Driving in Iceland can be one of the greatest experiences you can have. Driving a rental car, in Iceland can be challenging for the driver, with difficulties and dangers that you may not have come across in other countries. In the video, here below, you can see examples of what to have in mind, when driving in Iceland so as to avoid these hazards and have an accident-free holiday.
Just about all mountain roads, in the interior of Iceland, have a surface of loose gravel. The same applies to some sections of the national highway. The surface on the gravel roads is often loose, especially along the sides of the roads, so one should drive carefully and slow down whenever approaching an oncoming car. The mountain roads are also often very narrow, and are not made for speeding.
For further information on road conditions: Tel: 354-1777. The general rule, regarding speed limits, is that speed limit is 30-50 km/h in urban areas, 80 km/h on gravel roads in rural areas, and 90 km/h on asphalt roads. Please pay attention to special warning signs that indicate danger ahead, such as sharp bends, but there is generally not a separate sign to reduce speed.
Rule of thumb is to choose a safe speed according to conditions. Motorists are obliged by law to use headlights at all times, day and night and all passengers are required to use seatbelts.
In Iceland all off road driving or driving on marked tracks is forbidden. Driving under the influence of alcohol is also forbidden, by law.
Opening of the mountain roads:
Most mountain roads are closed until late in June or the beginning of July, or even longer because of wet and muddy conditions which make them totally impassable. When these roads are opened for traffic many of them can only be driven by four-wheel-drive vehicles. It is strongly advised that two or more cars travel together. Also, before embarking on any journey into the interior collect as much information as possible regarding road conditions from a travel bureau, tourist information office or the Public Roads Administration Tel: +354-1777.
Here is a short video of river crossing in Iceland.