April is an exciting month in Iceland, especially in terms of weather. You literally never know what it’s going to be! Here are a few tips for how you can prepare for Iceland’s unpredictable spring weather.

While people in other European countries may have started drinking fruity cocktails outside in the sun in April, Icelanders still have to check the weather forecast to see if they need to wear wool socks. 


See also: April in Iceland


If you’re on your way to the land of ice in April, here’s a list of clothing you might want to consider packing.

Waterproof outerwear

wellies

Wellies are waterproof, fyi. Photo: Flickr, benjgibbs.

Iceland in April can get mighty moist, which the more positive thinking Icelanders say is “Gott fyrir gróðurinn” or “Good for the plants”. Which is all well and good, but it’s hard to be happy for the vegetation while your feet are wet.

We recommend you bring waterproof shoes and warm socks to remain dry and happy during your stay in Iceland. Also, a raincoat might be a good idea.

Better safe than soaking wet, we always say!

T-shirts

bolur

This young lady knows the importance of a t-shirt. Photo: 66North facebook.

As previously mentioned, the weather in April is unpredictable. The fluctuating climate means there’s a chance you could encounter nice weather in Iceland in April. However, the good weather given can just as easily be taken away. 


See also: Weather in Iceland


You’re going to want to have layers on, wear a t-shirt under more substantial layers of clothing. Especially if you’re doing any sort of outdoor activity, for example, hiking, where you’ll move around and heat up.

You’ll want to take layers off while you keep moving but put them back on as soon as you stop, or you might catch a cold. If you don’t bring a t-shirt taking the layers off could get awkward.

Better safe than dripping sweat, we always say!

Buff

Survivor

BUFF headwear is used to distinguish the Survivor tribes. Photo: Survivor facebook.

A buff is a thin cylindrical piece of material which can be worn in a variety of ways to retain body heat, including as a hat.

If you’ve ever seen an Icelandic child, you’ve probably seen one of these buff things. Icelanders, especially the children, wear these all the time. It’s almost like there’s a competition amongst our countrymen to see who can wear the ugliest buff.

The popularity of these versatile head and neck warmers can probably be traced to the reality television show Survivor, which was very popular in Iceland. As you can see above, they were used to identify the teams on the show.

Despite not suiting anyone, these are one of the most useful pieces of clothing you can get. They can be worn on your head as a hat or a headband, around the neck or if you’re warm enough, they don’t take up much space in a pocket or wrapped around a wrist.

Below you can see a photo of the Icelandic President, Guðni Th. Jóhannesson, wearing a buff that doesn’t suit him. It is, however, supporting a good cause, the Icelandic Alzheimer Association.

Guðni

Our President’s buff look. Photo: mbl.is

This Puzzled by Iceland bandana is one of the more stylish approaches to the buff. We recommend you snag one of these bad boys if you’re doing outdoor activities during your stay in Iceland.

Better to not be stylish than to have cold ears, we always say!

Swimwear

Brauðterta.

A one-piece swimsuit. Photo: Tanja Levý Instagram.

Of course, the best thing to wear in Iceland is always a bathing suit! Okay, maybe not always, but do make sure you bring one. There are so many pools and geothermal spas in Iceland and you’re missing out on the true Icelandic experience if you don’t visit them.

If you forgot to bring your swimsuit, we recommend you check out this Brauðtertan Lifir swimsuit, pictured above. The image on it is of a traditional Scandinavian dish called bread-cake, a mayonnaise-heavy sandwich-cake decorated with vegetables, ham and shrimp. You can even get a matching towel. Yum!

No one is worse for getting wet, we always say! (This one is an actual Icelandic saying) 


See also: Best Swimming Pools in Iceland


Rental clothes

icelandcover

Stay warm in an IcelandCover parka. Photo: IcelandCover.

Like we’ve seen this year, spring in Iceland can sometimes mean snow. If you arrive in Iceland and realize you’ve packed for spring, but winter weather had persisted, fear not. You can rent warm clothes. 


Click this link to rent winter clothes in Iceland


Renting outerwear is also a great option for people who come from places with a warmer climate. Since buying a winter coat for one trip isn’t very cost effective.

IcelandCover offers snow trousers, parkas, down jackets and rain jackets for rent. These are stylish and warm, perfect for travelers who packed a bit too optimistically for their trip to a country which literally has the word ‘ice’ in the name.

Better to rent a parka than freeze, we always say!