Known as “The Land of Fire and Ice,” Iceland is famous for its vast number of geological wonders. It is one of the only countries in the world to have both volcanoes and glaciers, not to mention lava fields, hot springs, and so much more. Whether you are looking to hike through mountains and forests, chase waterfalls, lounge in hot springs, or traverse across a black sand desert, you can do it in Iceland. Not to mention, you have a chance to view one of the most marveled natural light displays in the world: The Aurora Borealis. With all this to offer, it’s no wonder that Iceland has become an increasingly popular tourist destination over the past ten years.
The good news is that thanks to over 25 airlines now flying into the country and about 20 cities in the United States offering direct flights (Boston, San Francisco, Denver, and New York- to name a few), Iceland is currently more accessible than ever. Reykjavík – Iceland’s largest city and capital – has become a hub for outdoor adventure and exploring nature.
When To Go
While Iceland has a relatively cool and temperate climate year-round, there may be certain times of year better suited for your trip depending on your desired activities and sight-seeing goals.
The Gulf Stream aids in Iceland’s temperate climate as it supplies cool summers and relatively mild winters. These weather conditions make the country a travelable destination at all times of the year. We offer a variety of world-class Iceland Wildland Trekking Tours year-round, so whether you want to hunt down the Northern Lights, see the highlights, or hike Iceland’s most iconic trails, we have a trek for you!
All of our Iceland treks are hut-to-hut, basecamp, or lodge-based, as the weather can be unpredictable and occasionally harsh, so you never have to worry about setting up tents in rough weather. Many of our tours also allow everyone to travel at their own comfort level without hefting heavy backpacks. So no matter your style or interests, our Iceland tours are the perfect way to spend a week or more exploring the landscape of a unique and beautiful country.
Warmer temperatures and drier weather make June through August the ideal time for outdoor explorers and nature enthusiasts. The surrounding nature is in full bloom: hills are green, mountains are colorful, and waterfalls are flowing. For this reason, most of our backpacking and hiking treks take place during these months.
However, we should also mention that summer is the time of the “midnight sun,” where the sun never sets, and night-time darkness is non-existent. Most visitors have a little trouble sleeping the first few nights, so we recommend adding an eye-mask or dark scarf to your packing list. Summer is also the high season of tourism in Iceland, so if you are looking for empty trails and un-crowded attractions, this is not the time for you.
Interested in seeing whales? There are over 20 species of Orca and other species of whales inhabiting the waters around Iceland! While tours operate year-round, April through September is peak season, with the majority of tours reporting at least one whale sighting.
While not frequent, snow has been known to fall in Iceland starting as early as September and will occasionally stay through May. Roads through the mountains can be closed as early as October and remain closed as late as June. Iceland’s iciest season is consistently December through February, and there is very little sun during this time.
However, don’t let the snow or colder weather scare you off! With proper thermal clothing and gear, Iceland can be beautiful in winter and offer some breathtaking views. Frozen waterfalls, snow-covered volcanoes, and fewer people are just a few reasons to travel in winter. It’s for precisely those reasons that we offer an incredible winter lodge-based tour to take in the stunning northern lights and dramatic winter landscapes.
While it can be observed any time from September to April, the Aurora Borealis is most frequently seen in February, March, September, and October. Pack a coat and get ready for those increased hours of darkness as your chances of seeing nature’s incredible light show is pretty high! Our Iceland Winter Wonders Tour is perfect for anyone looking to hike through Iceland in the milder months of winter and see the lights.
Interested in seeing the Winter Festival of Lights or Festival of the Sea? Iceland hosts a variety of festivals year-round, which could serve as the perfect end – or beginning – to your hiking trip! Therefore, be sure to take a look at all of Iceland’s festivals as you never know when one will coincide with your trip.
Our basecamp tours are perfect for hikers of all experience levels looking to explore Iceland during the day and partake in an all-inclusive camping experience each night. This trip is the ultimate outdoor Iceland adventure, featuring day-hikes to see waterfalls, glaciers, lava fields, black sand beaches, and more. We strive for a multitude of breath-taking views and encounters with unique wildlife, not to mention stops in several small Icelandic villages.
Our hut-to-hut based tours are perfect for those guests looking to participate in an authentic Icelandic hiking experience. These treks follow the iconic Laugavegur Trail and offer views of rainbow-colored mountains, waterfalls, lava fields, ice caps, and more. You will spend each night in a communal hut that provides shelter from any harsh weather that may occur in the evenings. Don’t worry about hauling all your gear for this trip! Jeeps will take our personal gear from hut to hut, allowing us to enjoy the scenery and hike with a much lighter backpack.
Our Wildland Lodge-based Tours are perfect for those explorers who want to hike during the day but relax in a warm shower and cozy bed each night. Each day will feature a new adventure as we visit several of Iceland’s most iconic sights for a complete exploration of everything the country has to offer. These tours are ideal for hikers and explorers who want to participate in day hikes without the heavy lifting of backpacking! Our tour prices include all lodging, food, and transportation so you can experience the wonders of Iceland with zero worries!
Explore Iceland’s stunning landscape on an epic hut-to-hut backpacking tour. We’ll see rugged lava fields, beautiful mountain views, simmering hot springs, and icy rivers as we carry our gear across Iceland’s stunning landscape. We’ll hunker down in rustic communal huts every evening where we’ll enjoy guide-prepared meals sheltered from potentially blustery weather. Then each morning, we’ll strap on our packs and head out on another stunning adventure.
Need to Know
Before heading to Iceland, here are a few things you need to book, pack, and know.
Primary Departure Cities For Iceland
All our Iceland tours will meet in Reykavik. Your guide will be in contact well before the beginning of the tour to organize a meeting time and place. We highly recommend you schedule in some time before or after your trip to experience everything Reylavik has to offer. There are fantastic museums, whale-watching tours, and excellent restaurants in this amiable and explorable city.
Book in Advance
Once you’ve chosen the Iceland Wildland Trek that best suits your desires, make sure to book it as soon as possible. Tours fill up quickly, and roundtrip airfare into Iceland (which will be your responsibility to book) tends to increase in price as you get closer to the departure date.
Before making any additional travel arrangements, ensure that you book your trip with Wildland Trekking first. Once your spot is confirmed, we recommend that you purchase your airfare as soon as possible after sign-up. Multiple airlines service Iceland, and direct flights are available from many U.S. and European Airports. Make sure you book a round-trip ticket into Keflavik International Airport (airport code KEF), located in Reykjavik, Iceland.
Reykjavik Airport (RKV), is also found in the area, but only services domestic flights, so please do not try to fly into this airport. To keep the tour schedule on time, please book your flights to arrive before 3 pm on the first day of your tour. This arrival time will allow you to be punctual for your pre-trip meeting. Similarly, please book a departure flight no earlier than 3 pm on the final day of the tour. This later departure time will ensure that you’re not rushing to make your flight.
Local Transportation and Lodging
A shuttle voucher will be provided to you for transportation from Keflavik International Airport to your hotel accommodations for the first night. Your guide will then rendezvous with you that evening for an orientation meeting. During the Wildland Trekking Tour registration process, you will be asked to provide a copy of your passport and your flight information to help us coordinate schedules and meeting times.
We want your Iceland Wildland Trek to be the trip of a lifetime. Our professional guides do their absolute best to provide you with an incredible Iceland trek that’s both on-time and on schedule. That said, we all know that unexpected travel delays and unforeseen events do occur. We, therefore, always recommend that you add in a day or two of extra wiggle room into your trip planning. That means arriving a day or two early and staying a day or two past your trip end date. This extra wiggle room will allow you to travel at your own pace and not rush to make flights on a tight schedule. What’s more, you’ll have the opportunity to explore fantastic Reykavik! For those guests wishing to lodge additional days, you can contact us for more information and recommended hotels.
You can also find additional travel information under the Iceland section at our Hiking and Backpacking Tour Travel Resources page.
Have more questions? Send us an email or call us at 800-715-HIKE (4453). We’re here 7 days a week from 9:00 to 4:30 Mountain Time to make sure your trip planning goes as smoothly as possible.
For more information about all your options, check out our Iceland page on the website with the button below! Individual trip pages have detailed itineraries, trip specifics, travel information, and more.