How to get to Iceland

AS A COUPLE
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Iceland’s Keflavík International Airport, about 40km west of Reykjavík, is connected by an ever-increasing quantity of flights to Europe, the UK, Scandinavia, the US and Canada. It’s also possible to reach Iceland year-round by sea via the Faroese superferry Norröna, which performs a regular crossing of the North Atlantic.

Airfares always depend on the season, with the highest being around June to August, when the weather is best; fares drop during the “shoulder” seasons – September to November and April to June – and you’ll get the best prices during the low season, November to March (excluding Christmas and New Year).

An all-inclusive package tour can sometimes turn out to be the cheapest way of doing things. Deals range from a weekend city-break to Reykjavík and its surrounds to all-singing, all-dancing adventure holidays involving snowmobiling across Vatnajökull and whale watching in Húsavík. Check the specialist tour operator websites.

The cheapest airfare deals are always available online, either direct through the airline website or via a discount travel website.

Flights from the UK and Ireland

Icelandair flies daily to Keflavík from London Heathrow, Birmingham, Manchester and Glasgow.

WOW air has now ceased operations, so present from Ireland you’ll need to travel via mainland Britain with Aer Lingus or discount masters Ryanair, and then pick up a connecting flight to Keflavík.

Flights from the US and Canada

Icelandair flies out of many cities across the US and Canada. The frequency – and cost – of flights is reduced during the winter months; schedules change each year, depending on demand, and some routes are suspended altogether.

Flights from Australia and New Zealand

There are no direct flights to Iceland from Australia, New Zealand or South Africa, so you’ll need to find a discounted airfare to somewhere that does – such as London – and arrange a flight to Reykjavík from there.

All return airfares to London from Australian East-Coast gateways are similarly priced, with the cheapest deals via Asia costing. From Perth or Darwin, scheduled flights via Asia cost less than if departing from eastern gateways, while flights via the US cost more. From New Zealand you can fly from Auckland to London via mainland US or Asia.

The Norröna ferry

Although it’s possible to travel by sea to Iceland aboard the luxurious Norröna ferry (w smyril-line.com), the journey is recommended only to those with a cast-iron stomach – the gales, storms and colossal swell of the North Atlantic will quash any romantic images of following the Vikings’ sea-road. One huge advantage, however, is that you can bring your own vehicle into Iceland this way.

The ferry departs once a week, year-round, from Hirtshals in Denmark, travelling via Tórshavn in the Faroe Islands to Seyðisfjörður, in Iceland’s East Fjords. Facilities include en-suite cabins, a swimming pool, a shopping arcade and even a fitness centre.

High season (mid-June through to late August) one-way fares from Denmark to Seyðisfjörður are €427 per person for one vehicle and two people sleeping in a couchette; a private cabin costs €574 per person.

The Rough Guide to Iceland and related travel guides

In-depth, easy-to-use travel guides filled with expert advice.

Travel advice for Iceland

Find even more inspiration for Iceland here

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Rough Guides Editors
8/29/2020
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