Iceland in winter was out of this world. Seriously, it was like we were on a different planet. We were blessed with incredible weather when we went for a week over New Years. We saw Iceland covered in snow the first few days we were there. Then the sun came out and when the snow melted, if left a beautiful green landscape I could never have imagined.
I would highly recommend anyone to visit this beautiful country, especially if you’re a huge fan of mother nature and all her beauty. The feeling of serenity you get from just being in this faraway remote island, is utterly precious.
Travelling in Winter
If you’re going in Winter like us the daylight is minimal. I’d say we had around 6 hours of light. A week was enough for us to get everything on our bucket list done in the South with the minimal daylight we had. However, I’m sure if you go in Summer, you’d be able to fit in travelling up North as the sun stays out much longer.
Day 1: We arrived in the evening so we went on our Northern Lights Tour straight away.
Day 2 (New Year’s Eve): We spent the whole day at the Blue Lagoon Spa and spent New Year’s Eve wandering around Reykjavik watching the fireworks.
Day 3: Explored the main town in Reykjavik.
Day 4: Hired a car and explored the Golden Circle.
Day 5: Drove to our Airbnb house in Selfoss. Set out to explore the landscape around us, found a group of Icelandic Horses and visited the Fridheimar Farm (Tomato Farm)
Day 6: Big day of driving to Vik – waterfalls, glaciers and black sand beaches.
Day 7: Flew out of Iceland for England at 9am.
Driving In Iceland
You must get your own car. In fact, I’d highly recommend a 4WD. The winds can get quite strong and the roads icy. Plus, I’m not a huge fan of tour buses and having to follow their schedules. Having the car meant we got to adventure anywhere at any time, and stop when we saw the gorgeous Icelandic Horses. Gosh they were amazing.
Saying that, we did go on a tour to see the Northern Lights which I’d recommend you do. It was pretty insane.
Clothing for an Iceland Winter trip
As I mentioned above we were very blessed with good weather. However, there were a couple of times where the wind was bone chilling. Be prepared for anything. Layers are key. You’ll need:
- Thermals (sometimes I got away with wearing my workout tights over the top of thermals, but jeans over the top were warmer)
- Snow boots (my husband wore Timberlands and I wore these boots.)
- Beanie, gloves & thermal socks
- Neck/Face shield just in case
- Rain jacket
- Windproof Down jacket (I took a Kathmandu Down Jacket, it was amazing)
- Fleece jacket
Food and Drink
Holy shit. I clearly didn’t do my research on the cost of food and alcohol. Iceland is the most expensive place I’ve been in the world for alcohol. To give you an example, a bottle of average white wine you could get from the bottle shop in Australia for $15 converted to $40. The spirits were out of this world expensive compared to what we are used to. The food was fresh and delicious everywhere ate.
Where to Stay in Iceland
If I was to go again, I’d do it differently. We stayed at the Foss Hotel in Reykjavik for four nights – lovely hotel, but two nights would have been plenty for us to check out the town, go on a Northern Lights tour and head to the Blue Lagoon.
We then stayed in this beautiful Airbnb home in the middle of nowhere in Selfoss for three nights, I could have stayed there the entire time to be honest. Even though it’s in the middle of nowhere it’s very central to the Golden Circle, main attractions, beautiful landscape, and only one and half hours from Reykjavik.
Must See Places in Iceland
- Blue Lagoon Spa: Go for at least 5+ hours. It’s so relaxing and the restaurant is amazing.
- Northern Lights Tour
- Gullfoss Waterfall
- Skógafoss Waterfall
- Seljalandsfoss Waterfall
- Silfra is a rift formed in the divergent tectonic boundary between the North American and Eurasian plates.
- Secret Lagoon
- Black Sand Beach in Vik
- Dyrholaey in Vik: the view is insane
- Jökulsárlón Beach
- Fridheimar Farm (Tomato Farm)
- Rent a car and just drive.
Iceland was a trip of a lifetime and I’m so grateful I got to share it with my husband and parents. If you decide to go to Iceland, respect the country and take some time to be in awe of the beautiful landscape that surrounds you.
If you have any questions regarding your trip to Iceland, please feel free to reach out. xx