Iceland is nothing short of a life-changing adventure. The country is full of natural wonders ranging from gigantic waterfalls and breath-taking landscapes. Iceland is also home to magnificent lava fields, awe-striking geysers and Europe’s largest glaciers. This stunning landscape is the result of incredible seismic changes over millions of years.
There are a very few man-made attractions in Iceland, it has no McDonald’s or Starbucks which adds to the popularity amongst tourists seeking an experience above anything else. Iceland is becoming a more popular tourist attractions in the last 10 to 15 years but fully closed its borders in 2020 due to COVID-19. While we don’t know what 2021 will bring, we can at least hope we can travel to Iceland again. If you are traveling to Iceland again, this is how a normal travel year would look like.
In fact, if we can normally travel again in 2021, the year might offer us a unique travel opportunity: with low or no crowds. In this post, we combine climate data with crowd predictions. The best time to visit Iceland is during the summer!
January in Iceland
The days are short and the weather is extremely cold. In fact January is the coldest month in Iceland.
What to expect: snow, winds, rain and thin crowds with a very short day of 4.5 to 7 hours maximum. It is best to avoid January if you aren’t looking out for winter holidays with snow as it can get very difficult for you to enjoy. Owing to the limited number of hours of the day, you won’t be able to see the scenic beauty and enjoy the terrific nature.
February is not great to visit Iceland
In terms of weather, January and February are twins. It will still be cold in February. One change: the days are longer in February as compared to January.
What to expect: Not a very ideal situation but if you just can’t wait to see the desktop wallpapers in real life, you can book now but we suggest you to wait at least till April!
March brings Spring to Iceland
The days continue to extend in terms of sun-light, the temperature starts getting better but obviously winter is still present in March. As the sun returns, travel opportunities on the island return as well. With some exceptions, the capital is mostly snow-free now for you to visit but the outskirts are still covered with snow.
What to expect: A lot of rain, snow in the outskirts, cold weather and thin crowds.
April can be a good month to visit Iceland
Hurrah! You can travel now to the destination of your dreams as the weather keeps getting better and days getting longer. It’s an official on-set of the summer season in Iceland.
What to expect: expect the most unexpected and pack your waterproof clothing and shoes with extra layers because it might get cold because of frequent rains in the region. The Island’s weather is so unpredictable that you may experience all four seasons in just one day. So we suggest you can check out the best deals for an April holiday and book in advance!
May, the best month to visit Iceland
May is “THE “ most fabulous time of the year to go to Iceland. The days are so long with an average of 20+ hours of daylight and an incredible weather with some terrific holiday deals. This sounds ideal but it can still be cold!
What to expect: Breathtaking landscapes turning green , jade green and emerald blue waters with black sand, snow-covered glaciers, Mighty Mountains, abundant marine life , natural hot springs , puffins arriving and the list is long ! Cherry on top, thin crowds and wonderful holiday deals. We suggest you to book your trip in May 2021 because it is so close to ideal.
June, good month to visit Iceland
June is the hottest in Iceland with the longest days and shortest nights. Although the summers are not at all extreme on this island, the weather can rise up to 20 degrees Celsius maximum.
What to expect: Thick crowds, pleasant weather and epic opportunity to enjoy the outdoor activities. From 2021 trip perspective it is best to avoid crowds as much as you can. So for the world it’s an ideal weather to visit Iceland but with the new normal, let’s wait or may be book in May?
July, peak season in Iceland
July and August are the most popular months to travel to Icelcand: the weather is pleasant, the outdoors are serene and offer all sorts of out-door activities for you to carry out. But just like June, it is better to avoid the crowds if you have the option.
What to expect: All the very same that you would be able to enjoy in the June. The crowd is massive during July and hence it is not advisable to book your trip during this time span.
August, end of Iceland’s peak season
August is the last month of summer in Iceland; the temperature starts to drop and days will be shorter. Towards the end of the month, the crowds start disappearing while the weather remains enjoyable.
What to expect: Busy during the beginning of the month, crowd free at the end.
September, late-season in Iceland
The days are shorter while it is also getting colder. September is said to be the best time to travel to Iceland to see the Northern Lights (no guarentees!) Book a tour at the end of august and start of September to take the best out of Iceland. If luck is on your side, you may be able to see the northern lights.
What to expect: pleasant days, opportunities for out-door activities with a chance of seeing northern lights.
October, last month of the year to visit Iceland
It is late autumn in Iceland with a beautiful landscape that is getting ready to embrace winter.
What to expect: opportunity to photograph Iceland at its BEST. Thin crowds and limited out-door activities.
November, not great for a trip to Iceland
The winters are in full-swing in November, the days are shorter with sunlight that only last 6 hours a day. Tourists are nowhere to be seen. Out-door activities are very limited and you would need proper clothing to protect yourself from the harsh climate.
December is one of the coldest months in Iceland. The days are too short and too dark. December is not a very good time for international tourists to explore Iceland for the first-time.
Iceland Travel Tips:
- Book in advance and book in months where the daylight is extensive i.e. the days are long because Iceland is full of marvelous sites that you wouldn’t want to miss.
- Experience the things you have only read about in the novels i.e ATV ride on volcanic mountains, Swim in the hot springs , visit the ice-caves , go whale-watching , see Puffins, spot the northern lights , watch the breath taking sunsets and visit the waterfalls and walk behind them.
- As long as the pandemic is ongoing we have to take Covid-19 precautions and wear masks at all times. Wash and sanitize your hands .
- Don’t forget your camera, sunglasses, raincoat, swimming costume, jackets, sunblock and beautiful smile.