Iceland on a Budget

Iceland’s growing popularity as a tourist destination leaves most travelers with the same two conclusions: The country is incredibly beautiful and expensive. With some helpful tips, you can keep your family trip to Iceland fun and budget-friendly.

Rent a Car

The vast, diverse landscape of Iceland can be pricey to traverse using taxis, buses or other modes of public transportation. Renting a car is the best way to explore the country while on a budget. Not only is renting a car more affordable in the long run, but it also allows visitors to make quick visits to small towns and natural wonders along the way. Enjoy the savings and flexibility on your trip.

Explore Natural Reserves

Take advantage of Iceland’s majestic scenery and stop as often as possible, exploring natural parks and reserves. From Snæfellsjökull National Park to Þingvellir, Vatnajökull National Park and Skaftafell, visitors observe incredible waterfalls, glaciers, mountains, volcanoes, thermal pools and stunning wildlife — all within budget. Iceland’s national parks and wonders are all free or affordable to visit; just pay for parking.

family in Iceland

© Glowonconcept | Dreamstime

Take a Guided Tour

Set aside a day or two to explore Iceland with the help of a guided tour. Iceland Travel offers a variety of daytrips showcasing the natural beauty of the Aurora Borealis, Crystal Caves, volcanoes, wildlife, Game of Thrones tourism and snowmobiling excursions. Tours are available for several days or more, but tend to be pricey and more structured than a single-day guide.

Explore Local Towns

Take advantage of the many towns spread out along your Icelandic adventure. Each offers sightseeing, shopping, dining and local flare for tourists on a budget. Visit like a local and inquire about the best places to go and avoid the more touristy locations.

Skip Tourist Destinations

The Blue Lagoon, now a famous and expensive natural resort and spa, was once just a humble hot spring. There are many hot springs located throughout Iceland and in the national parks free to visitors. Discuss with locals and do some research before hand and explore the budget-friendly natural wonders.

Instead of embarking on a whale-watching excursion — which can be expensive — opt for a coastline view of the water from the land. Check in with the locals and head to the suggested locations for whale watching. Take in the incredible view from the cliffside and save some money in the process.