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RE05-Reykjavik Panorama

What to do in Reykjavík

October 16, 2019

RE05-Reykjavik Panorama

What to do in Reykjavík

October 16, 2019

Reykjavík has a lot to offer

Nauthólsvík

Near the domestic airport and the University of Reykjavík, you'll find this man-made, white sandy beach nestled in the otherwise black urban shoreline of the capital. During summer, geothermal water is pumped into the sea in this area so it's possible to have a comfortable splash. There's also a hot tub on the beach which is kept at around 38.5°C all year round. Nauthólsvík is a popular place for sea swimmers who brave the open water around this golden cove, even in winter when the water temperature sometimes drops to -2°C.

Austurvöllur

Each square in downtown Reykjavík has its own character and history, but Austurvöllur is probably the most important one. Its boarders are lined by Alþingi (the national parliament) and Dómkirkjan (the cathedral) and boasts a statue of Iceland's hero of independence, Jón Sigurðsson, right in the middle. Should you need to protest something, as is your democratic right, head straight to Austurvöllur with your sharp message on a cardboard sign. But on sunny days, the area is full of people enjoying the weather and the services of multiple restaurants, bars and cafés around the square.

Ægisíða

This street by the ocean has some of the most spectacular houses in Reykjavík as well as splendid views, a dramatic shoreline and accessible walkways. Take a stroll along Ægisíða to the east and you'll end up in Nauthólsvík beach. Head west to explore the peninsula of Seltjarnarnes. These walkways are also the perfect place to enjoy a beautiful sunset.

Skólavörðustígur

The shopping street which lies diagonally from Laugavegur. It goes up to Skólavörðuholt hill where Hallgrímskirkja, Iceland's most famous church, sits. Enjoy the street's many boutiques, designer shops, galleries, restaurants and cafés while snapping that all important instagram-worthy photo of Reykjavik's most recognisable landmark, Hallgrímskirkja.

Hallgrímskirkja

Iceland's most famous church took 60 years to build, not because it was such a complicated build, but rather because this tiny nation had no money for such an ambitious project. The church was designed by Iceland's state architect, Guðjón Samúelsson, and is meant to resemble basalt rock columns.

Landakotskirkja

Christ's Church is the catholic cathedral in Iceland. It was also designed by state architect Guðjón Samúelsson and opened in 1930. They hold mass in Icelandic, English, Polish, Spanish and sometimes Latvian.

Heiðmörk

The conservation area of Reykjavík and the surrounding towns was proclaimed in 1950. The total area is about 3,200 hectares or 7,900 acres. Since the proclamation, over 4 million trees have been planted there. Today, the area is very popular for outdoor recreation.

Grjótaþorpið

This small neighbourhood in downtown Reykjavík has some of the oldest houses in the city. The mean building year of all houses there is 1904. For a while, there were plans to tear down the entire area to build a highway in the 1960s and despite it not coming to fruition a lot of the buildings were destroyed. Today, the remaining houses have been beautifully restored, creating a mini historical village within the city.

Esjan

One of the most famous landmarks in Iceland. It is the longest mountain in the country and a very popular outdoor recreational area. It is about 900m at its highest point. The path up the mountain is divided into sections and is marked with signs along the way. Each sign indicates how difficult the path ahead is. 200 metres from the top is Steinn (e. Stone), where inexperienced climbers usually turn around because the last 200 metres are quite steep and difficult.

Gljúfrasteinn

Iceland ranks fourth in the most Nobel Prize winners per capita, with a total of one Nobel Prize winner. Halldór Laxness won the esteemed prize in 1955 for literature.

Gljúfrasteinn is the house he and his family lived in for over fifty years and now it has been turned into a museum, looking exactly as it did when they lived there. The house is in the beautiful valley of Mosfellsdalur, right outside Mosfellsbær on the way to Þingvellir and a worthwhile stop for travellers heading off to see the Golden Circle.

reykjavik-hallgrimskirkja
reykjavik-harbour

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What to do in Reykjavík

October 16, 2019

RE05-Reykjavik Panorama

What to do in Reykjavík

October 16, 2019

Reykjavík has a lot to offer

Nauthólsvík

Near the domestic airport and the University of Reykjavík, you'll find this man-made, white sandy beach nestled in the otherwise black urban shoreline of the capital. During summer, geothermal water is pumped into the sea in this area so it's possible to have a comfortable splash. There's also a hot tub on the beach which is kept at around 38.5°C all year round. Nauthólsvík is a popular place for sea swimmers who brave the open water around this golden cove, even in winter when the water temperature sometimes drops to -2°C.

Austurvöllur

Each square in downtown Reykjavík has its own character and history, but Austurvöllur is probably the most important one. Its boarders are lined by Alþingi (the national parliament) and Dómkirkjan (the cathedral) and boasts a statue of Iceland's hero of independence, Jón Sigurðsson, right in the middle. Should you need to protest something, as is your democratic right, head straight to Austurvöllur with your sharp message on a cardboard sign. But on sunny days, the area is full of people enjoying the weather and the services of multiple restaurants, bars and cafés around the square.

Ægisíða

This street by the ocean has some of the most spectacular houses in Reykjavík as well as splendid views, a dramatic shoreline and accessible walkways. Take a stroll along Ægisíða to the east and you'll end up in Nauthólsvík beach. Head west to explore the peninsula of Seltjarnarnes. These walkways are also the perfect place to enjoy a beautiful sunset.

Skólavörðustígur

The shopping street which lies diagonally from Laugavegur. It goes up to Skólavörðuholt hill where Hallgrímskirkja, Iceland's most famous church, sits. Enjoy the street's many boutiques, designer shops, galleries, restaurants and cafés while snapping that all important instagram-worthy photo of Reykjavik's most recognisable landmark, Hallgrímskirkja.

Hallgrímskirkja

Iceland's most famous church took 60 years to build, not because it was such a complicated build, but rather because this tiny nation had no money for such an ambitious project. The church was designed by Iceland's state architect, Guðjón Samúelsson, and is meant to resemble basalt rock columns.

Landakotskirkja

Christ's Church is the catholic cathedral in Iceland. It was also designed by state architect Guðjón Samúelsson and opened in 1930. They hold mass in Icelandic, English, Polish, Spanish and sometimes Latvian.

Heiðmörk

The conservation area of Reykjavík and the surrounding towns was proclaimed in 1950. The total area is about 3,200 hectares or 7,900 acres. Since the proclamation, over 4 million trees have been planted there. Today, the area is very popular for outdoor recreation.

Grjótaþorpið

This small neighbourhood in downtown Reykjavík has some of the oldest houses in the city. The mean building year of all houses there is 1904. For a while, there were plans to tear down the entire area to build a highway in the 1960s and despite it not coming to fruition a lot of the buildings were destroyed. Today, the remaining houses have been beautifully restored, creating a mini historical village within the city.

Esjan

One of the most famous landmarks in Iceland. It is the longest mountain in the country and a very popular outdoor recreational area. It is about 900m at its highest point. The path up the mountain is divided into sections and is marked with signs along the way. Each sign indicates how difficult the path ahead is. 200 metres from the top is Steinn (e. Stone), where inexperienced climbers usually turn around because the last 200 metres are quite steep and difficult.

Gljúfrasteinn

Iceland ranks fourth in the most Nobel Prize winners per capita, with a total of one Nobel Prize winner. Halldór Laxness won the esteemed prize in 1955 for literature.

Gljúfrasteinn is the house he and his family lived in for over fifty years and now it has been turned into a museum, looking exactly as it did when they lived there. The house is in the beautiful valley of Mosfellsdalur, right outside Mosfellsbær on the way to Þingvellir and a worthwhile stop for travellers heading off to see the Golden Circle.

reykjavik-hallgrimskirkja
reykjavik-harbour

The RE blog

vaskur
Golden-Circle-and-Fontana-Steam-bath
Fjaðrárgljúfur
Into the Glacier
Eistnaflug_EydisKlaraThorleifsdottir
iStock-1151150610
RE63
JRJ09685-min Dress the Part
Thorsmork Panorama
Nature Pool
BlueLagoon1
Skógafoss waterfall Iceland hero mynd
RE05-Reykjavik Panorama
kirkjufell-12x7
Reykjanes

Drinks are on us!

Did you know that Iceland has some of the purest tap water in the world?

Read more