If you’re going on vacation to Iceland, you definitely need to download some apps for traveling around Iceland that will help make your trip to Iceland a really memorable one.
In this travel guide, I list the best Iceland travel apps I used during my road trip around Iceland’s ring road as well as apps I always use to help me plan my travels.
Some of these apps are designed to keep you safe, and I really recommend downloading these. Iceland’s weather can quickly change, and it’s landscape whilst beauitful is also quite deadly. You can easily end up in a dangerous situation if you’re not careful, especially you’re out exploring the outoors of Iceland. But don’t let t his scare you, as long as you are careful, and follow the safety guidelines, you’ll be fine. Some of the other Iceland apps listed will help you see the Northern Lights, find cheap places to eat and drink, take better photos & more.
All the apps are available on Android from Google Play and iPhone from the app store. Most of the recommended Iceland apps are free, with a premium upgrade available. Some are only premium but I’ve recommended them as they’re great apps which will help make your vacation more enjoyable.
1. 112 Iceland
112 is Iceland’s version of 911/999, it’s the official Iceland emergency app. If you only download one app for Iceland, make sure it’s this one. I highly recommend everyone traveling with you to install this. The app allows you to get help in an emergency by sending a text message, along with your GPS to 112, then it’ll call them for you. This is really useful as in an emergency, it removes the stress of having to open up your map app and find your location, etc. By sending them your GPS, 112 can track where you and your group are and as Iceland’s landscape can be quite treacherous, this app makes sure it’s easier to locate you and keep you out of danger.
Note: The tracking is only as accurate as your phone’s GPS, so I recommend calibrating your GPS before you head off. If you use Google Maps, there’s an explanation on how to do this here. But I recommend using Waze, and you can learn how to calibrate your GPS to work with Waze, here.
Wapp is a walking app, that acts as both a hiking guide and a travel guide. You can use it to find a variety of trails in Iceland, and while you’re following them the app pops up with information and photos of interesting places you’re going to pass by. This is a great way of learning about different places along your chosen route. Wapp lets you download the maps over WiFi and use them while you’re offline, which is a great way of avoiding data roaming costs. The app allows you to find hiking trails by searching by the length of trail, elevation, difficulty, and territory. The app itself is free, but you do have to pay for some of the trails. But even so, Wapp is definitely one of the best apps for Iceland.
Having an Iceland road conditions app installed on your phone is a must when traveling in Iceland, so I highly recommend downloading Vegargerdin. This is definitely an app you should download before your trip. Vegargerdin works as an Iceland road guide, and displays information on road conditions and the weather, so you can check if the route you’re traveling is ok to drive along.
It’ll let you know whether a road is clear, slippery, very slippery, covered in snow, or impassable. Vegagerdin is free to download, I suggest using it to check the road conditions in Iceland before heading out. I would check the app each morning, and again whenever I would stop off somewhere to confirm the roads are still safe before I continued driving.
4. Iceland Weather Guide
I really recommend grabbing this free Icelandic weather app. Whilst there are loads of weather guide apps out there, this one lets you download the information whilst on WiFi so you can check it later on without having to use up your phones data. The forecasts are detailed, and include tons of information for things things like temperature, conditions, wind speed, cloud cover, and more are available for up to 6 days. With 12 to 30-day weather forecasts available, based on archive data.
I find the best way to make use of this useful app was to download the weather forecast each morning so I would have up-to-date information. I’d check it for the areas I was planning on visiting, and if it looked all good I’d head off.
If you’re planning on using pubic buses in Iceland, you must download this app. This is the official app for Iceland’s bus service. It allows you to see the bus times, stop information, and plan your journey throughout Iceland. Plus, the app offers you the option of paying for your bus trip when using it within the Greater Reykjavík area. It also lets you see where the bus is in real-time, so you can make sure not to miss it.
I recommend adding your payment details to the app before you head off to Iceland so you don’t have the stress of trying to get it working while you are there. To save data, you can check the bus times, stop information etc on WiFi and screenshot it to view later.
6. Appy Hour
If you are staying in Reykjavík and are going drinking (especially in March if you’re there on Iceland Beer Day), it’s really recommnded to download Appy Hour. This app will help you find the best deals on beer, and other drinks in Reykjavik. Anyone who has visited Iceland will tell you how expensive food and drink here is, but the Appy Hour app gives you at least a chance of staying within budget by lowering the cost of alcholic drinks.
The app will show you when and where happy hours are taking place, plus the cost of a beer so you can figure out where and when to go drinking. The Appy Hour app is free for both iPhone and Android.
You may be wondering “Does Waze work in Iceland?” and the answer is yes! This is my faveorite map app, no matter where I am traveling but it is one of the handiest apps to have whilst in Iceland. You may wonder, why not just use Google Maps? Personally, I think Waze is a lot better. The app allows people to report accidents, police, speed cameras, traffic etc. It’ll detect when you or others using the app are in traffic, and accesses traffic information. It uses this and the user submitted data to calculate the best journey, and if something happens when on the route it’ll figure that out, and calculate an alternative to save you time. You can also use it to find petrol/gas stations and it’ll list the most recent pricing data.
Plus you can share your journey, so people can see when you’re going to arrive or just keep an eye on where you are if you’re worried about safety. It also lets you make an account, record how far you traveled and lets you get cute little user icons that show up on the map.
Waze is free for both iPhone and Android.
8. My Aurora Forecast & Alerts
When you’re in Iceland, having an aurora forecast app installed on your phone. My favorite is “My Aurora Forecast” and I recommend this app to any serious aurora hunter. It gives information on strength, viewing probability, and cloud coverage. It also includes a map of Iceland so you can see where the aurora will be strongest at. The app also sends a push notification when aurora activity is expected to be high.
I used this app in Iceland to see when the aurora was taking place, so I could plan what spot I wanted to be in, at the time it was going to happen. I attempted to see the Aurora 5 times in my 2 weeks in Iceland, and successfully saw the Aurora all 5 times thanks to this app. I really recommend combining this with one of the location apps, like Iceland films locations app as when used together you can some amazing places to view the Northern Lights and possibly take stunning photos of your faveorite film locations in Iceland.
My Aurora Forecast is free, although they do offer a paid version with extra features.
9. Iceland Film Locations
Iceland has become a popular place for filming movies and TV series, such as Game of Thrones and Vikings. With this app, you can locate parts of Iceland where your favorite movies/tv shows were filmed, and be guided when visiting them. The app includes an audio-video guide for each of the filming locations, that can be downloaded via WiFi so you can learn more about the location without using up your data.
The Iceland Film Locations app is free to download.
10. Flight Aware
The weather in Iceland can be unpredictable and you may have issues with flights being canceled or delayed. FlightAware lets you see the status of your flight, and look up other possible flights you could take if something was to happen during your stay in Iceland.
11. Photomapper: Best photo spots
Photomapper allows you to find photo spots during your travels. Chances are, while you’re in Iceland you’ll want to be photographing its amazing landscape, the northern lights and waterfalls. So this app is definitely worth downloading to find where there are some good photography spots, which will allow you to spend more time taking photos and enjoying Iceland rather than driving around looking for places to stop.
Iceland has very little light pollution, so I highly recommend doing some astrophotography or stargazing while in Iceland. Soon as you’re away from the main cities, you’ll be able to see millions of stars. Star Walk 2 helps you identify which stars, planets, asteroids etc you are looking at just by pointing your phone at the sky. It also shares information on different astronomy events so you can check if there’s any interesting events happening such as the perseid’s meteor shower. This is one of a number of apps I use to help plan my photography, and can make your time in Iceland more enjoyable.
The app is free to download if you’re happy seeing adverts, or you can choose to upgrae to an add free version.
13. The Photographer’s Ephemeris
This app is an important app for photographers traveling to Iceland. It shows what time the sun and moon set and rise, plus the direction they’ll be rising/setting in. This information is available well in advance so you can go through the dates you’ll be in Iceland to check the times & locations for each of the locations you want to photograph. This is great for planning out the sunrise, and sunset shots to ensure you’re in the right place, at the right time. The app uses your GPS to figure out where you are, or you can pick a location you want to see the information for.
The Photographer’s Ephemeris is not free, but it’s definitely worth buying. They do, however, have a web version that is free to use. I do recommend grabbing the app for your mobile though as it’s much easier to use, and supporting the developer helps ensure this great app is maintained.
14. Thingvellir National Park app
During your visit to Iceland, you’ll most likely be visiting the Golden Circle. Thingvellir national park is located within the Golden Circle, and the landscape is amazing with tons of things to see. I recommend downloading the official Thingvellir National Park app as it uses audio guides and GPS to help guide you through the national park. Plus it provides information on opening and closing times, and hiking routes. This app is a valuable asset to have on your phone if you’re visiting the national park.
Peak Finder is really useful for helping you identify the names of different mountains and hills while you’re in Iceland. Iceland has tons of mountains that look awesome, and thanks to this app, you can now quickly identify them.
It isn’t a free app, but it’s worth buying if you like to easily look up what mountains are called. It’s really useful to photographers as it can help us ID what we’re taking photographs of whilst taking photos in Iceland. I like to use this app, so I know where I am, and what I am photographing and can then, later on, I can name and describe my photographs properly.
16. Iceland Hot Springs Map
This free Iceland Hot Springs Map will help you find hot springs as you’re traveling around Iceland. The app uses GPS on your phone to locate you and show you hot springs near your location. You can also look around the map, so you can find hot springs you want to visit before you go to Iceland.
This app is freemium, with the free version having a selection of hot springs locations unlocked. But some of the best locations are locked, and you’ll need to upgrade by paying a one-off fee to access those.
17. Icelandic Coupons
Iceland is one of the most expensive countries in the world, so I recommend downloading this free coupon app to help save you money. The app shares discounts on restaurants, bars, cafés, and activities. There are coupons available for every day plus they do 2 for-1 deals on certain days. Combine this with Appy Hour so you can find both discounted food and drink, and the the two apps will help you save money whilst eating out in Iceland.
There are coupons for places all over Iceland, not just in Reykavik. Depending on when you visit you may find discounts for food at gas stations, Icelandic brands such as Icewear, geothermal baths, kayaking, and other activities. You can also search using your location to find discounts near you, so I recommend grabbing this app and using it whenever you’re looking for food, drink, or booking activities.
18. SafeTravel – Iceland
This is one of the must have travel apps for Iceland, and whilst you may be thinking it’s “yet another safety app”, I cannot recommend this app enough. It’s full of information, covering different places in Iceland including the coastal areas, volcanos, roads and more.
This app will display alerts from Iceland’s Road and Coastal administration. As you’re driving around Iceland, they’ll alert you as to whether there’s any important safety information about your current destination. This is really useful and could save your life, as it’s so easy to get distracted and easily forget to check the other apps.
They also include a guide for color codes, so you can quickly tell what each color means when viewing the map (e.g. green is easily possible, and red means closed). You can also do a free driver’s test, which will check that you know about Iceland roads and the rules about driving here. I highly recommend doing to ensure you don’t end up in any trouble. The driver’s test is quite short but covers everything you need to know about the Iceland driving rules.
The app is free, and is definitely one of the apps to download before flying to Iceland. It will help ensure you have safe travel and can enjoy your time in Iceland.
I hope you found this guide helpful. Make sure to stay safe whilst visiting Iceland, and if you’re visiting in March make sure to check out my tips on visiting Iceland in March.
If you found an app and would like to share it with others, drop a comment and let everyone know.