Silfra Diving

The Clearest Water you will ever Dive in

Silfra Diving

The Clearest Water you will ever Dive in

1-day / 2 dives
42,000 ISK per person.
The Clearest Water you will ever Dive in

The Silfra Ravine, located in the UNESCO World Heritage Site of þingvellir National Park, about one hour’s drive east from Reykjavik, is one of the world’s most spectacular dive sites. The ravine was formed as part of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, which runs diagonally through the middle of Iceland and represents the divide between the diverging North American and Eurasian tectonic plates.

Johnathan Belaski-136

About Silfra

Words by Kevin Martin

Silfra also known as “The Silver Lady” from above the water line hides its amazing visual characteristics very well. Visibility under the water is over 100m. For many divers this is an unfathomable figure. Most divers will class visibility over 15m to be excellent, particularly those divers from Ireland, UK and Scandinavia where visibility can be as low as 1m in certain sites. The remarkable visibility in the water is derived from a combination of two elements. Firstly, melt-water from Langjokull Glacier, which is located approximately 50km away and secondly, the porous lava rock which surrounds the Silfra dive site. The glacial melt-water flows from Langjokull over the course of up to 30 years and filters through the lava rock and subsequently flows out through Silfra into Lake Þingvellir. Following its filtration process the water becomes pristinely clear (even safe to drink) but remains extremely cold, ranging in temperatures of 2-4°C.

Silfra is composed of a series of connected ravines approximately 400m long and locally called “Big Crack, Silfra Hall and Silfra Cathedral” ending in a large open 150m wide lagoon. The widths of the connecting ravines range from 1- 20m and at its deepest point the site touches 50m deep. The average depth of the site is 15m and the average expected visibility in the water is over 100m on any given day. The site caters well for both novices and experienced technical divers. For all new divers coming to Silfra the first moments of putting their faces into the ice water can be the most daunting and exhilarating of their diving lives. Silfra is a dive site which “puts manners on you” fast. Due to the frigid nature of the waters, dry-suit diving is a necessity and for divers who previously have experience only in tropical waters this can pose some initial buoyancy problems. However with the proper guidance and instruction these issues can be overcome. The initial tentative fin-kicks from the starting point soon give way as the modest 1⁄2 knot current flowing through the ravine takes over the workload.

Any remaining anxiety and nervousness are soon replaced with wonderment and awe at the myriad of colours which one could never expect to see in Iceland and certainly not underwater in Iceland. The water from below has an intense cobalt blue colour while the surrounding lava rock morphs from burning reds to vivid yellows and during the summer months a luminous green algae provides an almost psychedelic backdrop to drift through. The dive finishes in the Silfra Lagoon and for many divers this represents the best part of the dive. The lagoon is very shallow with a maximum depth of 5m but its 150m width combined with a ‘lunaresque’ bottom composition of soft silt provide a divers final moments in Silfra with a ‘WOW’ factor few other locations in the world can deliver.

The general consensus of opinions from divers at Silfra is a feeling of flying, weightlessness and a number of divers have even described it as “as close to a space walk as one can get without being in space”. Silfra is a dive site where even the best underwater pictures cannot give true justice to the real experience of being suspended in its clear waters.The site does not contain much marine life. Although rainbow trout and arctic char are occasional summer visitors swimming in from Lake Þingvellir, for the most part the site is void of life. In addition to the fish for a short period around Spring the site hosts thousands of moth larvae which having hibernated over the winter emerge underwater from their cocoons and swim to the surface.

 

 

  • Hotel pick-up and passage to Thingvellir Valley National Park
  • Arrive at Silfra dive site, conduct briefing and prepare equipment
  • Commence dive no.1 > Surface interval including hot chocolate
  • Commence dive no.2 > End of diving followed by hot soup
  • Drive to Oxarafoss waterfall > Sightseeing at Oxararfoss
  • Drive back to Reykjavik > Hotel drop-off
Departure time

TBC

Time to dive site

44 mins/ 52 km

Duration of trip

5-8 hours

Minimum Persons

2 (private trips available)

Bring with you

Dive certification card

Go Pro Camera

Towel

What to wear

Set of thermal underwear

Thick wool socks

Warm outdoor clothing

Price

42,000ISK per person

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