Taking a summer trip to Iceland is an item at the top of many people's bucket lists. The Land of Fire and Ice has skyrocketed in popularity over the last few years. Over 2.3 million tourists decided to explore Iceland in 2018. Many of them came during the summer months, making June, July and August some of the most popular times of year for a trip to Iceland. And it's no wonder why. With a Ring Road going around the entire island, the dramatic landscapes and volcanic black sand beaches of the South Coast, and lots of options for day tours from Reykjavik, there are plenty of things to do during an Iceland road trip. Some of the best things to do in Iceland in summer 2019 include national parks like Vatnajökull, Thingvellir, and Snaefellsjökull, hot springs, volcano hikes in areas like Askja, lava fields, glaciers, fireworks at Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon, and visiting some of the 10,000+ waterfalls in Iceland.
Whether you've got 5 days in Iceland or are planning an Iceland Ring Road itinerary of 10 days or more, you certainly won't run out of outdoor activities and things to do.
Why Summer is a Great Time to Visit Iceland
The first and most obvious reason why summer 2019 the great time of year for a trip to Iceland is the Midnight Sun. The summer solstice takes place around the 21st or 22nd of June. Due to Iceland's far northern latitude just below the Arctic Circle, this means the country has almost 24 hours of daylight. All these extra hours of sunshine mean more time for day trips to places like the Secret Lagoon along the Golden Circle route. Take your time while hiking in Landmannalaugar and feel free to stop every hot spring that crosses your path. Tour operators also extend their hours and provide additional services to places like the Eldhraun lava fields on the South Coast or whale watching in Húsavik. Overall you just have more time to explore Iceland, whether it's a day trip to Thingvellir National Park or driving around Lake Mývatn and environs.
We also can't forget the weather. The ground is covered in ice and snow during much of the year. In the summer months, Iceland shakes off this white, snowy blanket and is transformed into a land of lush green landscapes and blooming purple lupine. The high gets up to an average of about 60 ºF (15 ºC) and is some of the most pleasant weather you'll experience in Iceland.
Iceland’s Blue Lagoon
One of the most popular activities and best things to do in Iceland in summer 2019 is a visit to the Blue Lagoon geothermal spa. It’s located quite close to Reykjavik and makes for an ideal day trip. Iceland is famous for its hot springs and bathing culture, and the turquoise waters of the man-made Blue Lagoon are probably one of Iceland's most iconic images. Come here to relax with a soothing massage or a refreshing silica face mask. The healing properties of the lagoon are said to treat everything from psoriasis to arthritis. If you're traveling around Iceland on a budget, the Blue Lagoon might be a little pricey as tickets start at 51€ ($58). But at the end of many days traveling around the Ring Road, a soak in the milky, restorative waters could be exactly what you need.
Because the summer months are one of the most common times of year to visit Iceland, and because the Blue Lagoon is the country's most popular attraction, be prepared for there to be lots of other people visiting at the same time. If you're looking for a less crowded, less expensive alternative then think about visiting the Lake Mývatn nature baths or the thermal pool at Hofsós.
Waterfalls in Iceland
Some of the best-known waterfalls in Iceland are Gullfoss, Skógafoss, Seljalandsfoss, Svartifoss, Godafoss, Dettifoss, and Kirkjufellsfoss. There are thousands more but these are probably the seven most frequently visited waterfalls in Iceland due to their sheer might and beauty. One of the top things to do in Iceland is visiting waterfalls, and you surely won't be disappointed when you do. And if you haven't guessed it by now, “foss” means “waterfall” in Icelandic. From Iceland's most beautiful to Europe's most powerful, the diversity of cascades in Iceland is simply astounding.
Iceland: Best Things to Do in Summer 2019
There really is something for everyone during the summer months in Iceland. In addition to the natural wonders listed above, there are also tons of outdoor activities and summer festivals. Just decide which attractions most interest you and start planning your itinerary for your Iceland campervan rental in summer 2019. You should note, however, that unfortunately the Northern Lights are not visible during the summer months in Iceland due to the Midnight Sun. It's only during the darkness of the fall and winter months that the Aurora Borealis becomes visible and Iceland. I guess that means you'll have to come back for a second trip during the winter time.