to take a HELICOPTER ERUPTION TOUR.

You can find the most up-to-date local eruption news stream on the RUV.is website.

Still, watch out for Safety Instructions when visiting the eruption site.

Watch the live stream of the 2024 eruption here:


We will do our best to update the list and broaden this article, and apologize for any discrepancies which may occur because everything changes really quickly these days.

When in Iceland, be sure also to check out our hand-picked list of the best guided tours in Iceland.

Volcano Eruption Map

First of all, Sundhnúksgígar is NOT a tourist eruption! It’s big and may be dangerous. The only safe way to see the active volcano right now is to observe it from a safe distance from the bird’s eye viewpoint of a helicopter tour.

The town of Grindavik, the geothermal power plant in Svartsengi, and Blue lagoon are all in real threat because of the fissures and magma under the surface.

Unfortunately, many Grindavik residents have lost and will lose their homes because of this eruption. Please support them as much as you can and be thoughtful when it comes to discussing seeing the volcano. It may be a sensitive matter to many of them.

december 2023 volcano eruption map iceland

December 2023 volcano eruption map, source: https://en.vedur.is/

Active Volcano Tours – What to Expect

As of 2024 ONLY HELICOPTER tours are operating at Sundhnúksgígar. All hikes/roads/buses are strictly forbidden and not running!

The volcano and lava flow change every day, so it’s essential to adhere to all rules set by Icelandic Civil Protection office and follow all the advice on Icelandic SafeTravel website.

The same applies to toxic gases! If you don’t want to keep track of all the safety guidelines and yet you want to see this spectacular natural wonder, it’s best to take the guided tour.

Types of the Volcano Tours

litli hrutur volcano eruption iceland

The summer 2023 Reykjanes volcano eruption in Iceland

There are two types of tours based on the number of participants:

  • Group tours – typically 6 to 20 participants
  • Private tours – only you and your group

You can visit the volcano eruption on three different kinds of tours:

  • Hiking tours – best for budget travelers and the physically fit [NOT OPERATING NOW]
  • Helicopter tours – best and closest aerial view, the most expensive
  • Airplane tours – less expensive than helicopter, less flexible

Price of the Volcano Tours

volcano tours iceland 2023

This is how a view from a helicopter or an airplane volcano tour looked like

The cheapest hiking group tours are priced at around 80 USD to 150 USD per person. [NOT OPERATING NOW]

The private hiking tours typically cost about 1000 USD to 1500 USD per group. [NOT OPERATING NOW]

The helicopter tours range between 450 USD to 1200 USD per person based on the length of the tour.

What is Included in the Volcano Tours

reykjanes volcano eruption 2023 iceland

2023 eruption sight

A typical volcano hiking tour includes the following:

  • Reykjavik pickup with a driver (not for a Helicopter tour!)
  • An experienced guide
  • Free cancellation up to 24 hours before the trip

A typical volcano tour does NOT include the following:

  • Shoes, clothes, or any gear (no special is required, though)
  • Food, water, snacks

There are exceptions, though, and almost always, there is an option to buy or hire anything you need, so don’t be afraid 🙂

Best Volcano Tours in 2024

Without further ado, below are the highest quality and best price-to-value guided volcano tours with top reviews only:

1. Helicopter Tour by GlacierHeli

best volcano helicopter tour iceland

Best Volcano Helicopter tours in Iceland. You can use a 5% discount code: EPICICELAND

We think the best currently available 2024 volcano helicopter tour is a 45-minute-long tour by GlacierHeli. Why?

  • This is one of the cheapest tours! A seat with our discount code costs as low as 400eur!
  • GlacierHeli is the only company with great reviews that still has free slots available! Most of the other tours are fully booked.
  • They have flights running every 30 minutes from 8:30 until 19:00
  • You can easily book online and use our 5% discount code: EPICICELAND

This is an eruption-only tour, so you will just fly over the, or near the volcano and back.

You will be flying as close to an eruption as possible and see it from various angles. The tour departs from Reykjavik. There’s a maximum of 5 passengers on each tour.

2. Helicopter Tour by Atlantsflug

iceland volcano helicopter tour 2023

View from a 2023 Volcano Helicopter tour

Another great helicopter volcano tour in Iceland from Reykjavik is a tour by Atlantsflug.

The tour takes 40 minutes to complete and is again just the dedicated volcano helicopter tour, taking up to 5 travelers on board.

3. Helicopter Tours by Nordurflug

volcano helicopter tour iceland 2023

Best Helicopter tours in general in Iceland are run by Nordurflug. 5% discount code on all tours: EPICICELAND

Hands down, the best helicopter tour company in Iceland is Nordurflug. They are running various volcano helicopter tours!

Our readers can use an exclusive 5% discount code on all tours by Nordurflug: EPICICELAND

There’s no special tour dedicated to the volcano only as of 14th January 2024 on Nordurflug’s website, but be sure that almost all tours by Nordurflug will also fly by the eruption site!

4. Airplane Volcano Tour by Myflug

airplane volcano tour iceland 2023

Best airplane volcano tour in 2023

Looking for the cheapest flight tour to see the eruption? You might want to check out the volcano airplane tour by Myflug.

The airplane tour is roughly 30% cheaper than helicopter flights, but it can’t fly as close as helicopters.

Nevertheless, this is the best currently available airplane tour and departs four times a day. The flight duration is about 1 hour.

5. Cheap Volcano Hiking Tour by David the Guide

volcano iceland hiking tour

Sundhnúksgígar Volcano Hiking tour 2023

[NOT OPERATING YET! Wait once the eruption calms down and officials assess the situation!]

This was one of the first tours that will take you directly to the eruption site of Litli-Hrútur, “The Little Ram”!

This is a HARD level hike. It is a 20km round-trip, i.e., about 8-10 hours of hiking. It is suitable for ages 14 and older and those comfortable hiking long distances with difficult terrain.

The tour provides blankets and hot chocolate/tea. Ponchos and Hiking Boots are available for rental if asked for in advance. All participants are REQUIRED to have good, sturdy hiking shoes, plenty of water, and food for this tour.

Pickup in Reykjavik area can be added to the tour.

6. Big Group Volcano Hiking Tour by Troll Expeditions

hiking volcano tour iceland

A Difficult Hiking Volcano tour to the Sundhnúksgígar eruption site

[NOT OPERATING YET! Wait once the eruption calms down and officials assess the situation!]

This hike up to Litli Hrutur Active Volcano was quite hard. You need to be able to walk up to 9km each way, but you will enjoy unbelievable views of lava fields and an ongoing eruption.

Once you’re at the site of the volcano, you will witness how those lava fields were formed, as you can see new lava spewing and flowing.

While you will get to spend some time by this natural wonder, the tour guide will also find a good and safe spot to enjoy the Icelandic chocolate, hraun – which stands for “lava”. Please make sure to bring enough snacks and water.

7. Private Volcano Hiking Tour

private hiking volcano tour iceland

Private Hiking tour to an active Sundhnúksgígar volcano

[NOT OPERATING YET! Wait once the eruption calms down and officials assess the situation!]

This was an exclusive private tour to the eruption site led by an expert guide.

You will be guaranteed to have the guide all for yourself, and the pace of the tour will be entirely adjusted to your needs.

The guide will take you as close to the mesmerizing lava flows as possible. You will experience the thrill of seeing a newborn volcano in action. You will learn about the geological forces at play and gain a deeper understanding of Iceland’s volcanic history.

The tour includes a pickup in Reykjavik area.

8. Volcano Transfer from Reykjavik

reykjavik volcano transfer

Roundtrip transfers between Reykjavik and Volcano Eruption site

[NOT OPERATING YET! Wait once the eruption calms down and officials assess the situation!]

Do you just need a transfer from Reykjavik to the Litli-Hrútur Volcano eruption site and back? Then your best option would be to book a transfer only.

This is the cheapest way to experience a volcano in Iceland in 2023.

A round-trip eruption transfer costs just about 50 USD and is running 3 times a day!

Eruption Safety Tips and Current Info

iceland volcano 2023 eruption night view

This is how the 2023 eruption in Iceland began.

  • The best Icelandic source for up-to-date safety instructions about the volcanic eruption is the SafeTravel website
  • Always watch out also for the Icelandic weather forecast. Don’t go near the volcano in heavy rain or heavy winds.
  • Under no circumstances get close to lava! Be it black lava or red lava. It can easily kill you or injure you!
  • Lava is not the only danger. So are the poisonous volcanic gases! Please follow closely any warnings regarding these gases!
  • Here’s a great article on the eruption by the official Icelandic Tourism Agency

FAQ

best active volcano tours iceland 2023

A picture from an amazing volcano helicopter tour

Here we will be adding the most common questions and answers on the 2024 Reykjanes volcano eruption.

What is the Hiking Time to the Eruption Site?

No hiking is allowed yet!

When is the Best Time to See the Volcano?

Daylight time, as well as nighttime, are both fascinating for experiencing the volcanic eruption. If you have the opportunity, go see the volcano during the day and also during the night!

Should I Book in Advance?

Book the tours as soon as possible! They can quickly sell out for an entire summer. Iceland does not have as many tour operators and guides as tourists! You may always reschedule or cancel within the cancellation policy of a particular tour company.

Is the Eruption Safe to Visit?

Potentially poisonous and dangerous volcanic gases have been detected at the eruption site. Moreover, new and new fissures can open anywhere around the volcano. Everyone hiking around the area has to do it entirely at his own risk! The safest way to experience the active volcano as of now is by helicopter tours.

How Long Will the Eruption Last?

Nobody can tell for sure how long the eruption will last. The eruption in August 2023 lasted less than three weeks, in 2022 also for about three weeks, and the eruption in 2021 for about 6 months.

Are the Volcano Tours Worth the Money?

Most of the travelers we’ve met say that helicopter and airplane tours of the volcano they took were totally worth the money. Seeing the erupting volcano and flowing lava is a once-in-a-lifetime experience!

epic iceland facebook group ask questions or get inspired in our community

Posted by Igor

Igor has spent months exploring every inch of Iceland over several years. He specializes in the Highlands, F-roads, hiking, hot springs, and less touristy places. He loves Iceland and keeps coming back.

4 comments

Wilfried Penners

Where /how can I book a guided tour from Reykjavik?

Here is tour 1 – small group
Here is tour 2 – big group
Here is tour 3 – private hike

May I please use a photo of the erupting Fagradalsfjall volcano on my X page?

It’s at https://twitter.com/WorldPopCulture.

Thank you!

Kay F. Davis

Hi Kay,
yes you can, if you link back to our page where you took the image from, as described in our Image Policy

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