If you are thinking of traveling to Reykjavík, Iceland, you are in the right place. As both the capital and largest city of Iceland, Reykjavík is a popular destination. The first settlement in the city, which is the center of Iceland’s cultural, economic and administrative activities, was made in 874. The city, where there was no urban development until the 19th century, was reconstructed as a commercial center in 1786 and started to develop rapidly.
Reykjavík is among the cleanest, greenest and safest cities in the world. Although the Elliðaá River, which runs through the city, cannot be used for this purpose due to its unsuitable flow for transportation, it is the most suitable river for salmon fishing in the country. The highest mountain in the city is Mount Esja with an elevation of 914 meters.
Most of the city of Reykjavík is located on the Seltjarnarnes peninsula. The suburban area has expanded to the south and east. In Reykjavík, which is a fairly flat city, the population density is low, so the dwellings are spread over a wide area. This planning work, which gives a sense of relief to the city, is one of the most important factors that enable visitors to find peace in this beautiful city.
When to Go to Reykjavík
Reykjavík has a sub-polar oceanic climate. Although it is located at a very high northern latitude, winter temperatures rarely drop below -15 degrees Celsius. The reason for this is the North Atlantic Current, which is an extension of the Gulf Stream. The location of the city by the sea did not make it vulnerable to strong winds. Although the summer temperatures do not exceed 20 degrees, it has an air that can be called cool, not cold. The best time to visit the city is July, when the humidity is low and the temperature is highest.
Where to Stay in Reykjavík
Let us share with you some of the things you need to know when traveling to Reykjavík. Reykjavík, the capital of Iceland, is also Iceland’s largest city. In Reykjavík, you can enjoy the breathtaking scenery, do many nature activities or visit museums and historical sites. You can enjoy the northern lights, especially between March and October.
You can find many hotels in Reykjavík that are affordable and offer you great amenities. Most of the hotels are close to the city center, but if you are looking for a peaceful and quiet environment away from the hustle and bustle of the city, you can choose hotels further away.
Reykjavík, both the largest city and the capital of Iceland, the happiest and most peaceful country in the world, is a city that will blow your mind with its unique natural beauties. You can observe Viking history in the city or visit various museums and be intertwined with art. You may need to spend a lot of time to see everything in Reykjavík, where the nightlife is as colorful as the day. Therefore, the hotel you will stay in is also of great importance.
In Reykjavík, you can find both luxury and cheap hotels and boutique hotels according to your budget. However, apartments and apartments are the majority in Reykjavík and are preferred because they provide a more friendly environment. Contrary to luxury hotels in other countries, most of the hotels and apartments have more suitable environment and equipment for outdoor activities. The reason for this is that the geographical and natural features of Reykjavík provide ample opportunities for these activities.
Places to Visit in Reykjavík
There are many places to see in Reykjavík, which fascinates visitors with its natural beauties and architecture. Here are some of them.
Other must-see places in Reykjavík: Alþingishúsið, Iceland Austurvöllur, Reykjavík Municipal Museum, Blue Lagoon, Iceland Art Center, Hallgrímskirkja, Harpa Reykjavík, Heiðmörk, Höfði, Iceland National Museum, Rauðhólar, Reykjavík Maritime Museum.
Tjornin (The Pond)
Feeding the ducks around this small pond in the center of the city will give you peace of mind. Around the pond is a park called Hljómskálagarðurinn (Music Pavillion Park), which is very popular in hot and sunny weather. There is a small bird sanctuary in the reed area at the south end. Visitors are welcome here at all times, except during the egg-laying season.
Fascinating with its wonderful architecture, this church overlooks the city from a high hill. In front of the church is a statue of Icelandic explorer Leif Ericsson. The entrance fee to the church is SEK 900 for adults and SEK 100 for children.
Reykjavík City Museum
Reykjavík City Museum is an open-air museum. The museum includes both the old Árbær farm and the old Icelandic buildings that were moved here by the moving system, as they correspond to the places to be opened during the re-urban re-planning of the city at the end of the 18th century.
Outdoor Thermal Pools
An essential part of Icelandic culture, outdoor thermal pools are the number one activity Icelanders choose for relaxation. You can also chat with the local people in these pools.
Transportation in Reykjavík
When you travel to Reykjavík, you should also know how to get there. Reykjavík has a very clean and safe city bus network. Bus lines are called Strætó. A ticket costs 420 Kroner. However, it is not possible to get change from the driver. If you are transferring, ask the driver for a transfer ticket. This ticket is valid for 75 minutes and is discounted. The transfer ticket is called skiptimimið. In taxis, the meter starts at 600-700 Kron and it is possible to pay by credit card.
Your trip to Reykjavík continues, if you can’t decide what to eat, then it’s time to talk about what to eat in Reykjavík. An island country located between Europe and North America, Iceland’s cuisine is based on fish, lamb and other natural foods produced daily. Its fish graze in cold polar waters, and its sheep in fertile meadows. Therefore, it can be considered as the most biological cuisine in the world and the refrigerator nationwide for Iceland.
Lobster, sea bass, cod and salmon are Iceland’s most consumed dishes. Fish is traditionally baked in the oven, unlike ours, marinated in garlic, onions and salt in Iceland.
Randalin is their very famous national sweet. Cakes with layers of blackberry jam are also very common. Another traditional dessert in Iceland is wild strawberries called “skyr” and served with cream mixed with unsalted cheese.
Dill: A distinguished representative of the cuisine called “New North”, the restaurant serves only locally grown products.
Sægreifinn: The most delicious of Iceland’s famous lobster soup is in this restaurant. In the restaurant, which mainly serves seafood, fish is grilled in front of your core.
Wouldn’t you like to beautify your Reykjavík trip with shopping? Laugavegur is Reykjavík’s main shopping street. There are also stores of international brands on this street, which is full of boutiques where you can see stylish examples of Northern European design. There are souvenir shops on Skólavörðustígur Street. Records and booksellers and shops are also on this street. Reykjavík’s most famous flea market is Kolaportið,
Reykjavík is famous for its nightlife. Especially on weekends, you will see that this quiet city is suddenly lively at 12 o’clock. However, the liquor sold in bars and clubs is quite expensive. That’s why people prefer to drink at home and go out like that. There are more than 100 bars and clubs in the city. Most of them are on Laugavegur Street and the streets that connect to it. Bars usually close around 4:30 on weekends and at 1:00 on weekdays. When you travel to Reykjavík, do not leave without tasting the nightlife!
- Gay Pride (August)
- National Day (June)
- Iceland Airwaves (October)
- Reykjavík International Film Festival (September)
- Reykjavík Arts Festival (May)
- Culture Night (August)
Reykjavík Public Holidays
- New Year (January 1)
- Good Friday (March 25)
- After Easter
- First Day of Summer (April 21)
- Labor Day (May 1)
- Ascension Day (May 5)
- Republic Day (June 17)
- Bank Holiday (August 1)
- Christmas (25 December)
*The days of holidays without a date change according to the year.