Iceland - 4 days mid December
Replies: 4 - Last Post: Nov 15, 2012 7:56 AM Last Post By: Icelandguide
Sep 24, 2012 10:30 PM
Iceland - 4 days mid DecemberHi,
My husband and I are travelling to Iceland for 4 days around December 14th. We arrive in Reykjavik and the primary purpose of our trip is to see the northern lights. But we're also interested in exploring the rest of Iceland, especially all the dramatic scenery outside of Reykjavik like the golden circle. Although I'm wondering whether is scenery is as dramatic in December as people mostly talk about, or will it all be snow laden and is that a good thing or a bad thing? Considering we'll be visiting in Dec, what are the places we should check out? Any chances of seeing a frozen waterfall? How are the driving conditions if we rent a car?
Thanks for the help!
Sep 28, 2012 10:50 AM
As for whether the landscape is more or less dramatic in December I guess it is down to personal opinion and what you're used to. Personally I think the Icelandic landscape covered in snow it is amazing and looks even more moon-like!
Depending on the weather, it is possible to see a frozen waterfall, but most of the larger falls will stay running as the weather in Iceland is fairly mild due to the Gulf stream. I have even been in December when they had a rainy period and it was about 5 degrees above freezing most of the time. However you can't beat Iceland's weird landscape and fascinating geothermal activity - the golden circle is a great collection of sights including geothermal hotspot - Geysir.
If you're wanting a more frozen environment take a trip into the interior with an organised trip (you can't drive non-ATV-type vehicles on the roads in the interior). Or alternatively visit somewhere out of the way of the Gulf Stream. Arctic Sweden and Norway are good options.
My articles below may give you more info about these places during winter, and the Northern lights:
My Northern Lights article:
My Iceland article:
My Arctic Norway and Sweden article:
Have an amazing holiday!
Nov 14, 2012 10:58 PM
Nov 15, 2012 12:43 AM
Much better to go there for Iceland itself, and take the lights as a bonus if they happen for you. But bear in mind also you are going at just about the darkest time of year, with very short daylight, so you need to plan to use that limited daylight very carefully.
You would have a better chance seeing the lights staying out of town, and also in the north of the country. Consider, for example, visiting the Myvatn area, about 60km from Akureyri, as there is a lot to see there. Though there is a significant difference in daylight hours between N and S of the country at this time of year, and this might argue against going to the north at this date.
The interior of the country is covered in snow through the winter, though only special tours can take you to to the interior in winter. High ground will also be snow-covered. On low ground by the coast, the snow comes and goes. It can be +8C and pouring with rain in midwinter in Reykjavik; it can also be -10 and covered with snow.
Whilst waterfalls may continue flowing through the winter, nevetheless there can be a large build-up of ice around them. December is early winter and better conditions would be usually be found in Feb/Mar. Things vary considerably from one year to another, early winter this year has been very hard with a lot of snow, so take local advice.
Nov 15, 2012 7:56 AM
4Here you find some different tours for the northern lights:
and here some general winter tours:
(4 star Hotel)
From US$236.10 per night
(3 star Hotel)
From US$214.51 per night
(4 star Hotel)
From US$148.94 per night