Skip to Content

Optimal Time to Explore Iceland in 2020

It is an all year round destination with many interesting things to do and places to visit.

Each period of the year has its own charm and landscape. So, it is very hard to name just one month as the best time for visiting Iceland in 2020.

The most correct answer to this question is depending on what are you looking for when visit Iceland.

Some of the following links are affiliate links. When you buy something using the retail links in our article, we may earn a small commission at no additional cost for you. You can read our full disclosure disclaimer and privacy policy.

Best time to visit Iceland in 2020

Let me explain to you in more details based on the 4 seasons of the year.

Iceland Spring Time Best time to visit Iceland in 2020 hz
Visit Iceland in Spring Time visiting in 2020

Visit Iceland in Spring

Spring months are March, April and May. The days become longer and warmer, the snow is melting and Ring Road is opened almost 24 hours, 7 days per week.

Nature wakes up after its long winter sleep, the flowers are blooming, the birds are singing, everybody is preparing for a new stage in life.

If you are interested in seeing puffins, in whales watching tours and if Ring Road is on your list, then spring is the best time to visit Iceland.

Iceland Spring Time Best time to visit Iceland in 2020
Visit in Spring Best time for visit Iceland

Spring is shoulder season. This means fewer tourists and lower prices for everything. Iceland is a very expensive destination so the fact that prices are lower than in summer is a huge advantage.

You will find much easier accommodation and the prices to rent a car in Iceland are lower and offer more varied.

Still, it is advisable to book your car in advance to be sure you will get the best price.

Get the best price for your car rental today

Visit Iceland in Summer

June, July and August are summer months and the best time to visit Iceland in 2020 if you want to explore each corner of the island.

There are almost 20 hours of light per day, it is the warmest period of the year and the number of tourists exploded. I don’t think I have to tell anything about the prices.

They are incredibly high! You will pay almost double in summer than in another period of the year!

Because it is so crowded you cannot enjoy the beauty of the landscape and the simplicity of nature!

Iceland Summer Best time to visit Iceland in 2020
Visit in Summer Best time for visiting Iceland

Maybe there is the warmest and longest day of the year but for sure you will pay extra!

More than that you will have to book everything in advance because whale watching tours, glacier tour, all main touristic attractions are fully booked.

Don’t you even think about going to IceIand without having reservations for accommodation and don’t forget to hire a car in Iceland.

You must be very lucky to find something available on the spot! But for sure you will pay extra!

Summer is the perfect period for Ring Road and exploring the island. All the roads are open and the landscape is just incredible!

Visit Iceland in Autumn

Autumn is from September to November and is the best time to visit Iceland in 2020 if you want to spot Northern Lights and have the island just for yourself.

Like spring, autumn is also shoulder season. This means lower prices, fewer tourists and still good weather.

We chose to visit Iceland at the beginning of October and it was almost perfect.

The weather was good, the days were long enough and there were not very many tourists.

More than that we were lucky to spot Northern Lights.

I cannot describe in words what I felt when I saw Aurora Borealis dancing in the sky.

Visit Iceland in Winter

Winter is the period of the year when everything is dressed in white. The days are short and dark, the temperatures are low and the wind is pretty strong.

The Ring Road is closed and you can have just short trips from Reykjavik to the nearest attractions.

It is not the best time to explore the island but it is the best time to spot Northern Lights in Iceland.

Detailed guides for choosing the best time for northern lights in Iceland:

best time of year to see Iceland Northern lights in 2020
best time of year to see Northern Lights

Everybody is waiting for Santa Claus and the landscape is stunned under the snow!

Best time to visit Iceland 2020
Visit in Winter Best time to visit Iceland 2020

We don’t advise you to explore the island on your own during winter because the weather is very changeable and there is a maximum of 6 hours of light per day.

You’d better go with local guides! It is safer and easier than on your own!

Best period to visit Iceland for Northern Lights is in September and March since those months are the equinoxes months

To sum up, each season is the best time to visit Iceland in 2020 for a specific thing. Set up your wish list and chose the season that fits you best!

Logistical tips and tricks for your trip

Book your accommodation

We always use Booking.com as they have the best price-quality ratio and they offer a wide range of hotels, guesthouses, apartments, and villas to choose from.

You will find here all types of accommodations, from the cheapest ones to the most luxurious.

Don't forget travel insurance

We never leave home without HeyMondo Insurance or Safety Wings Insurance as they offer the best services and a good value for money, plus COVID coverage.

Travel insurance will always protect you against unexpected events and cost like illness, COVID, injury, theft, or travel cancellation.

We never go on any trip without travel insurance and there were many cases when we had to use it.

Renting a car
We like to explore a country on our own and a car gives us the mobility and freedom to do that.

We always rent our car from Discovercars as they have free cancellation 48 hours prior to starting date and a wide range of car rental companies and options to choose from all over the world.

Tours and attractions
When we are looking for some adventure or we simply want to break up the monotony and discover new places, we always use GetYourGuide.

We love it because we always find the most amazing experiences, with free cancellation and a large variety of activities and tours to choose from.

Airplane tickets and holiday packages
Expedia is our ally when searching for the best price for airplane tickets as it works as an aggregator for a huge number of airlines and we always find the best price for our flights.

Travel tip: use Expedia when you are searching for holiday packages as they have many last-minute offers and great discounts for hotels, flights, and even the whole holiday packages.

Karina

Monday 2nd of December 2019

Hi Sonia! Great article about Iceland! I love this country and want to come back in Summer! I also read your previous article about Iceland and the road trip you described from Denmark - way too many hours of driving! But Faroe Island are on our list and maybe we will consider it once we have more time off! :) We visited Iceland in winter and it was crazy cooooold! I was shocked how short the days were and also the fact we couldn't buy alcohol in a local shop hahaha! Only thing is that we did not get to see the Northern Lights - but one more reason to come back!

Love the article!