Reykjavik

Image for Reykjavik featuring general coastal views, a coastal town and mountains

The world's most northerly capital, Reykjavik is a dynamic city with a renowned nightlife scene and some stunning vistas that are visible from the city centre.

A city like few others, Reykjavik's position in the middle of the Atlantic means that it feels different from other European capitals. With a culture that is outward-looking, child-friendly and modern, the city's population are nonetheless proud of their Norse heritage which dates back to when Iceland was first settled in the ninth century. Well known as a city break destination from where the mysterious Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights, can be readily seen, Reykjavik has much more to offer than just its natural beauty.

Easy to get to by public transport, the Hellisheidi Power Plant is a great example of Reykjavik's man-made tourist attractions, and is located about a 15-kilometre (9-mile) trip from the city centre. It offers a state-of-the-art exhibition that shows how Iceland's engineers have effectively harnessed geothermal energy. Elsewhere, among the oldest shopping streets in the city is Laugavegur, in which you can find all sorts of boutiques and comfortable restaurants serving an array of food. Take a stroll here during the weekend when it is not uncommon to find the street filled up with people enjoying its bars, especially in the summer when the sun barely sets.

Located in the heart of the city is the Harpa Concert and Conference Centre, one of Reykjavik's most recognisable landmarks. Here, you will find the Iceland Expo Pavilion, a unique 360-degree audio and visual experience that presents all of the country's wonders in a short movie presentation. Having attracted millions of guests since it opened in 2011, Harpa is also home to Reykjavik's high cultural scene with both the national opera and country's leading orchestra based here, in Iceland’s foremost performance arena.

Finally, it is worth mentioning Whales of Iceland, a relatively new attraction that first opened to the public in February 2015. Situated in the heart of Reykjavik's Old Harbour area, close to the city centre, it affords an exhilarating experience that will submerge you into the underwater world of these fascinating creatures. Coupled with many more great sites and excellent quality accommodation, there is every reason to plan a visit to Iceland's most exciting city.

Top hotels in Reykjavik

Estimated price for 1 night / 2 adults
Center Hotels Plaza
Center Hotels Plaza
3 out of 5
Adalstraeti 4, Reykjavik
Free cancellationReserve now, pay when you stay
€79
per night
Feb 27 - Feb 28

Located in Downtown, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Reykjavik City Library, Reykjavik City Hall and Reykjavik Harbour. Laugavegur and Harpa are also ...

4.1/5Very Good! (2,063 reviews)

"As the name suggests, the hotel was central to most things like shopping, eating and drinking."…"

Reviewed on 22 Feb 2020

Center Hotels Plaza
Room With a View Hotel
Room With a View Hotel
3.5 out of 5
18 Laugavegur, Reykjavik
€110
per night
Mar 3 - Mar 4

Located in Downtown, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Laugavegur, Reykjavik City Hall and Hallgrimskirkja. Reykjavik Harbour and Harpa are also within ...

4.4/5Wonderful! (28 reviews)

"Great location in the thick of it for Reykjavík. The accommodation was great with spacious rooms and good facilities. Unfortunately due to the weather we couldn’t take advantage of the hot tub on the balcony!!"…"

Reviewed on 17 Feb 2020

Room With a View Hotel
Reykjavik Residence Hotel
Reykjavik Residence Hotel
3.5 out of 5
Hverfisgata 45, Reykjavik
€132
per night
Mar 4 - Mar 5

Located in Downtown, this apartment building is within a 10-minute walk of Laugavegur, Harpa and Hallgrimskirkja. Reykjavik City Hall and Reykjavik Harbour are ...

4.8/5Exceptional! (1,672 reviews)

"We stayed at the Reykjavik Residence and has a great experience. The room was a nice size, amenities were good, and the staff was friendly. Close to everything and based on other reviews we brought earplugs but didn’t need them. We’d stay here again."…"

Reviewed on 22 Feb 2020

Reykjavik Residence Hotel

Popular things to do in Reykjavik

Reykjavik Harbour
Image for Reykjavik Harbour

Reykjavik Harbour

4.5/5(669 reviews)

Once a maritime and fishing precinct, the Old Harbour now buzzes with restaurants, cafés and tour boat operators.

Reykjavik City Hall
Image for Reykjavik City Hall

Reykjavik City Hall

4/5(225 reviews)

The dynamic architectural design and picturesque location of this modern civic building near the Tjörnin lakeside has made it a landmark in downtown Reykjavík.

Laugavegur
Image for Laugavegur

Laugavegur

4.5/5(430 reviews)

Brightly colored shopfronts spill into the street and add atmosphere to the sidewalk dining areas and designer stores of Reykjavík’s main downtown shopping strip.

Harpa
Image for Harpa

Harpa

4.5/5(453 reviews)

The sculptural glass façade of Reykjavík’s premier concert hall and conference center shines over the harbor, reflecting the water and the city’s energy.

Hallgrimskirkja
Image for Hallgrimskirkja

Hallgrimskirkja

4.5/5(499 reviews)

With its magnificent tower, this church is one of Reykjavík’s most famous landmarks, dominating the skyline and serving as a useful compass point.

Perlan
Image for Perlan

Perlan

4.5/5(249 reviews)

This unusual glass-domed structure combines the practical aspects of the city’s water heating system with spectacular architectural vision.

Top activities in Reykjavik

Full-Day Golden Circle Tour
Image for Full-Day Golden Circle Tour

Full-Day Golden Circle Tour

92% of travellers recommend
€52
Per adult
Guided Full-Day Tour of the South Coast
Image for Guided Full-Day Tour of the South Coast

Guided Full-Day Tour of the South Coast

90% of travellers recommend
€76
Per adult
Game of Thrones Filming Locations Tour
Image for Game of Thrones Filming Locations Tour

Game of Thrones Filming Locations Tour

94% of travellers recommend
€101
Per adult
Northern Lights Ocean Cruise
Image for Northern Lights Ocean Cruise

Northern Lights Ocean Cruise

€81
Per adult
Golden Circle Day Trip With Optional Blue Lagoon Entry
Image for Golden Circle Day Trip With Optional Blue Lagoon Entry

Golden Circle Day Trip With Optional Blue Lagoon Entry

94% of travellers recommend
€50
Per adult
Airport Transfer in Iceland from Keflavik Airport to Reykjavik City one way
Image for Airport Transfer in Iceland from Keflavik Airport to Reykjavik City one way

Airport Transfer in Iceland from Keflavik Airport to Reykjavik City one way

€25
Per adult

Reviews of Reykjavik

4.7

Top Destination

5 - Excellent
745
5 - Excellent 71.42857142857143%
4 - Good
268
4 - Good 25.69511025886865%
3 - Okay
29
3 - Okay 2.7804410354745923%
2 - Disappointing
0
2 - Disappointing 0%
1 - Terrible
1
1 - Terrible 0.09587727708533078%

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

Feb 22, 2020

When booking tours they often say hotel pick up. Check,as there are strict regulations where buses can go so it may be the nearest numbered bus stop to you.It is expensive but there are supermarkets to buy bread & butter items ie Bonus, 2010, Netto

4/5 - Good

Verified traveller

Feb 22, 2020

Great place to visit in itself and a good hub for various trips. Reykjavik seems to be experiencing a bit of a boom at the moment and there is a lot of development and building going on which perhaps detracts slightly from the overall experience.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

Feb 22, 2020

Clean ,safe friendly city - worth taking some cheap crampons if you are visiting waterfalls etc (we visited in February and just about managed without them but it would have made some visits a bit safer as it was icy underfoot at the sights)

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

Feb 21, 2020

Beautiful City with friendly people surrounded by absolutely amazing scenery

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

Feb 21, 2020

This a lovely place to visit and base yourself for the Golden Circle and Blue Lagoon tours.

4/5 - Good

Verified traveller

Feb 20, 2020

Reykjavik is small enough to be a pleasure to visit, though a little expensive

Read travel guides and advice on visiting Reykjavik

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