Iceland Winter Packing List

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What to Pack For Iceland – Winter

One of the question we get asked the most is “What should I pack for the Icelandic Winter?”, so in this article we will try to answer this questions once and for all with the ultimate Iceland Winter Packing List.

The name Iceland can be confusing. Most people think that it’s ice-cold in Ice-land. I remember when I was younger and Iceland was not as well known among travelers. I was with my family in Florida and got asked where I was from. When I told everyone that I was from Iceland, they immediately asked if we lived in snow houses. So it’s maybe not surprising that you don’t know what to pack for Iceland if you have never been there.

The winters in Iceland can be very cold, but usually we only have 2-3 very cold months, from December – February. The temperature can vary between -10°C in the coldest days, and up to +10°C in the warmer days.

In the winter time you can also expect to have wind, rain, sun and snow – all in one day. So, it’s definitely better to pack your bags right and be prepared for the weather in Iceland.

Iceland Winter packing list:

  • Rain Coat / Waterproof & Windbreak Jacket: This is a must when traveling to Iceland all year round. When traveling around the country, it’s extremely important to stay dry and the raincoats are the perfect clothing for that. It´s even better if they are both waterproof and windproof. It’s also better if the jacket is with a hood and even better if  it’s knee length – keep as much covered as possible. Also the colored raincoats look pretty good in all the photos you will take in Iceland.
  • Good Shoes: When traveling around Iceland, you will probably be walking to some beautiful waterfalls or exploring some glaciers and canyons. Either way, it’s always important to have good shoes on your feet.
    • Hiking boots: We recommend that you bring hiking boots to Iceland. It’s always better to have some good shoes when you are hiking the mountains, glaciers or just walking from the parking lot to the waterfall that you want to explore.
      We can recommend these hiking boots for your trip to Iceland.

    • Sport shoes: It´s always good to bring another pair of lighter sport shoes on your trip. Some times you might just be going for a short walk and just need some comfortable shoes.
      We can recommend these sport shoes for your trip to Iceland.

  • Wool Socks: Don’t forget to buy you some pairs of wool socks for your trip to Iceland. You will definitely not want to be traveling around with cold feet and the wool socks will safe you from that. You will want to have multiple wool socks with you to Iceland.
  • Hat / Beanie: You will 100% want to keep your head warm and the hat will keep your heat in on cold days. You will probably be wearing your hat all the time. I would recommend that you bring a hat that is warm, but of course it can also be stylish.
    • Here you can find an example of a great beanie to bring to Iceland
  • Gloves: There is nothing worse than having cold hands while exploring. Don’t forget your gloves for your trip to Iceland!
  • Scarf / Neck Gaiter: This will block the wind from blowing underneath your jacket. I would recommend the neck gaiter – it’s a life safer when the cold wind is blowing.
  • Sweaters: Don’t forget to bring some sweaters to Iceland. You will want to wear them under your raincoat – every day. You can also purchase the Icelandic Wool Sweater called “Lopapeysa” in numerous of stores in Reykjavik and around the country.
  • Warm / Waterproof Pants: Bring some warm pants and it’s even better if they are also waterproof. You can also take some waterproof pants and some comfortable pants to wear underneath. Like leggings or sports tights. I would not recommend to wear jeans for the outdoors, but you might want to wear a pair of jeans when going out for dinner or strolling around Reykjavik.
  • Thermal Layers: The most important tip for your winter trip to Iceland is to wear layers. It´s great to have wool leggings and pullovers closes to your body and then you can wear your sweaters and raincoat. Bring both a top and a bottom – it can make a big difference for keeping you warm.
  • Casual Clothing: If you are staying in Reykjavik for some time, you might want to bring your everyday clothes, and maybe even your fancy clothes. Reykjavik is a fashionable city with both travelers and locals with some very cool street style. Pack your jeans, shirts and dresses for a night out in Reykjavik. But remember that you might have to walk around Reykjavik, so don’t forget to bring something warm to wear over your shirts / dresses.
  • Camera: Don’t forget your camera – you will have so many amazing photo opportunities. Remember to bring your memory card and spare batteries if you own. Batteries can drain faster in cold weather and I’m guessing that you want to keep the memories from Iceland on a photo.
  • Swimsuit: Don’t forget to bring your swimsuit. Of course we recommend the hot springs – there is nothing better than relaxing in a natural hot spring in the middle of nowhere – but we also recommend the swimming pools that you can find all around Iceland. You can find a pool in every town and they are great! Icelanders love to soak around in the hot tubs and go for a good swim, so we 100% recommend that you try it as well.
  • Water bottle: Don’t buy water in Iceland – bring your own bottle and fill it in the sinks. The water in Iceland is the healthiest water in the world. You an even fill the bottle from the stream you are hiking by – it comes straight from the glaciers.

I really hope this list will help you for your winter travel to Iceland. Just remember to be prepared for all kind of weather in Iceland and the most important tip is to try to stay dry.

Comment below if you have any questions or if there is anything else that you think is necessary for a winter trip to Iceland.

Have fun packing for your winter travel in Iceland and I hope you will have a wonderful time in Iceland.

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