Iceland is a beautiful country to visit at any time of the year, but October is a fantastic good time to visit for those who want to avoid the crowds of the summer months. In October, the weather in Iceland can be unpredictable, with a mix of rain, wind, and even snow. Iceland can still be a fantastic destination to visit in October, especially for those who want to experience the beautiful fall scenery and have a chance to see the Northern Lights. Start planning your next trip to Iceland as we’ve rounded up the 7 best things to do in Iceland during October.
1. Watch the Northern Lights
The best time to see the northern lights in Iceland is from October to March. In October Northern Lights season begins around this time, and you may have a chance to see the spectacular aurora borealis in the clear night sky. With darker nights and clear skies, you have a good chance of witnessing this natural phenomenon in all its glory.
2. Soak in a Geothermal Hot Spring
Iceland is renowned for its natural geothermal pools and hot springs, offering a unique bathing experience. Immerse yourself in the warm waters of the various man-made lagoons scattered across Iceland or explore the enchanting natural hot springs like the Secret Lagoon or Reykjadalur, where you can indulge in a soothing soak amidst breathtaking surroundings.
The mineral-rich water of these hot springs provides numerous benefits for the body’s different systems due to their high mineral content. Instead of opting for a traditional spa, why not embrace the opportunity to relax in a picturesque lagoon and marvel at Iceland’s magnificent landscapes? If you’re seeking the perfect blend of healing, relaxation, and rejuvenation paired with stunning views, Iceland’s hot springs are a must-visit on your holiday itinerary. From natural hot pots to pools fed by nearby springs and town swimming pools, Iceland offers a diverse range of swimming spots for you to enjoy.
3. Discover Iceland’s Enchanting Ice Caves
Exploring one of the Iceland’s many ice caps should be high on the list of things to do for visitors at any time of the year. As the winter season approaches, the glaciers start to freeze, creating stunning ice formations and enchanting caves. October presents an excellent opportunity to venture into these ice caves, as the conditions become more stable and accessible. The natural light filtering through the translucent ice creates a magical ambiance, casting beautiful blue hues throughout the caves.
October marks the beginning of the ice cave season, and you can explore these magical formations in the Vatnajökull and Langjökull glaciers. Vatnajökull has the highest concentration of ice caves, while the Katla ice cave near Vík is open year-round.
Never venture onto the glaciers or into ice caves without an experienced guide, it’s crucial to prioritize safety when exploring glaciers and ice caves.
4. Experience the Golden Circle in October
The Golden Circle is the most popular day tour from Reykjavík and it is a must for first timers to the country. In October, you can immerse yourself in the wonders of the Geysir geothermal area, where geysers erupt in spectacular fashion. Witness the awe-inspiring power of Gullfoss waterfall and delve into the historical and geological wonders of Thingvellir National Park. After the trip you can recharge at the Secret Lagoon hot spring in Flúðir, the perfect way to cap off a visit in the region.
5. Discover the Beauty of Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon and Diamond Beach
Embark on a captivating journey along Iceland’s South Coast to the mesmerizing Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon and enchanting Diamond Beach. Experience the awe-inspiring wonders of nature as you drive approximately 5-6 hours from Reykjavik. Prepare to be amazed by the sight of crystal-clear, floating icebergs in the Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon, nestled at the foot of Europe’s largest glacier, Vatnajökull. The breathtaking landscape will leave you in awe.
Don’t miss the opportunity to visit Diamond Beach, located just across the road. Here, witness the mesmerizing sight of glacial chunks washed ashore by the waves, creating a unique display on the black sand. Watch as these ice formations gradually melt, transforming into fascinating shapes and sizes. Immerse yourself in the captivating beauty of these natural wonders along Iceland’s South Coast.
6. Visit the picturesque Hvalfjordur Fjord
Take a scenic drive along the stunning Hvalfjordur Fjord surrounded by mountains and peaceful coastal scenery. A hike to Glymur Waterfall, the second-highest waterfall in Iceland, is worth the visit. The Hvammsvík Geothermal Sea Baths is a popular attraction located in the Hvalfjordur area with natural geothermal pools. The geothermal baths are situated by the sea, offering picturesque views of the surrounding fjord. It is a peaceful retreat and relaxing bathing experience. It is convenient to stay at the Nordic Lodges close by, Brekka and Langholt.
7. Iceland’s Lava Tubes
October is the perfect time to delve into the captivating world of Iceland’s lava tubes. These natural wonders offer a unique opportunity to witness the extraordinary geological formations created by ancient volcanic activity. Iceland boasts several renowned lava tube sites, such as the Leiðarendi Cave, Raufarhólshellir Cave, and Víðgelmir Cave. Iceland is also the only place in the world where you can visit inside of a dormant volcano: Thrihnukagigur. It is only a 30-minutes’ drive southeast of Reykjavik, offering one of the most unique and unforgettable experiences in the country. Remember to dress warmly and wear sturdy footwear as you navigate through the lava tubes.
Iceland has lots to offer in October
In October, Iceland offers a crowd-free experience with unpredictable weather. However, it’s a great time to witness the Northern Lights and soak in geothermal hot springs. Explore enchanting ice caves, particularly in Vatnajökull and Langjökull glaciers. Discover the beauty of the Golden Circle and visit Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon and Diamond Beach. Additionally, explore Hvalfjordur Fjord and experience Iceland’s unique lava tubes.