Reykjavik, Iceland Travel Guide - Sightseeing, Hotel, Restaurant & Shopping Highlights (Illustrated)
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The world's northernmost national capital
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The open campus is a great area to walk around, as you will find the National Museum of Iceland at its east side, and Haskolabio University Cinema at its north side. Videy is an island 5 kilometers northeast of Reykjavik, where Yoko Ono set up the Imagine Peace Tower to memorialize her late husband - the former Beatles member John Lennon. The tower is a white stone monument where 15 searchlights come together in a pillar of light shine up into the sky.
Whale watching from Reykjavik is a popular tourist activity in Reykjavik and most tours depart from Reykjavik Old Harbor. All year round you can see white-beaked dolphins and harbor porpoises in Faxafloi Bay, which stretches from Reykjavik to Snaefellsnes Peninsula. Humpback and minke whales are commonly seen during the summer.
There are usually two types of boats you can get onboard for whale watching, the bigger boat provides shelter from bad weather but the smaller RIB boat can take you closer to the whales. You get to hang out with the locals in a beautiful setting, with snow-covered roads and flickering lights brightening up the darkest month of Iceland. During Advent, you can find a small Christmas market in Ingolfstorg Square downtown, offering a perfect chance to sample or purchase local food and crafts, from friendly chefs, creative designers, and craftsmen.
Yarn shops in Reykjavik are highly recommended and you should plan to take some home as a souvenir. Knitting is a very popular creative pastime for Icelanders and everyone has at least one signature wool sweater, a lopapeysa. In the downtown shops, you will find Icelandic yarns in elegant colors with knitting tools and accessories.
Wool is considered the most suitable fabric for surviving the freezing cold weather. In the wintertime where the daylight is so much shorter, the best thing to do is to set up a cozy spot at home for knitting, play some relaxing music and make some hot cocoa. The zoo inhabitants include Icelandic horses, some local farm animals, and a few wild mammals that call the far north home. There is also a small exhibition of fish, reptiles, insects, and amphibians.
As a result of the tourism boom in Iceland since , satisfying international tastebuds became a priority!source
Ultimate Guide to Reykjavik | Capital of Iceland | Extreme Iceland
Even the Reykjavikans became picky eaters and started to demand new flavors and cooking methods! Many restaurants adapted to the trend accordingly, by experimenting with new elements on the traditional Icelandic cuisine. Now in Reykjavik, you have many options when it comes to fine dining. On the search for Icelandic local cuisine, downtown Reykjavik has a range of suitable and traditional Icelandic restaurants.
Why not join a food tour to explore a diverse selection of authentic local cuisine, unique to Iceland. The accommodation in downtown Reykjavik is a convenient distance to all major attractions so you can explore the city at your liberty. If you only plan to use your accommodation as a base, the greater Reykjavik area has plenty of accommodation options including hotels, hostels, and guesthouses.
For travelers on a budget, Airbnb is getting more popular due to its competitive prices. Please keep in mind that summer and winter are two busy seasons, make sure you book your accommodation in advance. The main bus station in Reykjavik is the BSI bus terminal where the closest attractions are all within a minute walk. Transportation in the Capital Region is fairly convenient. The public bus system is named Straeto , meaning bus. Its yellow color is very easy to notice on the road.
Reykjavik is situated in southwest Iceland, where temperatures are cold! The Gulf Stream takes the warmer current to the shore of Reykjavik then moves all the way up to the north, giving Reykjavik a mild temperature all year round. As long as you dress suitably and follow the weather forecast attentively, winter in Iceland is indescribably charming.
Depending on what you plan on doing, Summer is a great time to visit Reykjavik and Iceland because of the midnight sun. This hour daylight is best for traveling! The downside is that there are more tourist crowds. The best time to visit Reykjavik and Iceland depends on what you want to see and how well you are prepared for staying in Iceland. Map - Click to Enlarge. As an astounding landmark in the capital city of Iceland, Hallgrimskirkja Church is the highest building in downtown Reykjavik, dominating the skyline of the northernmost capital of the world.
As a destination like no other, we are going to go over everything you need to know about visiting Hallgrimskirkja and nearby. Whether you want to travel solo, with some friends, or with your family, Iceland is the perfect vacation spot. Learn all about whales in Iceland. Whales are among the most enigmatic and fascinating creatures on our planet. Icelandic waters are some of their favorite areas to live, thanks to the advantageous location and natural assets. Don't miss the chance to see this amazing natural phenomenon!
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Reykjavik Harbor, or Old Harbor in Reykjavik. University of Iceland, Reykjavik, Iceland. Night lights in Reykjavik, Iceland. The river itself is a nice mix of beauty and exhilaration, with views of scenic canyons between heart-. Why not see the aftermath of the volcanic eruption in Eyjafjallajokull from the best possible place — take a helicopter tour! For those adventure seeking visitors that want to explore parts of Iceland normally hidden from the naked eye, but are not experienced divers, no need to worry. The fissure Silfra is not only a world class diving location but ideal for snorkeling tours unlike anything you have seen before.
The crystal clear water offers over meters of visibility so those not experienced enough for diving can easily enjoy this hidden gem. This location offers the chance of floating along the fissure and seeing first hand the amazing world underneath ours, an adventure most can handle and previous experience is not required.
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A number of tour operators offer day tours in this location all year. Icelandic nature in all its splendour. The steam columns from the geothermal plants at Nesjavellir and Hellisheidi are a magnificent sight. The plant is owned by Reykjavik Energy and is a striking example of how geothermal energy is harnessed in a sustainable manner in Iceland and a showcase for the rest of the world. Experienced guides are on-hand to provide informative presentations backed by multimedia shows about sustainable green energy as a global energy source.
Trails vary in length and difficulty and trail maps are available at location. You go down to the cafeteria and have some breakfast.