Iceland

Iceland is a Nordic island country located in the North Atlantic Ocean. Reykjavik is the nation’s capital, and it is also the largest city where over two-thirds of the population live. If you are seeking a trip out of the traditional and enjoy deserted landscapes, this is the right place for you.

The country offers many activities for all ages! Its cold waters host a diverse marine life, which you can better appreciate during summer. In fact, you can sign up for a whale watching excursion! If you are looking for adventure, why not try ice climbing on the glaciers? You can do this year-round throughout the country, but it is mainly practiced in the south of Iceland. Not sold on a trip to Iceland? Well, the Nordic island is one of the very few countries where you can enter a magma chamber; you get descend 120 meters into tube caves to explore these magma chambers!

Below, you’ll find more information on safety and precautions you can take, so you can enjoy your trip.

SAFETY INDEX

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Is Iceland a Safe or Dangerous Country?

Iceland is a very safe country. The greatest threats to visitors are natural hazards due to the rapid change in weather and nature. It is important to pay attention to the signs in the area. If there are no signs, use common sense. Tourists have gotten hurt or killed in the mountains or on the sea. Never approach a glacier front, big waves on the coast or big waterfalls. Only walk on glaciers if you have the proper equipment. If you are thinking about going hiking or skiing, we recommend that you do so with a guided tour.

Driving can be difficult and/or dangerous due to the weather’s conditions and the road conditions. Sheep tend to roam around the roads and sometimes even on them, so keep your eyes open. Route 1 in the east coast is very flat and windy, which can cause sandstorms during summer and drifting snow in the winter.

Warnings & Dangers

Mid Priority-96 OVERALL RISK : LOW

Iceland is one of the safest countries in the world. However, this does not mean you can let your guard down. Use common sense and be alert at all times as petty crime has become more common recently.

Mid Priority-96 PICKPOCKETS RISK : LOW

Pickpocketing and purse snatching are not common in Iceland.

Mid Priority-96 MUGGING RISK : LOW

Mugging and kidnapping are not common in Iceland; however, stay alert at all times for suspicious behavior.

Mid Priority-96 SCAMS RISK : LOW

Scams are not common in the country, but use common sense. Remain vigilant for thieves that use different strategies to rob you like a tap on the shoulder, spitting or getting something spilled on you.

Mid Priority-96 TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK : LOW

Public transportation and taxis are safe and reliable.

Mid Priority-96 NATURAL DISASTERS RISK : LOW

The weather changes frequently, so it is important to monitor local media and follow the advice of the local authorities. Safetravel.is is a good resource for weather alerts; it is run by the Icelandic Search & Rescue. The country is located in an active seismic zone, and it also has active volcanos. The Bárðarbunga, on the Vatnajökull glacier east of Iceland, last erupted in August 2014.

Mid Priority-96 TERRORISM RISK : LOW

There is no recent history of terrorism in Iceland. However, they should not be ruled out, so remain vigilant for suspicious activity.

Mid Priority-96 WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK : LOW

Many women travel safely without any issues. However, avoid isolated locations and traveling alone after dark. Remain extra vigilant at bus terminals and in taxis.

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Useful Information

Iceland is part of the Schengen Agreement. Most countries may not need a visa to enter the country. A Schengen visa is valid. Your passport should be valid for the duration of your stay. www.doyouneedvisa.com is a useful website that can help you know if you need a visa or not based on your nationality and the country you’re visiting.
The local currency is the Icelandic króna ($ISK). ATMs are widely available and credit cards are also accepted in most establishments. Tipping is not customary in Iceland.
The weather varies throughout the island. Generally, the south coast is warmer, windier, and wetter compared to the northern coast. The Central Highlands are the coldest part of Iceland.
The busiest international airports in Iceland is the Reykjavik Airport (REK) and the Keflavik International Airport (KEF). If you’re looking for cheap flight deals, you can find some on JetRadar
As in any country, we advise travelers to get a travel insurance that covers not only medical problems but also theft and loss of personal items. Learn more on our travel insurance page