ISK: Icelandic króna
Reykjavik holidays & city breaks 2021
From historical and cultural gems to striking architecture, holidays in Reykjavik guarantee lasting memories. Stunning natural attractions, a vibrant dining scene and bars galore complete the once-in-a-lifetime experience.
Despite its compact size, Reykjavik has a huge heart. From Viking ruins and quirky museums to performance halls, the Icelandic capital has attractions for all tastes. Away from the historic downtown, nature-lovers will be in their element soaking in outdoor thermal baths, exploring the area’s volcanic landscapes and interacting with the local wildlife.
Northern Lights in Reykjavik
If you’re visiting Reykjavik for winter holidays, head to the outskirts of the Icelandic city to see Aurora Borealis, or the Northern Lights. The natural phenomenon sets the night sky alight with swirls of emerald green, pink, yellow and blue. To learn more about Aurora Borealis, head to the city’s Aurora Reykjavik, an information centre with exhibits and multimedia displays.
Why book Reykjavik holidays
Top attractions to visit
Witnessing the Northern Lights is a must when visiting Reykjavic
Cultural hotspot not to miss
Go on a tour along the Golden Circle route
Art & culture
National Museum of Iceland, Reykjavik 871+/-2, Sun Voyager
Sample the local food
Expect tender lamb, succulent langoustine and cured shark
Rest & relaxation
Savour your time at a geothermal spring in the Blue Lagoon
Hit the nightlife & bar scene
Head to Laugavegur strip for a wide range of bars and clubs
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Your guide to Reykjavik holidays
Top 5 things to do in Reykjavik
Reykjavik city breaks offer a huge range of attractions bound to appeal to those passionate about culture, nature and history.
- Reykjavik’s most iconic structure, the Hallgrimskirkja Church is a rocket-like building with a main tower and cascading columns. Hop on an elevator up the 74-meter structure for spectacular 360-degree views across the Nordic capital.
- Centring around a 10th-century longhouse once inhabited by Vikings, the Settlement Exhibition delves into the Icelandic city’s ancient past. Some other attractions on display here include Icelandic artefacts such as iron axes and fish-oil lamps.
- One of the most important museums in the city, the National Museum of Iceland document’s the country’s 1,200 years of history. The two-storey museum features more than 3,000 artefacts and photographs.
- Snap a photo or two at the Sun Voyager Sculpture, a striking stainless steel structure of a ship. Unveiled in 1990 to celebrate Reykjavik’s 200th anniversary, the sculpture is a symbol of light and hope.
- Take a relaxing stroll along the boardwalks of the colourful Old Harbour in the heart of the city. Constructed between 1913 and 1917, the harbour affords amazing views of Mount Esjan.
Nature in Reykjavik
Reykjavik and its surroundings offer plenty of natural beauty. From scenic coastlines to urban parks, holidays in Reykjavik will leave you both relaxed and energised.
- Reykjavikurtjorn, or Tjornin, is a charming pond fringed by colourful Scandinavian homes. The area is home to flocks of geese, ducks and whooper swans.
- Hop on a ferry to Viðey Island, which is home to 30 bird species and one of Iceland’s oldest churches. Don’t miss Yoko Ono’s tower of lights installation for her late husband, John Lennon.
- Just under an hour’s drive from the city, Mount Esjan features a scenic 5-mile hiking trail. While challenging to reach, the 914-metre peak has great views of Reykjavik.
- While beaches aren’t the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about holidays in Reykjavik, the city’s coastline is breathtaking. Visit the Nautholsvik Geothermal Beach where hot water is continually pumped into the ocean and the adjacent jacuzzis.
- Take in the surreal landscape of Rauðhólar Red Hills in the Heiðmörk Nature Reserve. The hills are what remains of the red pseudo-craters that formed in the area 5,000 years ago.
What our local experts say
Local guide: 48 hours in Reykjavik
Icelanders believe in magical folk, and it’s easy to see why on this wild and otherworldly island. Its haunting beauty has landed it a starring role on the Game of Thrones TV series, which is partly filmed here. Reykjavik is the world’s most northerly capital, full of quirky ...Continue reading
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Your Reykjavik questions answered
For the best temperatures and longest days (up to 21 hours of daylight), visit Reykjavik between June and August.
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Prices last checked at 00:21 26 January 2021