This stunning ice cave is located in Vatnjökull National Park in southeast Iceland. The region (and indeed the entire country) is known for its natural phenomena and this part in particular is full of waterfalls, glaciers and volcanos. This region is home to Iceland’s most active volcano, Grímsvötn.
This cave was formed as meltwater from the Svínafellsjökull glacier ran into crevasses in the glacier and carved their way under the glacier and out to the sea, leaving a 20-foot opening on the shoreline. This crystalline chamber was the result. Because the ice is highly pressurized and contains no air bubbles, it absorbs all visible light except for blue, which is the colour that reflects back to us. The cave is most colourful during the winter after a rainfall. The surface of the glacier has been washed away and winter light enters the chamber from both ends, illuminating the inside.
You can head out on photography tours to the ice cave with a professional photographer and expert guides to try to capture photos like this one yourself. Because glaciers are always moving and changing and this cave could collapse, it’s not advised that you head out on your own.
Photo: Örvar Þorgeirsson