In less than two weeks, seventy people will gather almost half a mile below Europe’s second largest glacier. There, they will dance to an electronic DJ set, and will be served drinks made with glacial vodka and glacial ice cubes.
The Langjökull ice cave event, called ICERAVE, is part of the Secret Solstice 2015 festival on June 19-21 outside Reykjavik, Iceland, where thousands of people will party to bands like The Wu-Tang-Clan and FKA Twigs over three days of 24-hour sunlight. The festival’s page states that it is “themed after the Norse religion and mythology of old. It‘s set to deliver a unique party atmosphere filled with great entertainment. The summer solstice was a time of bounty in the lives of the Nordic nations and a cause for celebration. The Norse mythology and religion commonly known as the Asatru is deeply rooted in natural symbolism.”
Keeping in line with that intention, the main event is taking place in the Laugardalur recreational area. An open green field, Laugardalur’s name translates to Hot Spring Valley. The festival’s sponsors state “citizens of Reykjavík used to bathe and do their laundry in the geo-thermal hot spot . . . there is a huge swimming pool . . . a botanical garden and a theme park/petting zoo.” Camping is also available for those who want to sleep under three nights of sunshine.
After a highly reviewed debut last year, the festival is going even bigger this year, offering many other exclusive side events for those who want a little extra. In fact, this year they’re offering what has been described as the world’s most expensive festival ticket. For $200,000, two people will be flown to a luxury hotel in Reykjavík, helicoptered everywhere else they need to go, given private assistants and cooks, and a private yacht for the weekend. For those who don’t have a quarter million dollars to spend on one weekend, they are also offering a one-night boat party for 100 ambitious festivalgoers.
Taking advantage of Iceland’s extreme latitudes and remote location they are also offering a second excursion into nature, the opportunity to attend an all night music event inside a century old, 102ºF natural volcanic hot spring.
While partying inside a glacier or a hot spring may not exactly be low impact, and doesn’t scream, “leave no trace,” the festival may prove to be eco-friendly. Last year locals were reportedly throwing away their cigarette butts where they belonged, to the surprise of foreign guests. Already, the ICERAVE event has strict rules in place to not allow overly intoxicated individuals into the cave, and is enforcing a 2 drink maximum.
Overall, the festival looks like it will be a great deal of fun for everyone involved. The ICERAVE event is another example of the many different ways people explore the potential of living in a glaciated world, whether by drinking glacial water, or vodka, or dancing inside a glacial cave.