Suggested Packing List for Iceland

Recommended reading: 9 Day Iceland Itinerary 


Starting to pack for Iceland and feeling overwhelmed? Join the club!

I actually don’t mind packing that much because of the anticipation that comes with it – I enjoy thinking ahead about the trip, the places I’ll go to, and what my outfit will be (is it just me?). But for Iceland, I didn’t know where to start. After reading a few posts, this is what I gathered – August is the summer season, but it could snow anytime. Summer can be sandal season but it always rains in Iceland (should I pack everything I own?).

Since my husband and I were sharing a check-in bag (to save some $$), there was no extra room for mistake (pun intended). Keeping in mind that 55 °F (13 °C) is hardly summer (to me at least), and I love to be warm and toasty at all times, I started making a list. The important things to note are:

  • Layer it up
  • Plan for the worst (and hope for the best).

For hiking:

  • Base Layer – Light T-shirt/tank top, long johns, thermals.
  • Warm layer – Sweaters, hoodies, fleece zip ups.
  • Coats
    • Light jacket for the sunny days
    • Waterproof jacket and windbreaker
    • Down winter coat – because you never know
  • Rain pants – Preferably the zip-off type in case you get too warm hiking. My husband was happy with the convertible pants from Eddie Bauer.   
  • Waterproof Hiking Shoes – Make sure they have good ankle support because twisting your ankle is easier than you think, especially while walking on pebbles, rocks, and lava beds. I also brought a pair of regular walking shoes/sneakers for the days we didn’t hike as much. The Columbia ones below worked great for me. If you buy these though, make sure to go half size up.                  
  • Light waterproof backpack to put your snacks and water in while hiking.
  • Accessories – Waterproof gloves, and a hat (I got my hat in Reykjavik and I love it).

For the beach/lagoons:

  • Flip-flops – You can also use them for long car rides.
  • Swimsuit – Required to go in the lagoons.  
  • Towel – This may also come in handy if you’re spending nights at hostels.  

For the road & picnic meals:

  • Sunglasses
  • Water bottle
  • Coffee cup – Coffee in Iceland comes in one size – the smallest you can imagine. Having your own cup will let you fill it in from your hotel/guesthouse.
  • Car Charger for phone. We had a double adapter so we can charge 2 phones at once. It’d be nice to bring a car mount for your phone since you’ll most likely be using the phone as a GPS.
  • Sunscreen
  • Plastic knife & fork, paper towels.

For the night:

  • Sleep Mask – Especially needed in summer when the days are long. 
  • European power adapter


If you still have any room left in your suitcase, bring your favorite pet. You’re gonna miss them.

Until next time 🙂



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Affiliate Disclosure – Some of the links on this page are affiliate links, which means I get a small commission if you purchase an item using my link. You will pay the same price no matter what. Also, I only recommend the items my husband or I have personally tried and loved. 

2 Replies to “Suggested Packing List for Iceland”

  1. Carrol Palmore says: Reply

    Thank you so much for the great article, it was fluent and to the point. Cheers.

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