Traveling In Iceland With Kids: A Guide

Traveling In Iceland With Kids: A Guide

Angie Diamantopoulou Author

Text by: Angie Diamantopoulou

Iceland has been a top travel destination since around 2012. The country is a temporary home to millions of tourists every year. From couples to solo travelers to big families, Iceland is the perfect destination for everyone!

So, you are traveling to Iceland with kids. Great choice of a destination! Iceland is perfect for families, and kids and adults can have an amazing, memorable trip here, that will stay with them forever!

You might have a few questions, though, about what it is like to travel around Iceland with kids, as well as what you can do and if there is anything to be aware of.

Well, you have come to the right place! This guide will tell you everything you need to know about traveling in Iceland with kids, and how to make your trip enjoyable for the whole family!


Before we take a look at our guide about traveling in Iceland with kids, let's first see what you can find in this blog:

  • is traveling in Iceland with kids safe?
  • are there any places in Iceland where you can't take kids?
  • what are the best tours and activities to do when traveling in Iceland with kids?
  • some tips from a local!

don't miss out!

Our tours are often booked weeks or even months in advance! Make sure to book ahead so that you don't miss your chance for a spot! Our tours are also perfect for kids!


is traveling in iceland with kids safe?

trveling in Iceland with kids

​Iceland is one of the most family-friendly countries that you can visit. The country has been at the bottom of crime rate charts consistently for decades.

In fact, crime rate in Iceland is so low that local children are allowed to play outside way past sunset in the winter, with no worry that anything will happen to them. Furthermore, locals don't hesitate to leave their babies outside for a nap, as they believe that the fresh Icelandic air is good for them!

That is because Iceland is a very small country.​ Traveling in Iceland with kids, even in Reykjavik, is not like traveling in other big countries or cities. With a population of approximately 338,000 people, it is no wonder that everyone knows everyone. As a result, instances of serious crimes are very rare, and even petty theft is very unlikely. 

Children of all ages will be very safe in Iceland. From Reykjavik to the most remote part of the country, traveling in Iceland with kids will be a piece of cake, and you don't have to worry. Even the wildlife in Iceland is very safe, as there are no dangerous animals or even poisonous plants. ​

The only thing I would suggest you watch out for is steep cliffs and dangerous areas in general. While most places have clear paths that you have to follow, it's always a good idea to practice some caution around powerful waterfalls and steep cliffs, even as an adult.​


are there places in iceland where kids are not allowed?

traveling in iceland with kids

Generally, no. As I mentioned earlier, Iceland is a very popular destination for families, as well as a very family-friendly country. Therefore, most places and tours welcome kids and can easily and happily accommodate them.

However, some tours and places may have age restrictions for the children's safety. Keep reading to find out about what tours and spots I recommend you visit with your kids, and any age restrictions they might have!

If you want to visit a place or take a tour that is not on my list, make sure to contact them ahead! They will be happy to accommodate you if they can, and if it is not possible, you will be able to book something else. ​


best tours and activities for traveling in iceland with kids

​If you are looking for the best tours and spots to visit while traveling in Iceland with kids, you're in the right place! The Icelandic nature is perfect for exploring with children, as well as Iceland's native wildlife, with its charming little critters! 

So, keep reading to find out everything about the best tours and activities when traveling in Iceland with kids!

1. REYKJAVIK FOOD TOUR

Reykjavik Food tour cheese platter

Our Reykjavik Food Tour is a perfect daytime activity for the whole family! I know that some kids are notoriously fussy eaters. However, if you have a tiny foodie or a teenage aspiring chef with you, then this is a great tour to let them experience Iceland's traditional cuisine

In the tour, you will be treated to a walk of the city, with your guide showing you the biggest highlights of Reykjavik! Then, you will also visit a variety of restaurants, from cozy family-run restaurants to fine dining establishments.

Throughout the tour, you and your little chef(s) will enjoy a mouthwatering feast of Icelandic cuisine. Some dishes include an arctic char with honey, the humble, yet famous, hot dog and ice cream made with rye bread!​

Our Reykjavik Food Tour is perfect for when you travel in Iceland with kids, but make sure if you have a big family that you book well in advance, as it is one of our most popular tours! You can book your spot here!​


Psst! Do you want to read more about our Reykjavik Food Tour? Check out this blog about my experience, and about everything we enjoyed!


2. VISIT REYKJAVIK'S MUSEUMS

traveling in iceland with kids whales

Reykjavik is home to a vast array of different museums. No matter which one you choose to visit, I am sure that you will not only have a great time, but also learn a little more about Iceland, its nature and its culture.

However, perhaps one of the best museums for children is the Whales of Iceland museum. ​There, you will learn about these fascinating creatures, their biology, and how to help preserve their populations. You will also get to see some life-size models of Iceland's whales, which will get you closer to them than ever! 

Entrance fees:
  • Adults: 2900 ISK (24 USD)
  • Children 7-15: 1500 ISK (12 USD)
  • Children under 7: Free
  • Two adults and two children: 5800 ISK (47 USD)
Arbaer Open Air Museum

Another great museum for children is the Árbær Open Air Museum. The museum consists of different buildings that date several decades back! Its design is perfect for children, as you get to explore different houses, as well as the museum's surrounding nature! Roaming around and inside the buildings is a lot of fun, but will also teach you a thing or two about Iceland's history and culture.

Entrance fees:​
  • Adults: 1700 ISK (14 USD)
  • Children 0-17: Free​

For more museums and detailed information, check out this guide on the top five museums in Iceland!


3. SEE THE GOLDEN CIRCLE

The Skogafoss waterfall in South Shore in May in Iceland

​The Golden Circle is one of Icelandic nature's biggest highlights! Tourists flock to it constantly, and it's easy to see why! 

Our small group Golden Circle tour is perfect for families. You will see the world-famous Gullfoss, one of Iceland's most awe-inspiring waterfalls, as well as Thingvellir National Park, where you can see the rift between the Eurasian and North American tectonic plates, and Geysir, erupting around every 8 minutes or so much to everyone's delight!

Furthermore, we will take you to places where other tours don't visit, such as the town of Hveragerði and Faxi waterfall, which is gorgeous, though quite small in Icelandic standards!​ 

The Golden Circle tour is ideal if you have only a short time to explore the Icelandic nature with your family​. I also think that Geysir is one of the most magical, exciting places in Iceland!

Prices:​
  • Adults: 10900 ISK (90 USD)
  • Children 3-12: 5450 ISK (45 USD)​

Book your spot in our tour here!​


4. SEE THE SOUTH SHORE

South Coast of Iceland

For those of you traveling in Iceland with kids who don't mind being out for a long time, our South Coast tour is the perfect way to see even more of Iceland's beautiful nature! The tour is 10-11 hours long. However, it is not very tiring, as there is no hiking involved and younger kids can nap in the bus. 

The South Shore is another one of Iceland's biggest highlights. Along with the Golden Circle, it receives the most visitors every year, as it sights are...well, a sight to behold!

The first stops of the trip are Seljalandsfoss and Skógafoss, two of Iceland's most known waterfalls. You can walk behind the former, admiring its beauty from the other side. The latter, meanwhile, is one of Iceland's strongest waterfalls!

Next, you will stop at Reynisfjara, the famous black sand beach. It truly looks otherworldly, and it is one of my personal favorite places in all of Iceland! After that stop, you will visit the charming little town of Vík, and to wrap it all up, we will take you somewhere where most companies don't go; Solheimajokull glacier! You will be able to walk right up to it and maybe even discover an ice cave if you are lucky!

Prices:
  • Adults: 13900 ISK (114 USD)
  • Children 3-12: 6950 ISK (57 USD)

As our South Coast tour is for small groups only, make sure to book here in advance!


5. VISIT THE NATURAL HOT SPRINGS

Iceland is full of natural hot springs. One of the best things you can do when traveling in Iceland with children is visit them, and explore and enjoy the Icelandic nature!​

One of the most famous hot springs in Iceland is, of course, the Blue Lagoon. The Blue Lagoon is also family-friendly, and kids can enjoy it along with their parents.

However, there are some age restrictions:

  • Children under 2 years are not allowed in the lagoon, due to the fact that they are too sensitive to the water's minerals. ​
  • Children under 8 years must wear floaties in the lagoon. The Blue Lagoon provides them free of charge.
  • Each adult can supervise up to two children.
Prices:
  • Adults: From 10690 ISK (86 USD)
  • Children 2-13: Free if accompanied by a parent or guardian
Secret Lagoon in Iceland

Image by: Arnór Trausti | @arnortrausti

The Blue Lagoon is rather expensive and overpopulated, though. So, if you want something different, that is more affordable and, dare I say, more relaxing, why not try the Secret Lagoon? This hot pool is arguably my favorite in Iceland! There is just something so serene and special about it!

Prices:​
  • Adults: 3000 ISK (25 USD)
  • Children 14 years or younger: Free if accompanied by a parent or guardian​

If you would like to pay a visit to the Secret Lagoon, I would recommend that you also combine it with the Golden Circle, as they are very close. In fact, we have a tour just for that, which you can book right here!

There are also several other hot springs all over the country that you can visit ​when you travel in Iceland with kids. Most of them are, in fact, free! However, it is always good to be reasonably cautious. Even though most of the hot springs and pools are very shallow, they don't have lifeguards or the facilities that the Blue Lagoon and the Secret Lagoon have.


If you want to learn more about hot springs and pools in Iceland, check out this awesome guide!​


6. GO WHALE WATCHING

whalewatching in reykjavik best activities to do 2019

Whale watching is the best way to get acquainted with some of Iceland's most adorable critters! Iceland has a huge whale population, as the conditions of the ocean surrounding the country are perfect for the whales to thrive.

While you can go whale watching in many places around Iceland, perhaps the most convenient one is right in the heart of Reykjavik! That's right! You can find whales very close to the downtown area!

Our Whale Watching tour departs right from the heart of Reykjavik, and will take you out to the ocean, where you will meet these amazing creatures. Naturally playful, you'll see the whales swim, flap their fins, and jump out of the water, in what is nature's biggest spectacle!

Prices:​
  • Adults: 10900 ISK (90 USD)
  • Children 7-15: 5495 ISK (45 USD)
  • Children 0-6: Free​

You can find out more about this tour and book your spot here!


7. VISIT A ZOO

Reykjavik zoo

Is there anything that kids (and adults!) love more than some adorable animals? When you are traveling in Iceland with kids, you have so many opportunities to experience the Icelandic nature through Iceland's native wildlife!

In Reykjavik, you can find the Reykjavik Zoo​. The zoo houses mainly native animals, especially those that have been to Iceland ever since the first settlers brought them along. Therefore, you will find the Icelandic horse, as well as a lot of sheep and foxes! However, you can also see animals that are a little more exotic, such as mink and seals!

There is also a very fun playground with a zipline, castles, and many other play areas!

Prices:
  • Adults: 900 ISK (7 USD)
  • Children 5-12: 680 ISK (5.50 USD)
  • Children 0-4: Free

There are also plenty of petting zoos and farms outside of Reykjavik. One of them is Slakki petting zoo in Selfoss, where you can find a plethora of adorable animals to pet! From puppies to arctic foxes, there are plenty of animals to play with! 

There is also a minigolf, an outside playground, and a restaurant, so it's the perfect place for a daytime activity away from the city!

Holar farm and minizoo

If you find yourself going north, visit the Hólar farm in Búðardalur. I have been there once, and I am sure that once I go up north again, I will visit the farm for sure! Rebecca, the owner, and her family are the loveliest, friendliest people you can meet! They also have some amazing animals, including a talking raven and a fox! If you visit, tell Skótta the fox hi from me!


some tips from a local

Iceland things to do

Now that you know all the best tours and activities to enjoy while traveling in Iceland with kids, I will give you some tips to make your trip even more enjoyable!​

  • Wrap your kids in layers, no matter the season. We all have a mom that makes us carry a jacket everywhere, but this time, we all actually need it! Make sure you and your family wear many layers, so you can keep warm while exploring the Icelandic nature, but also keep cool while in the bus or car.
  • Bring snacks. I cannot stress this enough. Even I get cranky on long road trips when there is a lack of snacks! If you are on a tour or if you are driving far from any towns, you won't be able to find any snacks easily, so bring them along!
  • Bring water bottles. On a similar note, make sure to stay hydrated. There is no reason to buy water in Iceland, as you can drink from any tap or even from rivers, as long as the water is clear.
  • Bring sunscreen. The Icelandic sun can be quite strong, so it's a good idea to wear sunscreen while you explore Iceland and avoid any sunburns.

some final words

So, here you have it! I hope you enjoyed my recommendations and tips, and I hope they will make traveling in Iceland with kids a little easier for you!

Did you do any of the activities or tours I recommended? What did you think? Is there something else that families with kids must do on their visit?​ Let me know in the comments! And, as always, don't forget to share with other traveling parents!

Iceland has been a top travel destination since around 2012. The country is a temporary home to millions of tourists every year. From couples to solo travelers to big families, Iceland is the perfect destination for everyone!

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