Camping is a rather indulging activity as it is, but combines it with a location like Iceland that is all about exploring the unexplored and the hidden, you will have a real deal on your hands. Traveling around Iceland can be done in several ways, each one suiting a different set of requirements. There is the guided tour for people who would like to have the itinerary of the day set all the way to the end, private tours for the ones who like a little bit of luxury mixed in all the travels and then there is self-driving for the explorers out of the lot. Camper vans are one way to go about the self-driving tours apart from 4×4 jeeps and cars. While cars are more about being just a means to travel across the country while you go sightseeing and stay in accommodations in the nearby towns and villages.

Camper vans, however, are made to be a home themselves and hence eliminating the need to find and book accommodation everywhere you go. Once you have a campervan on your hands, you will have a quick fix for both accommodation and transportation. A campervan is seen to be the most comfortable way to camp in Iceland, and for all good reasons too. You do not have to get to go through the troubles of setting up the camp and other hefty physical labor that comes with going camping in a tent. There are several reasons that one should rent a campervan when traveling in Iceland and we are going to go forward in detail.

camper van driving in Iceland

Top Reasons to Rent a Campervan in Iceland

There are several reasons one should consider renting a campervan or a motorhome when traveling across the land of ice and fire. From the ones related to the freedom of travel to the technical ones that include making a cost effective plan for your travels around the country. Following is a list of some of the top reasons why you should rent a campervan in Iceland.

1. A Cost-Effective Way to See the Country

It is no secret by now that Iceland is a pretty expensive country to travel to. Adding up, accommodations, dining, travels, tours, and other miscellaneous expenses, the overall cost of the travels in the country can shoot up a lot and be a drag if you are trying to travel to all the natural attractions in the country. A campervan is multiple things combined in one. The best part is that these vehicles are advanced enough to travel most terrains in highlands including the paved roads, the adventure roads, and the basic streets that connect the places in a town. On top of that, your campervan is going to be your sleeping place with mattress and sleeping bags. Most campervans also come with working high-speed wifi in them making sure that you have access to the connectivity even when traveling to the remote areas of the country. There is also a working kitchen in the motorhomes and some camper vans available in Iceland which means that you can easily cook your meals and eat whenever you feel like it without having to worry about meal schedules in hotels and open hours of restaurants. All-in-all, the facilities that campervans in Iceland are available with ensuring that you have a wholesome traveling experience while keeping every expense under control. You will easily save $150-$200 each night – a pretty sweet deal.

2. All-Round Weather Protection

It is common knowledge that the weather of Iceland is never stable and can change in a matter of seconds only. The summer season can see heavy rain splashes even when the sun seems to be on top of its form and the harsh winters can turn even harsher with no prior warning. This can make it very hard to spend your relaxing and resting time in tents when camping around the country. The sturdiness of campervans makes it possible for you to handle any kind of weather that comes your way when you are traveling around the wild of the country. Moreover, you can easily get on moving if the existing weather conditions that time do not allow you to stay put without having to waste precious time in packing up your tent as the sky pours down. Many camper vans also have a built in heating system that will keep you warm on cold nights.

Seljalansfoss seen from a Camper van trip to Iceland

3. Flexibility of Travel

Spontaneity is the real deal when it comes to traveling in campervans. There are no set schedules when you are traveling on your own and that too with a handy, portable home and kitchen. Flexibility and spontaneity are the two biggest factors to consider when planning to travel around in the country in a campervan. You can simply pack up the extended porch and turn the wheel to head on to the next destination without waiting for the schedules and tour guides to help you move.

4. Safe Driving

Campervans are made to be exceptionally safe so that they can travel on all kinds of tracks and roads. Iceland is filled with several trails that are extremely difficult to cross. While most campervans can not travel across terrains like highlands, you can find some 4wd camper vans that can take you to almost any place in Iceland. The regular camper vans are more than capable of going around the country on paved roads and some adventure roads as well, keeping safety at hand a priority as well. There are three different kinds of roads in Iceland – the paved road, gravel roads, and the f-roads which connects the interiors of the country. Most campervans that are 4×4 are capable of traveling across these roads without any problem. So, there is no way that you will face any problem as long as you have the right engine on your ride.

camper van driving in East Iceland

5. Designed for both Travel and Accommodation

It is no secret that campervans come with a lot of space, more space than any car – 2×2 or 4×4 – would have. The back of the vehicle is spacious enough to fit anything that you will possibly need on any particular tour. The front of the motorhomes is made as cars with upright seats for day travels while the back is loaded with facilities like a sleeping area, a small kitchen, and sometimes an extended porch that can be used to relax and spend some time in the lap of nature when you set camp. Campervans are generally loaded with basic cooking facilities. All-in-all, camper vans are definitely going to be a home on wheels.

6. Accessibility to Exceptional Views

The good thing about campervans is that they offer some of the most amazing views that any moving vehicle can actually offer. Most kinds of vehicles that are used to travel around Iceland do not come with parking and camping privileges. Since campervans are assigned their own parking facilities, they are the perfect way to look upon the nature and the attractions in Iceland as and when you feel like it. The absence of trees in the country also adds to the accessibility of views around the clock from the camper itself. So, if you are worried that you won’t be able to get a good view if you camp in a camper, you are very wrong.

7. The Abundance of Campervan Camping Sites

Camping grounds in Iceland are of no shortage. There are grounds that are assigned for tent camping and then there are grounds where you can camp in your campervan. These grounds are endowed with facilities like bathrooms, a working kitchen, wifi facilities, and even electric charging points. Campsites in Iceland are available in abundance and you almost never have to reserve them beforehand. Although, it is a smart idea to check beforehand so that you do not end up in a tight situation or a waiting line. As evident, there are several modern-day facilities available in these campsites which means that your camping experience in the wild is going to be a combination of rugged and high-tech.

Two people in Icelandic wool sweater checking a map in a camper van in Iceland

Campervan Safety

  • Navigation: Keeping navigation handy when you are traveling around the country is a very sound idea. Many remote may not get good signal strength on your phones so, campervan wifi can be of good use to keep track of the routes.
  • Speeding: Campervans are not made for speeding at all. However, they can be driven at a decent speed while staying in line with the traffic rules of the country. There are several cameras on the roads, especially the paved roads like the ring road and there are warning signs before each one. Fines are a very real thing in Iceland so make sure that you are traveling while following the rules.
  • Fuels: Always fill up on fuel beforehand whenever you get a chance or when you stop by small towns or villages during your travels. A full tank is going to do you good since there are times when you won’t come across many towns or villages for a while when traveling to remote areas.
  • Snow Tires: The winter season comes with an undeniable need for snow tires, you need to make sure that your campervan has the snow tires on it so that you are safe to travel in literally any season that you need to.
  • Highway safety: Pulling up on highways is not recommended in Iceland as it is very dangerous. You can easily park the motorhome on picnic spots and stop areas which are located once every few miles.
  • Parking: Designated parking spots for campervans aka the campsites and the picnic spots along the highways are the allowed places where you can park your campervans. Although campsites are the only places where you will find amenities. There are no facilities available on the picnic sites so you need to be aware of the details whenever you pull up at a certain place. Picnic spots are only good enough to stop and get a good look at the view that surrounds the place. Campsites are the only place that should be considered for an overnight stay though.
relaxing in the back of a camper van with a view over Reynisfjara black sand beach in South Iceland