Hire a Car and you will find driving in Iceland can be an exciting and unique experience, but it also comes with some challenges, especially depending on the season. Here's an overview:
Roads: Iceland has a well-maintained network of roads that can take you to many of its beautiful natural attractions. The Ring Road (Route 1) encircles the entire island, providing access to most of the major destinations.
Daylight Hours: In the summer, Iceland experiences long daylight hours, while in the winter, daylight can be very limited. Be prepared for driving in darkness during the winter months.
Off-Roading: It's important to note that off-roading is strictly prohibited in Iceland to protect its fragile ecosystems.
Best Type of Vehicle To Hire:
Seasonal Variation: The type of vehicle you should choose can vary depending on the season. Here are some guidelines:
Summer (June to August): In the summer months, a regular car or a compact SUV is usually sufficient for most of the popular tourist routes. You won't typically need a 4x4 vehicle unless you plan to venture onto rougher, less-traveled roads.
Winter (October to April): During the winter, especially if you plan to explore beyond major routes, it's advisable to rent a 4x4 or an all-wheel-drive (AWD) vehicle equipped with winter tires. Iceland's winter roads can be icy and challenging.
Winter Tires: If you're driving in Iceland during the winter, make sure your rental car is equipped with proper winter tires. Studded tires are often recommended.
Gas Stations: Be aware of the distances between gas stations, especially in more remote areas. Fill up your tank when you have the opportunity.
Weather Updates: Check weather and road condition updates regularly, especially if you plan to travel in rural or mountainous areas.
F-roads: Some roads in Iceland, known as F-roads, are only suitable for 4x4 vehicles. Check road conditions and regulations before attempting to drive on them.
Emergency Kit: It's a good idea to carry an emergency kit in your car, including blankets, non-perishable food, and a first aid kit, in case you encounter unexpected delays.
Overall, driving in Iceland can be a fantastic way to explore its natural wonders, but it's essential to be prepared for the unique challenges the country's weather and terrain can present. Make sure to research your routes, choose a suitable vehicle, and stay informed about road conditions and weather forecasts to ensure a safe and enjoyable trip.
*average daily rates based on 7 day rental, search for today's best prices.