Are you planning to visit Iceland?
I visited the land of ice and fire in May and loved my trip. Traveling to Iceland in May is not only budget-friendly but also fantastic if you’d like to avoid the crowd.
What’s more? Continue reading this article and find out the benefits of visiting Iceland in May, as well as tips and tricks for your trip to Iceland in spring.
1. The day is longer
Ideally, you’ll want longer days to see as much as possible. May is the best time for it.
As the day is longer than the winter, and the night is still “night” – which is not too bright, you can use your day effectively without changing your body clock due to the extension of daylight (in June, it is 20+ hours).
During my trip to Iceland, my day started at 8 am and ended at midnight because it was bright until that time. 10 pm looked like 5 pm, so there was no need to stop :)
Read my guide on 10 Icelandic food you should try!
2. May is the shoulder-season
May is a shoulder season in Iceland. You get the best deals when traveling between a peak and off-peak season.
Iceland is notoriously famous for being expensive, so if you’re a budget traveler, you will love choosing to travel to Iceland this month.
So, why is May the best time for traveling to Iceland on a budget?
3. Everything costs less!
Flights and accommodation are discounted or cost less during this time because fewer people are visiting Iceland.
a) Flights are affordable
Flights to Iceland are cheap in May. I always use Skyscanner to compare the prices and get the best deals.
Read more: Best websites to find cheap flights.
b) Accommodation is cheaper
In May, Hotels in Iceland are less expensive than usual. In peak season, such as June, the price of hotels, or even budget hostels, can double.
For example, when I search on Booking.com for the price in Reykjavik Hostel Village for two nights on May 28-31st, it costs $58, while on June 26-28th (also from Tuesday to Thursday), the price is $105 for two nights.
c) Car rentals are cheaper
The best way to discover Iceland is by renting a car. I rented a car with some friends I knew through Couchsurfing and went on an Iceland road trip. It was amazing and memorable.
As it’s shoulder season, you will be able to get better deals when traveling to Iceland in May.
4. Attractions are less crowded
Kids are still studying, and many people take their day-offs during holidays or summer, so not many people travel to Iceland in May.
In addition to saving money, you are likely to avoid crowds and long lines in tourist attractions compared to peak seasons.
It was pretty crowded in some attractions when I visited (because of tourist buses), but I supposed the crowd would be more crowded if you travel in peak season.
More people will block your way in peak season and interrupt the view.
5. The weather is awesome
The weather in May is not too cold, but not hot either. So you don’t need to pack tons of thick jackets to avoid being frozen to death and can enjoy the trip on a sunny day.
The temperature in the morning can be around 8° to 10°, while at night, it is 1° – 3°
Note: Iceland is still windy all year, so it’s unavoidable.
The pleasant weather makes it easy to go on your road trip. Some roads may be closed in the winter due to the weather, so it’s not safe to go. We had no difficulty exploring the Ring Road or driving to Vik in the South.
Read more: The best time to visit Iceland.
6. Nature is blooming
Iceland is a beautiful country and has various stunning attractions.
From May, nature starts to wake up. Although most flowers bloom from June to August, you can already spot some of them in May.
Also, you can see green grass on the hills or trees full of leaves.
7. You can go hitchhiking
Since the weather is good, it’s excellent to try hitchhiking on your trip to Iceland. I hitchhiked from the airport to my friend’s house and back and saved some money.
8. Whale watching is starting
Traveling to Iceland in May is a big bonus if you’re interested in whale-watching activities.
As whale watching in Iceland begins from April to October, May is a perfect month to book a whale watching tour in Reykjavik.
9. It’s puffin time
You can see puffin is from the middle of April to mid-August, so May is a good month to find these cuties.
10. You can pack light
You don’t need to pack a big suitcase when traveling to Iceland in May. Since the weather is friendly, you can bring light.
What to pack for a trip to Iceland in May?
- Lightweight outdoor pants
- Lightweight, weatherproof jacket with hood. You should choose the ones with rain and windproof.
- Good hiking/ walking shoes: A good pair of shoes will be necessary as you need to walk a lot. My friend broke his shoes while traveling and had to buy a new pair, which was expensive.
- Swimsuit for lagoon
- Other necessaries: towels, toothbrushes, etc.