Packing for Iceland - The Essentials

Packing for Iceland can be tricky - the weather is extremely unpredictable and will change quite quickly from what appears to be a lovely, sunny day to a full blown snow blizzard. 

Top Tip: Be prepared for all types of weather! Of course, what you pack does also depend on the time of year you're visiting...and for how long. In the winter, temperatures in Reykjavik average at around 0ºC and in the summer, 11ºC. Depending on where you're coming from, you can certainly expect it to be cold. It is Iceland!

We visited in early March (5 days, 6 nights) which is still within the winter season. We were very lucky with the weather, staying clear of any snow storms throughout the road trip with plenty of sunshine and blue skies! Average highs of around 2ºC and lows of -12 topped with the strong Icelandic wind, it was very cold. The locals recommend to check the weather every hour to prep for any drastic changes - you can use the Icelandic Met Office site here

Whatever the weather, this handy little checklist will help you pack the essentials you need for your trip to Iceland no matter what time of year you're going! 

The Absolute Essentials:

  • Passport
  • Travel Insurance 
  • Boarding Passes (Printed or on phone)
  • Accommodation Reservations (Printed or on phone)
  • Bank Card 
  • Mobile
  • Travel Money (Icelandic Krona, ISK) - we didn't take any cash. Two reasons - it has to be ordered through the post office and we ran out of time, Secondly, we discovered Revolut which literally revolutionised our spending and all future spending abroad - don't have one? Get one!


  • Waterproof coat 
  • Waterproof trousers
  • Insulated jacket 
  • Thermal base layer tops
  • Thermal base layer trousers / leggings
  • Lots of long sleeved tops / t-shirts - it's all about the layers
  • Jumpers
  • Jeans / Trousers 
  • Swimwear - absolute must if you're visiting any of the geothermal baths!
  • Towel
  • Gloves
  • Hat 
  • Scarf
  • Sock and Pants (pack extra socks for those chilly nights)
  • A decent pair of walking boots
  • Trainers for when you're on the plane or not hiking!


  • Toothbrush / Toothpaste
  • Deodorant 
  • Hairbrush (Hairdryer if needed)
  • Make-up / Remover (If necessary)
  • Medicine if needed


  • Phone charger 
  • Adaptor 
  • Headphones
  • Sunny-G's
  • Rucksack
  • We also took food and drink flasks as we went self-catering (you can read more on this here)

Photography / Videography

If you're a budding photographer / videographer - then this applies to you! We wanted to film our adventure and took the following;
  • Drone
  • Camera
  • Lenses 
  • Tripod 
  • Camera Bag
  • Lots of Batteries / Charger (car charger if road-tripping)
  • SD Cards - take a few!
Watch our video HERE