The population of Iceland was 376,248 on 1 January 2022 and had increased by 4,658 from 1 January 2021 or by 2.0%. A total of 193,095 men and 183,153 women lived in the country at the beginning of the year, an increase of 2.1% for men and 1.9% for women.
Proportionally greatest population increase in the South
On 1 January 2022, 4,354 more people lived in the Capital region than a year ago. This is equivalent to a 1.8% population increase in one year. Proportionally, however, the population increase was greatest in the South where it increased by 3.3%, or 1,049, from last year. The population increase in the Southwest region was 3.2% which is also above the average, or 913 individuals. The population growth was proportionally lower in the West (1.9%), North East (1.8%), East (1.7%) and the Westfjords (1.4%). The smallest increase was in the Northwest, where the number increased by only five individuals or 0.07%.
Population decreased in 27 of 69 municipalities
There were 69 municipalities in Iceland on 1 January 2022, same as a year before. The municipalities are diverse in size of population. Reykjavík was the most populous with 135,688 inhabitants while Árneshreppur had the smallest population of 42 inhabitants. Thirty-six municipalities had less than 1,000 inhabitants, but only eleven had 5,000 inhabitants or more.
In 2021, the population decreased in 18 of the country's 69 municipalities with the biggest proportional decrease in Eyja- og Miklaholtshreppur (14.2%). Of the eleven largest municipalities with 5,000 inhabitants or more, the largest increase was in Garðabær (4.3%), Reykjanesbær (3.8%) and the Municipality of Árborg (3.7%). The increase was also above the national average in Mosfellsbær (3.5%), Fjarðabyggð (2.5%) and Akureyrarbær (2.2%) but the increase was below the national average in Akraneskaupstaður (1.9%), Reykjavíkurborg (1.8%), Kópavogsbær (1.7%) and Múlaþing (0.7%). Of the 11 largest municipalities, the number increased the least in Hafnarfjörður (0.3%).
63% of the population in the Greater Reykjavik area
About 63% of the population lived in the Greater Reykjavík area on 1 January 2022, i.e. the continuous settlement from Hafnarfjörður to Mosfellsbær, a total of 236,518. The second largest urban area was in Keflavík and Njarðvík, where 20,298 inhabitants lived, while in Akureyri and the surrounding area 19,573 inhabitants lived on 1 January 2022. Inhabitants in rural areas were 21,745 individuals or 5.8% of the population. Rural areas are defined as the countryside or localities with less than 200 inhabitants.