The vitality that pulsates through Reykjavik’s every street comes as a result of the city’s truly paradoxical essence; one Viking-boot clad foot firmly rooted in its rich heritage, and one pounding the streets of contemporary restaurants and chic bars. Visually, Reykjavik is an explosion of rustic-style color and life, but it is the endless zeal and cultural pride of its residents continually driving this spectacular city forward.
As Iceland’s main tourist destination, Reykjavik has no shortage of options when it comes to accommodation. Whether it’s a shoe-string hostel, swanky, boutique hotel or rustic guesthouse, you are sure to find exactly what you are looking for somewhere in the city. Below is a guide to Reykjavik’s neighborhoods, and what each of them offers, to help you choose the best place to stay in the city.
When it comes to shopping, the Reykjavik locals like it luxurious. As a fashion-conscious nation, it is no surprise that Iceland’s capital is brimming over with designer stores and chic boutiques, as well as kooky markets to discover. Whether it’s a stylish new look, or a memento of your trip, you are sure to find it somewhere in the city.
Like any contemporary, cosmopolitan city, Reykjavik’s dining options are varied and diverse. Boasting an excellent selection of international food restaurants, the city has an answer for any pizza, curry or burger craving. However, it is nothing short of sacrilege to visit and not sample a rustic, steaming plate of hangikjöt (aromatically smoked lamb) or tucking into a hunk of rúgbrauð (spiced rye bread). Icelandic meals are always filling and full of meat and dairy produce, but vegetable dishes have become much more commonplace in recent years. Fish also finds its way into most traditional dishes in Reykjavik, due to the miles of coastline and harbors.
The multitude of attractions, which draw tourists worldwide onto Reykjavik’s streets, is truly astounding. A world-class collection of museums, galleries and exhibitions, all showcasing Iceland’s cultural heritage, can be found in many main areas of the city, scattered amongst breathtaking examples of innovative, Reykjavik architecture, most notably in the form of its many churches and cathedrals. Journey a little in any direction from the city center, and you will undoubtedly stumble across natural landscapes of the most visually impressive variety. Fjords and geothermal pools, mountains and volcanoes, there are miles of beautiful expanses just waiting to be discovered.
A Reykjavik city break is a high-energy experience. Step out of your Reykjavik hotel to discover a Viking past, legendary nightlife and nature’s marvels in Europe’s northernmost capital.
Take a holiday to Iceland at the top of the world. Explore a restless landscape of volcanic crags and icy plains, then dip into steaming natural pools. Or book an Iceland hotel for a night out with the Viking party people.