Don’t let the cold deter you from visiting Iceland during the winter months. In my opinion, it made the landscapes much more beautiful covered in snow and ice. As long as you’re prepared, traveling Iceland in the winter isn’t a problem. Here’s what to pack for Iceland in January.
The most important thing to pack! Make sure you have a warm waterproof jacket. And the more pockets the better so you don’t have to carry a purse and can just use your coat pockets.
I debated bringing these but in the end, I’m so glad I had them. Especially when we drove out of Reykjavik along the coast. Everything is much more enjoyable when you’re not worrying about being cold or sitting on a snowy or icy seat.
HAT, GLOVES, SCARF
More essentials! I would recommend gloves over mittens in case you are touching rocks or ice. It’s pretty windy at times so you’ll want to be completely covered up.
SNOW/HIKING BOOTS, SOCKS, CHAMPONS
While the snow was never deep, there was still snow on the ground, and there was often ice. Make sure your boots have good traction. They don’t need to be super tall like Hunters, you can even do sneakers if you have warm enough socks. If your shoes are slippery on ice you can always buy crampons that attach to your existing boots or shoes for extra traction.
No need to dress up, I found just regular long sleeve tees and chambray shirts worked for any occasion.
Pack a layering piece for either under or over your regular shirt for extra warmth. A sweater, a heat tech layer or just a zip up all work fine depending on what you prefer.
Keep it simple. I wore fleece leggings and jeans under my snow pants every day.
The Blue Lagoon is not to be missed so you’ll need your swimsuit. There are also hot springs you can find around the island and you can even go snorkeling!
A few other things you might want to pack. A waterproof phone case so you can bring it into the Blue Lagoon, a reusable water bottle (you can drink the tap water), and tissues (it’s winter after all!). If you tend to get cold, hot hands are great. Also, bring any over the counter medications you usually use like Advil or Tylenol. You can only buy them at pharmacies which are not easy to find outside Reykjavik. Food is also very expensive in Iceland. Any snacks you can fit in your bag will save you money.