Practical info
9 January 2018

How to dress for winter in Iceland?

The weather in Iceland can change dramatically from one day to the next, and you can’t rely on long-term forecasts although they give you an idea. You can expect anything from warm-ish and wet 8-9 °C up to freezing cold, wind and snow storms. The road and walking paths might be clear, or they might be covered in ice and snow. So, we’re going to give you a few suggestions:

what to wear in winter in iceland

How to dress for winter in Iceland?

Must have:

  • Waterproof jacket. Well insulated and windproof as well. It can’t be too tight because you´ll need to be able to wear a sweater underneath.
  • Fleece or wool sweater.
  • Waterproof hiking boots. They’re not optional, seriously. You do not want to get your feet wet and cold, and you don’t want to wear slippery sneakers in Iceland during winter.
  • Warm socks. Make sure your boots are big enough so that you can wear thick socks underneath. You should splurge on special hiking socks because having cold feet kind of ruins the experience.
  • Crampons. You don’t need Mount Everest crampons, but something you can slip on your shoes if you encounter icy footpaths is a must. They’re not expensive and can save you a broken arm.
  • Water resistant pants. Warm and wind resistant as well.
  • Long John’s or fleece leggings.
  • Gloves, scarf, hat, balaclava or something else to cover your head and face. It can get very, very cold.

Nice to have:

  • Swimsuit
  • Thermal underwear
  • Flashlight / headlamp
  • Lip balm (because frost isn’t nice to your lips)
  • Sunglasses (because the sun is low in the winter and it can be hard to drive when it shines on your face)
  • Matching outfits if you’re a couple. No, just kidding.
  • Waterproof backpack or one with a waterproof cover
  • Walking poles if you’re into hiking