Laugavegur Trail Packing List

*This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclosure for more info.

If you’re planning to walk the Laugavegur and have been utilizing our Guide to Camping on the Laugavegur Trail you’re likely wondering what to pack for your own adventure.

Below you’ll find a detailed packing list that will provide you with great, trail-tested gear that won’t weigh down your backpack too much. This list reflects our personal packing list which will vary for each individual’s specific needs. However, this should serve as a great starting point for planning your own Laugavegur Trail adventure!

In This Post

Everything you need to to plan your Laugavegur Trek – all in one place.

Whether you prefer mountain huts or tents, fastpacking or meandering, or something in between, we’ve got you covered. Our downloadable Guide to Trekking the Laugavegur Trail is ultimate resource to help you plan your perfect trip. Pick your digital guide below:

The 50+ page guide contains resources you won’t find anywhere else, including:

  • Custom GPS files for the entire trek
  • Three unique stage-by-stage itineraries
  • Complete packing list for campers and those staying in huts
  • Detailed information on getting to/from the Laugavegur
  • A 15-week training plan to ensure you’re prepared for your hike

We truly believe this is the best guide available for the Laugavegur.  Pick up your guide below and if your not satisfied for any reason we’ll give you a full refund!

Laugavegur Packing Basics

There are many considerations to keep in mind when packing for a trek on Iceland’s Laugavegur Trail, but it’s best to start with a few essentials. Regardless of whether you’re camping or staying in the huts along the route, you’ll need to have a few basics that will make your trip to Iceland much more enjoyable.  These include:

  1. Selecting the right footwear
  2. Packing clothes that can be easily layered
  3. Having the right gear for Iceland’s harsh weather

In the following sections, we’ll break down each of these and share our best advice.

Laugavegur trail packing list
Whether you’re camping or staying in huts, packing the right gear will ensure you have a great time on the Laugavegur.

1. Figure Out Your Footwear

As with any multi-day hike, selecting the correct footwear will have a direct impact on how enjoyable the trail is. The Laugavegur has a diverse set of underfoot conditions ranging from rocky slopes and snow covered sections to sandy stretches and of course several river crossings. Therefore, it is imperative that you are proactive about keeping your feet healthy and happy on your trek.

Traditional hiking boots, hiking shoes, or trail runners will all work for the trail conditions on the Laugavegur Trail, but you need to make sure they will work for you too. This means that you should bring a pair of boots or shoes that you know from experience don’t cause problems for your feet. Ideally, you should put at least 30 miles on them in various terrain and weather conditions to reduce the chance of running into issues on the trail. That being said, you also don’t want your boots/shoes to be too broken in, as you need them to hold up faithfully for many miles of gnarly terrain.

You’ll also want to make sure you have some good socks. Socks are one of those rare things in life where you really do get what you pay for, and high quality socks can be a game-changer. Try to do some hiking in a few different types to figure out how what you like in terms of thickness, cushion, and height. We love merino wool for its quick-drying and anti-stink qualities.

If you’re blister prone, consider trying sock liners. Many hikers swear by them. Other tried-and-true blister prevention tactics include putting bodyglide on potential hotspots or wearing toe socks.

In addition to your main hiking boots/shoes you’ll also want to consider bringing shoes for the many river crossings on the Laugavegur Trail. We brought an old pair of lightweight running shoes that we didn’t mind ditching once the hike was over, but Chacos or other hiking sandals are a popular options as well.

Just be sure you aren’t planning on using flip-flops or other sandalls that don’t provide good traction and a secure fit. The rivers on the Laugavegur will easily rip thost right off your feet, which will create the dangerous situation of crossing a rocky and freezing river barefoot.

A river crossing on the Laugavegur Trail.
River crossing on the Laugavegur necessitate bringing proper footwear.

2. Layers are Key

If there is one thing that Iceland should be known for its almost certainly the unpredictable weather. On the Laugavegur you’re likely to encounter radiant sunshine, pouring rain, gale force winds, and even the occasional snow flurry. As such, you need your clothing to be adaptable to these ever changing conditions.

The best way to do that is by selecting hiking clothes that can easily be layered. For this, we really like base layers made from merino wool combined with lightweight down jackets and a good wind/rain proof outer layer. This will give you enough options to hike in short sleeves on those beautiful, sunny days while also being able to quickly layer up when that distant storm on the horizon is suddenly bearing down on you.

3. Be Prepared for Rain and Shine

Continuing on the theme of weather from the section above, we’re diving a bit deeper in our final section on Laugavegur packing essentials. Namely, that you must come prepared with great waterproof clothing. You may get lucky like we did and not experience any rain on your trek, but the odds heavily favor that you’ll see some type of precipitation on the Laugavegur. While this could end up being nothing more than a few sprinkles, odds are you’ll experience one of Iceland’s notorious downpours with driving wind accompanying the freezing rain.

To prepare for this, you’ll want to bring an excellent rain jacket, full rain pants, and a well-fitting pack over for backpack. While nothing makes hiking in the rain fun, at least you’ll have the knowledge that when you arrive at your hut or campsite your body and gear will be dry.

Storm clouds in Iceland.
Storms move quickly in Iceland.


Camping Gear

If you plan on camping on the Laugavegur Trail you’ll need to be prepared for a heavier pack and a longer packing list. However, don’t let that dissuade you as camping is an incredible way to experience the trail!

Use the camping gear list below as a good starting place for your kit and be sure to combine with the personal and miscellaneous gear outlined in the following sections.

ItemRecommendedNotes
TentMSR Hubba Hubba Backpacking Tent
The MSR Hubba Hubba 2 is the best overall tent you can buy, and the freestanding feature is helpful when you’re trying to find a level pitch or squeeze into a tight spot.
Sleeping BagMarmot Trestle 15If planning to camp at Hrafntinnusker plan on bringing a 0 degree Fahrenheit sleeping bag. Otherwise the Marmot 15 is a great all around bag.
Sleeping PadNemo Astro Insulated Sleeping PadThis is one of the most lightweight and comfortable sleeping pads out there. Plus, the genius pump sack makes inflating it so easy!
PillowTherm-a-Rest pillowA camping pillow can be great when you’re spending multiple nights sleeping in a tent, but this is an optional item for those looking to save weight.
StoveMSR Pocket Rocket Stove + MSR WindscreenIf you’re camping, you won’t be able to use the stoves in the huts along the Laugavegur. The MSR is a classic backpacking stove, but you’d be wise to bring a windscreen given the Icelantic weather.
Backpacking PotGSI Halulite
UtensilsHumangear Spork
Plate/Bowl/Mug
MSR 2-person mess kit

We find this bowl and mug combo to be light, durable, and perfect for camp dinners.

Most Valuable Camping Gear: Nemo Astro Insulated Sleeping Pad

This was by far our favorite piece of gear for camping on the Laugavegur. After a long day of hiking, there’s no better feeling than lying down in a cozy tent, especially when the wind is whipping outside. Our Nemo sleeping pads were reliable, comfortable, and easy to pack. Getting a good night’s sleep is so important on a multi-day trek, and a comfortable sleeping pad is a key ingredient when you’re camping.

Personal Gear

Whether you’re camping or staying indoors, these items are must-haves for your Laugavegur packing list. While we’ve included some toiletries that are absolutely essential for the hike, we’ve left it up to you to determine your personal list of additional self care items (comb, toothbrush, prescription medication, etc). Use this list in conjunction with the miscellaneous and clothing lists to build your perfect kit.

ItemRecommendedNotes
Multi-ToolGerber Suspension Multi-PlierPerfect for making sandwiches, repairing gear, and a million other purposes!
First-Aid Kit
Adventure Medical Kits
A good backpacking first aid kit is essential. You hope to never have to use it, but will be glad you have it when you need it. Make sure to include some Compeed for blisters.
Hydration Bladder or Water BottlesPlatypus Big Zip EVO Reservoir – 3LFar easier than a water bottle!
Water Filter Sawyer Squeeze or Sawyer MiniYou don’t need to treat water from the huts, but it is always a good idea to carry a portable filter just in case.
Pack CoverSea to Summit Pack CoverThis is a truly essential piece of gear given how much it can rain on the Laugavegur! Sea to Summit makes a variety of sizes to fit a range of packs.
Men’s BackpackOsprey Atmos 65L or Osprey Talon 36L If you’re camping, a 65L pack is a good size for all of your gear. The 36L Talon pack should be plenty for those staying in huts. We believe that Osprey makes the most comfortable packs on the market.
Women’s BackpackOsprey Aura 65L or Osprey Kyte 36LIf you’re camping, a 65L pack is a good size for all of your gear. The 36L Kyte pack should be plenty for those staying in huts. We believe that Osprey makes the most comfortable packs on the market.
Trekking PolesBlack Diamond Trail Trekking PolesEssential for long downhills!
Travel TowelSea to Summit Drylite TowelGreat to have for those freezing campsite showers!
HeadlampBlack Diamond Storm HeadlampGreat headlamp with long battery life and adjustable brightness.
Dry BagsSea to Summit Ultra-Sil Dry SackKeeps your clothes and other items dry in a downpour!
Hiking GaitersOutdoor Research Rocky Mountain High GaitersThese will help keep your boots dry when walking on snow covered trails.
Sunscreen
Blue Lizard SPF 50We recommend a waterproof sport version with SPF 30 or higher.
Toilet PaperCoghlan’s Packable Camp TissueIt’s always good to have a backup. Be sure to pack it out!
Hand SanitizerDr. Bronner’s SprayThis can come in handy on the trail and while traveling.
Extra BatteriesIt’s a good idea to have a few spare batteries for your headlamp or other essential electronics.


Most Valuable Personal Gear: Platypus Big Zip EVO – 3 Liter

We loved being able to fill up these bladders at the huts along the Laugavegur in the morning and not have to think about water for the entire day. They sit comfortably against your back, making it easy to carry the extra weight. Plus, you can sip from the hose while walking instead of having to stop every time you need a drink.

A comfortable backpack pays dividends on long days while hiking the Laugavegur!

Miscellaneous Gear

These odds and ends are the unsung heroes of the Laugavegur Trail packing list. From getting your stinky shirt clean to keeping your phone charged, these items help your trek run smoothly. Make sure to use this list in addition to the other categories to complete your POB kit.

ItemRecommendedNotes
GuidebookThe Laugavegur Trail Hiking CompanionA great resource for planning your walk. It also includes a wealth of information about the geology of the area.
EarplugsMack’s EarplugsEssential for sleeping in dormitories or crowded campsites.
Sleeping MaskAlaska Bear Sleeping MaskThis is a must-have for summer in Iceland where the sun barely dips below the horizon.
Travel AdapterAll-in-One Travel AdapterGreat for all of your travels.
Digital WatchCasio digital watchWe recommend a simple digital watch to keep track of hiking times. Unlike smart watches, you don’t need to worry about charging this.
CameraSony Alpha a6000 Mirrorless Digital CameraOptional item for the photography lovers. Consider using your phone to save weight.
Battery BackupAnker PowerCore 10000Great for charging electronics when you don’t have access to an outlet.
Biodegradable SoapSierra Dawn Campsuds Outdoor SoapThis is a great all-purpose cleaner for your body, your clothing, your gear, and everything else.
Plastic Bags- quart, gallon, and garbage bags.We used these constantly for everything from storing trail mix to keeping our sleeping bags dry. A must-have for backpacking.

Most Valuable Personal Gear: Alaska Bear Sleeping Mask

This simple sleeping mask will do wonders for ensuring you wake up rested and ready for a big day on the trail. If you’ve never experienced a midnight sun like you’ll encounter in Iceland, you’re in for a spectacular experience. However, when you’re trying to get a good night’s sleep before a long day, a quality sleep mask to block out all that light is just what the doctor ordered!

Iceland’s midnight sun is sure beautiful, but you’ll definitely need a sleep mask if you’re trying to get some sleep!

Women’s Clothing

When you’re trekking in the same clothes for days on end, it is imperative that those clothes are comfortable and high quality.  Although your individual preferences may look a little different, this list is an excellent starting point to ensure you’ve got all the essentials. 

ItemRecommendedNotes
Underwear (2-3 pairs)ExOfficio Women’s UnderwearVery packable, comfortable, and easy to wash on the go!
Socks (2-3 pairs)Darn Tough Micro Crew SocksIn our opinion, these are the best hiking socks available. Your feet will thank you!
Sports BraBrooks Women’s Rebound Racer Sports BraProvides excellent support, cushion, and breathability.
Standard Bra (1)After a long day of hiking in a sweaty sports bra this can be a welcome relief to change into.
Long sleeve base layer (1)Smartwool Women’s NTS Mid 250 CrewA great merino wool base layer for chilly evenings.
Short Sleeve Hiking Shirt (1)Smartwool Women’s Merino Short SleeveMerino wool is perfect for backpacking. Lightweight, quick drying, and odor resistant.
Leggings or Hiking Pants (1)Prana – Women’s Halle PantThese pants are stylish, lightweight, and great to hike in.
ShortsLululemon Run Speed ShortsWe prefer running shorts to hiking shorts, as they are more breathable and comfortable under a backpack.
Puffy JacketMarmot Featherless HoodyLightweight, super warm, and packs down small. This jacket was perfect for this kind of trip!
Rain JacketOutdoor Research Helium II JacketA high-quality all-weather jacket that packs up small.
Rain pantsColumbia Storm Surge pantsFor those heavy downpours!
Hiking Boots or Trail ShoesAltra Lone Peak Trail Shoes
or
Keen Targhee II Mid Hiking Boot
Depending on your preferences, these are our favorites for a traditional hiking boot and a minimal trail runner.
SunglassesSuncloud Loveseat Polarized SunglassesGood quality sunglasses are essential when you’re in the mountains all day. And these are stylish too!
HatColumbia Bora Bora Booney
This wide-brimmed and breathable hat keeps you cool and protected from the sun.
SandalsChaco Z1
These are a must-have for the several river crossings along the route.
Bandana/BuffBuff CoolNet UV+
These are great for wiping away sweat, keeping hair out of your face, or protecting your neck from the sun.
GlovesSeirus Waterproof GlovesEssential for the cold, wet weather on the Laugavegur.

Most Valuable Women’s Clothing: Darn Tough Micro Crew Socks

The Laugavegur can be pretty tough on your feet, so it’s important to be proactive in keeping them feeling good and blister-free. Darn Tough makes high-quality socks that are comfortable, durable, and moisture-wicking. Although they’re a little pricey, the lifetime warranty makes them a good value.

Men’s Clothing

When you’re trekking in the same clothes for days on end, it is imperative that those clothes are comfortable and high quality.  Although your individual preferences may look a little different, this list is an excellent starting point to ensure you’ve got all the essentials. 

ItemRecommendedNotes
Underwear (1-2 pairs)ExOfficio Men’s Give-N-Go Boxer BriefHighly recommended! 1-2 pairs is all you need as they are super easy to wash out and dry.
Socks (2-3 pairs)Darn Tough Hiker Micro Crew Cushion SocksIn our opinion, these are the best hiking socks available. Your feet will thank you!
Long Sleeve Base LayerSmartwool Men’s NTS Mid 250 CrewVery versatile mid-weight base layer
Short Sleeve Hiking ShirtSmartSmartwool Men’s Merino Short Sleeve ShirtMerino wool is perfect for backpacking. Lightweight, quick drying, and odor resistant.
Sun HoodieColumbia Sun HoodieThis is a new favorite item of ours. Cool enough to hike in even on hot days, you’ll appreciate not having to constantly reapply sunscreen.
Hiking Pants (1)Prana Brion PantsThese are great for hiking and also look good around town!
Hiking Shorts (1)Prana Brion Hiking ShortsAwesome shorts that are great for hiking.
Down JacketPatagonia Down Sweater HoodySuper warm, and super packable.
Rain JacketOutdoor Research Men’s Helium II JacketA good rain jacket is a must! This one packs up small and light
Rain PantsMarmot Precip Pants
HatColumbia Bora Bora BooneyThis wide-brimmed and breathable hat keeps you cool and protected from the sun.
SandalsChaco Z1 sandalsThese are a must-have for the several river crossings along the route.
Hiking BootsSalomon Men’s X Ultra 3 Mid GTX Hiking BootSuper comfortable and super waterproof! These held up well to the gnarly trail conditions on the Laugavegur. There is a trail running version for those who prefer something a bit lighter.
SunglassesSuncloud Mayor Polarized SunglassesGood quality sunglasses are essential when you’re in the mountains all day. And these are stylish too!
Buff/BandanaBuff CoolNet UV+These are great for wiping away sweat, keeping hair out of your face, or protecting your neck from the sun.
GlovesSmartwool Merino 150 glovesTrust us, you’re going to want gloves on cold morning around camp.

Most Valuable Men’s Clothing: Smartwool Men’s Merino Short Sleeve Shirt

When it comes to hiking shirts, we much prefer merino wool over synthetic materials. This shirt stayed smelling fresh after multiple days of trekking, and it dried super quickly once we finally washed it out. The fabric is soft, comfortable, and very breathable.

What’s Next?

Be sure to read our entire series on the Laugavegur Trail to learn everything you’ll need to know to prepare for your trip!

1 thought on “Laugavegur Trail Packing List”

Leave a Comment