It wouldn’t be wrong to say that Iceland in December is a haven for winter lovers. With just the right amount of chill, it offers the most incredible experiences for a holiday like none other. The country looks utterly gorgeous and is wrapped with breathtaking beauty throughout the month. So, there clearly isn’t any reason why you shouldn’t consider visiting it during this time of the year.
And just to convince your heart and give you a glimpse of what’s in store for you, here’s everything essential!
Weather In Iceland In December
With the temperature ranging from -1°C to 4°C, December in Iceland is pleasantly cold and bearable. Being the darkest month, the days during this time are the shortest and nights utterly gorgeous. The dancing Aurora Borealis covers the sky for most of the night, while the daylight stays for only four hours.
Apart from the northern lights, the darkness in this month is lit up by the warmth of the Christmas lights, which make the place look all the more magical. If you plan on visiting Iceland in December, make sure you don’t forget to carry your warm woolens and clothes with extra layers.
Reasons Why You Must Visit Iceland In December
- December is one of the most beautiful months of the year in Iceland
- You can fly to Iceland and stay anywhere without spending too much money
- Best time to witness the gorgeous Northern Lights
- Iceland is less crowded during this time
- A backdrop for popular shows like Game Of Thrones, Iceland during this month will give you the right feels
15 Experiences To Witness The Best Of Iceland In December
1. Soak in the Blue Lagoon
Home to a lot of hot springs, hot pools, and hot pots, the Iceland winter is an ideal time to take a dip and rejuvenate yourself. And of all the places, the Blue Lagoon is the best one to visit. True to its name, the geothermal spa sea water here looks too blue only during the winters, which only enhances the beauty of this place.
Timings: 8:00 AM to 10:00 PM everyday
Location: Nordurljosavegur 9, 240 Grindavík, Iceland
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2. Admire the startling northern lights
There is no doubt that being the darkest month of the year, December is the best time to look for the gorgeous Aurora Borealis. With the sunlight being there only for four hours, there is plenty of time to hunt the dancing lights in a clear dark sky. This experience will not only leave you in awe, but also completely captivated.
Best Place To See Aurora Borealis In Iceland:
- Grótta Lighthouse or Klambratún Park in Reykjavik
- Rent a car and drive to a place which has a clear dark sky
- Take a northern lights tour with experienced guides
3. Explore the natural blue ice caves
Winter in Iceland is exactly when ice caving begins to become almost perfect, and exploring them is just the experience you need to make the most of your holiday. With an expert guided tour, you can discover some of the best and ‘too true to be beautiful’ looking caves during your trip.
Cost: $170 depending on the tour you book
Best Places To See Ice Caves In Iceland: Jökulsárlón, Skaftafell Nature Reserve, Vatnajökull, and more.
4. Witness the gorgeous Gullfoss Waterfall
Located in Southwest Iceland, the Gullfoss Waterfall in the south is a treat for the eyes. The splendid views of the golden water against the mountains is breathtaking and the cafe offering hot soups here only adds onto the experience, making it a magical moment.
Timings: Open for 24 hours
Location: White River, Blaskogabyggd 801, Iceland
5. Capture picture perfect memories
Suggested Read: Southern Lights: Have You Heard Of The Aurora Australis?
While December might have only four hours of daylight, it offers an amazing amount of light in the noon that are perfect for capturing good pictures. The natural light acts as a great backdrop for highlighting the beauty of Iceland, and we can vouch that you will not come back home with a zillion memories captured on your lens.
6. Take a sightseeing tour
Apart from Gullfoss and Blue Lagoon, Iceland is home to a lot of stunning places and a sightseeing tour is the best way to make sure you don’t miss out on witnessing any marvel. From cathedrals to waterfalls and national parks to villages, there are a lot of places to visit in Iceland in December.
Best Places To See In Iceland: Hallgrímskirkja, Vatnajokull National Park, Pingvellir, Jokulsarlon, Harpa, and more.
7. Stay at Hotel Rangá
While there are many hotels in Iceland, there is none that offers an experience like Hotel Ranga. From comfy stay to fine dining by the riverside, this hotel also boasts an opportunity to witness the northern lights from here. And to top it all, there are also a lot of adventures and activities to indulge in.
8. Take a snowmobile ride
Of all the things to do in Iceland in December, snowmobiling on the glaciers is an experience worth living. While you might not come across too much snow, the thrill of speeding on the ice for almost an hour is perfect for doing some sightseeing and indulging in adventure at the same time.
Cost: $237 and above
Duration: 4 hours and above depending on the tour you book
9. Eat at Grillmarkadurinn or The Grillmarket Restaurant
Iceland has a lot of great places to eat and drink, and Grillmarkadurinn is surely a haven for foodies. It offers the best of grilled meats, fishes, and vegetables in downtown Reykjavik along with some sizzling cocktails that are perfect to lift your mood up for experiencing the nightlife in the city.
- 11:30 AM to 2:00 PM and 5:30 PM to 10:30 PM from Monday to Friday
- 5:30 PM to 11:30 PM from Saturday to Sunday
10. Groove to the ethereal Icelandic music at Harpa
If your heart beats to good music, then Harpa – the dazzling concert hall in Iceland is the place to visit. With classic music being played by renowned artists and bands, this place makes your winter holiday even more enchanting.
Location: Austurbakki 2, 101 Reykjavík, Iceland
11. Go for whale spotting
Winter in Iceland might not be the best time to spot wildlife, but is definitely a great time to witness the 23 types of whales like mink and humpback. You can take any regular Iceland winter tours that leaves around 1 in the noon from Reykjavik and witness some of the never-seen-before marine creatures.
Cost: $55 in winters
12. Enjoy dog sledding
As unique as it sounds, dog sledding is a one-of-its-kind experience in Iceland. With this unique way of transportation, you will not only fall in love with the dogs, but also the beauty of the snow around.
Cost: $34 to $422
Duration: 1 hour to 9 hours depending on the tour you book
13. Be a part of the New Year’s celebrations in Reykjavik
The new year celebrations in Iceland are an extraordinary sight. With lavish dinners & parties to fireworks show, the whole city is well lit up and definitely a place worth visiting to kick-start your new beginnings.
Best Party Places In Iceland: Austur Nightclub, Slippbarinn, and more.
14. Indulge in shopping
A blend of rural and urban culture, Reykjavik is certainly the best shopping hub in Iceland. From boutiques in Laugavegur to the oldest handicrafts shop – Thorvaldsens Bazar, there are a plethora of options for Shopaholics to pamper themselves with.
Best Places To Shop In Iceland: Handknitting Association of Iceland, Nordic Store, and more.
15. Ride the Icelandic horse amidst the picturesque valleys
Horse riding in Iceland is not an ordinary experience. It is undoubtedly the best way to get in touch with nature. With a variety of tours available, you can easily get on an Icelandic horse and take a tour of the famous tourist attractions in Iceland.
Cost: $76 to $284 depending on the tour you book
Duration: 1 hour to 9 hours
And while you’re thinking of planning your trip to Europe already, here is everything else you need to know about:
Q. How cold is Iceland in December?
A. With the temperature ranging between -1°C to 4°C, Iceland is pleasantly cold in December, but bearable. The snow adds on to the beauty of the country, making the winter wonderland a perfect holiday destination.
Q. What are a few tips for visiting Iceland during winters that one needs to keep in mind?
A. Some of the tips to keep in mind when planning to visit Iceland during winters is to plan your holiday and make the bookings in advance, pack a good amount of layers, make a list of things to do there, carry your medicines, and more.
Q. What are the best outdoor activities to do in Iceland in winter?
A. Speeding on a skiddo, dog sledding, taking a tour of the blue ice caves, bathing in the hot springs or pools, and more are some of the best activities to do in Iceland during winter.
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