The 10 Best Hiking Boots For Iceland To Hit The Trails

What are the best hiking boots for Iceland? We share our top picks to help you out on the trail. When spending time outdoors, your first line of defense is a great pair of hiking boots. You will want a good pair of boots since Iceland’s real beauty and draw are its natural wonders.

It makes sense because a nice day out exploring can easily be ruined with the wrong pair of boots. These days, the heavy-duty hiking boots of the past are being phased out for lighter options. This is due to the growing understanding that the lighter your boots, the faster and longer you can walk.

In our opinion, if you plan to hike in Iceland, you rarely need heavily insulated boots. Getting your insulation through a pair of quality wool socks is better. When it comes to hiking boots for Iceland, the key element is waterproofing. The weather in Iceland is unpredictable, and with all the precipitation, you’ll want a pair of waterproof boots like many of the Goretex models we recommend. In addition to the unpredictable weather, you have tons of waterfalls in the summer and snow in the winter.

There are two other elements to look for in a good pair of boots for Iceland. A high ankle for protection and to keep your feet dry in rain or snow, and then a durable sole that protects the feet from the sharp volcanic rock all around Iceland. Don’t feel the need for some big winter boots. They’re unnecessary for most visitors unless you have plans for some real snow adventuring, like snowshoeing, dogsledding, or winter hiking.


The Best Hiking Boots For Iceland



1.) Salomon X Ultra 4 Mid GTX

Best Hiking Boot Salomon GTX III
  • Weight: 1 lb. 15.6 oz.
  • Material: Leather, Goretex,
  • Waterproof: Yes
  • Pros: Lightweight, Feel Like Running Shoes, Good Value, Waterproof
  • Cons: Lightweight Nature Sacrifices Stability, Not Super Warm For Snowy Hikes

Salomon has been at the top of the hiking boot game for a long time. With exceptional quality, outstanding durability, and solid overall construction, it’s easy to see why. Now, they have entered their contender in the lightweight hiking boots fight, and we couldn’t be happier.

Weighing in at just under 1lb, the Salomon X Ultra 4 Mid hiking boots will have you walking longer and faster without even noticing. The mid-ankle design gives you great support. Improved lugs provide excellent grip, and the boot offers robust toe protection. Overall, these hiking boots for both men and women are a fantastic option for hikers of all levels. 

It’s a good boot for anyone looking for a boot without sacrificing performance. This is a great hiking boot if you’re seeking a boot to move fast and run downhill with some ankle protection. We love these hiking boots for Iceland because they’re lightweight, comfortable, and waterproof. As a bonus, they have a lot of versatility after the trip.

Salomon X Ultra 3 Mid GTX


2.) Merrell Moab 3

Best Hiking Boots - Merrel Moabs
  • Weight: 2 lb. 4 oz.
  • Material: Leather, Goretex,
  • Waterproof: Yes
  • Pros: Fit, Comfortable, Waterproof, Great Value
  • Cons: Durability and Support

Merrel is one of our favorite boot brands and delivers some of the best value on the market. They make entry-level boots that are super comfortable for long distances and with weight on your back. Merrell has managed to keep these boots affordable as they haven’t updated the design in years and have proven reliable. If it’s not broken, don’t fix it.

The boots are a blend of leather, textile, and synthetic. They are waterproof, comfortable, and have high ankle support. Tough Vibram soles on the outsole provide good cushion and traction on slick surfaces. The major downside of the boot is its lack of support.

The Moab 3 operates more as an easy trail boot than something designed for scrambling or traversing craggy trails. You may want a more robust hiking boot if you spend much time in the Rocky Mountains with lots of scree and rough rocks. However, these boots are great if you spend more time in warm environments. As a bonus, they come in a non-waterproof vented version to keep your feet cool.

Merrell Moab 3

Women’s

Men’s


La Sportiva Nucleo High GTX

La Sportiva Nucleo High GTX Best Hiking Boots
  • Weight: 2 lb. 1.6 oz.
  • Material: Nubuck Leather, Goretex,
  • Waterproof: Yes
  • Pros: Fit, Comfortable, Waterproof, Great Value, Durability, Light,
  • Cons: Ventilation, Fit

La Sportiva’s Nucleo High GTX hiking boots were designed to increase breathability throughout. A Gor-Tex Surround liner allows airflow through the top of the boot, as well as the sides and bottom of the footbed. It also boasts Nano-Cell Technology, a web-like mesh found on the sides of the boot.

Weighing in at 2lbs 1.6oz, it is hard to believe they could get away with the large swathes of leather throughout that give these hiking boots notable foot protection against some of the most rugged terrain. The only downside would be the narrowness of the footbed. These boots will not work well for men or women who generally wear wider styles. Nevertheless, they make a fantastic pair of hiking boots for Iceland.

La Sportiva Nucleo High GTX


Scarpa Zodiac Plus GTX

Scarpa Zodiac Plus GTX Best Hiking Boot
  • Weight: 2 lb. 6.4 oz.
  • Material: Leather
  • Waterproof: Yes
  • Pros: Lightweight, Great Support, Comfort, Stiff
  • Cons: Overkill For Easy Trails

The Scarpa Zodiac Plus GTX brings heavyweight hiking boot quality to the lightweight category. These supportive, durable hiking boots for Iceland are made to handle heavy loads for multiple days of backpacking without the added strain of bulky boots wearing you down. The mid-ankle height gives you excellent stability, while the PU and EVA midsole blend combines the phenomenal shock absorption of the PU with the cushy quality of EVA.

There are not many other hiking boots that offer this blended option. Also, their choice of a suede upper rather than leather boosts these boots in the breathability department – surprisingly, without sacrificing the waterproof abilities. It’s a great boot for those more skewed towards mountaineering and scrambling.

Scarpa Zodiac Plus GTX


Vasque Talus Trek Mid UltraDry

Vasque Talus Trek Mid UltraDry Best Hiking Boot
  • Weight: 2 lb. 8 oz.
  • Material: Nubuck Leather
  • Waterproof: Yes
  • Pros: Comfortable, Good Value, Style
  • Cons: Lightweight Nature Sacrifices A Little Stability and Underfoot Protection

If you plan on setting out on exceptionally rocky and wet terrain, look no further than the Vasque Talus Trek Mid UltraDry hiking boots. Explicitly designed for long-distance thru-hikes, these boots hold up through mud, rain, rocks, and snow — an excellent hiking boot for Iceland!

They are slightly heavier than the Salomon X Ultra’s, weighing in at 2lbs 8oz, but still haven’t fully tipped into the midweight category. The added weight comes from the comfortable leather exterior and rugged foot protection, which we think are worth the trade. These boots come in both men’s and women’s sizes and various colors depending on your style preference. 

Vasque Talus Trek Mid UltraDry


Salomon Quest 4D 3 GTX

Salomon Quest 4D 3 GTX
  • Weight: 2 lb. 13.2 oz.
  • Material: Leather, Textile, Goretex
  • Waterproof: Yes
  • Pros: Durable, Comfortable, Supportive
  • Cons: Heavy, Overkill For Easy Trails

While the Salomon Quest 4D hiking boots toe the line between midweight and lightweight at 2lbs 13.8oz, they make up for it in aggressive quality. These boots are the whole package, with an extremely rugged outsole that can help you glide through any environment, a flexible platform for improved comfort, and a performance fit. Salomon Quest 4D boots can easily take you from your day hike to your next big backwoods adventure, making them great for every style and experience level.

Salomon Quest 4D 3 GTX


Hoka One One Kaha

Best Hiking Boots Hoka One One Kaha
  • Weight: 2 lb. 3.8 oz.
  • Material: Leather
  • Waterproof: Yes
  • Pros: Comfort, Stability, Traction
  • Cons: Rockered Sole, Feels Unreliable in Scrambles or Off-Trail

If you love to hike, but your body and feet are sensitive to rough terrain, the Hoka One One Kaha hiking boots have your back. With extra plush soles and rocker bottoms, these boots will make you feel like you are walking on clouds as you glide along the trail.

While this maximalist approach may not be perfect for every hiker (the added padding can feel a little strange at first), it can give those with injuries or sensitivities the ability to get back out doing what they love most. However, that doesn’t mean that they skimp on the features.

These hiking boots for Iceland feature the Vibram MegaGrip sole, eVent waterproof sock liner, and leather uppers that keep you stylish, comfortable, and upright. The barely-there 1b 2oz overall weight doesn’t hurt either.

Hoka One One Kaha


Lowa Renegade GTX 

  • Weight: 2 lb. 7 oz.
  • Material: Nubuck Leather / Cordura nylon
  • Waterproof: Yes
  • Pros: Light, Comfortable, Stability
  • Cons: Durability

Similar to the Vasque Breeze, the Lowa Renegade hiking boots are highly comfortable straight out of the box, with no break-in period needed. The Lowas also has one of the highest ankle collars of any of the boots on this list, giving you exceptional ankle support for uneven terrain.

Their solid construction can stand against the best brands, and a full leather upper only adds to their overall durability. Lowa Renegade hiking boots have more stability, durability, and waterproofing than many lightweight brands but fall slightly behind the endurance of many midweight boots. 

Lowa Renegade GTX 


adidas Outdoor Terrex Swift R2 Mid GTX

  • Weight: 1 lb. 15.6 oz.
  • Material: Nubuck Leather / Cordura nylon
  • Waterproof: Yes
  • Pros: Traction, Comfort, Lightweight
  • Cons: Weak Support

Being a top footwear brand for years, it was only a matter of time before Adidas crossed over into the hiking genre, and we can’t say that we are disappointed. The Adidas Outdoor Terrex Swift R2 is the perfect combination of a hiking boot and a trail runner.

Weighing in at 1lb 15.6oz, they are light and flexible without skimping on the Gor-Tex waterproofing or impressive Continental outsole grip. While they don’t have quite the ankle support of other mid-ankle hiking boots, they do have exceptional foot and toe protection. Not to mention, they are just as stylish as you would expect an Adidas product. All that being said, these are better for summer hiking boots in Iceland — not even the shoulder seasons.

adidas Outdoor Terrex Swift R2 Mid GTX


Hiking in Snow


sólheimajökull Glacier Area

It snows in Iceland very frequently in the winter months and can be cold. However, it is not as cold as parts of the American Midwest, Northwest, Canada, or Northern Europe. Due to the ocean surrounding Iceland, temperatures remain mildly cold all year. In the South of Iceland, temperatures hover around a few degrees above or below freezing in the winter months. Things do get a bit more difficult in the North during the winter months, but travel around the area is difficult and generally only good for

If you plan to trudge through the snow, it’s not necessarily about clunky snow boots like the Sorel Caribou above. Those winter boots are great if you plan to stand around for extended periods, but they aren’t necessarily hiking boots. That being said, some insulated hiking boots will help keep your feet toasty in cold temperatures.

It’s about keeping your feet dry, so you need waterproof hiking boots like the Goretex models above. In addition to the waterproof hiking boots, quality wool socks and, if it’s really deep a pair of gaiters are lifesavers. The key is dry feet, which means warm feet.


What to Consider Before You Buy Hiking Boots


Many factors go into making the best hiking boots, some of which are more important than others. So, to simplify your purchasing experience, here are the essential things to look at before you splash your cash. 


Fit

The fit of your hiking boots is the most crucial aspect to consider before investing in a new pair. Too tight, and you risk restricting your blood flow, your toes squishing up against the rough outer layer of the boot, and swelling. Too loose, and you can develop blisters, slip on rocks, or even lose your boots on an uphill climb. 

To know you have the right fit, try on the boots at the end of the day with the socks you intend to use. This is when your feet are the most swollen, so it gives you room to grow. The boots should fit snugly everywhere, be loose nowhere, yet still allow you to wiggle your toes. 


Uppers

This refers to the material used mostly over the boot’s exterior. These generally come in split-grain, full-grain, nubuck, or synthetic leather. Specifically for hiking boots for Iceland, you should look for nubuck leather or synthetic, as they are lighter and much more breathable. 


Midsole

The midsole is the material that cushions your stride and absorbs the shock as you trek through the countryside. These are generally made from two materials – EVA and PU (polyurethane). PU midsoles are usually firmer and more durable, making them better for long-distance backcountry backpacking. EVA midsoles tend to give more cushioning but don’t last as long, so these are most recommended for day hikers. 


Lug Pattern

The lug pattern refers to the plastic grips on the outsole of your boots. Tighter lug patterns give you more grip, while lugs that are more spaced out give you great traction and are easier to clean mud from. 


Weight

Even in the lightweight category, you still need to evaluate the weight of your boots. That’s because anything below 3.3lbs is considered lightweight. The ideal weight for hiking boots is around 2lbs. This generally means they have the higher durability of a midweight boot without sacrificing ankle support and foot protection. Plus, removing the weight from your feet will make you more agile and increase your overall comfort in the long run. 


Features in Hiking Boots 

Outside of hiking boots’ basic construction, the features they have can make or break the pair. Here are a few things to keep a close eye on to avoid buyer’s remorse.


Eyelets

Personally, this is a pet peeve of mine. There is nothing worse than finding that perfect pair of boots, lacing up and hitting the trail, just to find that the eyelets are too small and your laces keep coming undone! Look for eyelets with strong brackets around the ankles that can handle you tugging your laces through them regularly without bending or breaking. 


Waterproofing

If you have ever ended up with soggy feet miles away from your final stop, you already know the importance of waterproofing. Outside of keeping you comfortable, this important feature will also help better regulate your body temperature and prevent blisters in wet environments. The two best and most common types of waterproofing are Gor-Tex and eVent. Trust me, if the boots you are looking at don’t have one of these types, you should continue the search. 


Mesh Inlays

While it may seem counterproductive to have mesh inlays in the upper part of the boots, it’s actually more beneficial than you think. They give your hiking boots a huge boost in breathability to prevent you from sweating through your socks and slipping and sliding inside your boots. 


Padding

Extra padding is not always the top choice in the midsole, as it can initially make you feel wobbly until you get used to it; however, it is a great way to increase your shock absorption and save your knees on those strenuous days in the woods. Also, look for added padding around the ankle support to prevent chafing. 


Plan For Your Trip

About Cameron Seagle

Cameron Seagle is one of the principal writers and photographers for The World Pursuit. He is a travel expert that has been traveling the world for the past decade. During this time, he established a passion for conservation and environmental sustainability. When not traveling, he's obsessed with finding the best gear and travel products. In his free time, you can find him hiking, mountain biking, mountaineering, and snowboarding. His favorite countries are Scotland, Indonesia, Mozambique, Peru, Italy, and Japan.

You can learn more about Cameron on The World Pursuit About Us Page.

1 thought on “The 10 Best Hiking Boots For Iceland To Hit The Trails”

  1. Thanks for good article. I am wondering what you recommend for glacier hiking and walking (no ice climbing) in January in Iceland. My feet get cold easily so I want insulation warmth in addition to waterproof feature. I already own a good pair of Salomon hiking boots, Sorel Caribou, but want to wear in Iceland winter good strong warm insulated waterproof hiking boots, boots that also are stiff enough to fit crampons that tour guides provide. Any recommendations?
    I was looking at Oboz Bridger 9″ Insulated Waterproof Boots but REI and Oboz said crampons don’t work on Oboz Bridger 9″ Insulated Waterproof Boots, as boots are not stiff enough. What type of crampons do the Iceland tour guides provide to tour participants? What winter hiking boots can I buy instead that are warm, stiff enough for crampons, good ankle support, insulated waterproof winter hiking boots?

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