A Guide to Camping in Iceland

For those seeking unique, rugged and beautiful scenery, camping in Iceland is an unforgettable experience. While there’s plenty of adventure to be had, camping in Iceland can be daunting for first-timers. Before setting out, it’s important to understand and plan ahead for the special considerations regarding camping in Iceland. This guide will provide you with the essential know-how to ensure a safe, fun and memorable camping trip in Iceland.

What You Need to Know Before Camping in Iceland

To ensure a safe and enjoyable camp out in Iceland, there are some things that you should know beforehand:

  1. Camping is only allowed in designated areas.
  2. Respect nature and minimize your impact on it.
  3. Make sure to bring adequate clothing to stay warm and dry.
  4. Beware of volatile weather conditions.
  5. Always carry a map and compass.

Finding the Right Camping Location

Before you head out, you need to choose the right spot for your camping trip. When it comes to camping in Iceland, there ice no shortage of amazing locations – but where do you start? Here are a few tips to help you find the perfect camping spot:

  1. Determine how far you want to travel – Iceland is a big country and you will want to factor in how long it will take to get to your destination.

  2. Consider the landscape – there is a wide variety of terrain in Iceland. Consider your preferences and the activities you plan to do: Are you looking for a mountain vista? A lake? An ocean view?

  3. Research local regulations – Different regions have different regulations regarding camping, so make sure you familiarize yourself with them so as not to cause any issue.

  4. Reach out to local organizations – If you have any additional queries regarding camping in a certain area, it’s often helpful to contact a local organization, such as a visitor center or tourism office, who can provide up-to-date information.

  5. Think about the amenities – Are you looking for a luxe experience with a hot shower and a kitchenette, or are you aiming for a more primitive, back-to-basics camping experience?

Tips for Enjoying Your Camping Trip

Once you’ve chosen your camping spot, it’s time to prepare for your adventure. Here are some tips to enjoy your Icelandic camping trip:

  1. Pack light but be prepared – Camping in Iceland may mean you’ll be camping in the wilds, far away from civilization so you want to be prepared for the unexpected.

  2. Don’t forget your sunscreen – Even though you’re camping in Iceland, you should still bring sunscreen, particularly during the summer months.

  3. Bring a headlamp – Not only will a headlamp provide you with light but it can also be a great accessory for activities such as caving and exploring remote places.

  4. Follow safety protocol – Make sure you bring a first aid kit, a map and compass, a charged cell phone, and always let someone know where you are going.

  5. Support local businesses – Iceland is home to many talented artists and craftsmen. If you’re looking to pick up a souvenir, consider purchasing something from a local artisan or shop.

  6. Respect nature – Camping in Iceland offers you a chance to experience the awe-inspiring beauty of the country, so keep in mind to respect and protect nature for future generations to come.

Wildlife to Look Out For in Iceland

While camping in Iceland, you may come across some of the country’s abundant wildlife. Nordic animals such as reindeer, arctic foxes, seals and muskoxen may be encountered in different regions. If you’re lucky enough to catch a glimpse of any of these animals, remember to keep your distance and not to disturb them.

Practical Tips When Camping in Iceland

When camping in Iceland, there are some practical tips you should keep in mind:

  1. Don’t forget to pack food and water – When camping in the wilderness of Iceland, it’s important to bring food and water. Packing a little extra just in case is always a good idea.

  2. Have a backup plan – The weather in Iceland can be unpredictable, so always come up with a plan B in case the weather turns bad.

  3. Fire safety – Knowing how and when to have a fire is essential when camping in Iceland. Always take precaution and use established fire pits and rings when they’re available. When constructing a fire, you should also double-check to make sure that the embers are out before leaving.

  4. Don’t get lost – Before heading out, it’s wise to make sure that someone, such as a family member or friend, knows your itinerary.

  5. Raccoons and bears – While you are unlikely to encounter these animals while camping in Iceland, they do reside in the area, so it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the proper safety protocols.

Enjoying a Night Under the Aurora

One of the most special experiences that you may come across when camping in Iceland is the Northern Lights. This natural event is worth the trip alone, but here are a few tips to capture that perfect night in Iceland:

  1. Timing is everything – In order to see the Northern Lights, you’ll need to head out during the ideal time. The best time to view the Northern Lights is during late winter or early spring, when the nights are dark and clear.

  2. Get away from the city – City lights can make it difficult to see the Aurora. Consider heading out to a more remote spot that is far away from light pollution.

  3. Keep your eyes peeled – It is wise to keep your eyes peeled and take frequent breaks while you’re waiting to spot them. Do not forget to look up to the sky every few minutes.

  4. Take a break – If you’ve been looking at the night sky for quite some time without seeing anything, it’s probably time to take a break and go to sleep. That said, it’s always a good idea to set your alarm for about 2 am, as this is when the Northern Lights are usually most visible.

Camping in Iceland – A Dream Come True

Camping in Iceland can be an unforgettable experience. Whether you’re looking to catch the Northern Lights, explore the wilderness, or take in the beautiful scenery, this guide has covered the essentials to help you plan for the perfect Icelandic camp out. So don’t wait, start planning your camping trip today and get ready for a dream come true.