10 Things To Do In Reykjavík


Below is a list of our favourite things to do in Reykjavik. Be sure to scroll to the bottom for our interactive map, to help you plan your city adventure.



1. Visit Hallgrimskirkja Church

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. It stands out among the cute, colorful two-floored houses, and for which it’s one of the most photogenic spots in the entire country. In summer, from May to September, the church opens at 9 a.m. and closes at 9 p.m. The tower closes at 8:30 p.m., making it a perfect spot for seeing the cityscape covered by soft light.


The entrance to the church is free. It only costs when you want to take the elevator to the tower, which is highly recommended to see the city.


For children aged from seven to 16, it only costs ISK 100, that’s roughly no more than one dollar or one euro.

For adults, the admission fee is ISK 1000.



2. Old harbour

The old harbour is the heart of Reykjavík and the catalyst to its formation. The city grew up around the harbour and in the early 20th century it became one of the centres of the Icelandic trawling industry. The harbour area has been transformed in the past decades. It is still one of the most important harbours in Iceland, but in recent years tourism and whale watching have gradually replaced fishing vessels while shops and restaurants have occupied warehouses.



3. Whale Watching

Abundant summer daylight combined with a unique mixture of cold and warm sea currents, which blend in Iceland’s shallow fjords, make the Icelandic territorial waters home to a wide variety of krill and fish.

As a result, Iceland is a bountiful feeding ground that attracts 24 different whale species, from the enormous sperm whale to the gentle little harbor porpoise.


  • Whale Watching Tour from Reykjavik by Special Tours
  • Price: approximately 92 USD
  • Chances of seeing a whale: 99 percent
  • Availability: all year
  • Common species: minke and humpback whale, whale-beaked dolphins, and harbor porpoise


4. Harpa Concert Hall


Harpa is one of Reykjavík’s most striking landmarks and a centre of cultural and social life in the very heart of the city. Harpa is a tourist destination and an award-winning work of art that has been visited by millions of people since opening in 2011.



5. Sun Voyager


The gleaming steel sculpture on Reykjavik’s splendid waterfront that resembles a Viking long-ship is the ‘Solfar’ or ‘Sun Voyager.’  The artist Jon Gunnar Arnason created the striking landmark.


Many locals enjoy strolling by the seaside and marveling at the view of the bay with Mount Esja in the background. The Sun Voyager is also a great attraction for tourists. It offers a superb photo opportunity, especially when the sun is setting.



6. Explore the Public Gardens and Parks

The Botanic Garden is an outdoor collection of living plants. It was founded in 1961 and is run by the City of Reykjavík.


The garden’s main role is to conserve plants for education, research and delight. It conserves some 3000 plant species in eight plant collections. The collections give an idea of the enormous diversity of vegetation in the northern temperate zone.
In summer there is a variety of events in the Botanic Garden and group receptions are available throughout the year.


Opening hours:


Summer (May 1st –September 30th) 10:00 – 22:00
Winter (October 1st – April 30th) 10:00 – 15:00


7. Visit The Saga Museum

Experience the Icelandic sagas


From the time of the earliest settlers, history is brought to life in a unique and exciting way.
The Saga Museum intimately recreates key moments in Icelandic history, moments that have determined the fate of our people and which give a compelling view into how Icelanders have lived for more than a millenium.


Visitors are guided through the museum with an audio-guide available in English, French, German, Russian, Spanish, Swedish or Icelandic.

8. National Museum Of Iceland

The National Museum displays objects that provide insight into Icelandic cultural history – displays that encourage visitors to dwell on the past, present and future. The museum aims to nurture knowledge and innovation while maintaining a wide perspective and sense of community.


Hours: (1 May – 15 September) Daily from 10:00-17:00

9. Perlan Museum & Viewpoint

Perlan is a Nature Exploratorium and among Reykjavik’s main landmarks. You can learn all about Icelandic nature in fun and interactive ways at Perlan’s museum. Some highlights include a real indoors ice cave, hands-on exhibits, a life-size bird cliff full of life, and a show about volcanoes. There is also a Planetarium dome theatre where the northern lights virtually dance all around you. The 360 views from Perlan are spectacular in all directions. You see all over the Reykjavik area, the ocean, and the mountains around. There is also a 230-meters long zipline where you can go zipping from the top of Perlan and down to Öskjuhlíð hill.



10. Þúfa Hill

Þúfa is a public artwork in Reykjavík. Þúfa was designed by the Icelandic artist Ólöf Nordal, who sought to create a place of serenity and meditation in the bustling capital city. The piece is a large, grassy, dome shaped hillock with a walking path encircling it to the top.

Here, there is an old fishing shed, the kind used historically to wind-dry fish, as a callback to Iceland’s past. Fishing was the lifeblood of the country for centuries, and how Icelanders managed to work in the tumultuous seas, harvest their catch, and utilise it for lasting food, clothing and oil, is a fascinating story.



Use the map below to plan your adventure: