Is Iceland cold?

Contrary to its rather misleading name, Iceland is not always as cold as you might think! 

Though it may not be constantly cold, the weather is certainly changeable, unpredictable and sometimes extreme!

With the combination of the sometimes surprisingly warm Gulf Stream bringing in milder Atlantic air, and the much colder Arctic air Iceland is subject to varied shifts and patterns of weather. 

As the saying goes, if you don’t like the weather you only have to wait 5 minutes! With 5 different kinds of weather making an appearance within the same hour the best advice is to be prepared. Layers, raincoats, hats, gloves and extra sweaters are all worth packing even in the height of summer!

Summer or winter?

Dried fish hanging in Iceland
(Unsplash. Photo Credit: Steve Parfitt)

Officially Iceland has 2 seasons. The first day of summer is celebrated in late April, though it is common to still see snowfall at this time of year! Whilst the first day of winter comes in late October. 

Between June and August you can expect average temperatures from 11°C to 13°C, although sometimes it can get into the twenties which is always a reason to celebrate! In winter the average high is below 2°C, with lows commonly dipping under -2°C.

This might not sound too cold but with taking the wind chill factor into consideration you are looking at potential temperatures that are  sub -10°.