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A Smarter Iceland Packing Checklist + What to Put on in Iceland

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Hanging in combination the appropriate Iceland packing checklist is likely one of the maximum vital issues you’ll be able to do sooner than your commute! Iceland is a vacation spot identified for its bloodless and windy climate.

No longer most effective that, Iceland is rainy, rainy, rainy — and in case you’re no longer adequately coated in water resistant clothes on a wet day, you’ll be depressing.

Moreover, Iceland is a rural nation. As a rule, I like to recommend purchasing issues in the community if you wish to have to. That’s no longer as simple in Iceland. Except you’re in Reykjavík or Akureyri, you gained’t have the ability to simply in finding first rate buying groceries.

I do know this sounds difficult — however please, don’t concern! I’m right here to make your commute to Iceland more uncomplicated. I’ve been to Iceland a number of instances, together with a two-week street commute across the Ring Highway, and I’ve found out what to pack for Iceland, what to put on in Iceland, the pieces that you simply truly want, and the pieces you’ll be able to go away at house.

This information has 4 sections: Climate in Iceland, The Maximum Essential Pieces to PackWhat to Put on in Iceland, Wintry weather in Iceland, the Iceland Packing Checklist, and What To not Deliver to Iceland.

And as you propose your commute, don’t omit to take a look at my different Iceland posts: the highest issues to do in Reykjavík, issues to understand sooner than you move to the Blue Lagoon, and the main points on how a lot my Iceland street commute value.

A girl in a turquoise coat walking on a rocky path in a foggy, rainy landscape.
Amanda walks to Dettifoss waterfall on a wet, foggy day in Iceland.

Climate in Iceland: What to Be expecting

Iceland has bloodless climate year-round and is ceaselessly wet. The forecast adjustments frequently and climate stipulations can flip bad while you don’t be expecting it. Briefly, you wish to have to be in a position for anything else — however particularly precipitation!

You may success out and get a string of sunny days (I surely have on all 4 of my journeys). You can be right here two weeks and no longer see the solar as soon as. You’ll have dreadfully foggy or wet days while you least need them. Briefly, be in a position for anything else.

Should you’re visiting all the way through the summer season (Would possibly-September), the most productive time to seek advice from for just right climate, you must be in a position for reasonable temperatures round 40-60 F (7-15 C).

Should you’re visiting all the way through the less warm months, you must be ready for reasonable temperatures to fall beneath freezing (frequently 15-32 F, or -9-0 C). The wind relax can deliver that a lot decrease.

This Iceland packing checklist is essentially centered towards summer season vacationers, who include nearly all of Iceland guests, however I’ve added a supplemental segment for iciness Iceland vacationers as neatly.

Kate in a bright yellow raincoat over a bright pink coat, standing in front of a canyon of tall thin rock columns.
Soaked via at Studlagil Canyon, East Iceland!

Maximum Essential Pieces on Your Iceland Packing Checklist

Some pieces in your Iceland packing checklist are important. This is the checklist of things that I feel must be on each and every Iceland traveler’s checklist, it doesn’t matter what the time of 12 months is.

Don’t skip any of those — aside from perhaps the tripod and lightweight make-up.

Kate standing in a cave with a waterfall falling through it, wearing a yellow raincoat and holding her arms up in joy.
Taking part in getting soaked at Gljúfrabúi waterfall!

Head-to-Toe Water-proof Equipment

Water-proof equipment is the only maximum vital factor you wish to have to deliver to Iceland. And no longer only a water resistant jacket — you wish to have rain pants, water resistant mountaineering boots, and a water resistant backpack quilt.

It WILL rain sooner or later in your commute to Iceland. It will rain each day, and closely. I do know individuals who had been rained out each day in their Iceland commute.

There also are some waterfalls that you’ll be able to stroll at the back of or get as regards to, like Gljúfrabúi and Seljalandsfoss, and also you’ll be soaking wet later on. Going at the back of them is tremendous cool — so you wish to have outer layers that can stay you dry.

However the quickest approach to being depressing in Iceland is being soaked to the bone in a sweatshirt, like that one circle of relatives I noticed at Kvernufoss waterfall.

An in-car selfie of Kate and Amanda in the front seats, and a girl in the backseat. All three are wearing brightly colored raincoats and grinning.
3 ladies, 3 colourful raincoats!

Water-proof Jacket

You’ve two choices for a water resistant jacket to put on in Iceland: an all-in-one insulated raincoat, or a rain jacket shell worn over an insulated jacket.

There are arguments for each. I wore a fundamental raincoat shell (I wore an area Czech logo however this Columbia one is superb) and a Uniqlo extremely gentle down jacket. We had numerous sunny days and it used to be pleasant to simply put on my red Uniqlo jacket.

Nevertheless it’s surely extra handy to have one jacket that you’ll be able to put on in all climate, like this one.

Most sensible Tip: Get a brightly coloured coat; it appears to be like wonderful in pictures in opposition to the gray-green Icelandic panorama. Reds, oranges, yellows, and sizzling pinks particularly stand out.

Kate standing facing a waterfall in a yellow rain jacket, holding her hand up in a peace sign.
Take a look at my rain pants, child!

Rain Pants

I by no means wore rain pants in my LIFE till my most up-to-date Iceland commute — and so they ended up being lifesavers. What are rain pants? They’re water resistant pants you put on on most sensible of your common pants. Such a good suggestion!

You don’t need to put on your rain pants all day. Simply throw them to your backpack, and if it begins to rain, throw them on most sensible. You don’t even need to take off your boots!

Since that commute, I’ve been extolling the advantages of rain pants to any person who will concentrate, and considered one of my readers instructed me she purchased them for her Iceland commute with skepticism however couldn’t consider how a lot she beloved them!

A person's feet in hiking boots walking through a wet path.
Get ready to rock out in water resistant footwear. By way of Shutterstock.

Water-proof Climbing Boots

You’re most likely going to be mountaineering via dust or rain sooner or later. That’s simply an inevitability in Iceland. Common mountaineering boots or path runners don’t seem to be sufficient: you wish to have just right high quality water resistant mountaineering boots.

Moreover, there are some puts the place you may well be strolling via ankle-deep water, like Gljúfrabúi waterfall or Rauðfeldsgjá Gorge at the Snaefellsnes Peninsula.

Some other people deliver one pair of water resistant mountaineering boots to Iceland, and a few deliver one pair of normal boots and one pair of water resistant boots. Take my recommendation: deliver one pair of water resistant boots (preferably made from Gore-Tex).

You by no means know when a sunny Icelandic sky will all of sudden cloud over and start raining.

A hiker looking over a canyon, wearing a big backpack with a bright yellow waterproof cover over it.
A rain quilt on your backpack makes lifestyles such a lot more uncomplicated. By way of Shutterstock.

Water-proof Backpack Quilt

Believe being half-hour right into a two-hour hike and it begins to rain. And also you’ve were given a dear digital camera simply sitting to your cloth backpack.

That used to be me at Studlagil Canyon this previous August. Whoops.

You completely want a water resistant backpack quilt. It prices not up to $10 and helps to keep your whole digital camera equipment dry, even though you’re mountaineering for hours!

I generally suggest a dry bag for vacationers, particularly in case you’re taking rides on small boats, however the general public don’t take small boats in Iceland, so I feel a water resistant backpack quilt will quilt you.

A woman sleeping with a face mask on.
Go to sleep simply with a nap masks! By way of Shutterstock.

Sleep Masks

Most of the people who trip to Iceland move all the way through the summer season months, when you’ll be able to have a bit little bit of sunlight as past due as 2:00 AM. Ever slept via that? It’s no longer simple!

Without a doubt, each and every Iceland guesthouse will have to have top quality blackout curtains, you’d assume. You’d be mistaken. (And don’t name me Shirley.) I used to be stunned how frequently the nighttime solar peeked in from Icelandic curtains.

You’ll wish to deliver a sleep masks if you wish to sleep peacefully. Ear plugs also are useful, particularly in case you’re staying in dorms or different shared room lodging.

I like my Trina Turk swimsuits!

More than one Swimsuits

One of the crucial amusing issues about visiting Iceland is visiting all of the other sizzling springs! From the vintage Blue Lagoon to the horny Sky Lagoon in Reykjavík and my private favourite, the Vök Baths in Egilsstaðir, East Iceland, they’re far and wide!

Although you skip the expensive thermal hotels, there are many sizzling tubs and herbal sizzling springs all the way through Iceland. And just about each and every the city in Iceland has its personal heated outside swimming pool. Those swimming pools are an affordable, amusing, and really native task.

Translation? You’ll be to your bathing swimsuit a LOT.

One mistake I see other people making ceaselessly is most effective bringing one go well with to Iceland. The rationale? A washing swimsuit takes a very long time to dry and also you may well be repeatedly hanging on person who’s bloodless and damp.

Because of this, it’s a good suggestion to deliver at least two bathing fits to put on in Iceland. I introduced 3. We might hold our bathing fits within the automotive, at the again of the entrance seats, however frequently 24 hours wasn’t sufficient to dry them.

All of my bathing fits are through Trina Turk — she’s all I purchase. They’re stunning, colourful, and final for years. Some are available plus sizes.

Fast-Drying Commute Towel

Nearly each and every sizzling spring or swimming pool in Iceland fees you for a towel in case you don’t have already got one. And costs are frequently round 900 ISK ($6 USD). The ones truly upload up!

So what do you wish to have? A trip towel! A handy guide a rough-drying microfiber trip towel will prevent a variety of cash.

Most sensible Tip: Bathe at night time in Iceland. Your towel will dry in a single day, you’ll have the ability to get a quick get started the following morning, and in case you’re staying in a spot with shared toilets, you gained’t need to stay up for everybody else to complete.

A bright pink plastic water bottle

Reusable Water Bottle

The faucet water in Iceland is secure to drink. Don’t upload to the plastic downside through purchasing bottled water in Iceland. Simply deliver your reusable water bottle and fill it up on every occasion you’ve got a tap.

I take advantage of a BPA-free Blender Bottle. It’s large, it’s sturdy, and it is available in a variety of colours (I’ve it in sizzling red). Mine is sitting subsequent to me as I write this.

Eye drops, lip balm, and hand cream

Iceland can dry you out — particularly in case you’re visiting more than one sizzling springs all the way through your seek advice from. I stopped up with brilliant crimson eyes midway via my most up-to-date commute and wanted drops badly. It wasn’t amusing looking to observe down an open pharmacy in the course of nowhere!

You may wish to deliver eye drops, lip balm, and hand cream.


Nevertheless it isn’t that sunny in Iceland, you assert. Howdy — in case you’re spending a variety of time outdoor, even though it’s a cloudy day, even though you’re no longer fair-skinned, you wish to have sunscreen. You’ll be able to simply burn while you’re no longer anticipating it.

I at all times put on moisturizer or BB cream that accommodates sunscreen. If no longer, deliver sunscreen with an SPF of no less than 45. I really like Neutrogena SPF 55 sunscreen.

Further SD Playing cards, Digicam Battery, and Exterior Onerous Power

You’ll take a ways extra pictures than you generally tackle journeys. Iceland is likely one of the maximum visually impressive puts I’ve ever visited.

It’s at all times smarter to have more than one SD playing cards quite than one large card, simply in case it fails. A couple of SanDisk 64 GB playing cards must hang you over.

It’s just right to have some backup batteries, and in case you’re packing for Iceland within the iciness, know that batteries drain sooner when it’s beneath freezing.

Again up your pictures in more than one puts if you’ll be able to. A tiny thumb pressure most definitely gained’t be sufficient — as a substitute, deliver an exterior exhausting pressure.

A camera on a tripod in front of an Iceland waterfall with a rainbow.
Every so often it kind of feels like everybody in Iceland has a tripod! By way of Shutterstock.


A tripod is an non-compulsory merchandise, however person who extra critical photographers must pack. Should you’re browsing to do long-exposure pictures on Iceland waterfalls, or benefit from low-light eventualities, you’ll want to have a tripod.

On the other hand — in case you’re no longer a photographer, you don’t essentially want this. (Plus, lugging your tripod and atmosphere it up far and wide could be a large ache in case you’re no longer pictures.)

Most sensible Tip: You probably have an iPhone, set your digital camera as much as take Are living Footage. Hang your digital camera as nonetheless as you’ll be able to when photographing a waterfall. To your picture, contact the “LIVE” setting up the highest left nook and alter it to “Lengthy Publicity.” Hi, clean waterfall!

It takes a little of observe, and I like to recommend capturing on a wide-angle as a result of this will chop off numerous the sides.

Kate in a pink jacket taking a selfie in front of a black beach studded with grass and jagged black mountains of Stokksnes.
Taking a selfie at Stokksnes in gentle make-up — and feeling just right!

Sufficient Make-up to Glance Further Great in Footage

Clearly that is non-compulsory as neatly, however in case you put on make-up to your daily lifestyles, you’re going to most definitely admire dressed in a little in Iceland. No longer a complete face — simply sufficient to appear a bit bit nicer than you can be bare-faced.

Every day in Iceland, I wore BB cream, mascara, forehead shadow, and lip balm. No longer a lot, however sufficient to make a distinction.

For a similar reason why, I wore earrings — little stud earrings that I saved in the entire commute. I really like having a little of shimmer in my pictures.

Kate standing in front of a craggy green mountain in Iceland. She wears a pink jacket and has her hands in her pockets, grinning.

What to Put on in Iceland

My outfits in Iceland had been just about the similar factor, over and over again. Pick out a components and keep it up!

Within the picture above, taken at Hvalnes Lighthouse in southeast Iceland, I wore a medium-weight sweater, Uniqlo Extremely Mild Down Jacket, leggings, merino wool socks, boots (those ones are a discontinued taste of Hunter boots however I might get water resistant mountaineering boots subsequent time), and sun shades.

That’s a super outfit for a sunny day in Iceland in the summertime.

For the day I hiked into Múlagljúfur Canyon, considered one of my absolute favourite puts in Iceland, I wore my standard mountaineering outfit: an Icebreaker merino wool pullover, mountaineering pants, rain pants on most sensible simply in case, merino wool socks, and path runners (once more, must have worn water resistant mountaineering boots).

For the hike I wore my two jackets — the Uniqlo Extremely Mild Down jacket and my rain jacket shell — and tied them each round my waist after I were given sizzling.

They’re out of the body on this picture, at the side of my backpack.

A woman in a winter coat and hat stands on a snowy Icelandic road.
Package up for iciness in Iceland! By way of Shutterstock.

Packing Checklist for Iceland in Wintry weather

Touring to Iceland in iciness calls for further pieces. It’s all about staying heat and dry in a chilly, rainy setting! Let’s check out crucial pieces on your iciness Iceland packing checklist:

Base layers (thermal lingerie). Base layers are very important — those are what stay you in fact feeling heat when it’s bloodless out! I’m an enormous fan of Uniqlo HeatTech Base Layers (most sensible and backside). They’re so at ease, so heat, and strangely inexpensive!

I like to recommend two pairs of each and every on your commute to Iceland. Excellent base layers can also be worn a number of days in a row.

Mid-weight layers. This additional layer is what you put on between your base layers and outerwear. I favor a heat sweater on most sensible and heat leggings at the backside.

Heat parka. You’ll desire a heavyweight iciness coat with a hood. I like to recommend person who is going to mid-thigh or decrease; coats that forestall at your waist let in numerous bloodless air. (Other folks from Texas and Florida: communicate on your cold-weather-living pals. They know higher.)

Water-proof, windproof snow pants. Like rain pants, aside from constructed for low temperatures.

Heat hat. I’m partial to North Face beanies, however anything else comfy and wooly will do neatly.

Water-proof, windproof gloves or mittens. I in fact favor mittens, like those ones from Outside Analysis. You might wish to put on glove liners or working gloves as neatly.

Heat shawl. I’m an enormous fan of Speakeasy Commute Provide scarves that include a hidden pocket — and they have got a choice of heat heavy weight scarves that are ideal for Iceland within the iciness!

Base layer socks and heat socks (I like to recommend merino wool socks if imaginable). Base layer socks, once more, stay you hotter than simply common socks.

Sizzling Palms hand heaters. Crack those and so they’ll stay you heat for hours. Those stored my lifestyles in Antarctica! They promote particular toe heaters as neatly, however I don’t assume you wish to have them — hand heaters paintings for each.

I like to recommend dressed in the Sizzling Palms between your base layer socks and heavier socks, or between your glove liners and mittens. You’ll be able to additionally stay them to your wallet.

Northern lighting fixtures pictures equipment. The Northern Lighting are considered one of Iceland’s largest attracts all the way through the iciness months. Should you’re hoping to peer them, you’ll want a tripod, as you wish to have to take lengthy publicity pictures to make the colours truly pop.

(You may wish to see my Antarctica packing checklist for examples of my iciness outfits for being lively in a chilly setting.)

Kate making a goofy jump in the air on a rainbow striped street leading to a church.
Remember to pack your adventurous spirit!

Iceland Packing Checklist

Right here it’s: the overall packing checklist for Iceland.



Wintry weather Vacationers



Pieces to Pack

Digicam Equipment and Tech Equipment

Not obligatory

Must you do laundry in Iceland?

Should you’re staying in Iceland for not up to every week, you most likely don’t wish to do laundry. However in case you’re staying for longer than every week, you’re going to most definitely wish to.

Most sensible Tip: Guide lodging with laundry incorporated midway via your commute. Amanda and I booked an condo in Akureyri that had a washing machine and drying rack. This used to be highest timing and we didn’t have to move discover a laundromat!

You’ll be able to additionally do laundry within the sink in case you’d like. Deliver trip laundry detergent if that’s the case.

Kate in a leather jacket standing in front of Gulfoss waterfall in Iceland.
Expensive 2015 Kate: WHY did you put on a leather-based jacket to the Golden Circle?!

What NOT to Deliver to Iceland

Right here are a few things that you simply completely don’t wish to deliver to Iceland:

Umbrella. Should you packed correct rain equipment — hooded raincoat, rain pants, water resistant boots, and backpack quilt — it utterly negates the desire for an umbrella. You gained’t use it!

Money. Iceland accepts bank cards for nearly the entirety (there are a couple of exceptions, like town buses in Reykjavík). On my most up-to-date two-week commute, neither Amanda nor I used money as soon as.

Dressy garments. You do not want dressy garments — no longer even for that nice-looking eating place in Reykjavík. Put on your nicest sweater and your black mountaineering pants and also you’ll are compatible in simply fantastic.

Horseback using equipment. Icelanders don’t permit any using equipment from overseas international locations to be worn in Iceland. That is to give protection to the horses from outdoor pathogens. Please don’t assume they’ll make an exception for you. They gained’t.

A digital camera you don’t know the way to make use of. Numerous other people get fancy new cameras for his or her Iceland commute — however they don’t know the way to make use of them. Be sure you spend a just right period of time getting to understand your digital camera’s settings and training sooner than you move to Iceland.

Extra on Iceland:

My Favourite Puts in Iceland:

Have you ever been to Iceland? What did you admire bringing?

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