Tap Water Safety in Iceland

Can you drink the tap water in Iceland?

In general, yes.

The US Center for Disease Control’s travel advisory confirms the safety of the tap water in Iceland (source). However, it would be best if you take special precautions toward the unregulated water sources in some areas.

Like all countries though, water accessibility, sanitation, and treatment vary widely from location to location, so we encourage looking for specific city information.

What do people in Iceland think about the tap water?

Iceland has some of the cleanest water in the world and tap water is completely safe to drink. Locals find it amusing to see travellers buying bottled water when the same quality of water is available from the tap. Geothermal hot water smells of sulphur, but the cold water doesn’t smell.

Wikitravel

Tap water is safe to drink in Iceland and it has some of the cleanest water in the world. Coffee is easy to find and is comparable to what is found throughout Europe. Juices are generally imported and made from concentrate.
If you're travelling on a budget, camping is your best bet. There are sites located throughout the country, especially at places you'd want to visit. They range from fully-equipped (hot showers, washing machines, cooking facilities) to farmers' fields with a cold-water tap. Expect to pay 500-1000 Kr per person per night. If you intend to camp in Iceland you must be prepared for the cold, 3 season sleeping bags are essential and an inner, I would also highly recommend thick pyjamas and a warm hat! A bedding roll is also useful as you may end up sleeping on very rough ground...and that's just not very comfortable at all! Don't wait until last minute to find a place to camp. Campers and mobile homes have become immensely popular among Icelanders and they take up a lot of space. You could arrive at a large camping ground that's so filled up with campers and mobile homes that you'll have no place to pitch your tent.
The water quality in Iceland is excellent and tap water is always drinkable.

The most commonly searched cities in Iceland are:

For a full list of cities in Iceland, scroll to the bottom of this post or click here.

World Health Organization Iceland Water Summary

The World Health Organization estimates that 99 percent of Iceland have access to drinkable tap water.

In 2000, 90% of the population had access to drinkable, tap water on site, and 99% within an accessible distance, including both rural and urban areas.

World Health Organization's 2017 Iceland Water Data

The World Health Organization data on water quality and availability throughout Iceland includes the national average, averages for urban population centers, and averages for rural areas.

DataDescription
Safely ManagedA location that safe, drinkable water that is free of biological or chemical contaminants available on premise.
At Least BasicSafe drinkable water is available within 30 minutes from the location
LimitedIt would take more than 30 minutes from the location to access safe, drinkable water.
YearPopulation in 1000sSafely managedAt Least BasicLimited
National
200028090%99%1%
201733599%99%1%
Rural
200022-99%1%
201720-99%1%
Urban
2000258-99%1%
2017315-99%1%

What Do People In Iceland Think About The Tap Water?

Travelers and residents of Iceland have rated the water quality and pollution as follows, according to subjective survey data.

A score of 100% is considered very high, and a score of 0% is very low. Please be cautious that "moderate to very high" water pollution is bad and the higher the rate of water quality the better.

DescriptionScoreRating
Drinking Water Pollution and Inaccessibility4%Low
Water Pollution9%Low
Drinking Water Quality and Accessibility96%High
Water Quality91%High

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View our tap water report on all cities in Iceland

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