Eruption in Grímsvötn Boosts Iceland’s Volcano Tourism Skip to content

Eruption in Grímsvötn Boosts Iceland’s Volcano Tourism

By Iceland Review

“Travel where it blasts” reads a headline of an article posted in Norwegian online newspaper on Wednesday.

It says that at the same time the media was covering the possible impact of the Grímsvötn eruption on aviation, Icelandic travel agents started planning tours to the crater.


The scenic eruption on Fimmvörduháls, which preceded the big Eyjafjallajökull blast, attracted a number of tourists. Photo by Páll Stefánsson.

“Even if Grímsvötn is about to fade out, you can still see steam and a lot of ash in the area,” commented Anton Gudmundsson who organizes super jeep tours. “It depends on the wind direction and other safety factors but as soon as the conditions are favorable, we will offer tours to look at the volcano.”

Gudmundsson explained that the outburst in Eyjafjallajökull last year attracted a number of tourists who wanted to see the aftermath of the eruption, which was a pleasant development given the cancellations of bookings that followed immediately afterwards.

“It isn’t good for tourism short term, but it helps replacing Iceland on the map for many foreigners,” he said of volcanic eruptions.

Rune Selbekk, a geologist at the Norwegian Museum of Natural History, visited Iceland shortly after the eruption in Eyjafjallajökull.

“There were many tourists there who, among other things, fried eggs on the lava that was still hot,” he described. “The heat remains in the ground for a long time after such an eruption and there are many interesting things to see.”

However, Selbekk believes it might be more difficult to get a good view of Grímsvötn. “It is more desolate and demands more logistics.”

“The authorities don’t want people to travel to the immediate area around Grímsvötn, as it can be dangerous, but you can most likely see things from a distance,” he added.

Click here for general information about the eruption in Grímsvötn from Promote Iceland.

Please note: The next issue of the print edition of Iceland Review will include extensive coverage of the eruption. If you subscribe now, you will receive a photo book by IR editor/photographer Páll Stefánsson of the eruption in Eyjafjallajökull as a gift.

Click here to subscribe.

Follow for further news updates of the eruption. If you have any photos of the current Grímsvötn eruption and would like to see them published, please send them to [email protected] and [email protected].

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