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Basic information

  • Area: 274.5 km² (106 sq mi)
  • Calling Code: +354
  • Currency: Icelandic króna (ISK)
  • Population (EST): 120,165
  • Official language: Icelandic
  • Time Zone: GMT (UTC+0)

Reykjavik - Places to Visit

The National Museum of Iceland

Located in the centre of Reykjavik, the National Museum has a permanent exhibition called The Making of a Nation. This exhibition is dedicated to educating visitors on the heritage of Iceland and displays are organised into time periods throughout this great nation’s long history. Temporary exhibitions are also shown, depicting various aspects of life in Iceland over the years, as well as current themes such as the recent recession. The museum caters for visitors of all ages and is easily accessible with six different bus routes servicing the area. The museum is opened all year round with the exception of certain holidays.

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Hallgrimskirkja Church

The largest church in Iceland Hallgrimskirkja church towers 73 meters and can be seen from all over the city. Located on a hill at the top of Skolavordustigur the church was built by state architect Gudjon Samuelson and took over forty years to build, opening in 1986. Designed to look like volcanic rock formations it is a nod to the geology of the country. In front of the magnificent building is a statue of Leifur Eiriksson, the Viking sailor who discovered America around 1000AD.

Hallgrimskirkja Churchtop ↑

Mount Esja

Dominating the Reykjavik skyline is Mount Esja, a volcanic mountain range. It is a popular destination for hikers and is easily reached by bus from the city. Certain bus routes also travel to one of the summits but if you choose to walk the paths are graded by difficulty. Once at the summit the views over the Reykjavik town and countryside are fantastic and it’s well worth a visit.

Mount Esjatop ↑

The Golden Circle

The most popular day tour in Reykjavik takes in some of the most famous natural sights in the country. Attractions visited during the day include spouting geysers, the stunning Gullfloss waterfall and the spectacular scenery of Thingvellir National Park. Also visited is the site of the first Viking parliament and the magnificent Kerið volcanic crater. The Golden Circle Tour takes approximately 10 hours and is offered by a number of different operators. Prices vary between companies and all tours are available in several languages.

The Golden Circletop ↑

Perlan

Sitting atop Oskjuhlid hill is Perlan (the Pearl) one of Reykjavik’s more unusual landmarks. The building, constructed in 1988, consists of a huge dome that sits on five water tanks where naturally hot water is stored. The views over the city are spectacular and there is a rotating restaurant offering fine dining. A viewing platform which runs around the dome can be accessed for free by the public and there is also a café serving up drinks and snacks.

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Hofdi House

Hofdi House played a major part in history when the President of the United States and the Russian President met to discuss ending the cold war in 1986. It is a beautifully constructed wooden building and is owned and used by the City of Reykjavik for official receptions. Visitors are free to walk around the grounds and view the house from the outside.

Hofdi Housetop ↑