1 to 14°C
1672 hours
sunshine per day
313 mm
165 days
162 days
38 days

Climate of Iceland

Iceland has one of the most distinctive and diverse climates on earth. Located in the North Atlantic, just south of the Arctic Circle, Iceland has a temperate maritime climate influenced by the Gulf Stream. This means that, although located in the north, the country does not often experience the severe cold like other Arctic regions.

Climate averages for the whole year

  • Day: the average daily temperature during the day is between 1°C and 14°C
  • Night:the average nighttime temperature is between -2°C and 9°C
  • Sea temperature: the sea temperature is between -3°C and 19°C
  • Rain: it rains 162 days and there is a total of approximately 313 mm rainfall
  • Snow: it snows an average of 38 days per year
  • Sun hours: throughout the year there are 1672 sun hours
Maximum temperature: between 1°C and 14°C
Warmest month: 14°C in July
Coldest month: 1°C in December
Night temperature: between -2°C and 9°C
Sea temperature: between -3°C and 19°C
Dry days: 165 days
Days with rain: 162 days
Days with snow: 38 days
Total rain sum: 313 mm
Hours of sunshine: 1672 hours

Though it is difficult to predict the climate, Icelandic weather is very unpredictable and subject to abrupt changes. This is partly because the country lies on the edge of the Arctic Circle, where it is subject to both polar and tropical air masses. As a result, Icelandic weather often changes from one extreme to the other within hours.

Iceland is blessed with warm water and warm air thanks to the Gulf Stream, a warm ocean current that moves from the tropics to the poles. As a result, the country's temperature is considerably milder than in other areas at the same latitude.

Spring, summer, autumn and winter are Iceland's four distinct seasons. When planning a vacation to the country, it is vital to be prepared for everything, as each season has its own weather patterns and environment.


As the country emerges from the gloom and cold of winter, spring is a period of transformation in Iceland. At this time of year, temperatures are chilly, fluctuating between 0 and 10 degrees Celsius. Sunny days can alternate with rain and snow showers, and the weather can be quite unpredictable.


Summer in Iceland is the warmest and most enjoyable season. It has the longest days and most continuous sunlight of the year, with temperatures ranging from 10 to 20 degrees Celsius. The "midnight sun" phenomenon, in which the sun never sets completely and there is up to 20 hours of sunshine every day, is famous for occurring in Iceland throughout the summer. So if you want to take advantage of Iceland's natural beauty and engage in outdoor activities, summer is the ideal season to go there.


Iceland experiences changes in autumn as the leaves begin to change color and the days become shorter. At this time of year, temperatures usually range from 5 to 15 degrees Celsius, with chilly, cool days and sporadic rain or snow showers. If you want to see the Northern Lights, autumn is a great season to go to Iceland, as the longer, darker evenings are ideal for this phenomenon.


Winter in Iceland is chilly and dreary, with lows of about -5 to 5 degrees Celsius. It is not unusual for the entire country to be covered in a layer of snow. Snow and ice are also common. Even when it is cold outside, Iceland's pristine environment is beautiful in winter because it is covered with a layer of snow. Winter is a great time to come if you want to see the Northern Lights because it is much more noticeable.

The climate in Iceland's many regions

Iceland's climate is generally uniform throughout the country, but there are slight regional differences. For example, the southern and western parts of the country tend to have warmer and wetter weather than the more chilly and dry northern and eastern parts.

Reykjavik, the country's capital, is located in the southwestern part of the country and has moderate temperatures compared to other regions. The Gulf Stream affects the city, which helps maintain pleasant temperatures in winter. Reykjavik's average winter temperature is about 2 degrees Celsius, while the summer maximum is 16 degrees Celsius.

In contrast, the northern and eastern parts of the country, including Akureyri and Egilsstadir, are known for their chilly, dry winters and cool summers. These areas usually have winter temperatures of about -5 degrees Celsius and summer temperatures of up to 10 degrees Celsius. Strong winds and clear, bright days are also more common in these areas.

In short, Iceland has a very different and variable climate, with each season having its own weather patterns and conditions. Its proximity to the North Atlantic Ocean and the influence of the Gulf Stream cause temperatures to decrease, although the weather can still be quite erratic. Iceland is a beautiful and unique location that is likely to amaze visitors, whether you go there during the hot, glorious summer days or the chilly, dark evenings of winter.

Do you want to go to Iceland?

These are the travel companies where you can book a trip to Iceland:

Temperature graph

This graph shows the average maximum temperature (red) and minimum temperature (blue) for Iceland.

Precipitation graph

This graph shows the average amount of rainfall per month for Iceland.

Climate table of Iceland

In this climate table you can see at a glance what the average weather per month is for Iceland. The data has been collected over a 30-year period, from which an average per month has been derived. From year to year the differences may be larger or smaller, but with this climate table you have a good idea of what the weather for Iceland might be like in a given month.

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Day temp. (°C) 2 2 2 5 8 12 14 13 10 6 3 1
Night temp. (°C) -1 -1 -1 1 4 8 9 8 6 3 1 -2
Water temp. (°C) -3 7 8 16 18 19 17 18 12 8 6 6
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Precipitation (mm) 37 28 31 23 20 17 19 24 26 36 25 27
Days with rain 13 11 11 14 14 15 17 14 17 14 12 10
Days with snow 6 6 9 6 1 - - - - - 4 6
Dry days 12 11 11 10 16 15 14 17 13 17 14 15
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Sun hours per day 2 3 4 5 7 4 7 8 5 4 3 3
Wind force (Bft) 4 4 4 4 4 3 3 3 4 4 4 4
UV-index 1 1 2 2 3 3 4 3 2 2 1 2

Best time to visit Iceland

July and August, which are the hottest months in Iceland, have traditionally been the most preferred months for tourists to visit the country. And because there is continuous daylight in June, there are almost as many tourists as there are during the height of summer. However during this time of year, poor weather like heavy rain and strong winds may and does occur. Due to the unpredictable climate of the island, it is not uncommon for a single day to have elements of all four seasons.

Considering that Iceland's climate may maintain a comfortable temperature far into the first week of October, traveling there in September may be the best option. May also features more hours of daylight, making it ideal for outdoor excursions, and milder temperatures. However, this may not be the greatest time to visit if you are interested in visiting some of the more distant hills and fjords, since some roads are still blocked as they thaw from the snowy cover that they had over them over the winter.

The greatest time of year to go hiking in Iceland is during the summer, as this is the only season in which all of the mountain roads are passable and the majority of the country's most well-known paths are available.

When is the best time to see whales in Iceland?

The months of June and July are ideal for whale watching in Iceland. Northern Iceland has a longer season for seeing humpbacks, minkes, and dolphins, which cruise the Atlantic from May to August; some few humpbacks even stay until the end of the year. Blue whales also travel through in the summer.

Minke whales and dolphins can be seen near Reykjavik during the summer months, while orcas concentrate in West Iceland around the Snaefellsnes peninsula in the first part of the year.

When is the best time to visit the hot springs?

Hot water baths in Iceland are an important part of the Icelandic culture, providing both social and wellness advantages. The public pools in Reykjavik are available all year. Visit them in September or the first half of October, while they're still still reachable by mountain road but the tourist numbers have greatly decreased.

When visiting the Blue Lagoon, the world's most well-known geothermal spa, visitors will find less crowds by going in the off-seasons.

Climate of Iceland by month

What is the average climate in a given month for Iceland? Click on a month to see all monthly averages for sunshine, maximum and minimum temperatures, percent chance of rain per day, snowfall and number of rainy days.

Iceland weather experiences

Have you been to in Iceland?

Leave your Iceland weather experience for a chance to win $150!

Your email will not appear with the review and will not be passed on to third parties.

Populaire bestemmingen in Iceland

Cities and towns in Iceland

Seen a mistake?

Email us, we are grateful to you.