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Drangajokull Glacier; Famous for a Number of Reasons

Updated: Apr 18

As the Land of Fire and Ice, one of the things Iceland is known for is our magnificent glaciers list. We even boast the biggest glacier in all of Europe! But when you get to Drangajokull Glacier you are in the presence of a glacier that owns a number of infamous titles here. 


If you’re planning a trip to the island, or want to learn more about this fascinating natural wonder – read on. In this article, we give you the lowdown on everything there is to know about Drangajokull Glacier, and what you can expect from a visit. 


Drangajokull Glacier


Quick Facts About Drangajokull Glacier


  • Drangajokull Glacier is famous for many things. It’s the northernmost glacier, as well as the lowest-lying glacier in Iceland. It is also the only glacier found in the Westfjords and the only one that sits at an altitude below 1000 meters.

  • Locals often refer to Drangajokull Glacier as “the country’s loneliest glacier”.

  • It’s one of the island’s smallest glaciers, covering just 200 square kilometers.

  • Even though we refer to it as a glacier, Drangajokull is technically an ice cap.

  • Drangajokull Glacier is the only glacier (thus far) to not have shrunk or retreated in recent years, which is the case with most of our glaciers here on the island due to global warming. 

Where is Drangajokull Glacier in Iceland?


Drangajokull Glacier can be found in the southwest of the Hornstrandir Nature Reserve in the more remote regions of Iceland, the Westfjords. To put it into perspective, it’s about 200 kilometers from the capital city of Reykjavík



drangajokull iceland


How to Get to Drangajokull Glacier


There are two ways of getting to Drangajokull Glacier: 


Book a Spot on a Guided Tour


There are many tour operators and guides in Iceland that’ll take you to Drangajokull Glacier. These tours will usually depart from the bigger cities and can range from existing day tours, and multi-day holiday packages to customized private tours. If you want to explore the icy surface of the glacier itself or take part in any of the exciting activities it offers, you will have to book a spot on a guided tour. Due to safety concerns, this is the only way you’ll be allowed onto the glacier.

 

Drive Yourself


Driving yourself is pretty easy from Reykholar, whether you are planning on making Drangajokull Glacier a day outing or a stop along a Westfjords Way road trip. Road 635 is 40 kilometers long and will take you to where the trail to the glacier starts. 


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The Drangajokull Glacier Hike


The Drangajokull Glacier hike is called the Kaldalon Trail. It’s a back-and-forth trail of roughly 8 kilometers and is considered moderately challenging, so it’s not suitable for small children or pensioners. The hike will take you about 1.5-2 hours, depending on your pace. 


Things to Do at & Around Drangajokull Glacier


There is plenty to do near Drangajokull Glacier. These are some of the things to look forward to:


  • Visit Kaldalon (aka the Cold Lagoon)

  • Check out the Memorial Stone for Sigvaldi Kaldalons

  • Snowmobile across the glacier

  • Go birdwatching (the Westfjords is famous for its diverse birdlife)

  • Hike to Jökulbunga Summit

  • Go on a magical Northern Lights Tour of Drangajokull Glacier


Drangajokull Glacier visit

Drangajokull Glacier; The Understated Glacier of Iceland


Drangajokull Glacier may be small, but it sure packs a punch when it comes to its beauty, all the things one can do and see there, and all the impressive titles it has claimed for itself. A Westfjords visit will simply not be the same without a stop at the glacier. Our recommendation will always be to do a Westfjords Way road trip around the island and include Drangajokull as a stop along the way. 


To take care of your accommodation as well as transport, and make it possible to save on accommodation costs, you can rent a campervan in Reykjavik upon arrival. This way you’ll be able to book spots at campsites whilst you get to camp in style. But whichever way you choose to explore the Westfjords, Drangajokull Glacier is definitely a must-visit.

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