Reykjavík’s Sunniest Start of the Year in 77 Years

Beautiful scenery in the harbour area of Reykjavík

You would have to go back to 1947 to find a sunnier start of the year in Reykjavík than 2024 has been so far. At the same time, other parts of Iceland have not been as lucky.

Over 500 hours of sunlight

According to a report issued by the Icelandic Met Office, Iceland’s capital has been blessed with some 512.1 sunlight hours. As Vísir points out, only 1947 had a sunnier start of the year.

That said, sunlight is not necessarily equivalent to warmth, of course. The temperature in Reykjavík in April was, on average, 3.1°C. This is about half a degree under the average for 1991 to 2020, and 1.3 degrees lower than the average for the past ten years. The first four months were, however, also not as rainy as the average for 1991 to 2020, with precipitation only reaching 70% of the average for that time period.

Snowy in the north and east

In other parts of the country, the situation was decidedly different. Heavy snowfall has been the hallmark of the northeast this spring.

Akureyri, located in north-central Iceland, experienced 17 snowy days in April alone. This is three times more than usual, and also meant that there was not a single day in town that month when the ground did not have at least some snow on it.

Not to worry, though; meteorologists predict a very sunny summer for Iceland.

Solar Eclipse Visible from Iceland on Saturday

A partial solar eclipse will be visible from Iceland on August 11.

A partial solar eclipse will be visible from Iceland this Saturday, August 11, RÚV reports. The eclipse should be visible from all parts on the country if weather allows.

Astronomy website Stjórnufræðivefurinn provides more details of the eclipse, which will be visible between 8.10-9.26am, with slight variations around the country. Depending on the viewer’s location, the moon will block from just under 9% (Westman Islands) to as much as 14% (Ísafjörður) of the sun’s visible surface.

Saturday’s eclipse will be most visible from just north and south of the arctic circle, or from Northeast Canada, Greenland, Iceland, Northern Europe and Northern Asia.

The last solar eclipse visible from Iceland occurred on August 21, 2017. The next will take place three years from now on June 10, 2021.

Observers are reminded that protective eyewear or a telescope with a solar filter are needed to observe the partial eclipse. Regular sunglasses do not suffice.

Sun Shows Itself in Reykjavík… Finally

After experiencing near-daily rain all summer, residents in South and West Iceland are finally enjoying some sun, RÚV reports. Temperatures are expected to reach 18°C (64°F) in some parts of the region.

The good weather will be fairly short-lived, as rain is in the forecast for both South and West Iceland as early as Wednesday. “For two days we’ll get a small trace of sun and summer,” stated Meteorologist Hrafn Guðmundsson on RÚV morning radio today. “It won’t last long, it’s a little high-pressure ridge which we get to enjoy now. Then right away on Wednesday comes another low-pressure system which, as so often before, is forming in the Greenland Sea with some rain and then after that there will likely not be much sun this week.”

Hrafn encourages locals in the south and west of the country to look on the bright side and enjoy the days of sunshine which appear between the rain.