Planes, Helicopters – Iceland 2023

14 - 21 Nov 2023 : Fully Booked

Planes, Helicopters & Ice

14 – 21 Nov 2023

14 – 21 Nov 2023

Iceland South Coast



Peter Gordon & Thorarinn Jonsson

Fee Includes:
Accommodation for 7 Nights in Deluxe Upgrade Hotel Single Occupancy,  Helicopter Transports (up and back the same day to the cave) Ice Cave Day Out, 2 Aerial Shoots from a Plane over river beds and glacier, 7 Days Shooting, Transportation, Breakfast, Location Guide, Day and Night Shooting

Photography Level:
Intermediate – Advanced

Group Size:
9 Max (We like to keep groups small)


Fancy a unique trip to the South Coast of Iceland? 7 days of Icelandic adventure with 1 day being dropped onto the glacier by helicopter to impossible-to-reach ice caves plus the chance to shoot from a small plane with an open window for your lens. 2 30 minute plane shoots included. River beds and patterns and so much more.. Its landscape photography heaven all from single occupancy deluxe hotels.

This is a truly unique workshop/tour and perfect for people that want to get access to some inaccessible locations. For a number of years now it’s become more difficult to access the stunning ice caves of Iceland as the caves at the foot of the accessible glaciers can be very busy. Nevertheless, we longed to get back to that amazing environment hence the idea to beat the crowds and hit the caves by helicopter. Adventure is in the air. Fancy joining us?

Helicopter Tour by Thor

The workshop will be based along the south coast so we will take in some other iconic locations such as Vik, the Glacial Lagoon, Diamond Beach, and Vesterhorn. However, the emphasis here is on a unique experience so our primary objective is ice caves without people plus the aerial shooting from the plane. With this in mind, we are taking only a small group of 9 people plus 2 guides. It’s going to be busy so we have also upgraded from standard to deluxe rooms to make sure everyone is really comfortable at the end of the day.

Unparalleled photography, adventure, access, and comfort.

We will have 1 day of access by helicopter. A flight in and out and we will spend the whole day on the glacier shooting the caves. Plus 2 flights shooting from small windows in a 6 seater plane.

Day 1 Arrival – Hotel Keflavik

Arrival night. Get acclimatised and if the Northern Lights are possible we will be out for a night shoot. For those that arrive early in the day we will do a sunset on the Reykjanes Peninsula.

Day 2 Transit East – Foss Hotel Deluxe Rooms

We leave Keflavik early and head east to our first locations. The exact locations depend on weather conditions, but on our route are the two waterfalls Seljalandsfoss and Skógafoss, plus other great locations like Dyrhólaey and Reynisfjara. There’s some great shooting en route. Also transiting all the way across means we stay in the Glacial Lagoon area for longer increasing our access to the helicopters and the caves.

Day 3, 4 and 5 – Glacial Lagoon Area – Foss Hotel Deluxe Rooms

The core part of the workshop will be so packed with epic shooting. We will take a helicopter ride to and from the ice caves, and 2 plane rides for aerial shooting.  On top of this, we will shoot the iconic diamond beach, glacial lagoon, and Vesterhorn. It’s going to be insane.

Day 6 – Vik – Deluxe Hotel Room

The next stop is Vik on our way back to Reykjavik. We will transit across and shoot the iconic stacks plus more black beach action. This part of Iceland is just so damn photogenic.

Day 7 – Transit back to Reykjavik

The workshop will end on day 7 arriving back to Keflavik in the afternoon. Again we have organised upgraded high-quality hotels for your departure night.

The cost of the workshop is $7200 for single occupancy. For this fee, you will receive all tuition and location guide as described above. Accommodation for 7 Nights in Deluxe Upgrade Hotel Single Occupancy, 2 Helicopter Transports, 2 Aerial Shoots from 6 Seater Plane, 7 Days Shooting, Transportation, Breakfast, Location Guide, Day and Night Shooting

Booking is in US Dollars as the tour is being co-hosted by our partner in Iceland Thor Photography.

In the unlikely event we cannot fly due to adverse weather we will refund $750 per helicopter day missed.

FLIGHTS to Iceland are not included.

It is not advised to book flights until we confirm we have adequate numbers for this workshop to go ahead. In the event of the workshop not going ahead, we will refund deposits in full. However, we will not compensate for flight costs.

  • On Location Guidance
  • Compositional Instruction
  • Post Processing Instruction in Free Webinar
  • Understanding Exposure Triangle
  • Modes of Exposure
  • RAW, White Balance and Filters
  • Why is the angle of the sun so important – Understanding Light and seeing like your camera
  • Using Graduated Neutral Density Filters
  • Sharpness From Here to Shanghai – Understanding Depth of Field
  • Choosing the Correct Shutter Speed to get the best Outcome
  • The Importance of Composition – Using Lines and Texture
  • Histograms ExplainedExposing to the Right for Maximum Details

Peter Gordon – view gallery of Peter’s images HERE

Thorarinn Jonsson – view Gallery of Thor’s images HERE

Camera gear:

  • For equipment, we recommend at least a DSLR. Wide, fast lenses are more popular with night and aurora.
  • We recommend an ND filter, grad filters and polariser. Sturdy tripod – think windy!
  • An expected amount of gear would fill a camera backpack.Typically we will be shooting landscapes, so a quality wide angle is important… the lens needs to be fairly fast i.e. f/2.8 if possible
  • Spare Batteries, European charger. Car charger
  • Shutter Release
  • As we will be shooting at night, it is important to have a headlamp.


  • The correct way to dress is to have suitable layers of clothing, so that layers can be added or removed accordingly. Icelanders dress with 3 or 4 thin layers, starting with wool and ending with Goretex (or similar).
  • You can expect temperatures between 12 c and -12 c
  • Layers of clothing, for example, thermal-shirt, fleece, jacket, long-johns, Outdoor trousers (not jeans!!), rain jacket and rain trousers.
  • Sturdy shoes for light hiking (waterproof is best), wool socks.
  • Hat and gloves, scarf and balaclava.
  • Spare gloves – spare shoes.

Luggage Guide:

  • One large suitcase, small personal bag, camera bag and tripod each.

EASY – There are no long walks on this workshop with locations typically within 5 minutes of the car. All workshops require walking on uneven ground on beaches or lake edges for example. Ice Caves vary each year of course so we cant be certain of the distance from the helicopter to cave. We envisage this being a 5 – 10 minute walk. There is also a 1 mile walk to the cave we will access by super jeep. This is not a strenuous walk.

Our team is dedicated to getting you the best images possible on every trip. We are an experienced team of leaders and always willing to go the extra mile for our participants. Ask our repeat customers. Most workshops have 50% or higher returning customers.

We will get you to the right place at the right time of day to maximize your chances of making great images. That’s the core focus of every trip. What drives us forward. We love the light as much as you do and our primary goal is always to give you the best chance possible of bringing home special images.

We have small groups and a really high teacher to pupil ratio. Most workshops are only 6 or 7 people. Our max is 10 and there will be 2 instructors. This means that there is always time to give advice and help when on location. It also means we always travel in comfort with 2 people to a 3 seat berth. We take your comfort seriously with single occupancy rooms with private bathrooms as standard. We also have a dedicated office team managing logistics so you have a point of contact for your arrival and departures or other logistical questions you might have around the trip.

Every workshop of 3 days or more comes with a free follow-up private webinar for the group. 2 hours of post-processing of the images from your trip. Recorded live and emailed back to you so you have a road map through the edit of the whole trip.

So why not join the adventure? Join the ExploreLight Community!

“On a workshop with ExploreLight, there are always laughs, but there are always great photographs too.  Peter and his team go to great efforts to ensure everyone gets the shot they want at a location – whether it’s the continuous checking of local weather conditions, to in depth knowledge of each location, to prepping the group prior to arrival at the location by showing past shots, to walking among the group during the shoot, offering advice and sharing their own shots, total dedication to the client.  I’ve taken some of my best shots while on ExploreLight workshops and that’s no coincidence.

The aftercare is second to none, with a private Facebook group where you are encouraged to share your shots (and where you can receive suggestions for improvement) to social nights out and emails on upcoming workshops, editing sessions, etc.  Peter is building a community of photographers who return again and again.”

Barbara Tanzler

“Something deep within tempted me to attend an ExploreLight fundamentals workshop in the Wicklow National Park in March 2015. I remember coming home feeling invigorated, that a new world was about to open up for me. My photography has improved steadily so much so that I recently achieved my Associate distinction from the IPF but more importantly I have met fantastic people many of whom are now considered friends, I’ve attended many more ExploreLight workshops since and visited fantastic locations all under the expert guidance of the ExploreLight team. These guys are good and are at the top of their game and super professional. I recommend ExploreLight because they are the best Photography workshop and tour operators out there.”

Noel McIntyre AIPF

“I have been on several ExploreLight Workshops and have thoroughly enjoyed every one of them.  The ExploreLight workshops are a perfect combination of excellent teaching, superb locations, and great “craic”. Your enthusiasm is infectious, even if it means getting up at 5am to shoot the sunrise, or staying out until 4am to shoot the aurora. I look forward to returning to many more workshops with you guys.”

Paul Byrne

Iceland Midnight Sun : 4 – 9 Jul 2022

Iceland South Coast : 21 – 26 Jan 2023

Please read our Terms & Conditions HERE

Regarding flights or other personal expenses, we cannot take responsibility for costs if a workshop does not go ahead. We suggest having insurance or a ticket that allows you to move dates. This is available with most airlines at the moment.

Email [email protected] if you require any further information

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