Why Iceland is Amazing for Solo Travel

A woman standing atop a cliff at sunset

Iceland is a world of natural thrills. With awesome glacial landscapes, rugged coasts, and the breathtaking Northern Lights, it’s an unforgettable destination no matter who you are.

That said, the Land of Fire and Ice particularly deserves its reputation as one of the world’s top spots for solo travel. Why? Of course, there’s natural beauty in bucketloads, but that’s not all. Aside from simply stunning, your Iceland solo travel adventure will be social, safe, and straightforward too. 

Read on to discover why Iceland is the perfect place for solo travelers. And learn some top tips to make your trip extra special.

10 reasons why Iceland is great for solo travelers

Why is Iceland such a dream for solo travelers? Here are 10 reasons why you should visit on a solo trip.

1. Plenty of natural beauty to explore

The first reason is simple: Iceland boasts some of the most dramatic and enticing scenery on the planet. And whether you’re traveling solo or with a loved one, this island nation should be on your bucket list.

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Where to start? The Golden Circle, Iceland’s most famous itinerary, is just a skip and a jump from Reykjavík. Here, you’ll encounter the fury of Gullfoss waterfall and the otherworldly landscapes of Geysir. Take the chance to explore Þingvellir National Park too, with the Silfra trench dividing two continents.

Rent a car and journey Iceland’s Ring Road (the circular route that runs around almost the whole island of Iceland) and you’ll find much more. Black sand beaches, magnificent mountain peaks, waterfalls, and glacial lagoons await!

2. No need to worry about your safety

It’s quiz time: which picturesque island nation has one of the lowest crime rates in the world? 

The answer’s Iceland. With low rates of violence, high levels of security, and a peaceful culture, Iceland ranks top of the list of the world’s safest countries. And it’s been at the top for the last 15 years.

All of this helps make traveling solo in Iceland as stress-free as possible. Of course, you can still miss a bus or lose your passport. But you won’t find the nuisances or more serious concerns that can make solo travel a challenge elsewhere. 

3. Chances to see the Northern Lights

Iceland sits on the very edge of the Arctic Circle and it claims the most northerly capital of an independent country in the world, Reykjavík. It’s a combination that makes the country a paradise for travelers seeking the Northern Lights.

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But what exactly is this natural phenomenon? The Northern Lights are a display of bright color that illuminates the night sky in the far north. Caused by the sun’s activity, it’s a mesmerizing spectacle that brings people from all over the world. 

As a solo traveler, experience them in good company on a Northern Lights tour. It’s one of the best ways to glimpse the Aurora Borealis for yourself.

4. Super-friendly locals

Iceland may be the safest country in the world. But it has another prize in its collection. Icelanders are among the friendliest people on the planet too. 

An Icelandic woman leaning out of a car window

Visit Iceland solo and you’ll see why. Whether you’re after a personal tip or recommendation, or you just want a chat in a bar, don’t hesitate to ask a local. They will be more than happy to share their experiences with you. 

That’s why at Iceland Tours our local guides are one of our greatest assets. Whether you want to join a group tour or enjoy a private adventure, you’ll be led by a friendly guide who knows the area inside out.

5. Carefree travel for women

It’s a sad fact that women often don’t feel safe when traveling solo. But in Iceland, things are different. In the safest country in the world, solo female travelers can feel a bit more at ease. 

Whether you’re hanging out in the city or heading deep into the Icelandic highlands, put the worries aside. Instead, focus on the breathtaking scenery or dive deep into the local culture. Nothing should hold you back.

6. Endless opportunities for outdoor adventure

Looking for a thrill? There’s nowhere better than Iceland. With some of the most rugged landscapes in the world, you’ll find many ways to get a taste of excitement. 

The edge of the Vatnajökull glacier

For instance, take the opportunity to go glacier hiking. Over 10% of Iceland’s surface is covered in ice, in the form of winding glaciers or enormous ice caps. Explore them on foot to get a glimpse of the wildness that defines this northern nation.

Alternatively, head beneath the surface into one of Iceland’s ice caves. It’ll give you a different perspective on the Land of Ice and Fire. 

7. Chances to meet independent travelers like you

If you’ve never traveled solo before, it’s natural to worry that solo travel means lonely travel. It doesn’t. In fact, one of the beauties of traveling alone is just how social it can be. 

Iceland is full of independent travelers, all looking for their own thrills, experiences, and memories, just like you. And wherever you stay or however you like to travel, you’ll have the opportunity to meet like-minded people.

Group tours to some of Iceland’s top sights can be a great way to socialize while you’re away. On a bus tour or a more intimate small-group experience, for example, you might make a friend for life. 

8. Easy transport connections

Beautiful? Check. Social? That’s right. Easy to get around? Iceland is exactly that too. That’s thanks to the country’s highly developed transport system and a range of offerings for visitors. 

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If you want to rent a car to drive around Iceland, booking a self-drive tour is a great option. Or, if you’d prefer to be based in Reykjavík and see the best of Iceland’s south coast during the day, multi-day tours are a good fit.

However you’d rather get from A to B, you’re sure to make incredible memories along the way. 

9. No need to learn another language

On the theme of ease of travel, Iceland has another perk. Most Icelanders are fluent in another language besides Icelandic. That means you don’t have to worry if you can’t speak the lingo.

Icelanders learn English throughout school and you won’t have any trouble communicating if that’s your first or second language.

But it’s not just English that’s widely spoken. Icelanders are often fluent in Norwegian and Danish. And, as a visitor, you’ll find travel guides who operate in French, Spanish, and other languages too. 

10. R&R in abundance at spas and hot springs

Finally, one of the great reasons to visit Iceland, solo or otherwise, is the spa culture. After a long day of sight-seeing, there’s nothing better than to plunge into the warm waters of Iceland’s geothermal pools.

A man floating in the Blue Lagoon

The Blue Lagoon is one of the most famous, thanks to its milky blue waters. Or there’s the new kid on the block, the Sky Lagoon, with its luxurious offerings and breathtaking views.

Solo, with loved ones, or in a social group, there’s no better way to chill out. 

4 top tips for solo travel in Iceland

Now you know why to come, what can you do to make sure you have the perfect solo visit to Iceland? Read on for 4 essential tips.

1. Choose the right time to come

As anyone who’s traveled to Iceland will tell you, the experience changes with the seasons. 

Lupines in Vatnajökull National Park, Iceland

Some things you can do in summer (hiking, or visiting the highlands) are more difficult in the winter. And the beauties of the winter (such as the Northern Lights) won’t be around in summer.

That said, there’s no real best time to come – just the best time that suits you.  

2. Join a tour

To travel independently is to feel free. But many solo travelers would still highly recommend joining a group tour. Why? Because it’s a pleasure to experience wonderful things in the company of others. 

Of course, you don’t have to be in guided groups all the time. But if you want to meet fellow travelers, there’s no better way to do it. 

3. Plan and book ahead

For many travelers, journeying solo means going where the wind takes you. Of course, there’s a lot of fun in keeping things flexible. But while detailed plans might not have the same romance, they’re crucial to get the most out of your trip. 

That matters particularly in high season, when tours and accommodation can book up fast. To avoid disappointment, think ahead.

At Iceland Tours, we can provide you with an action-packed and fully-booked itinerary, to keep your vacation admin to a minimum. Of course, it’s completely customizable, so you can build your perfect visit. 

4. Trust the locals

Whether they are tour guides or people you meet by chance, locals are experts in the country they live in. Hearing their tips and recommendations can help turn your trip into an unforgettable experience. 

FAQs

Is Iceland good for solo travel?

It’s no exaggeration to say that Iceland is one of the best countries in the world for solo travel. 

Thanks to its majestic scenery, captivating culture, and the Northern Lights, it’s a top destination for all travelers. But as Iceland is safe, easy to get around, and social, you’ll find it an excellent choice for solo travel.

Is Iceland safe for female solo travelers?

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Iceland has the reputation for being among the world’s safest countries for solo female travelers. And that’s well deserved. No one should feel uncomfortable when traveling alone.

Travel solo in Iceland with Iceland Tours

No matter your preferred travel style, you’ll find an option for solo travel that suits you. Want to go it alone on a road trip around Iceland? Take a self-drive tour. Prefer to join an intimate group of independent travelers? Check out these guided group tours instead.

At Iceland Tours, we can arrange your solo trip however you want to travel. We’ll handle the accommodation, transport, and any excursions. And you can customize your solo trip to Iceland with optional extras, making it as unique as your personal adventure should be.

The best part? All it takes to secure your booking today is a 5% deposit.

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About the author

Max has been back and forth from Iceland since 2009. He lived and worked there for several years, and although he’s moved away, he left a piece of his heart there. When he’s in Iceland, he loves to relax in the ‘hot pot’, chow down on some local food, and catch up with friends. He speaks Icelandic fluently, so if you need to know how to pronounce ‘Fagradalsfjall’, he’s your guy.

View more posts by Max

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