From ice-caving, to snowmobiling on glacial plains, and chasing waterfalls – there are so many things to do in Iceland in March.
Iceland had been a country on our Travel Bucket List for ages. When we had the perfect opportunity to visit Iceland in March, which is their winter, we both felt that it was one of the best months to visit Iceland. There are fewer crowds, the vibe is abuzz in Reykjavik, and the snow creates the perfect backdrop for photographing much of Iceland’s stunning scenery.
For a country whose name (and location) embodies everything about winter, Iceland’s weather can be wild and unpredictable, but that’s part of the charm. Iceland’s tourism industry is literally built around activities that are perfect for a winter getaway.
Here is our recommendation for the best things to do in Iceland in March!
#1 Do a Road Trip
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If it’s your first-time visiting Iceland, I would absolutely recommend planning a road trip. Iceland is a large island and to get to many of the things to do in this guide, you’re going to need a car.
Public transport is limited (other than in Reykjavik city) and it’s possible to join a group tour, but we found that driving in Iceland in March was surprisingly easy. Many of the main roads are well maintained and graded on a daily basis. You’ll just have to avoid the F-roads, most of which are still covered in snow in March.
Practical Tips for Doing a Road Trip in Iceland:
- Download the Vedur app and Google Maps before you go. The Vedur app is published by the Iceland Meteorological Office and provides up to the minute information on weather and road conditions.
- Be prepared to change your plans last minute if there is a storm coming. We had to skip a few attractions and move one of our hotels on one night because of a storm.
- Book your car hire from Rentalcars.com to take advantage of their Price Match Guarantee and free cancellation on most bookings. We booked a 4WD, just because it felt more comfortable when driving on ice and it allowed us to drive on the dirt roads, but most other tourists weren’t driving a 4WD.
#2 Soak up the Vibe of Reykjavik
We absolutely loved Reykjavik. The vibe is fun and eclectic, and there is so much to see and do. Most things in Reykjavik are within walking distance.
Some of the best things to do in Reykjavik in March include; taking a wander along the waterfront to check out the beautiful Harpa Concert Hall or the Sun Voyager statue. Climb up the top of Hallgrimskirkja Cathedral for a great view over the city. For something a little different, see the unique exhibits at the Icelandic Phallological Museum.
At night, find a restaurant that serves traditional Icelandic cuisine or head to a bar and soak up the party vibes. Icelander’s love to have a good time!
Practical Tips for Exploring Reykjavik:
- Reykjavik’s main street, Laugavegur is very central and a great place to stay. We highly recommend the Ion City Hotel or the Sand Hotel.
- Before exploring the city, grab a coffee from Reykjavik Roasters and a bite to eat from Glò.
- Yellow buses and taxis are the only forms of public transport around Reykjavik. But the city is only small and very walkable.
#3 See the ‘Diamonds’ on Diamond Beach
This was one of the highlights of my trip to Iceland. They really do look like Diamonds against the black beach! Just check out my photos (above).
The black beach near Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon is affectionately known as Diamond Beach, because the chunks of ice that break of Vatnajökull Glacier and float down the lagoon into the sea, where they get picked up by waves and deposited onto the beach.
The amount and size of ice chunks on the beach varies day-to-day, depending on the weather conditions and how quickly they melt. It’s not uncommon that people arrive to find no ice chunks at all, only to return the next morning and find the beach covered in them.
Practical Tips for Visiting Diamond Beach:
- Diamond Beach and Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon is a 5 to 6 hours’ drive from Reykjavik but was one of my favorite things to do in Iceland in March – so don’t let this deter you. Some tour operators such as this one offer a day trip from Reykjavik, which involves a very long return bus ride. However, I recommend doing a road trip and staying nearby.
- Book your stay at the Fosshotel Glacier Lagoon, so you can visit Diamond Beach at sunset and then return the next morning to give yourself the best opportunity to see the diamonds.
- Check the location of Diamond Beach here.
Related Post: 20 Photos to Inspire You to Book a Trip to Iceland
#4 Go Snowmobiling on a Glacier
After boarding a minibus with the biggest wheels I’ve ever seen, we motored along Iceland’s Golden Circle Road and then along a track covered in thick snow and arrived a few hours later at what looked like a massive white, snow covered lake with a few ‘island’ mountains peeking through in the distance.
After suiting up and getting a safety briefing, we spent the next few hours experiencing an exhilarating adventure getting around the glacier on a couple of snowmobiles and had an absolute whale of a time.
Practical Tips for Booking Snowmobiling Tour:
- We booked this snowmobiling tour, which was a full-day tour including pick up from Reykjavik hotels.
- The weather can be unpredictable in Iceland. We were blessed with absolutely beautiful weather during our snowmobiling tour, but I would recommend having an alternative plan in case your tour gets canceled.
Related Post: The Ultimate Iceland Bucket List: 50 Things to See & Do
#5 Hike to Solheimasandur Plane Wreck
There are not many places you can go hiking in Iceland in March, as many of the trails are snowed out. However, the hike to this old US Navy plane crash site is about 3 km one way along a remote stretch of black beach near Vik and is easy to do year-round.
The plane wreck has become a bit of photographer’s playground. If you’re planning to photograph the wreck without other people around it, I highly recommend arriving early in the morning.
The wind can get very strong and gusty along the track, so be sure to dress appropriately. The actual plane wreck is in a ditch, so you’ll be slightly more protected from the wind once you arrive.
Practical Tips for Hiking in Iceland in March:
- Always check the weather as it’s not uncommon for fierce storms to pass through.
- Be prepared with appropriate gear for hiking in harsh winter conditions.
- Check the location of the plane wreck here.
#6 Descend into an Ice Cave
It’s only possible to go inside an ice cave in winter. Why? Because as the weather heats up and the ice begins to melt, the caves fill up with water and are impassable. Ice caving is one of the best things to do in Iceland in March, because it’s generally the last opportunity before the ice caves start to succumb to the warmer weather.
Practical Tips for Ice Caving:
- We booked this Ice Caving tour at Skaftafell.
- As with most Iceland activities in March (or anytime really), Ice caving is weather dependent, so always have a plan B should the ice cave not be safe enough to visit on the day you booked.
#7 Visit Reynisfjara Black Beach
Visiting Iceland’s famous black beach is a must-do on anyone’s list of things to do in Iceland, and if you plan to visit in March, there’s no better time! Reynisfjara Black Beach is a very popular tourist hotspot, but when we visited in March, there wasn’t too many people around.
We spent a good hour wandering around the beach, taking photos, admiring the striking offshore rock formations called Reynisdrangar, and climbing the basalt sea cliffs that line the eastern end of the beach, before a storm rolled in and forced us to take shelter in our car.
Practical Tips for Visiting Reynisfjara:
- Reynisfjara Black Beach is free to visit and is just a short 10-minute drive from Vík.
- Arrive early in the morning or at sunset if you wish to have the beach mostly to yourself.
- Search and book hotels near Reynisfjara Black Beach here.
#8 Stay at the Insta-Famous Ion Adventure Hotel
After seeing so many photos of this striking modern luxe hotel on Instagram, I knew I had to stay there. Unfortunately, we didn’t get to make much use of their totally instagrammable pool due to the weather, but it was a great place to stay none-the-less.
We spent a night at the Ion Adventure Hotel while exploring the Golden Circle – another one of those unmissable things to do in Iceland in March. The hotel allows for easy accessibility to all the Golden Circle attractions such as the Silfra Fissure, the Great Geysir, the Secret Lagoon Hot Springs, and Gullfoss Waterfall.
Practical Tips for Staying at the Ion Adventure Hotel:
- Arrive early enough to test out your snowshoeing skills in the fields around the hotel.
- The food at the hotel’s restaurant was incredible.
- Book your stay at the Ion Adventure Hotel through Booking.com to get the best rate.
Related Post: 25 of the Best Luxury Boutique Hotels in Iceland
#9 Visit Iceland’s Best Waterfalls
Chasing waterfalls is one of the best things to do in Iceland at any time of year, but in March, most of them are blanketed in snow, creating some beautiful photo opportunities.
Some of the best and most easily accessible waterfalls to add to your list of things to do in Iceland in March are Skogafoss, Gullfoss, Seljalandsfoss, Svartifoss, Godafoss, Kirkjufellsfoss, and Dettifoss. In case you hadn’t worked it out by now, “Foss” means “Waterfall” in Icelandic.
Practical Tips for Visiting Iceland’s Waterfalls:
- Seriously, there are so many waterfalls in Iceland. This is just a handful of the more popular ones, check out some more here.
- Most of Iceland’s waterfalls are free to visit and many are accessible year-round. It wouldn’t surprise me if some of the more popular waterfalls begin charging entry in the future.
More Things to Do in Iceland in March
If you’re looking for more inspiration on things to do in Iceland in March, we wrote an entire post about our Iceland Bucket List – featuring 50 of the most popular and best things to do in Iceland, as well as some off-the-beaten-path gems! The majority of the things on our Iceland Bucket List are totally doable if visiting in March!
SHOP Our Iceland WINTER TRAVEL ESSENTIALS:
The Best Iceland Winter Tours from Reykjavik:
These are some of our favourite things to do in Iceland in March:
- Northern Lights Bus Tour from Reykjavik
- Silfra Fissure Snorkelling Tour
- Whale Watching Tour on a Luxury Yacht
- Golden Circle Tour + Snowmobiling
- Full-Day Southern Iceland Tour
- Snæfellsnes Peninsula Full-Day Tour
- Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon Full-Day Tour from Reykjavik
- Katla Ice Cave and Super Jeep Tour
Get our Iceland Trip Planning Bundle:
Are you planning a trip to Iceland this winter? Enter your email below to subscribe to our newsletter and download our free Iceland planning bundle which includes a printable Iceland Bucket List plus, itinerary, Google Map (featuring all these places + more), and our Iceland packing list. You’ll also get access to tons of other free travel resources!
Read More About Iceland:
- 7 Day Iceland Itinerary: Golden Circle and South Coast Road Trip
- Ultimate Iceland Bucket List: Top 50 Things to Do
- The Coolest Things to Do in Iceland in March
- 10 Things You Need to Know Before Your First Trip to Iceland
- 25 of the Best Luxury Boutique Hotels in Iceland
- 20 Photos to Inspire You to Book a Trip to Iceland
- Video: Staying at the Silica Hotel in Iceland
- When is the Best Time to Visit Iceland?
- 11 Most Instagrammable Places in Southern Iceland
- The Ultimate Travel Bucket List
Pin This Post for Later:
Planning a trip soon? Here is a list of the websites and resources we use for booking everything from flights, to accommodation, tours, and more:
- Skyscanner for booking the best flight deals
- Booking.com | Agoda | Hotels.com for booking the best hotel deals
- Airbnb | Stayz | HomeAway | VRBO for home rentals
- Rentalcars.com for quick and easy car rentals
- Luxury Escapes for luxury package holiday deals and tours
- Get Your Guide for a great range of day tours
- Tourradar | Intrepid for multi-day experiential and adventure tours
- Priority Pass for airport lounge access in hundreds of locations around the world
- Skyroam to stay connected to WiFi everywhere I go
- iVisa for processing entry visas for many countries around the world
- World Nomads or Covermore for the best worldwide travel insurance coverage (Covermore is only available to Australians & New Zealanders)
About the Author:
Amanda Twine is the founder and creator of Fly Stay Luxe – a luxury travel blog sharing informative travel guides, food guides, hotel reviews, itineraries and tips about how to make luxury travel more affordable.