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Full Guide to Iceland in July: Weather and Things to Do

Updated: Sep 4, 2023

Iceland in July is like a breathtaking masterpiece that's too beautiful to describe. This stunning country is a must-visit destination for travelers seeking adventure and unforgettable experiences.


Iceland in July is simply irresistible. With long daylight hours, mild temperatures, and a plethora of exciting activities and events. There's literally something for everyone! Whether you're exploring dramatic landscapes, hiking in national parks, touring picturesque towns and villages, or discovering vibrant Reykjavik, July in Iceland has it all.


In this blog post, we will dive deeper into why visiting Iceland in July should be on every traveler's bucket list. So, pack your bags, grab your camera and passport, and prepare to explore Iceland!


Iceland in July

Weather and Clothing for Iceland in July


In July, Iceland experiences average temperatures of around 13°C (55°F), occasionally peaking at 20°C (68°F). This moderate climate, combined with extended daylight, offers an ideal setting to fully embrace the Icelandic summer.


When traveling to Iceland in July, it's essential to know what kind of weather to expect and what clothing to pack. This will ensure a comfortable and enjoyable experience. Iceland's weather can be unpredictable and change rapidly, even in the summer months. It is then crucial to be prepared for all kinds of conditions.


Here are some of the highlights of what you can expect during this month:

  • Average Temperature: 10°C (50°F)

  • Daylight Hours: 24 hours of daylight

  • Sunrise/Sunset Times: 4 am - 11 pm

  • Weather Conditions: Mostly sunny with occasional showers


Summer sun in Iceland

Pros and Cons of Visiting Iceland in July


Going to Iceland in July has its pros and cons. The mild temperatures and long daylight hours make exploring the country's unique landscapes comfortable, and the opportunities for outdoor activities are numerous.


Iceland's lush greenery and wildflowers are in full bloom, creating a vibrant and picturesque setting. However, July is one of the busiest months for tourism, which means crowds are expected, and accommodation and tours can be more expensive due to high demand.


Pros

  • Mild temperatures, with an average high of 13°C (55°F)

  • Long daylight hours, with up to 24 hours of daylight in some parts of the country

  • Access to a wide range of activities, including hiking, camping, whale watching, and more

  • The country's unique landscapes are in full bloom, with lush greenery and wildflowers

  • Opportunities to participate in cultural events and festivals

Cons

  • July is one of the busiest months for tourism, so expect crowds

  • Accommodation and tours can be more expensive due to the high demand

  • Some areas, particularly the highlands, may not be accessible until late July or August

  • The weather can be unpredictable, with occasional rain and wind

  • Certain roads and hiking trails may be closed due to adverse weather conditions


Iceland peak season

What To Pack for Iceland in July


July in Iceland is a great time to explore the country and its natural beauty. However, it's essential to be prepared for the unpredictable weather that comes with the summer season.


Here are some essential clothing for Iceland in July you should pack:


  • Sturdy Boots: Shoes for Iceland in July should be both waterproof and comfortable. Ensure your boots are waterproof and provide good traction on slippery surfaces. You'll need them for hiking and exploring the outdoors.

  • Layers of Clothing: The weather can change quickly in Iceland, so have plenty of layers to keep you warm and dry. Base layers such as thermal tops, leggings, jumpers, t-shirts, and long-sleeved shirts will all be useful.

  • Waterproof Outer Layer: A waterproof jacket or coat keeps you dry during sudden downpours or snowfall.

  • Sweaters: Even if sunny outside, temperatures can drop quickly at night. Pack a couple of sweaters to keep you warm when the sun goes down.

  • Gloves: It's always a good idea to bring gloves wherever you go in Iceland - they'll keep your hands warm during hikes or outdoor activities.

  • Fleece: A lightweight fleece is perfect for layering up when temperatures drop, or there's a chill in the air.

  • Moisturizer & Chapstick: The cold Icelandic air can be harsh on the skin, so pack some moisturizer and chapstick to keep your skin hydrated throughout your trip.

  • Sun Protection: Don't forget the sunscreen! Even though it may not feel very hot outside, UV rays can still cause sunburns. So make sure to protect yourself from the sun with sunscreen or other protective clothing such as hats or sunglasses.

  • Travel Towel & Water Bottle: A travel towel will be handy for hot springs or pools. A water bottle will help you stay hydrated throughout your trip (tap water is safe to drink in Iceland).

  • Swimsuit: You never know when you'll come across a hot spring or pool - bring a swimsuit to make the most of any opportunity to take a dip.


Clothing for iceland in july

Iceland in Late July


Late July is a great time to visit Iceland, as the weather is warm and the days are long. The country's stunning landscapes are in full bloom, and there are a variety of outdoor activities and events to enjoy.


What to Expect in Iceland in Late July


Due to the warm weather and extended daylight hours, late July is a popular time to visit Iceland. Here are some things to expect during your trip to Iceland in late July:


  • Long days: With up to 24 hours of daylight in some parts of the country, you'll have plenty of time to explore Iceland's stunning landscapes and natural wonders.

  • Mild temperatures: The average temperature in Reykjavik in late July is around 10-20°C (50-68°F), making it a comfortable time to explore the outdoors.

  • Crowds: Late July is one of the busiest times of the year in Iceland, so be prepared for crowds at popular tourist attractions and on the roads.

  • Wildlife sightings: July is peak breeding season for many of Iceland's bird species, so you may be able to spot puffins, Arctic terns, and other seabirds along the coast.

  • Outdoor activities: Late July is a great time to go hiking, camping, or fishing in Iceland's stunning natural landscapes. You can also participate in organized tours and activities like whale watching or glacier hiking.

  • Cultural events: Late July is home to several festivals in Iceland, including the Bræðslan music festival in East Iceland. You can also find smaller concerts and events throughout the country.


Iceland during july

Things to do in Iceland in July


Late July is a great time to visit Iceland and participate in various outdoor activities. Here are some activities you can enjoy during your trip to Iceland in late July:


1. Discover Icelandic Culture at Reykjavik's National Museum


For cultural enthusiasts, one of the best Reykjavik things to do in July is to explore Reykjavik's National Museum. It's the perfect place to discover Iceland's rich art and culture. The museum is located on top of a hill and is easily accessible from the city center. Its impressive collection covers the history of Iceland from its early settlement to the present day. That will provide you with a fascinating insight into the country's unique heritage.


Visitors can explore the museum's extensive collection of artifacts. Discover Viking weapons and tools to traditional Icelandic clothing and modern art. One of the museum's highlights is the permanent exhibition. It's organized chronologically and takes visitors on a journey through Iceland's history.


The National Museum of Iceland also hosts a variety of temporary exhibitions throughout the year. These showcase the work of Icelandic and international artists. These exhibitions provide an excellent opportunity to learn about contemporary Icelandic art and culture.






2. Hike on the Glaciers at Skaftafell National Park


If you're an outdoors fanatic, one of the best things to do in Iceland in July is to hike the glaciers at Skaftafell National Park. This nature reserve is located in the south of Iceland. It offers some of the best glacier-walking tours in the country.


The breathtaking views of Iceland's stunning natural beauty will leave you awestruck as you hike through the picturesque landscape of Skaftafell National Park.


The hiking tours suit all fitness levels, from the novice to the experienced hiker. The expert guides will take you through the glacial terrain and provide insights into the area's geological history. You'll learn about the formation of glaciers and how they have shaped the landscape over time. As you hike through the park, you'll also have the opportunity to see unique wildlife and flora that have adapted to Iceland's extreme weather conditions.


If you're feeling particularly adventurous, try ice climbing on one of the glaciers. The guides will provide all the necessary equipment and teach you the techniques to climb the ice walls safely. It's an exhilarating experience that will give you a sense of achievement and leave you with unforgettable memories of your time in Iceland.


Glacier hiking

3. Take a Dip in the Geothermal Blue Lagoon Spa


Taking a dip in the Blue Lagoon is considered by many to be one of the top things to do in Iceland in July. Located in southwestern Iceland, the Blue Lagoon is one of the world's most geothermally active places and is a must-see attraction.


The milky-blue waters of this man-made lagoon are heated by the lava fields below. Its mineral-rich composition makes it a great place to relax and unwind. You can even dip in the lagoon's hot springs and rejuvenate your skin with its mineral-rich composition. The lagoon itself is enormous, so there are plenty of areas for you to explore and find your secluded spot.


Visitors can also try on-site spa treatments, such as mud wraps and massages. The Blue Lagoon is open all year round, and the warm temperatures in July make it the perfect time to visit. However, we advise you to make early reservations on their website to avoid disappointment. This is one of Iceland's top attractions, and it can get quite busy during peak season.



Reykjavik things to do in july

4. Go Whale Watching in Reykjavik


One of the most exciting things to do in Reykjavik in July is whale watching. Reykjavik is known for its abundant marine life. There's no better way to experience it than on a whale-watching tour. The tours depart from Reykjavik harbor and take you out into Faxafloi Bay. There you'll have the opportunity to see a variety of whale species in their natural habitat.


As you sail through the pristine waters, you'll have the chance to see humpback whales, minke whales, and even orcas. The experienced guides on board will provide you with fascinating insights into the behavior and biology of these magnificent creatures, making the tour both educational and entertaining. In addition to whales, you'll also have the opportunity to see other marine life, such as dolphins, porpoises, and seals.


The tour offers a unique perspective on Reykjavik's natural beauty. The breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains and coastline will leave you awestruck. The best part about whale watching in Reykjavik is that it's a year-round activity, but July is one of the best times to go. The weather is mild, and the days are long, giving you plenty of time to explore the bay and spot some whales.



5. Visit the Famous Black Sand Beaches in Vík Í Mýrdal


Visiting the famous black sand beaches in Vík í Mýrdal is like stepping into another world. The black sand, contrasted against the white of the crashing waves and the green of the surrounding cliffs, creates a stunningly dramatic, eerie, and enchanting landscape.

The beach is located on the southern coast of Iceland, one of the country's most visited tourist attractions.


It's easy to see why - the unique beauty of the black sand beaches is unlike anything else you'll see in the world. The sand is made up of volcanic ash created by the frequent eruptions of the nearby Katla volcano. In addition to the striking black sand, the beach is home to fascinating rock formations and sea stacks sculpted by the sea and wind over time.


One of the most famous formations is the Reynisdrangar sea stacks, which rise from the water like dark sentinels guarding the coast. While the beauty of the black sand beaches is undeniable, it's important to remember that the sea can be dangerous. The waves here can be unpredictable, and the currents are strong. That's why it's essential always to follow the advice of the local guides and stay within designated areas.


Black sand beaches

6. Explore the Mystical Landscapes of Landmannalaugar


If you're looking for a truly unforgettable experience in Iceland, exploring the mystical landscapes of Landmannalaugar should be at the top of your list. This remote region in the highlands is a true natural wonder, with landscapes that will take your breath away.

One of the best ways to explore Landmannalaugar is on foot, with a hike through the rugged terrain.


The area is famous for its incredible geological formations, including bubbling hot springs. You'll experience colorful mountains, and vast lava fields. The unique combination of volcanic activity and natural hot springs has created a landscape unlike anything else. The vibrant red, yellow, green, and blue hues blend to create a dazzling display of nature's artistry.


Several hiking trails wind through the area, offering a different perspective on the stunning landscape. You can hike up to the top of a mountain for panoramic views or soak in one of the natural hot springs for a unique experience.


Iceland's landmannalaugar

7. Hiking in Iceland in July


Hiking in Iceland in July is a great way to explore the country's stunning natural beauty. With extended daylight hours and milder temperatures, July is the perfect time to tackle some of Iceland's most scenic trails. Just bring the proper gear and be prepared for weather changes.


Best Hiking Trails in Iceland in July


Iceland is home to some of the most breathtaking hiking trails in the world, and July is an ideal time to hit the trails.


Here are some of the best hiking trails in Iceland to explore in July:


  • Laugavegur Trail: A challenging but rewarding trek that takes you through some of Iceland's most stunning landscapes, including colorful rhyolite mountains and glaciers.

  • Fimmvörðuháls Trail: This challenging trail takes you across the Eyjafjallajökull volcano, offering views of glaciers, waterfalls, and valleys.

  • Glymur Waterfall Trail: A moderate hike that leads to Iceland's second-highest waterfall, with stunning views of the surrounding fjord and mountains.

  • Hornstrandir Nature Reserve: A remote and rugged area in the Westfjords with stunning coastal scenery and abundant wildlife.

  • Skaftafell National Park: A popular hiking destination in South Iceland, with trails ranging from easy walks to challenging climbs up glaciers.

  • Landmannalaugar: A geothermal wonderland in the Highlands, with trails that lead through colorful rhyolite mountains and hot springs.

Best things to do in iceland in july

8. Visit the Vatnajökull Ice Caves


Visiting the Vatnajökull ice caves is like stepping into a mysterious, otherworldly realm that's as awe-inspiring as it is weird. Nestled beneath the largest glacier in Europe, these natural wonders are a sight to behold, with shimmering ice formations and surreal blue hues that seem almost too beautiful to be real.


As you venture deeper into the caves, the sense of mystery and wonder only grows. You'll see strange shapes and textures appearing around every corner. The ice seems to take on a life of its own, forming cavernous chambers and intricate sculptures that are both haunting and beautiful.


Exploring the Vatnajökull ice caves is a once-in-a-lifetime experience that will leave you with a sense of awe and wonder that lasts long after you've left. Just be sure to come prepared with proper winter gear and follow the safety advice of local tour guides when exploring.


Ice caves in Iceland

9. Walk Behind the Stunning Seljalandsfoss Waterfall


Seljalandsfoss is a breathtaking sight in Iceland, with a mighty cascade of water that tumbles 60 meters/197 feet into the pool below. What makes Seljalandsfoss so special is that you can walk behind the waterfall, creating an incredible experience of being enclosed in the thunderous spray of the falls.


Visiting Seljalandsfoss in July is ideal. The days are long, and the sunsets provide a stunning backdrop for the mighty falls. Walking behind the waterfall is relatively easy, but you should wear appropriate shoes since some rocks can be slippery.


So if you're looking for things to do in Iceland in July, visiting Seljalandsfoss should be at the top of your list. Get ready for an unforgettable experience that will leave you in awe of the power and beauty of nature.


Seljalandsfoss Waterfall


10. Take a Dip in the Hot Springs of Mývatn Nature Baths


If you're looking for a relaxing and rejuvenating activity in Iceland, look no further than the Mývatn Nature Baths. Nestled in the heart of the stunning Mývatn region, these hot springs offer the perfect respite from the stresses of daily life. As you slip into the warm, mineral-rich waters, you'll feel your cares melting away.


The springs' soothing heat will help ease sore muscles and promote deep relaxation. You'll leave feeling refreshed and renewed. And the best part? The Mývatn Nature Baths are surrounded by some of Iceland's most breathtaking landscapes. That includes rugged volcanic terrain and stunning geothermal features.


Whether you're looking for a solo escape or a romantic getaway, a dip in the hot springs of Mývatn Nature Baths. It will leave you feeling relaxed, refreshed, and ready to take on whatever comes your way.


Mývatn Nature Baths

11. Visit the Picturesque Fishing Village of Stykkishólmur


If you're looking for a glimpse of traditional Icelandic life, visiting the picturesque fishing village of Stykkishólmur is a must. With its colorful houses, charming harbor, and friendly locals, this town is like a step back to a simpler era.


Walking the streets of Stykkishólmur is like walking through a postcard, with quaint homes and cobblestone streets that harken back to days gone by. And the town's fishing heritage is still alive and well, with fresh seafood available at local restaurants and the sound of seagulls echoing through the harbor.


A visit to Stykkishólmur is a chance to slow down and appreciate life's simple pleasures – like a cup of warm coffee at a cozy café or a stroll along the waterfront as the sun sets. If you're looking to escape the hustle and bustle of modern life, a trip to this picturesque fishing village will fill you with nostalgia and wonder.


Stykkishólmur, Iceland

12. Experience Viking Heritage at Þingvellir National Park


Experience the Viking heritage of Iceland at Þingvellir National Park! This historic location is renowned for being the birthplace of the world's oldest parliament, founded by Viking settlers over a thousand years ago.


Today, visitors can explore the beautiful landscape and its many attractions, such as ruins once housing chieftains and kings, the stunning Öxará river and waterfall, and Almannagjá Gorge – where Icelandic law was declared in 930 AD. Take a boat tour on Lake Þingvallavatn to see the spectacular scenery and learn more about the area's rich history.


Take advantage of a guided tour of Silfra fissure, one of Iceland's top diving sites with crystal-clear water offering breathtaking views! For those looking for a unique experience, try camping overnight at Þingvellir Campsite to get an even closer look at this majestic place.


Þingvellir National Park

13. Snorkel in the Crystal-Clear Waters of Silfra Fissure


If you're looking for things to do in Iceland in July, snorkeling in the crystal-clear waters of Silfra Fissure is a must. This natural phenomenon is located in Þingvellir National Park. It is the only place in the world where you can snorkel between two continents.


Descend into the glacial waters of Silfra Fissure and explore an incredible underwater world filled with vibrant colors and stunning beauty. Look up toward the surface, and you'll see the stunning contrast of the sun's rays against the dark blue water.


There are also tour companies that offer guided snorkeling experiences for beginners and experienced snorkelers alike. Whether you're a seasoned pro or a first-timer, the experience of exploring snorkeling between tectonic plates in Iceland will leave you with unforgettable memories.


Silfra Fissure, South Iceland

14. Go Horseback Riding Through the Scenic Countryside


Experience the thrill of horseback riding in Iceland and explore the breathtaking countryside like never before! Imagine yourself atop a petite, sturdy Icelandic horse, a breed initially brought here by the Vikings, as you ride through lava-laden scenery past mountains, glaciers, and volcanoes.


It's like riding on a cloud - the horses are so gentle and responsive that it feels like you're one with nature. The Icelandic horse is unique - it's smaller than other breeds but has a powerful spirit and is known for its sure-footedness.


You'll be able to take in all the beauty of Iceland from your saddle as you ride through lush green valleys, over snow-capped mountains, and along black sand beaches. You can even participate in traditional activities such as herding sheep or playing Viking games.


Horseback Ridingin July

15. Drive Along the Ring Road for Breathtaking Views


A scenic drive along the Ring Road is one of the best things to do in Iceland during July. This 1322-kilometer/821-mile road circles the country, offering dramatic and diverse landscapes with stunning views at every turn.


Drive along the southern coast to explore charming towns, rugged cliffs, and some of Iceland's most famous attractions. See the iconic Eyjafjallajökull Glacier and Dyrhólaey Arch, both incredible natural wonders. As you drive along the northern coast, take in the astonishing beauty of cascading waterfalls and dramatic fjords.


This is a great way to explore Iceland at your own pace and have plenty of time to enjoy the spectacular scenery. If you're looking for an unforgettable road trip, read our article on A Travel Guide to Iceland by Campervan. It contains all the information you need to plan a fantastic adventure!


Driving Iceland's Ring Road

Driving in Iceland in July


To have a safe and enjoyable journey while driving in Iceland, it's important to be aware of the many narrow roads and winding mountain passes.


Here are some helpful tips specifically for driving in Iceland during July.


  • Plan your route and check the weather forecast before you set out. Iceland's weather can be unpredictable, so it's essential to be aware of potential hazards or road closures.

  • Watch for animals, mainly sheep, known to roam freely on the roads.

  • Always wear your seatbelt and obey the speed limit. Speeding fines in Iceland can be steep, and the roads can be dangerous.

  • Ensure your rental car has the necessary safety equipment, such as a spare tire, jack, and reflective vest.

  • Fill up your tank regularly, as gas stations in rural areas can be few and far between.

  • Use caution when driving on gravel roads, which can be slippery and unpredictable, particularly in wet weather.

  • If you plan to drive in the highlands or on F-roads, rent a 4x4 vehicle and familiarize yourself with the unique challenges of off-road driving.

  • Be prepared for long stretches of driving. Pack plenty of snacks, water, and other essentials to keep you fueled and comfortable.


Driving in Iceland in July


Precautions To Take While Hiking in Iceland in July


While hiking in Iceland in July can be thrilling, taking certain precautions to ensure your safety is essential.


Here are some precautions to keep in mind:


  • Check the weather forecast before heading out: Weather conditions can change rapidly in Iceland. Always check the forecast and plan your route accordingly.

  • Dress in layers and bring proper gear: Even in July, temperatures vary greatly, and weather conditions can be unpredictable. Bring warm layers, waterproof clothing, sturdy hiking boots, and other essential gear.

  • Bring plenty of water and snacks: Dehydration can be a serious issue while hiking in Iceland. Bring plenty of water and snacks to keep you fueled and hydrated.

  • Stay on designated trails: Iceland's fragile ecosystems can be easily damaged, so it's crucial to stay on designated trails and avoid cutting switchbacks.

  • Be aware of wildlife: Iceland is home to various wildlife, including reindeer, arctic foxes, and birds. Respect their habitat and keep a safe distance.

Essential Gear for Hiking in Iceland in July


When planning a hiking trip to Iceland in July, it's essential to pack the right gear to ensure you have a comfortable and safe journey.


Here are some essential gear items you should consider bringing:


  • Sturdy hiking boots with ankle support - ensure they are broken in before your trip.

  • Moisture-wicking socks to keep your feet dry and comfortable.

  • Waterproof and breathable outerwear, including a jacket and pants, to protect against rain and wind.

  • Layered clothing for changing weather conditions, including quick-dry shirts and pants and a warm fleece or wool layer.

  • A hat and gloves for added warmth.

  • Sunglasses and sunscreen protect against UV rays.


hiking gear in Iceland

Tours of Iceland in July


There are many popular tours of Iceland in July, ranging from day trips to multi-day adventures. Many of these tours include guided hikes, allowing you to explore Iceland's stunning landscapes and wildlife with the help of an expert.

Popular Tours in Iceland in July

Iceland offers a variety of tours that cater to different interests and budgets. Here are some popular tours to consider during your visit in July:


  • Glacier Hiking and Ice Climbing Tour: This tour offers a unique opportunity to explore Iceland's glaciers up close. You'll hike across the glacier's surface and even try ice climbing with the help of experienced guides.

  • Whale Watching Tour: Iceland's waters are home to diverse marine life, including whales, dolphins, and seabirds. A whale-watching tour lets you see these majestic creatures in their natural habitat.

  • South Coast Tour: The South Coast of Iceland is known for its stunning black sand beaches, towering waterfalls, and dramatic landscapes. This tour takes you along the coast and stops at popular sites such as Seljalandsfoss waterfall and Reynisfjara beach.

  • Midnight Sun Tour ATV Tour: Experience the midnight sun in style with this ATV tour. You'll drive along Iceland's rugged terrain and witness some of its most spectacular landscapes, all while the sun stays in the sky.

  • Inside the Volcano Tour: This tour takes you inside the dormant Thrihnukagigur volcano, where you can explore the unique geological formations and learn about the volcano's history.


Tours in Iceland in July


Reykjavik in July

The Magic of Iceland in July


Iceland in July is an ideal time to visit and experience its unique culture, landscapes, and wildlife. With up to 24 hours of daylight in some parts of the country, you'll have plenty of time for outdoor activities.


Whether you're looking for a relaxing getaway or an adventurous escape from reality, an Iceland vacation in July will leave you with lasting memories. So take advantage of what Iceland offers by booking your campervan or motorhome and start planning your Icelandic adventure today!

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