I remember it as it was yesterday: When I first came to Iceland, back in 2012, I saw an advertisement from Inside the Volcano, in downtown Reykjavik. It was a poster that made me stop and think: “wow, I want to go there!” Being a poor student at the time, unfortunately I could not afford to join this tour, and I dreamt about going there for years! Last autumn, I finally had the opportunity to do it!
I was about to descend into a 120 meters’ deep volcano which erupted approx. 4000 years ago – how exciting!
Inside the volcano adventure
My colleague Christina and I were picked up in Reykjavik and transferred to a meeting point near Þríhnjúkagígur volcano, where we would prepare for the trip. We met up with our guides and had a change of clothes. Then, we went on a hike through endless lava fields that took about 50 minutes. On our way, the tour guides showed us the fissures and caves in the ground and explained how they arose. When we arrived to their base camp, we received helmets and safety harnesses, and some coffee to keep us warm. Now we were ready!
Only a few more steps until we saw the open cable lift. My breath was taken away for a brief moment, as I imagined how I would enter this lift and descend all the way to the bottom of the crater. My god!
Thankfully, even though it looked dangerous, it felt very safe, and our confident tour guides had everything under control. In a small group of approx. 8 persons, we moved down into the crater.
This moment, witnessing the insides of the crater all around us as we descended further into this hole, created by an eruption so long ago, was truly majestic. On our way down, the guide gave us one warning, as he informed us that this was the “iPhone dropping zone”. So please be careful when taking photos. Of course, when your phone drops down over a 100 m., there’s not going to be much to salvage.
The ride down took about 6 minutes, but it felt like a couple of seconds. It was quite an adrenaline rush!
The view inside the magma chamber was stunning, to say the least. The tour operator enlightened the immense cave which appeared to us in all colors imaginable. I can’t remember for how long we stayed there, walking around, being consistently astonished by the colors and the unreal surroundings.
I liked the way back up as well, as we elevated from the depths of the volcano. Everyone in the group was thrilled about what we had just experienced.
It ends with a treat!
Afterwards, we were offered some delicious lamb soup, coffee and/or tea to warm up as we talked about this amazing experience. We hiked back and were transferred to Reykjavik. After this 6 hours’ trip in total, we came home feeling exhausted, but very happy! This was truly a once in a lifetime experience!
If you want to know more about this tour and/or would like to experience it for yourself, please click here.
Posted in March 2017