The next total solar eclipse visible from Iceland will occur on August 12, 2026, with the totality beginning at 5:48 PM, Icelandic time. Iceland’s most famous astronomer and a member of Parliament both expect thousands of visitors.
Can the roads handle it?
While this eclipse is still a ways off, there is a need to prepare quickly. It is estimated that the eclipse will be best seen from Látrabjarg, in northwest Iceland. Látrabjarg is a somewhat popular destination already, but also off the beaten track, and for this reason Pirate Party MP Andrés Ingi Jónsson has posed a formal question to the Minister of the Interior asking, “What measures will be taken so that the road system will be able to handle the large amount of visitors who are predicted to seek out experiencing the total solar eclipse on the 12th of August 2026 at Látrabjarg?”
The minister has not yet responded at the time of this writing.
One of the most beautiful natural events
Sævar Helgi Bragason, better known to Icelanders as Stjörnu-Sævar, told MBL that he believes many visitors can be expected.
“A total solar eclipse is one of the most beautiful natural events you can see,” he said. “People from all over the world travel by the thousands just to experience them.” As such, he believes it fair to estimate a sharp influx in visitors to Iceland around the time of the eclipse.
As this will be happening in August, when tourist numbers are already near their peak, getting the infrastructure prepared in advance is important.
An historic event
As with most places in the world, Iceland frequently experiences partial solar and lunar eclipses. However, the last total solar eclipse that could be experienced in Iceland was in 1954.
Látrabjarg will indeed be a great place to see the total solar eclipse of 2026, as it both lies in the west of the country and is far from light pollution. That said, there are numerous other good locations from where one could experience the eclipse to an enjoyable degree, albeit for a slightly shorter amount of time.
If 2026 seems like a ways off, bear in mind that the next total solar eclipse visible from Iceland will be in 2196.
Subscribers to Iceland Review can read our interview with Sævar Helgi Bragason here.