10 Best Places to Kayak in Iceland

Thanks to the excellent water bodies, beautiful scenery, sweeping glaciers and smoky mountains, Iceland- the land of fire and ice, has become a perfect getaway destination. One of the most enjoyable pastimes for visitors and locals in the country is kayaking. So if you are visiting there as a tourist or a local looking for more amazing places to kayak in Iceland, you are at the right place.

This article outlines the top 10 places to enjoy an incredible kayaking experience in Iceland. 

Best 10 Places to Kayak in Iceland

First, you must know that there are countless exciting places to kayak in Iceland, and it is almost impossible to talk about every one of them. However, these are the ten most promising and exciting spots to get the ultimate kayaking experience in Iceland. 

1. Snæfellsnes Peninsula

The Snæfellsnes Peninsula is a popular kayaking site, especially among visitors from around the world. Its lovely scenery makes it one of the best places to go on a kayaking tour. 

The most striking view in  Snæfellsnes is Kirkjufell Mountain. It is famous for its unique arrowhead shape and role in the popular series ‘ Games of Thrones. In addition to this stunning view, kayaking in this region exposes you to its majestic wildlife, offering you an unforgettable experience.

2. Reykjavík

One of the best Icelandic places to enjoy kayaking is Reykjavík. It is located in the coastal area of the country. This town is blessed with several water bodies, which you can choose to explore on a kayak

For beginners and experts alike, you can explore the vast fjord and glacier lagoons here. The frigidity and tranquillity of these lagoons are amazing and perfect for a memorable kayaking experience.

3. Stokkseyri – South Iceland

For visitors of the South Icelandic region, check out the Stokkseyri village, located about forty minutes from the capital city. This small town boasts vast and lovely water canals, fascinating sights, majestic plants and wildlife and many others. 

One of the benefits of kayaking in such environments is that you get to do a wholesome workout while taking in all nature has to offer simultaneously.

You can contact many tour operators within the town for a safe and exciting tour. With an experienced tour guide, you can enjoy the beautiful canals, lakes and rivers the town offers. 

At the end of your kayak trip, you can take a dip at the famous Stokkseyri pool while enjoying cups of hot choco. 

4. Hvalfjörður Fjord

The fourth on the list of best places to kayak in Iceland is the Hvalfjörður Fjord, located in the southwest near Reykjavik. With its 1000m high mountains and calm scenery, you can be sure to enjoy a day out kayaking on its clear waters. 

This location is perfect for beginners as you get to kayak slowly through the flatwater while taking in nature.

The quiet surrounding, elegant mountains, and wildlife in this area make up a mesmerizing view for kayakers. It is mainly known for its colorful jellyfish, eagles and sheep that roam freely around the hills. 

5. West Fjords

In the northern part of the country sits WestFjords. It is one of the best places to visit in Iceland. It is considered the most beautiful part of Iceland and a must-visit for anybody visiting the country. In addition to being home to whales and other fabulous sea creatures, the west fjords feature impressive waterfalls, mountains and dreamy scenery. 

There are several kayaking tours here for you to tour the area. Most tour companies here offer a tour from Ísafjörður, the largest town of the Westfjords. 

Make sure you dress warmly for your trip, as the temperatures are usually cooler in the northern regions.

6. Solheimajokull Glacier Lagoon

If you are looking for a thrilling kayaking trip, check out the stunning glacier lagoons in Iceland, with the Solheimajokull Glacier Lagoon being one of them. It is located in the south coast region of the country. Here you get to paddle ice waters and navigate the enormous icebergs while enjoying the fantastic views.

Kayaking this route is one of the popular summer activities in Iceland. Apart from leaving you refreshed and mesmerized by its structures, you get to leave with a lifetime of memories.  

7. Heinaberg Glacier Lagoon

The Heinaberg Glacier Lagoon is located on the South Coast of Iceland and is part of the Vatnajokull glacier. What sets this location aside, different from others on this list, is how close you get to these icebergs. This, coupled with the view of the mountains nearby, makes for a thrilling kayaking experience. 

You can round off your day with a walk on the Vatnajokull glacier. Remember not to forget the necessary safety gear on this excursion as you enjoy the view of the lagoon under your feet. 

8. Vatnajökull Glacier

The Vatnajökull National park is one of the best places to enjoy glacier kayaking. Here you have several glacier lagoons to explore, and you can enjoy the views of Europe’s largest glacier from all angles. 

After an unforgettable kayaking trip with its unbeatable view of mountains, glaciers and their lovely reflections, you can go on an ice hike around the icebergs. Kayaking the Vatnajökull Glacier is encouraged for people who wish to explore nature in a calm and friendly environment.

9. Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon

Your trip to Iceland is incomplete without time on Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon. It is located on the South coast, and this lagoon is not as popular among tourists as the other locations. However, it offers the most impressive sights of crystal clear waters, beautiful glaciers and unique birds. 

Kayaking through this lagoon will leave you spellbound as you explore the sheer beauty of this ice wonderland. Paddling through the vast and uniquely shaped colorful icebergs, you discover sites that some might consider otherwordly. Each tour is unique, with ever-changing icebergs of different forms and colors. 

10. Grundarfjordur fishing area

Are you thinking of going on a kayaking fishing trip? The Grundarfjordur fishing area is the best place for you. You can enjoy the breathtaking view of mountain Kirkjufell as you explore the beautiful location—and even catch a few fish while at it. 

You can decide to go solo by renting the fishing gear and enjoying the area’s solitude or go with a fishing guide. Kayaking through its waters is the perfect way to explore Iceland’s unspoiled nature while enjoying your favorite activity. 

Tips to Enjoy Kayaking in Iceland

To get the best out of this great country, here are a few tips to remember:

Bring appropriate clothing. Pack up your warm, waterproof and windproof clothing as they are your best bet to enjoy a trip to Iceland. Also, make sure you pack up comfortable footwear. The best way to get around some of the favorite spots is on foot.

Know what to expect from each season. If you are visiting in summer, note that there will be a lot of midnight sun, and the whales will appear in late summer. Winter offers a view of the northern lights, and you can easily find cool spots for a perfect romantic break.

Don’t stress about changing your money. Almost everyone accepts credit cards, from the bus driver to the coffee shop.


Kayaking is the perfect activity for you to make memories in Iceland. Get your paddling gear ready and prepare for an adrenaline-filled trip while exploring these stunning locations. Don’t forget to take your camera to capture the fantastic views and beautiful moments. 

Frequently Asked Questions

What clothing is best to wear for glacier kayaking?

Iceland can be pretty cold, so how you prepare to go kayaking here is a little different than most other places. For you to have the best time and avoid being frostbitten, you should have the following: 

  • Hiking boots
  • Warm wooly hat 
  • Warm base layers made of synthetic or wool fibers (not cotton)
  • Warm mid layers and 
  • Sunglasses

Do you need experience to Kayak in Iceland?

You must have prior kayaking experience if you plan on a solo tour. For beginners without experience, you can take a tour guide who will teach you the required techniques, places to visit and where to avoid when kayaking in Iceland.

What time of year can you kayak in Iceland?

You can enjoy a solo kayaking trip all year round. However, most tour companies operate between March and September for kayaking tours. If you end up in the Westfjords, several tour companies run until October. 

What is the minimum age to kayak in Iceland?

The minimum age is 12 years old. However, for a solo kayaking trip, you must be up to 16 years to kayak the Iceland waters.