Local guide - from coast to mountains

Local Guide travel service is located right between Iceland's highest peak Hvannadalshnúkur and the nature reserve cape Ingólfshöfði in Öræfi. Local Guide has offered mountain guiding to Hvannadalshnúkur and glacier walks in southeast Iceland since early spring 1994, and is therefore oldest mountain guide company operating in Iceland.

The company was founded in 1991 though by the farmer Sigurður Bjarnason in Hofsnes, when he started to use his hay cart to bring travellers to the nature reserve cape Ingólfshöfði. Sigurður has now retired, born in 1932, but his family continues to offer the Coast Tour he started, and many other trips around the year.

While the focus is on the bird watching and history trip to Ingólfshöfði (Coast Tour) and Kayak Tour in summer, Local Guide also offer short and long glacier walks all around the year and ice climbing tours, cross country skiing, ski mountaineering, and ice cave photography tours in winter and spring.

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Fun facts about Local guide - from coast to mountains

Einar Sigurðsson, the owner and mountain guide of Local Guide travel service has been on the top of Hvannadalshnúkur more than 250 times, wich is a world record. His great grandfather Páll Jónsson in Svínafell, was the first person to climb to the top of Iceland's highest mountain in summer 1891.

The family has strong roots in this area as it has lived there for 600 years or since about 1400.

Customers testimonials

"Visit Vatnajokull Glacier with ´From Coast to Mountains´ - amazing!"

We recently spent a wonderful morning glacier walking on Vatnajokull with our guide, Einar, from 'From Coast to Mountains' (www.oraeferdir.is). The visit is exclusive so you can go at your own pace. We were collected from Hotel Skaftafell and driven a short way to where we were going to walk. After a further short walk we stopped to put on our harnesses and crampons. It was a fascinating experience walking on the ice - all the different colours, the cracks, the fissures and the depth of some of the openings. I didn't expect to be able to see so far into the ice itself. Our guide was extremely interesting and knowledgeable to talk to. He was great with the youngest of our two children (aged 10) who was attached to him by a rope for most of the time. During the morning we stopped now and then for a mini 'lesson' e.g. walking up a steeper section using the toe crampons and back down again - bending knees and leaning backwards. Later on we came down a longer, steeper section using a rope and walking backwards. It was all great fun and pitched just right for our family. Earlier in our holiday we had also walked on Myrdalsjokull - grouped together with another family - but this was by far the more memorable experience. What an incredible landscape!

Gillian B

Visited February 2012





TEL: +354 894 0894


785 Öræfi
15 minute drive from Skaftafell on the Ringroad heading East. Half way between Skaftafell and Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon.


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Where to dine and shop nearby


  • Excursions
  • Guide
  • Bird watching
  • Viewpoint
  • Place of interest