August is the warmest month in Iceland with temperatures shooting even up to 20 degrees Celsius on some days. The average temperatures range between 10-15 degrees. Despite occasional rains and the chilly arctic wind, this is the period when you could do with some light clothing in this polar country. But keep your warm clothes close since Iceland weather is so unpredictable. It is summer time and the days are longer than in the other months, ranging between normal and long days. Some days experience 16 hours of daylight, setting a quite desired mood for outdoor events. This is the perfect time for activities like hiking, horse riding and simply travelling around the island of ice and fire. The atmosphere is also perfect for photography. Although the nights get darker, the days are still warm and sunny.
Being officially the last month of summer, the locals tend to go out there and enjoy the summer days knowing the colder and darker days of winter are fast approaching. Because of this, August is packed with a lot of events. The Icelandic culture Night is normally celebrated on the second or third Saturday of august. Popularly referred to as “Menningarnott”, this is a night filled with activity, with entertainment shows, music concerts and performing artists gracing the night. The air is filled with music and the night sky with beautiful fireworks. This is the most attended cultural event in the country, probably because it takes place right in the capital, Reykjavic. The heart of the city is filled with people from all over the country and also foreign tourists, and when the night comes, you can be sure to have a memorable one.
Another event is ‘The Great Fish Day’. Fishing is a major activity in the whole of Iceland and a number of festivals are held every year and in almost every part of the country to celebrate the people’s rich fishing heritage. The biggest of these is the festival held in August. In this festival you can enjoy a tasty buffet of seafood, prepared by the people themselves just for the love of fish. The fish for this occasion is supplied by the local producers and the delicacy is absolutely free for all those attending the festival.
The summer solstice is approaching late in the month and the sun is at its peak altitude causing the midnight sun occurrence. Also at the end of the month the nights are getting darker and The Northern Lights also start showing on dark nights with clearer skies. The summer weather augurs well with swimming activities. Iceland is a great swimming nation and swimming pools are located throughout the country with the most popular one right inside the capital thus easy to access.
Just driving around in Iceland is an experience in its own and one of a kind. If you plan just a little bit well you can be sure to visit a number of key towns, catching almost all the events taking place all over the island. Hiking and trekking trails are favorable in summer due to the weather. As a matter of fact, some hiking can only be done in summer. These include the Laugavegur trek, which is Iceland’s most popular trek. Just remember to carry some heavy garments incase the weather suddenly changes. Other areas to go hiking include the Three National Parks in Iceland.
One shouldn’t miss on the year round activities like visiting the Blue Lagoon, bathing in the springs, horse riding and self-drive tours, because they only get better in summer. The summer months are the best for whale watching in Iceland. During the period, the enormous mammals tend to feed close to the shores creating an opportunity for one to see them in their natural habitat. The waters host a diverse range of marine life and one could catch a glimpse of over 20 species of whales, including the Humpback and the Blue Whale.
When watching the whales you also have an opportunity of seeing other wildlife, like dolphins and seals and various sea birds including the puffin. The puffins have a lovely striking appearance and this is one of the months when you can catch a glimpse of them in the island.
Specific tours in august include the Reykjavic Bar Crawl and the Reykjavic Beer Tour. The Bar Crawl takes you to the best spots in town where you get to meet people and of course enjoy some drinks. In the Reykjavic Beer Tour you get to experience the Icelandic beer culture at different selected views that offer a great beer drinking experience.
With the long days of summer, good weather which means better roads and the buzz of activity all over the island, with just the right schedule you can be sure to have a lifetime experience touring Iceland.