Iceland as you can tell from its name is not a very warm country. Even in the summer, the winds can be strong and temperatures can get low. So, you have to prepare for any type of weather when you plan a trip to this beautiful country. You’ll definitely want to read this Iceland summer packing list and maybe print it out for later!
Due to the weather, packing can be quite difficult to figure out. I took a great road trip there in the summer, and I wrote a comprehensive packing list. I went in August, which is one of the warmest months and I was often wearing a sweater or a vest with long-sleeves. July is the warmest month of the year with the average temperature landing around 60℉, but you could see lows that get down to the 40s.
Weather is not always predictable and it can rain at anytime. LAYER, LAYER, LAYER! So, read below to find a complete packing guide for your trip to Iceland!
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Table of Contents
Your Iceland Summer Packing List
- Swimsuit – There are plenty of geothermal pools around Iceland that you can relax in after a long day of hiking. First, head to the Blue Lagoon to see the most popular one of them all.
- Merino Wool Shirt/Base Layer– Merino wool shirts are the perfect shirt to bring for outdoor activities. They will help regulate your temperature and keep you happy. Of course, you can also bring some normal t-shirts as well.
- T-Shirt – Sometimes the sun comes out and it can get warm. Pack some lightweight t-shirts to wear under your warmer layers!
- A couple of nice shirts/sweaters– Icelandic people wear nicer clothing when they are out and about. If you go to a restaurant, you do not want to stick out like a sore thumb in your hiking gear. Also, I loved throwing on a comfortable and warm sweater at the end of the day.
- Waterproof Pants– I tend to wear hiking pants that are waterproof. If those aren’t your thing, you should still have a pair of pants that you can wear when it’s raining.
- A couple of nicer pants– Again, Icelandic people tend to put themselves together in public. You should have a couple pairs of pants you can wear to dinner or out to the club if you choose to go.
- Fleece/Hoodie– Add a top layer that doesn’t take up too much room or simply wear it on the plane. You want something that will keep you warm, but will also be comfortable for long car rides.
- Waterproof Rain Jacket/Windbreaker– You can pack a windbreaker and rain jacket separately, but that is a waste of space. It’s best to pack something sturdy that can cover you for all of the inclimate weather.
- Dress/nicer clothing (optional)- If you choose to go to the nightclubs in Reykjavik, you will want to dress up. Although, this is an optional item and not necessary to add for your Iceland packing list.
- Hiking Socks– Merino wool hiking socks are the best for keeping you warm and dry. Try them out beforehand to make sure that you don’t get any blisters from your shoes and sock combo.
- Waterproof Hiking Boots– Waterproof is the key. Even if you only go on short hikes, you might get stuck in the rain or climb over slick surfaces. It’s not fun when you have puddles in your shoes, so pack a good sturdy pair of boots.
- Comfortable shoes– One of the best feelings in the world is taking off your hiking boots after a hike. You should pack a nicer/comfortable pair of shoes that you can wear out to restaurants or lounging around. For example, I usually bring vans with me.
- Flip Flops– Bring these to wear at the geothermal pools, in the car, or at your hotel. Also, they don’t take up much space and are always great to have.
- Winter Hat– Because it is so wind, you will want to bring something that will stay on your head and cover your ears. A beanie or something similar is a great choice.
- Gloves– I remember multiple times when we were out in the cold wind and I could barely use my camera because my hands were frozen. So, do yourself a favor and pack a thin pair of gloves.
- Car Charger– If you plan on driving around the country like myself you will definitely want to have one of these handy. You don’t want to be using your phone for GPS and then lose power.
- Day Pack– An Iceland packing guide isn’t complete without a day pack, because you can use it on a day-long adventures or short treks. Pack your camera gear, snacks, and water bottle in your pack. Definitely test it out to make sure that it’s comfortable and doesn’t hurt your back.
- Thermos/Reusable Water Bottle– Because tap water throughout Iceland is pure and clean, you should bring a water bottle to fill up for the day and refill it.
- Camera/GoPro with chargers- Iceland is insanely beautiful and you will definitely want to capture it. So, you should bring a nice digital camera, use your phone, or bring a GoPro and take some adventure shots.
- Adaptor– Iceland uses the C and F plug types. Usually, I opt to bring universal adaptors so that I never have to worry if my plugs will fit.
- Eye-mask– Don’t forget that Iceland is the land of the midnight sun, so the sun only sets for a few hours in the summer. If you want to get some shut eye, you may want a mask to block out the light.
- Sunglasses– Although, you may find that you rarely see the sun when you are driving through the country, but when you do it can be very bright. Have a pair of sunglasses handy so you can wear them while driving or out on a glacier walk.
- Conditioner– I made the rookie mistake of getting my hair wet at the Blue Lagoon and I paid for it the rest of the trip. Surprisingly, most of the hotels we stayed at did not have conditioners, so if you have long hair you are definitely going to want to bring it along.
- Sunblock– When the sun decides to shine it can be very strong. Pack some sunscreen and lather up.
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