Before telling you about the best time to travel to Iceland, let me give you a quick summary of the country. Iceland is a Nordic island nation in the north Atlantic and is exiguously populated. Most of the population lives in the capital city of Reykjavik, leaving the rest of the country partially isolated.
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Iceland is becoming so desirable due to its dramatic landscapes with volcanoes, geysers, crystal ice caves, massive glaciers, natural hot springs and lava fields. Reading so much about this country left me desperate, and I planned my next trip to Iceland.
I won’t deny that I was afraid of travelling to such a remote country, knowing that there will be nobody to help if something goes wrong? Like, what if my car breaks down and I meet that scary mutant from “Wrong Turn”, or if wildlings/white walkers attack me from “The North”, and what if the place is haunted? Yes, I love watching horror movies/web series, but I hate the aftereffects of those scary faces or scenes that stay with me forever to give me a nightmare.
This trip has completely changed my perception of Iceland, and it turned out to be a fantastic place on Earth with the best travel experience of my life.
Iceland – The land of Ice and Fire
Iceland is the only destination which every traveller will recommend that you must travel for being one of its kind and a lifetime experience for any individual.
I know that some of you must have heard a lot about Iceland, and it must be on the top of your bucket list. But, others are entirely blank. Therefore, I will take you through the highlights of this unique land and share when is the best time to travel to Iceland.
Renting a car and driving around the famous Ring Road in Iceland is most of the traveller’s dream. Although, if you want to travel in big groups, you can book a bus tour. It’s ok if you’re going to sit back, relax and enjoy the incredible scenery without stressing about the routes, following maps and, of course, driving.
I like to explore on my own, having the freedom to stop anywhere and eat anytime, or should I say every time. In both cases, Iceland is the perfect destination for the seasoned traveller, first-timer, solo traveller, adventurous couple or family looking for an epic road trip around a country.
When is the best time to travel to Iceland?
Well, that’s a challenging question to answer as each season has something unique to offer. The best time to visit Iceland depends on what you want from your trip as it is the favourite destination of all travellers year-round for different reasons.
(April-May): Spring Season
Spring is the best time to travel to Iceland for many people. As winter weather is fading away and days are getting longer, inviting nature lovers to view Iceland’s landscapes in full bloom. Winter storms, heavy snowfall and ice-covered roads are no more dangerous. However, you can’t expect northern lights due to increased hours of sunlight.
Best of spring
- To see about 8 million Puffin birds
- For snorkelling between continents (north American and Eurasian continental plates),
- Fishing and golfing
- Creating a fantastic backdrop with fields of purple wildflower
- Enjoy waterfalls with icebergs melting into the sea.
- To attend Reykjavik Art Festival
(June- August): Summer Season
This season, spring invites summer to take over the place and make the country shine for almost 24 hours. No kidding, summer has peak sunlight with warm weather and famous midnight sun. As a result, you will find horses and sheep roaming freely, and the grass is vibrantly green and lush.
So naturally, you can expect the most crowded tourist attractions, overbooked hotels, and higher car rentals in the high season.
Best of Summer
- Cultural Festival (Menningarnott)
- Whale watching
- Witnessing midnight sun
- Hiking & Camping
- Puffin Spotting
- Road Trips
(September- October): Autumn Season
It is the time to experience another planet on Earth. The autumn season has the supernatural power to change the Icelandic landscapes into unearthly colours and textures.
As the weather gets cooler, flight and accommodation prices start to decline due to shorter daylight hours. The temperature begins to fall slowly, but the wind is more vital to make it feel colder than it is.
People in Iceland are much lively to enjoy the film, art and music festival, creating high vibes, especially in theatres and cafes. Although, if you’re lucky, you might experience the first snowfall of the year in October, and if super lucky, then you might spot the northern lights as well.
Best of Autumn
- Drive rugged and remote F-roads
- Pick wild berries and mushroom
- Halloween Festival
- Enjoy outside natural Hot spring
- Glacier Hiking & Ice Climbing
- Fewer tourists, more time to explore
- Lower prices for hotels, flights and attractions
- Northern lights start getting visible
- World-famous Iceland Airwaves
- Reykjavik International film festival
- Experience another planet (somewhat like Moon)
(November- March): Winter Season
Iceland is just Ice and snow in winters as you can hardly see any other colour or texture in the highlands. Some roads will be closed, and you will keep getting storm alerts on the radio.
Although, Iceland’s magical caves are safe to see and enter only during winters. The capital city, Reykjavik, is still better temperature-wise than the rest of the country. You can book tours from the capital city for glacier hiking, northern lights and other snow activities.
The sunlight is only for 4-6 hours (depending on the month). Many tourist attractions and camping grounds are closed. The locals prefer to stay indoors and avoid the harsh weather.
Best of Winter:
- Blue Glacier Cave & Crystal Ice caves
- Relax in the most Famous Blue Lagoon
- Save a lot on flights, hotels and car rentals
- Less sunlight means more northern lights
- Fewer people, i.e. fewer tourists
- More Snow Activities
My favourite month is October-Why?
As summer break is over and most tourists have gone, which means lower prices, more privacy, best photography and picture-perfect locations with no crowd in the background.
Ever since I started travelling, I changed my birthday ritual from dining at some luxury/fancy restaurant to exploring a new country. And, I have an extended birthday celebration there. Thankfully, I was born in October, as it’s the best time to travel anywhere due to the perfect weather and festive season around the globe.