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The Complete Guide to Packing for Iceland

The Complete Guide to Packing for Iceland

You’ve just booked your Iceland holiday, but there’s one problem, what do you pack? With an ever-changing climate, it’s important that you pack accordingly.

The weather changes drastically from one season to the next, the sun could be shining one minute, and you could be faced with a snow storm the next – all part of Iceland’s wintery charm.

To save you the lengthy research, we’ve listed everything you’ll need for your trip to The Land of Fire and Ice.

Iceland packing


Waterproofs will be your saviour if you experience any rainfall on your trip – after all, no one wants to walk around in soaked-through clothes when the weather is cold. So with that in mind, water-resistant clothing is a necessity, from a raincoat to your shoes and trousers, it’s essential you come prepared.

It may also be a good idea to pack an umbrella, this will come in especially handy if you experience a heavy downpour.

Fleece-lined everything

Nothing keeps the heat in better than fleece-lined clothing. Woolly items will become your best friend on a cold winter’s day in Iceland, whether it’s the comfort of warm boots, cosy leggings or a fluffy hat.

Layers, layers and more layers

When it comes to layers, the more the merrier. Long-sleeved or short-sleeved, mix it up and try to make sure you’re wearing around four on a cold day – but don’t worry, you can always take them off if you get too warm drinking hot chocolate by the fire.

The biggest secret to keeping snug is thermals. Perfect for layering under the likes of jeans and jumpers, invest in some good-quality thermals and we guarantee you’ll be toasty all trip.

Snow boots

You’re going to want to keep your feet warm during your time in Iceland, so that’s why we advise packing some waterproof hiking or snow boots. Now, pair these with some thermal socks and your feet are bound to stay warm rain or snow.

Plus, with Iceland’s often slippery surfaces you’re going to want to make sure your wearing suitable footwear so you don’t fall. On a really icy day, you might even want to take some rubber crampons for your boots. Simply slip them over your shoes and take on the breathtaking terrain like a pro.

Nifty Gadgets

It’s always a good idea to pack pocket-sized gadgets as a trip to Iceland involves a lot of on-the-go activities. Whether you use your phone, a Go-Pro or a camera, the landscape begs you to take photos. From its enchanting icy waterfalls to the awe-inspiring hot springs and illuminated night sky – you’ll  want to capture it all.

Bring a waterproof case for your phone, not only will it protect your device from Iceland’s often wet climate, but it’s also great if you use your phone as your camera.

Swimwear and towel

Whatever you do, don’t forget your swimsuit and towel. One of the greatest things about this winter wonderland is its multiple hot springs, and we’re not just talking about the Blue Lagoon. Yes, the Blue Lagoon is the most famous, but there are plenty of others like Reykjadalur, a hot spring river near Reykjavik.

You may also want to bring a quick dry towel. Not only will it save you tons of packing space due to its compact size, but it will also dry fast, which is perfect when temperatures outside are at their coldest.


For those planning on exploring during their time in Iceland, it’s a good idea to pack a rucksack. This is the ideal place to store all your items when you’re going on a day trip, and it’s surprising how much you’ll need.

Essentials like a water bottle, extra layers, waterproofs and your camera are important items when out on your adventures.

Touch screen gloves

You’re going to need gloves during your holiday to Iceland, and with so many beautiful sights at your feet you’ll want to take a million snaps. That’s why we recommend purchasing some touch-screen gloves to save you taking them off to use your electronic devices.

Sun-ready gear

It may seem a little strange putting sun and Iceland in the same sentence, but you’ll still need to pack for those brighter days. We recommend taking sun lotion all year round, especially for days when you’re out for long periods of time such as hiking.

Sunglasses are just as important – and even more so in the winter. Although there is a shortage of daylight hours at this time of year, when the sun does come out, it is extremely low making shades a necessity.

Download our Iceland check-list and you’re good to go, it’s time to start planning your winter getaway.

Iceland checklist