The Lava Tunnel

Explore the magnificent lava tunnel Raufarhólshellir, one of the longest and best-known lava tubes in Iceland. It is located just 30 minutes from Reykjavík and is easily accessed year round.

A journey into Raufarhólshellir is a unique experience and a great opportunity to witness the inner workings of a volcanic eruption as one walks in the path of lava that flowed during the Leitahraun eruption, which occurred east of the Bláfjöll mountains about 5200 years ago. Every winter spectacular ice sculptures are formed inside the entrance of the cave making the experience of visiting the lava tunnel even more breathtaking.

The cave formed as a lava tube during the Leitahraun eruption, which occurred about 5200 years ago.

The total length of the tunnel is an impressive 1360 m (4500 ft), the main tunnel being 900 m (3000 ft) long. The tunnel is up to 30 m wide with headroom up to 10 m high, making it one of the most expansive lava tunnels in Iceland. Near the entrance of the tunnel the ceiling has caved in creating three beautiful columns of light inside the tunnel. At the end of Raufarhólshellir the tunnel branches into three smaller tunnels where magnificent lava falls and formations are clearly visible.

Raufarhólshellir is a lava tube formed during the Leitahraun eruption and is one of Iceland´s longest cave. Lava tubes are a natural conduit formed when an active low-viscosity lava flow develops a continuous and hard crust, which thickens and forms a roof above the still-flowing lava stream. Up until the last century, the tunnel was full of stalactites but in the 1950s, more and more people started visiting the tunnel and as a result the stalactites began to disappear and today almost none are left.

The total length of the tunnel is an impressive 1360 m (4500 ft), the main tunnel being 900 m (3000 ft) long

A trip through Raufarhólshellir is a unique opportunity to get a close look of the impressive forces of nature that emerge from the center of the earth and a guided tour of the wondrous world that can be found just under the surface.

1.4

Km Long

10-30

Mtr Wide

10

Mtr High

Year Round

There are an amazing range of colors, from the reds, oranges and purples in the rocks, to the blue of the ice stalagmites.

The Tours

We offer two kinds of tours to The Lava Tunnel. The Standard tour takes you to the part of the tunnel that is easily accessible for everyone and the journey last approximately 55 - 60 minutes (also available with transfer). The extreme tour is for the true explorers that want to take on adventures tour to the bottom of the cave. The tour is approximately 3 hours in the tunnel or total of 5 hours with pick up and drop off. We offer free pick up and drop off in the Reykjavik area for the extreme tour.

1

Standard Lava Tunnel Tour

Our standard tour allows you to explore the tunnel in an easy and enjoyable manner. A footbridge has been built and impressive lighting in this part of the tunnel highlights the changing colors and clearly shows the powerful volcanic activity that formed the tunnel.

6.400 ISK

1H

2

Extreme Lava Tunnel Tour

Our extreme tour is for the adventure seeker and takes you all the way to the end of the tunnel where magnificent lava falls and other natural monuments await. The extreme tour includes free pick up and drop off in the Reykjavik area. Truly an unforgettable experience.

19.900 ISK

3-4H

3

Standard Tour With Transport

This is a standard tour that includes a bus fare from Reykjavik. Our standard tour allows you to explore the tunnel in an easy and enjoyable manner. A footbridge has been built and impressive lighting in this part of the tunnel highlights the powerful volcanic activity that formed the tunnel.

11.400 ISK

3H

It's quit a unique feeling to be inside a lava tube which is thousands of years old, we thoroughly enjoyed the experience.

The kids thought it was amazing and they loved exploring it. I highly recommend this for a quick visit.

About Us

The Lava Tunnel is operated by Raufarhóll ehf. Shareholders include companies that have vast experience of working in tourism in Iceland. The aim of Raufarhóll is to protect the nature of Iceland so that future generations may enjoy it.

We are proud to have some of the most experienced guides and mountaineers in Iceland on our team and our team also includes an expert on safe travel. We make sure that every guide receives robust training before taking on the role of guiding you to the Lava Tunnel.

The CEO and co-owner is Hallgrímur “Halli” Kristinsson, one of Iceland’s most experienced mountaineers.

 

So glad we visited! It was filled with beautiful ice formations. An amazing and unique experience.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Can I move my booked departure time without a penalty?

Yes, that is no problem. You can attend a different departure than you booked, as long as there is availability.

Q: How long is the tour?

The standard tour is approximately 55 minutes in the tunnel. However, the extreme tour is usually around 2,5 to 3,5 hours in the tunnel.

Q: Do I need to be part of a group to come on a tour?

No there is not need, you can simply show up for the standard tour as we depart every hour on the hour. If you book yourself on the extreme tour, then you may find yourself in the company of others exploring the tunnel all the way to its bottom although the extreme tours have maximum capability of 8-10 people.

Q: Do you offer private departures?

Sure, please contact us and we can arrange a private tour for you, whether you are just enjoying this nature wonderland or if you want to shoot a video or even planning to get married in TheLavaTunnel!

Q: Is the extreme tour for everyone?

We recommend the extreme tour only for people in good physical conditions and we don´t recommend it to those with back or knee issues. The age limit is 12 years old for the extreme tour.

Q: How do I get to the tunnel?

The tunnel is very easily accessed and is less than 30 minutes drive from Reykjavik. TheLavaTunnel is easily accessable in the winter time as well. Head east on road no. 1 and drive for about 18 km. Turn right onto road no. 39 (Þorlákshöfn) and drive for another 12 km. The parking lot is right by the road. The GPS coordinates are: N.63º 56.407 / W. 021º 23.742

Q: Do I have to book the tour in advance?

You do not need to book the standard tour in advance, although we recommend you do so to guarantee a place on the hour of your selection. The standard tour runs every hour on the hour from 10am to 5 pm. For the extreme tour you need to book in advance.

Q: Do I need any special equipment when visiting the tunnel?

No, we provide all necessary equipment such as helmets and lights. However, we recommend that you were good hiking shoes (especially for the Extreme tour) and take note that the temperature inside the cave is around 0 – 4 degrees celcius (32 – 38 Fahrenheit). Water sometimes drips from the ceiling of the cave so wearing a waterproof jacket helps.

More Questions? Contact Us Here.