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Seeing Iceland from above and cruising over a glacier on a snowmobile is an absolute dream. Read on to find out the best snowmobile tours in Iceland!
Glacier Snowmobiling & Golden Circle
In our opinion, this is the best of the snowmobile tours in Iceland. You get an incredible snowmobile experience on the Langjokull glacier as well as being taken around the famous Golden Circle. Both of these activities are a must in Iceland so combine them right here.
If you want a tour which only includes snowmobiling then check this one out instead!
- The Best Snowmobile Tours In Iceland
- The Best Snowmobile Tours In Iceland With Extra Activities
- Where To Stay For Snowmobiling In Iceland
- What To Expect On A Snowmobile Tour In Iceland
- Fear Not! Snowmobiling Is For Everyone
- Tips About Riding The Snowmobile
- Best Time To Get Snowmobile Tours In Iceland
- The Best Place To Snowmobile In Iceland
- Lake Myvatn
- What To Wear
- What Is A Snowmobile?
- A Brief History Of Snowmobiling And Icelandic Culture
- Where To Stay In Reykjavik
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Packing List Essentials
The Best Snowmobile Tours In Iceland
Taking one of the fun snowmobile tours in Iceland is one of the best ways to enjoy the glorious landscapes and nature that the country has to offer. Read this post for our recommendations, tips and advice from our own personal trip before booking your adventure of a lifetime!
When we went to Iceland in November we made the decision to book ourselves onto an ice cave + snowmobile tour whilst we were there. This has got to be the BEST decision we made on our entire trip. Seriously, if you have never been on a snowmobile before then it is well worth the money.
They are so bloody fast and your tour guides won’t hold you back either. There are multiple employees throughout the entire tour so the people at the front can go off as fast as they want and the others can go as leisurely as they want. Everyone wins!
There are so many snowmobile tours in Iceland available, some on their own and some with additional activities included in the tour. I’ve started with only snowmobile tours, but further down you can find multi-activity tours too!
If you are looking to find out what snowmobiling in Iceland is all about then scroll down past the recommended tours for all the information you could ever want! Oh and I highly recommend hiring a car for your stay in Iceland, it’ll save you a tonne of time and money on transport.
#1 Glacier Snowmobiling on Langjokull Glacier
This is the cheapest option on my entire list and, in my opinion, your best option if you’re wanting only the snowmobile part of the tour.
- Tour Duration: 4 Hours
- Pick Up Included: From Gulfoss waterfall
- Age Suitable For: 8+
- Need To Take: Driving licence
- People Per Snowmobile: 2
If you have a look around then you’ll come to realise that all of the tour operators are providing roughly the same service – 1 hour’s worth of snowmobiling and around 4-5 hours of your time. Well, this tour is exactly that and is the best value for money.
The pick-up is from Gullfoss waterfall which is part of the famous Golden Circle. Take my advice and see the Golden Circle in the morning and arrive at Gullfoss in time for your tour. This kills two birds with one stone and saves you money as you won’t have to be picked up from Reykjavik, which is around $30 extra per person on the tour. If you want to be picked up from Reykjavik then click here for the same tour but with a pickup.
- If you want the highest-rated snowmobile tour in Iceland, on the most convenient glacier and for the best price then this is the one for you.
- Budget travellers. This is the lowest-priced tour on this list.
#2 Snowmobile Tour On Eyjafjallajökull Glacier
If you have already planned a little road trip exploring the southeast coast (which you definitely should) then this is the perfect snowmobile tour in Iceland for you.
- Tour Duration: 2 Hours
- Pick Up Included: Yes
- Age Suitable For: All
- Need To Take: Licence & walking boots
- People Per Snowmobile: 2
This tour is a similar price to the Langjokull glacier tour but it has some very unique selling points. Foremost, this glacier is where the huge volcanic eruption happened in 2010 that shut down most of Europe’s air space! I don’t know about you but knowing all that raw power is so close makes it a little more epic.
Secondly, the views from the Eyjafjallajökull glacier are insane. On a clear day, you’ll be able to see the Westman Islands in the south and incredible horizon views of the highlands as well. So, if you’re not planning a trip to the South East then stick with the Langjokull glacier tour. If you are then this is a great option.
- Any travellers making their way through the South East.
- People that want to experience views you cannot get elsewhere.
#3 Glacier Rush on Langjökull Glacier
If you’ve been snowmobiling before, want to push yourself or you’re just a straight-up adrenaline junkie then look no further.
- Tour Duration: 5 Hours
- Pick Up Included: From Gulfoss Waterfall
- Age Suitable For: Anyone with a licence
- Need To Take: Licence & Walking Boots
- People Per Snowmobile: 1
The Glacier Rush tour offers the quickest and most powerful snowmobiles on offer in the whole of Iceland and the staff don’t hold you back. They will push you to your limits and you will end up travelling further and faster than any of the other tours on this list.
The cost is higher than both of the previous tours, however, these monsters only have one seat. The other tours in this list are for 2 riders and all of the tour operators have an additional cost if you want to have a snowmobile to yourself. There is obviously no additional fee with this tour so, in fact, the cost is not that much more if you don’t want to share!
- Adrenaline junkies
- People with experience wanting something extra
- Anyone wanting something more unique and exhilarating.
#4 Snowmobiling Tour On Mýrdalsjökull Glacier
The Mýrdalsjökull glacier is a distance away from Reykjavik down in the southeast of Iceland. However, I strongly suggest you visit the southeast when you’re in Iceland so this might just be the perfect way to complement your trip.
- Tour Duration: 3 Hours
- Pick Up Included: No – tour starts here
- Age Suitable For: 9+
- Need To Take: Licence & walking boots
- People Per Snowmobile: 2 (Can pay a supplement for solo rider)
These tours tend to be less busy due to the distance from the tourism centre so this means that you can expect a more peaceful and personal experience. Plus the price is pretty much the same so if you’re down there any way it’s a no brainer!
- Any travellers making their way through the South East and don’t want to have to go out of their way.
The Best Snowmobile Tours In Iceland With Extra Activities
There is an incredible array of things you can do alongside your snowmobile tour in Iceland. They include pairing it up with an ice-cave visit, Golden Circle tour, Northern Lights show and waterfall chasing.
The south of Iceland is literally packed with incredible scenery and places to discover so if you’re already spending the money on the transport and staff, why not pair it up and make the most out of your trip.
If you are thinking of doing multiple tours then I highly recommend you book a tour with all of the things you want to do in one. This will save you time and money.
#5 Snowmobiling And Golden Circle Tour
This is our top pick for a snowmobiling tour in Iceland and there are plenty of different tours following a similar itinerary.
- Tour Duration: 10 Hours
- Pick Up Included: From Reykjavik bus stop
- Age Suitable For: 6 years old
- Need To Take: Licence & Walking Boots
- People Per Snowmobile: 2
Combining snowmobiling and the Golden Circle is the most popular combination of tours and for good reason.
Many of the snowmobile tours in Iceland pick you up from Gullfoss waterfall, which is part of the Golden Circle. Therefore, it doesn’t cost that much more to visit the Golden Circle on the same day.
The Golden Circle consists of the Geysir geothermal area, Pingvellir national park and Gullfoss waterfall.
All 3 are a MUST visit on your trip to Iceland so why not do it as part of an epic full-day activity that culminates in the adventure of a lifetime, snowmobiling a glacier.
At the time of writing, this tour was not much more per person than the cheapest solely snowmobile tour so it’s a no brainer if you don’t have your own transportation.
- People who want to see the Golden Circle and don’t have their own transportation
#6 Snowmobiling, Ice Cave And Hot Spring
This is another amazing snowmobile experience you can get in Iceland. You get to snowmobile, you get to walk into a natural ice cave and you get to bathe in a secluded secret lagoon. What more can you ask for?
- Tour Duration: 10 hours
- Pick Up Included: From Reykjavik hotel
- Age Suitable For: 18+ for driver
- Need To Take: Licence, boots & swimsuit
- People Per Snowmobile: 2
If you have already planned a trip to the Blue Lagoon (the most famous hot spring in Iceland) then you might want to consider the tour below that only goes to the ice cave.
However, if you haven’t then this lagoon is more secluded and less crowded than the Blue Lagoon.
To be honest with you, even if you have planned to go to the Blue Lagoon I still highly recommend this tour over all of the others. Bathing in a hot spring in Iceland is not something that you should only do once.
- People looking for a perfect Iceland experience.
- People who haven’t planned a lagoon visit yet.
#7 Snowmobiling And Ice Cave
This is quite a lot cheaper than the ice cave and hot spring tour above so if you really don’t want to add the hot spring element or you’re on a tight budget then this is perfect.
- Tour Duration: 4 Hours
- Pick Up Included: From Gulfoss Waterfall
- Age Suitable For: 6+
- Need To Take: Licence & walking boots
- People Per Snowmobile: 2
The ice caves of Iceland really are amazing. People literally have to go out into the glacier at the end of each summer to try to find newly formed ice caves from season to season. This means that every year there will be new and different caves over the glacier.
Inside you get to see the evidence of thousands of years of volcanic activity, shown as lines of black in the ice. I think it’s so cool to be able to see the actual ash from eruptions thousands of years ago right in front of you.
These caves aren’t accessible to everyone either, it takes roughly half an hour of riding through the glacier to get to the entrances, so don’t expect queues of people and photographers ruining your moment.
- Adventurers that want to experience the natural ice caves of Iceland who are also on a budget.
Where To Stay For Snowmobiling In Iceland
There are a couple of locations discussed in this post but most of you are going to want to be in or around Reykjavik. This will allow you to get to the majority of the snowmobile tours in this post and still be around the other action Iceland has to offer. Have a look at our top picks below or use the map to check out deals now.
You get the entire apartment for a remarkably low price compared to other options in Reykjavik whilst also being in the heart of the city. If you are staying in Reykjavik then I think this may be the best option in the whole city.
This 2-bedroom private chalet is perfect for small groups and still doesn’t break the bank compared to other options in Iceland. When we went to Iceland, we got a small chalet and it really is the best way to experience this beautiful country.
What To Expect On A Snowmobile Tour In Iceland
I had never been snowmobiling before so I really didn’t know what to expect with my snowmobile tour in Iceland.
Firstly you have to actually get to the glacier, which is no small feat! You will probably be loaded into a very large custom-built off-road truck that looks like it wouldn’t be out of place on Mars.
Then you are driven through the mountains, up into the snow. Depending on where you have been picked up, this trip can take anywhere from 1 hour to 2 hours.
When you get to the base camp you will be offloaded and be fitted for all in one winter suits, helmets, goggles and balaclava. This is the reason you must bring good sturdy shoes with you as they will not provide this.
They will also not let you ride if you are wearing something inappropriate. After, you’ll be loaded back into the Mars Rover and driven to the snowmobiles.
You’ll be given a snowmobile between 2 people unless you have paid an additional solo rider fee or your tour specifically states that it is for solo riders only.
The tours are 1 hour long and have a break in the middle so there is an opportunity to swap drivers at the midway point.
You will follow in convoy through the ice, snow and mountains but don’t worry about being slowed down by the person in front.
Before you go everyone will be asked how confident they are with driving and the less confident people will be put at the back.
This benefits everyone as the speed freaks get to zoom around and everyone else gets to have a relaxing time without worrying about someone too close behind them.
After the tour, you will get unchanged and be driven back to the original pick-up point. We actually got hot chocolate and biscuits after our tour so maybe you’ll be as lucky as we were.
Fear Not! Snowmobiling Is For Everyone
If you’ve watched a few videos about snowmobiling in Iceland then you’ll have seen that snowmobiles are big pieces of kit and pack a serious punch. I wouldn’t be surprised if some of you were thinking that maybe snowmobiling in Iceland isn’t for you.
Let me put that theory to bed straight away. In our group, we had 2 people who were really on the fence about the whole idea. My 54-year-old mum and the other Two Tall Traveller, Jade.
Both my mum and Jade are people who look for a bench in theme parks to wait for the people who are queuing for the roller coasters, so it’s safe to say they are not adrenaline junkies.
But this is where snowmobiling and pure thrill-seeking differ greatly. When you get on a roller coaster you have no control over the speed or the intensity and you’re only on it for the thrill.
None of the snowmobile tours in Iceland will make you go faster than you feel comfortable going or make you do something you are not comfortable with.
Yes, you will be in convoy but people who want to go fast will slowly move towards the front and the people who want to sit back and soak in the atmosphere will slowly find themselves closer to the rear. This is by design.
There will be multiple tour guides throughout the convoy who will stay with people who are expecting different things from this experience.
When I got to the halfway point, people were still arriving in dribs and drabs up to 10 minutes later. No one was being told to hurry up and everyone was given the opportunity to drive.
Tips About Riding The Snowmobile
Some of these bad boys go up to 70kmph which is incredibly fast considering the bumpy ride that you’ll be experiencing.
Every time you push the accelerator you’re going to get some serious acceleration. It is, however, very easy to control the speed that you are going at. Don’t worry about losing control or being forced to go too fast.
When we went, Jade didn’t want to drive so she sat behind for the duration of the trip. At first, she wanted to have a steady pace as she was a little nervous, which is completely understandable.
I had never been snowmobiling before but it was very easy, right from the start, to control the snowmobile exactly the way I wanted it.
After a short amount of time, you will really get the hang of it and be able to open up a little across the ice.
However, if you don’t then DO NOT feel obligated to go faster.
We had people on our tour that simply did not want to go above a nice crawl. When we stopped mid-way we had to wait a little longer for the others to catch up but all this meant is that we had more time to mess about in the snow and ice.
The tour guides will not pressure you to go faster so don’t ruin your tour by going faster or slower than you feel comfortable going.
Best Time To Get Snowmobile Tours In Iceland
There are snowmobile tours in Iceland running throughout the year. However, there are considerably more available outside of the summer months.
Don’t worry though as the glaciers are there 365 days of the year!
The main difference in the tours will be the drive up to the snow. In the summer you will have to drive a lot further into the mountains to reach the start point so your tour may be slightly longer than the winter tours.
I think the winter months may have a slight edge over the summer as the views from the top are the whole country covered in a gorgeous white layer of fresh snow.
However, in the summer you can go snowmobiling in the middle of the night during the midnight sun! As always, Iceland manages to amaze whatever season you end up going.
The Best Place To Snowmobile In Iceland
As you can imagine, there are quite a few glaciers in Iceland. Only some of these can be snowmobiled on and some only at certain times of the year.
It all depends on where you are going to be and what you already have planned for your trip. If you’re staying in the capital, book an airport shuttle that will take you directly to the centre. It means that if you arrive in Iceland planning on going directly on a snowmobile tour, you can go straight to your pick-up location from your transfer.
The first two are the best in my opinion but don’t let that put you off the other glaciers because, in reality, they are all epic!
Langjokull is by far the most popular place for snowmobiling tours in Iceland due to its close proximity to both the Golden Circle and Reykjavik, both huge tourist hot spots.
It is also the second biggest glacier in the whole of Iceland with a thickness of 500m in certain areas. This means that it is also one of the grandest and most awe-inspiring places to snowmobile in Iceland.
Tours will start either from Reykjavik or from Gullfoss waterfall. It is cheaper to start from Gullfoss as the majority of the distance has already been covered by yourself.
Most of the tours charge around an additional $30 or more per person to start from Reykjavik.
Take my advice, hire a vehicle and do a self-drive tour of the Golden Circle in the morning and finish at Gullfoss. Then you can save money by getting to Gullfoss yourself as well as seeing the sights along the way!
You can’t really go wrong with Langjokull glacier for snowmobiling due to the location and the lower price in comparison to the other glaciers.
Vatnajokull is the largest glacier in the whole of Europe so I couldn’t leave it off my list entirely. If you are visiting Iceland in summer then this is very close to the top of the list for the best locations as it is only accessible in the summer.
It still doesn’t beat Langjokull in my opinion as you do have to drive quite far into the southeast to get to the starting point of the tour.
However, if you are already planning a trip to Diamond Beach or any of the incredible sights along the south-east then definitely bear Vatnajokull in mind.
The views and experience from Vatnajokull are unforgettable and you would get to snowmobile on Ice that goes up to 1000m deep, which is pretty damn cool.
Another glacier situated in the south of Iceland, Myrdaljokul sits right on top of the infamous Katla volcano. It seems that wherever you decide to go in Iceland, the raw power of its nature follows you even to its most remote places.
If you are planning a trip around the south coast then this is another great option for a snowmobile tour in Iceland. It will be slightly more expensive and a little further to travel from Reykjavik but if standing on top of a volcano (which is due an eruption) gets your blood pumping then this is the place for you.
If you are planning a trip up north, maybe to get away from the tourist centre in the south or to go whale watching in the summer months, then you’re in luck! Akureyri is home to some absolutely fantastic snowmobiling experiences.
They actually differ slightly from what you would experience in the south of Iceland because you won’t be sledging on a glacier.
Instead, you will get to ride out onto the large snow flats which blanket the outskirts of Akureyri. This is an altogether different experience to glacier snowmobiling as you can really pick up some speed in the beautiful soft snow.
It might be far from Reykjavik and away from some of the best attractions but rest assured, Akureyri’s charm and remote beauty will not leave you wanting anymore.
If the name sounds familiar then that’s because this is the site of the volcanic eruption that closed significant parts of Europe’s air space in 2010. Don’t let that put you off though as on a clear day you will witness some of the most spectacular views anywhere in Iceland.
If you are planning on travelling throughout the southeast coast of Iceland during your trip then this is definitely a good option for snowmobiling in Iceland. If you will be staying closer to the capital then I recommend spending less money and time and sticking with Langjokull glacier.
This gorgeous lake is in the north of Iceland, relatively closse to the town Akueyri. In the winter months this is a great place to grab a snowmobile tour in Iceland. You won’t be on a glacier but you will have vast open spaces of gorgeous fresh snow to explore.
There are not as many tours available for this area but take a look at this one to see if the location and the price seem better up north.
What To Wear
It gets pretty cold whilst snowmobiling in Iceland so we have compiled a list of products that you’re going to need to take if you want to make the most out of your trip! Take a look and remember, amazon has deals all the time so make sure to go through the links to see the current price.
This windproof/waterproof jacket is absolutely perfect for keeping the cold out and staying warm when you are visiting such cold places. If you only have a warm waterproof jacket I would seriously consider upgrading to windproof as it makes even more difference than the fleece lining in my opinion. See our recommendation here.
If you’re looking for some decent waterproof trousers then take a look at these. They are windproof and waterproof but also insulated which means that you may get away with only wearing these and not having to have an additional layer underneath. They also do a very good job of not looking too much like waterproof trousers. Have a look to see what I mean here.
If you’re planning on doing some serious hiking then we recommend you take a look at these Columbia walking boots. They come in loads of different colours and we think that they are really stylish. The most important thing however is that there are comfortable, waterproof and resilient which these are! There is nothing worse than sore feet preventing you from making the most out of your trip so don’t put it down to chance. Check them out in more detail here.
If you get particularly cold then you are going to want to take a look at these fleece-lined full-body thermals. If you couple these with decent clothing over the top then the coldest of people should be warm in the coldest of places. Have a look at colours and sizes here.
If you’re looking for a pair of warm gloves then check out these waterproof/windproof/thermal gloves. When you’re looking for decent gloves then fashion should not be your main priority. I don’t know about you but cold hands are the pinnacle of annoyance! These absolutely get the job done and you don’t have to take them off to use your phone which is a godsend. Take a more detailed look here.
If you are worried about getting cold feet (and you should be) then take a look at these brilliant thermal socks by Hot Feet. They should keep your feet warm in the cold conditions you will be facing, as long as you have decent footwear as well! You get 8 pairs which are also really good for the price. Take a look in more detail here.
You absolutely need to have a warm hat when you are visiting cold places so take a look at this gorgeous fleece-lined cable knit beanie. It’s a timeless style and will absolutely keep your ears and head warm for your trip! Take a look at different colours here.
If you’re not a massive fan of fleece-lined hats (Jade isn’t) then earmuffs are the way forward. These vegan earmuffs look amazing and come in varying sizes whilst also looking really cute. I personally like the brown faux leather look but there are lots of different colours available. Take a look here.
It goes without question that you’re going to need a jumper. This gorgeous knitted jumper will keep you warm whilst also looking the part (people love the knitted look in the cold!). There are a few colours to choose from the reviews talk for themselves! Take a look here.
Packing List Essentials
Read More: Your Complete Guide To Icelandic Souvenirs
What Is A Snowmobile?
So, I come from the south of England where snow settles every 2-3 years. When it settles the entire country stops and people huddle indoors too afraid to venture outside in case you slip and die….
Suffice to say, no one is heading to the garage to whip out a snowmobile and head to the local grocery shop. So if you haven’t ever ridden or even seen a snowmobile before then let me explain.
They look and feel very much like a motorbike on skis. At the rear there are two rubber tracks that push you along and at the front is a pair of skis. Turning the handlebars turns the skis which is how you turn. Unlike a motorbike, they don’t fall over when you stop so don’t worry about falling off.
Some of the more high-end snowmobiles can reach nearly 100mph on snow which is completely insane but you will almost certainly be limited to about 45mph. Don’t be sad though because I reached about 40mph on my first go and going across snow at that speed feels properly mental. I think I reached that speed for about 3 seconds before Jade was frantically hitting me on the back asking me to slow down.
A Brief History Of Snowmobiling And Icelandic Culture
As you can imagine from the land of ice, snowmobiling is built right into their culture. Many Icelanders have snowmobiles just like me and you have bikes in the shed. This might seem alien to us but heading out into the ice and snowfields is a normal weekend activity for so many across the island.
Who do they have to thank for this pretty damn cool hobby? The modern design is most closely attributed to Joseph-Armand Bombardier, a French-Canadian inventor who wanted to make it easier for families in remote areas to get around.
The first snowmobiles were hulking great beasts capable of transporting up to 7 people. This just wasn’t necessary for the vast majority of practical applications so 20 years later Joseph-Armand helped develop the much more sleek and dependable 2 seater variant that is so popular today.
Jump forward in time to the 21st century and it isn’t just adrenaline junkie locals or wanderlust searching travellers who have Joseph-Armand to thank. Snowmobiles are still used the world over in search and rescue teams and scientific expeditions in some of the most remote and inhospitable places on the planet.
Where To Stay In Reykjavik
If you’re still stuck on accommodation whilst in Iceland, here are a few great options that cover budget travellers, families, groups and even honeymooners! Click on the links to find the best deals and availability for each place.
- Try Lækur Hostel if you’re looking for a dorm bed or if you would prefer a private room, Igdlo Guesthouse should tick all of your boxes.
- Vesturgata is a cool apartment that sleeps 4 adults, but if you want rooms for the kids, try Grey Apartments
- An incredible option for couples if you want to treat yourself is Tower Suites Reykjavík – you won’t regret it!
- If you’re looking for a unique place to stay in Iceland that isn’t necessarily the capital, check out my post on these INSANE accommodation options!
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is The Best Time To Go On A Snowmobile Tour In Iceland?
You can go snowmobiling in Iceland all year round however there are more tours running in the winter months. The only difference is it will take you longer to get to the snow in the summer as a lot of it has melted.
How Old Do You Have To Be To Go On A Snowmobile Tour In Iceland?
You have to be at least 18 and have a driving licence to be able to drive the snowmobile in Iceland. However, you can take children from 6+ as passengers (depending on the operator).
Do I Need A Driving License To Go On A Snowmobile Tour In Iceland?
Yes. You will need a full driving license to be able to drive the snowmobile. You can go as a passenger if you do not have one.
Can I Take Children On A Snowmobile Tour In Iceland?
Yes as passengers. Operators differ on the minimum from 6+ to 8+ so make sure you check the minimum age with your operator before booking.
How Long Is A Typical Snowmobile Tour In Iceland?
The typical time of a snowmobile tour in Iceland is 1 hour. This does not include the time it takes to get to the ice. The entire tour may take up to 5 hours of your time depending on where you are being picked up from and which glacier you are seeing.
Can I Get Snowmobile Tours In Icleand In The Summer?
You can but not everywhere. The glaciers are available to snowmobile all year but in the low lands this will be specific to the winter. I recommend Langjokull Glacier in the summer.
How Many People Fit On A Snowmobile In Iceland?
You can fit 2 people on a snowmobile in Iceland but you can also choose to only have 1 (some tours will ask for additional fees for this).
Is A Snowmobile Tour In Iceland Worth It?
100% it was the best thing we did in Iceland. So good in fact that very soon we will be going to Iceland again, just to do a snowmobile tour. I’m not kidding either, stay tuned for the video!
So thats our complete guide to snowmobile tours in Iceland. If you have found this article helpful, please do let us know in the comments section. Also, if there is anything you think we could add then please also let us know below!
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