It’s official, we’re heading back to Iceland! Literally, we’re so excited and we’ve already started planning on the best places to see and all the essential things to pack for Iceland when we visit. 

We definitely couldn’t stay away for too long and we’re looking forward to getting around and doing some of the stuff we did before and a lot more stuff we didn’t get to do the first time around (which doesn’t seem like much as we spent every waking moment going from sight to sight in Iceland).

In any case, I’m not one for packing my bags too early however seeing as I have a reasonable idea what to expect I figured I might as well put together a list of the essential stuff that I need to pack for a trip to Iceland in Winter!

Needless to say, you need to pack obvious things like clothes, underwear, toothbrushes…etc regardless of wherever you’re travelling to so I won’t cover those again here.

Let’s jump right in shall we?

1.) Cameras

I plan on taking my DSLR camera (as per usual) and my Go Pro.

The GoPro is a must on such an active holiday and I’m really looking forward to using this! I even have a chest harness, GoPro stick and a head strap-on thing so I’m all set on that front for cameras.

The one thing I’m realising as we speak that I still need is a spare battery for the Go Pro. I seem to forget to switch the camera off all the time and find that the battery is all drained later in the day. Must get that before we head out. I wonder if I could use those mobile phone battery pack chargers to charge it (you know, like these ones?)

Honestly, cameras are one of those things to pack for Iceland that’s totally incredible for saving those memories. Still, to this day, I love looking over our old pics. 

Update: I ended up getting this one and it’s amazing – it lasts ages, charges super-fast and is the most affordable for its capacity.

Read more: Best things to do in Iceland

2.) Coats

In the past, I’ve tended to travel with somewhat ridiculously inappropriate jackets and instead depended on layering to keep me warm (which has often led to me feeling like the Michelin man underneath all those layers so I figured it was high time to get something winter travel/adventure appropriate.

Cue the Columbia Turbodown jackets, I got this one, Lloyd got this one. Can’t wait to try them out.

If you look at the older Iceland photos on here like in the glacier post here, you’ll see what I mean about the ridiculous layering. I mean, come on – I actually packed a leather jacket to go to Iceland (and that was the only coat I took as well).

I wanna say it was for fashion or some other justifiable reason but the reason I picked it was because I was thinking practically. At the time I had no idea how cold Iceland would have been (the clue was really in the name but I figured I’d be okay). It was warm in the end but not without effort.

Can’t wait to try out the new coats. Took it for a test run when it got cold in London recently so really looking forward to it.

*Update: They were absolutely perfect! They’re so warm and toasty, even in the blistering cold.

Read more: Best things to do in Iceland

3.) Sensible shoes

Again, scroll down on that glacier post and you’ll see the shoes I packed.

Definitely not exploring shoes though I did my best with them. This time, I plan on packing sensible walking shoes (like these).

Trust me, don’t go to Iceland without a good pair of walking or hiking shoes, it’s one of the essential things to pack for Iceland even if you’re not going hiking itself. 

4.) Tripod

An absolute must if you wanna catch the Northern lights (and so much else of course).

Fingers crossed they make an appearance but if they do, we all plan on being ready with our tripods. Hopefully, it won’t be quite as cloudy as the first time we saw them.

That being said, it was still amazing as it wasn’t cloudy everywhere; just in bits.

5.) Swimwear

Sounds counter-intuitive but one of the best parts of visiting a country with a lot of active volcanos is the presence of hot springs (heated geothermally). Case in point – The Blue Lagoon.

I actually plan on packing a pair of speedos, which I bought in Singapore as soon as I realised I would be heading over to The Marina Bay Sands for a mini staycation, and of course, to check out their infinity pool.

Alas, they’re not speedos briefs (ha!) but they’ll do.

6.) Sunglasses

Another seemingly counter-intuitive item but you’ll be grateful for them on bright days, walking on what seems like endless miles of snow (or ice).

You wouldn’t think you’d need that in winter but the sun still shines loads in Winter and sunshine on ice can be pretty bright.

It doesn’t hurt to get something you can use all year round so while you’re at it so pick up a pair of Ray-Bans or whatever else takes you fancy.

Personally, I like the aviators and the club masters (especially the club masters – I wanna get my actually reading glasses replaced and I think I’m definitely going for Cubmaster frames).

Read more: Best things to do in Iceland

7.) Travel adapters

Legit travel adapters are a must-have.

Unless of course if you use exactly the EU 2-pin plugs at home in which case you can just skip this one on your list. Now, you will be able to pick these up at the airport but I always find them so much more expensive than buying beforehand. 

8.) Torchlight

Best Things To Do In Iceland (21)

This isn’t something I’d usually pack but when you’re out at night in the middle of nowhere with no lights in sight (which you have to be when you need to see the Northern Lights), it does help to have your own source of light.

Thankfully, most smartphones have torchlights (or at least torchlight apps) but just in case, a torch is one of the things to pack for Iceland if you’re heading around at night or dusk. 

And it doesn’t have to be a big one either!

This mini Maglite is amazing (and surprisingly affordable). Got one a few years back and it still works perfectly now! They’re definitely durable traveller’s lights.

Read more: Best things to do in Iceland

22 Very Best Things To Do In Iceland



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