26 Reykjavik sights worth seeing


The page presents the most interesting sights of Reykjavik, among which modern architecture, Cathedrals and Temples prevail. In total, the list contains 2 objects that can be sorted alphabetically and by tags at the top of the site. Reykjavik's most popular attractions are Perlan, Perlan and Hallgrimskirkja. The pages of the sights contain useful information for tourists, as well as photos and videos. In addition to this list, you can find all the objects on the map of Reykjavik

Lutheran Hallgrimskirkja Church

Hallgrimskirkja is a Lutheran church in the center of Reykjavik. It is not only the largest temple, but also the tallest building in all of Iceland, reaching a height of 75 meters. The building in a modernist style with a spire rising into the sky is the main attraction of the Icelandic capital, which will be interesting to see even for people far from faith.

The church resembles a mountain peak - the architect was conceived to make the structure look like part of the natural landscape of Iceland with mountains, cliffs and glaciers. And they made her so high because the church fathers wanted her to be higher than the Catholic Cathedral of the city. The construction of this unique building began in 1945 and was completed only after 41 years.

Address: Hallgrimskirkja, Hallgrímstorg, Reykjavik, Iceland.

Sculpture “The Solar Wanderer”

The sculpture “The Solar Wanderer”, or literally translated from Icelandic as “solar ship”, is located on the Atlantic coast, on the Saebraut Road. It was created by Jon Gunnar Arnason and won first place in the competition for the best street sculpture to celebrate the 200th anniversary of Reykjavik.

At the opening of the monument, the artist said that the Solar Wanderer symbolizes the legend that the ancient Europeans followed the sun in search of Mongolia, while their descendants migrated to Iceland. The solar wanderer is an ode to the sun, which is embodied in a huge abstract sculpture of steel, similar to a Viking ship.

Address: Sun Voyager, Reykjavik, Iceland.

National Museum of Iceland

The National Museum of Iceland shows the entire history of the country, starting from the first Viking settlements to the present day. It was founded in 1863. More than anything in the museum tells about the era of the settlement of Iceland and the rule of the Jarls. This exhibition also features swords, a bronze statue of Thor (the Scandinavian god of thunder), and goblets from the horn.

However, the most valuable item in the museum is the door of the 13th-century Valpjofstadur church. It depicts a knight fighting dragons and saving a lion from them, which will then become his faithful friend. The museum is located in a unique building and stores more than 2000 artifacts. Also, when viewing exhibitions, you can use the audio guide.

Address: National Museum of Iceland, Suðurgata, Reykjavik, Iceland.

Reykjavik Central District

Be sure to take the time to walk around the city center. It does not look like any other metropolitan center: instead of standard souvenir shops, there are small private shops that sell unique goods, for example, clothing made from Icelandic wool and dishes made of volcanic rock.

Enjoy a leisurely shopping trip and drop by the excellent restaurants serving traditional Icelandic food. On the city promenade you can breathe in the fresh ocean breeze and get acquainted with the city's architectural monuments. Late in the evening at the Sunstrider you can see the most magical sunset in all of Iceland. For those wishing to settle near the center, within walking distance of the main attractions and bus routes, is the Lotus Hotel.

Address: Downtown, Reykjavík, Iceland.

Thermal pools

The most popular type of relaxing holiday in Reykjavik is visiting the public thermal pools. The city has 17 pools with water from the natural thermal springs of Iceland. Locals come here to meet friends and relax in body and soul.

Thermal pools are an important part of Icelandic culture and provide an opportunity for visitors to get acquainted with local customs, as well as experience the unique healing properties of hot springs. In order to make the most complete impression of the thermal springs of Iceland, it is best to go all day to the popular thermal complex “Blue Lagoon” (Blue Lagoon).

Address: Blue Lagoon Spa, Reykjavik, Iceland.

Exhibition about the settlement of Iceland

If the Saga Museum has aroused your interest in the early history of Reykjavik, you might want to visit the exhibition about the first settlers of Iceland. The exhibition is in the City Museum and is called Reykjavik 871 +/- 2. The exposition got such a name because Reykjavik was supposedly founded around 871, maybe a year earlier or later.

The central place at the exhibition is occupied by the so-called “palace”, which was discovered in 2001. Scientists believe that people lived in this place from 910 to 1000 years. The chamber is one of the most ancient structures in Iceland, created by human hands. Also on display are relics and Viking culture objects.

Address: Landnámssýningin / The Settlement Exhibition, Aðalstræti, Reykjavik, Iceland.

Cultural Center "Perlan"

Perlan (translated from Icelandic “Perlan” means “pearl”) is one of the main attractions of Reykjavik. Building Pearls are used for a variety of purposes. On the ground floor, also known as the Winter Garden, there is an exhibition hall and a concert venue. And the glass dome contains 6 huge tanks with hot thermal water, which is used for urban needs.

An atrium is located between the tanks, and on the fourth floor there is a viewing platform with a telescope, from which a panorama of Reykjavik and its surroundings opens. Next to the building, on top of Oskjuhlid Hill, is an artificial geyser built in 1988.

Address: Perlan, Reykjavik, Iceland.

Harpa Concert Hall and Convention Center

Despite the fact that Harpa opened only in 2011, it is rightfully considered one of the most important attractions of Reykjavik. Harpa is not only a venue for conferences and concerts, but also an incredible work of architectural art: multi-colored glass panels frame the steel structure of the building.

The first performance at the new concert center was shown live on television. Even before the construction was completed, Harpu was used as a temporary mosque during the film adaptation of Eirikur Orn Norddal’s novel “Gæska: Skáldsaga”. The concert complex also hosts events such as International Jazz Day and the Reykjavik Children's Culture Festival.

Address: Harpa Concert Hall and Conference Center, Austurbakki, Reykjavik, Iceland.

Arbaer Open Air Museum

The Arbaer Museum is a great place to discover Reykjavik's past. Until 1957, there was a working farm, which later turned into a living historical museum. Here you will be met by staff dressed in historical costumes of farmers, and you will be able to see firsthand how people lived in Reykjavik many years ago.

To form the main part of the museum, 20 houses were moved to Arbaer from the center of Reykjavik. Museum expositions cover various periods of Reykjavik's history, and various events are held on the territory of the former farm, including crafts days and exhibitions of antique cars.

Address: Árbær Open Air Museum, Kistuhylur, Reykjavik, Iceland.

Loygavegur shopping street

Shopping enthusiasts on arrival in Reykjavik should head straight for the main shopping street Löygavegur. This is one of the oldest streets located in the center of the capital. Its name in Icelandic means “washing road”, as it leads to the thermal spring, where in the past women of Reykjavik washed their laundry.

Voque Magazine has called Lauigavergur a trendy street with modern branded shops surrounded by historic buildings. There are also some of the city’s best restaurants, and on Fridays and Saturdays, vibrant nightlife is in full swing. Loygavegur fulfills any desire: whether it’s buying fashionable clothes or just having a good time.

Address: Laugavegur, Reykjavik, Iceland.

Volcano house

Modern Iceland is a country of peace-loving people, which cannot be said about its nature. There are 200 volcanoes here - more than anywhere else in the world. One of them is active and erupts every 3-5 years. In the museum you can learn about the geological history of Iceland and on what the activity of volcanoes depends on.

The expositions of the Volcano House also feature a collection of minerals found on the island. Unlike other museums, most exhibits of the Volcano House can be touched, as indicated by special signs. The museum also shows documentaries on the most famous volcanic eruptions.

Address: Volcano House, Iceland, Tryggvagata, Reykjavik, Iceland.

Saga Museum

Fans of the Vikings will have something to see in Reykjavik: the Saga Museum tells about the warlike ancient Scandinavians and their influence on the history of Iceland. Some expositions depicting the life of the first Icelandic settlers look rather frightening and “bloodthirsty”.

Visitors are greeted by the wax figures of the harsh Vikings who ruin everything in their path or roam with weapons in their hands in search of new lands. The museum also has an exhibition that shows the life of ordinary peasants. Almost all wax sculptures can be photographed as a keepsake.

Address: Saga Museum, Grandagarður, Reykjavik, Iceland.

Climbing Mount Esia

The majestic mountain near Reykjavik is the most popular place among tourists who love hiking. While climbing the main tourist route passing around Esia, you can enjoy the fresh mountain air of Iceland. All trails to the top of the mountain have a mark of difficulty. Essia is suitable for both beginners and experienced tourists.

You can climb to the very top of the mountain, to a height of 914 meters, and sign there in your guest book or turn back, not reaching the top, at a stone called Stein. The trail near Stein is considered difficult to climb, so it is intended only for experienced tourists and climbers.

Address: Esjan, Iceland.

Old Port Area

The true spirit of Icelandic culture is in the old port of Reykjavik. It offers amazing views of the bay and Mount Esia. From the Old Port you can go on a sea excursion to observe whales or petrels.

The colorful houses that used to serve as fish barns now have shops, cafes and restaurants. The Old Port area is filled with eclectic energy from the clash of two cultures: the historical influence of Scandinavia and modern fashion trends.

Address: Old Harbor Area, Geirsgata 5c, 101 Reykjavík, Iceland.

Videy Island

The charm of the island of Videi is almost impossible to resist. The island is open to tourists and provides an opportunity to enjoy breathtaking views of the Snaefellsnes peninsula and the mainland. The island is famous for the fact that it began the settlement of Iceland.

The rich wild and plant life of Videa attracts photographers, artists and all those who want to enjoy the beauty and tranquility of Icelandic nature. The main attraction of the island is the Peace Tower, erected there according to the project of Yoko Ono.

Address: Videy, Iceland.

Bruarfoss Waterfall

Not far from Reykjavik is the most beautiful waterfall in Iceland with incredible blue water. The waterfall is formed by cascades of water streams converging in one place. It is not surprising that Bruarfoss is very popular among photography enthusiasts.

When planning a trip to a waterfall, you need to count extra time in case of bad weather: the road can be slippery, which will make it difficult to move. A pair of durable spare boots will save you from possible problems, and a magnificent view of the waterfall will more than pay for all your efforts.

Address: Bruarfoss Waterfall, Brekkuskógur, Iceland.

Maritime Museum "Wikin"

This is a former factory for fish freezing in the Old Port, which was built in 1947, and in 2005 turned into the Maritime Museum. In the old hall where fish was processed, there is now a grandiose exhibition on the history of navigation in Iceland with a real wooden pier, under which the sea water splashes. In order to get to the pier, you need to go through the reconstructed deck of the Gulfoss ferry, which was in charge of Iceland, Denmark and Scotland in the middle of the 20th century.

An exhibition entitled “From Poverty to Abundance” tells how the latest technological advances have changed the fishing industry in the 20th century. At the pier next to the museum, there is an ICGV Odin coastguard patrol vessel (ICGV Óðinn), which participated in all the Cod Wars between Iceland and Great Britain from the 1960s to the 1970s. On board the vessel is a special device that was used to cut the networks of British trawlers entering Icelandic waters.

Address: Wikin Maritime Museum, Grandagarður, Reykjavik, Iceland.

Street art street art

Street art began to develop rapidly in fashionable Reykjavik since the beginning of the 90s of the last century, and in recent years street art has acquired a new direction. In the Old Port and Grandi, the facades of the buildings are decorated with stunning wall paintings. Most of these paintings are the result of collaboration between the participants of the Iceland Airwaves music festival and artists from the Berlin street art gallery Urban Nation.

Graffiti is called “Wall Poetry” (“Wall Poetry”). When creating them, artists drew inspiration from the songs of artists such as John Grant and the music groups Mercury Rev and Gus Gus, and some of the drawings are a pure fantasy flight of street artists and musicians.

They bring us back to the time when fine art went side by side with the creation of music. The Wall Poetry collection is just a small part of legal street art in Reykjavik. The city also has huge photorealistic works by Guido Van Helten and fantastic paintings by Sarah Riel, miraculously transforming the city landscape.

Address: Street Art Mural, Framnesvegur, Reykjavik, Iceland.

Thjörnin Lake

The most picturesque area of ​​Reykjavik is located in the city center near Lake Tjörnin. On its banks among flower beds, trees and shrubs are painted houses. In the warmer months, this place is suitable for relaxing walks, and in winter you can go ice skating. On the northern shore of the reservoir is the City Hall and the ironic Monument to the Unknown Bureaucrat, created by sculptor Magnus Tomasson.

The statue is a man in a suit with a briefcase in his hands, whose upper body is walled up in an unprocessed stone block. Not far from the lake are the Supreme Court, Reykjavik Free Church, the National Theater and many different museums, including the Museum of Living Art, the National Gallery of Iceland and the National Museum.

Tjörnin Lake is famous for the fact that ducks, geese and swans live on it, and warm thermal water allows birds to stay there all year round.

Address: Tjörnin, Reykjavik, Iceland.

Einar Jonsson Museum

The famous sculptor of the XX century Einar Jounsson is at the head of the list of the most famous artists of Iceland. Sculpted clay is a rarity in Iceland, so Jounsson mainly worked with gypsum and, thanks to the plasticity of this material, could devote up to ten years to one sculpture.The artist’s works are very dramatic and portray our contemporaries, as well as the historical and mythological heroes of Iceland and Scandinavia.

In 1909, at the beginning of his career, Jounsson performed an outstanding act: he donated all his works to the state for free to be placed in the museum. The author himself chose a place for the museum - at the very top of Skólavörðuhæð - and he designed a catchy eclectic building, the construction of which was completed in 1923. Jonsson housed a studio and an apartment, and the former garden is now decorated with the most famous works of the artist, cast in bronze.

Address: The Einar Jónsson Museum, Eiríksgata, Reykjavik, Iceland.

Iceland Whale Museum

The Whale Museum is located next to the harbor in the Grandi area, among many other places for families. Here you can find out absolutely everything about 23 species of whales living in the waters of Iceland. The museum displays life-size models of whales, and the surround sound and lighting effects create the illusion of being in the natural habitat of these marine giants.

The museum’s expositions are the result of the joint work of the whale watching organization and the Iceland Maritime Research Institute. At the exhibition, one can see grandiose models of blue whale, sperm whale, humpback whale, finwale, minke whale, killer whale, as well as dolphins of various species. Next to each exposure is information on the behavior and migration routes of the animal.

The Whale Museum is equipped with various modern technologies, including an interactive station for tracking whale movements in real time.

Address: Whales of Iceland, Fiskislóð, Reykjavik, Iceland.

Cultural Center North House

A 10-minute walk from the center of Reykjavik is the North House, a cultural center created in 1968 to strengthen ties with other Scandinavian peoples. The northern house has an original design, which was developed by the prominent Finnish modernist architect Alvar Aalto. He designed the building in the style of hezamtkunstverk ("a comprehensive form of art").

Alvar and his wife Elissa thought through the interior of the center to the smallest detail, including fittings, furniture and decorative decoration. In a stylish setting, you can get acquainted with the expositions of Scandinavian design, explore the wonderful Aalto library, go to the designer store and have lunch at the AALTO bistro. The chef of this small cafe is Svein Kjartansson, a famous person in Iceland.

Address: Nordic House, Sæmundargata, Reykjavik, Iceland.

Museum of Fine Arts Kjarvalstadir

In the North Hall of the Modernists is another branch of the Reykjavik Museum of Art - Kjarvalstadir. It opened in 1973, a year after the death of the popular Icelandic artist Johannes Sveinsson Kjärvala, and was named after him. The museum has a permanent exhibition of the artist's works.

Kjarval is famous for its landscapes, which cannot be attributed to any particular direction in painting. Many of his paintings were painted in the style of symbolism, and in later works Kjarval turned to abstractionism. Also in the museum you can see the works of Herro and the sculptor Ausmundur Sveinsson. Each year, the Kjarvalstadir Museum presents about 20 temporary exhibitions of world famous authors in the field of Art Nouveau and contemporary art.

Address: Reykjavík Art Museum Kjarvalsstaðir, Flókagata, Reykjavik, Iceland.

Aurora Borealis Center

Aurora is an information center in Reykjavik, where you can see how the Northern Lights look in all its glory. Aurora, or Aurora Borealis, is formed as a result of a collision of electrically charged particles emanating from the sun with the upper atmosphere. In Reykjavik in winter, this phenomenon can be seen with your own eyes - the main thing is that there is a clear sky at night.

In addition, for good visibility, clean air is required, so it is better to go to the coast, out of town or go by boat to the sea. If all conditions are met, you will witness one of the most magnificent natural phenomena, when the night sky shimmers with shades of pale green, pink, yellow and blue.

Address: Aurora Reykjavík, Grandagarður, Reykjavik, Iceland.

Gold ring

On this 300 km long circular route from Reykjavik to the southern hills of Iceland, there are three of the most impressive countryside attractions. At the first stop, an hour's drive east of the city, is the Thingvedlir National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In this park there is a canyon, which was formed as a result of the breakdown of Eurasian and North American tectonic plates, as well as Alting, the oldest parliament in the world, founded in 930.

Also in the park is the beautiful two-stage Gulfoss waterfall 32 meters high and the Haukadalur valley with thermal springs and mud geysers, including the famous Strokkur geyser that erupts every 5-10 minutes.

On the Golden Ring, you can take a group tour with a guide or rent a car and travel on your own. Tourists who value privacy can camp at Tingvedlir Park and stay there overnight to enjoy the natural surroundings in the light of the midnight polar sun.

Address: Thingvellir National Park, Iceland.

Whale and Petrel Watching

Reykjavik is considered the best place in Iceland for whale watching - the city is located in the Fahsaflowi Gulf, where a huge number of these marine inhabitants gather in the summer. From April to September, you can count more than 20 species of whales in the bay, but most of all small whales and humpback whales swim here.

Excursions depart from the Old Port in small cozy ships. On a boat trip, you can not only see how whales jump over the water, but also see a large population of petrels near the shores of Akureyri. On the way back you will find unforgettable views of Reykjavik against the backdrop of the mountains, and along the way from time to time you will come across seals, white-faced dolphins and porpoises. Remember to grab the camera!

Address: Old Harbor Area, Geirsgata 5c, 101 Reykjavík, Iceland.

Photo and description

The Reykjavik Cathedral, which houses the bishop's chair of the Church of Iceland, is located in the city center. It is considered the main attraction of the capital and is beloved and respected by the townspeople. Many consider it a symbol of Reykjavik.

The Danish colonial-style cathedral was built in 1787 after the disaster that destroyed the city of Skalholt - at that time the spiritual and intellectual center of Iceland. In the spring of 1783, an eruption of the Laki volcano began in the southwestern part of the island, which lasted a whole year and was accompanied by strong earthquakes. In Skalholt, only the church was almost unaffected, the city itself ceased to exist, and the bishop had to move his residence to Reykjavik.

The current Reykjavik Cathedral was originally intended to be the parish church. But Skalholt after destruction did not revive. Currently, only a small village with one church can be seen on that site. And in 1796 the archbishop had to officially recognize his move to Reykjavik. Thus, the parish church in Reykjavik assumed the function of the cathedral.

All subsequent years, the cathedral was constantly rebuilt. He underwent particularly significant changes in 1847. With the help of the latest technologies for that time, the building was enlarged.

Then the famous Danish artist and sculptor of Icelandic origin Bertel Thorvaldsen sculpted a baptismal font from marble for the renewed Reykjavik Cathedral. This font is now the pearl of the interior of the cathedral.


Dómkirkjan í Reykjavík - the main church of Reykjavik, which houses the bishop's chair of the Church of Iceland. The building is located in the heart of the Icelandic capital. The church was built in 1787. In 1847, the cathedral was rebuilt; a baptismal font was installed here, by sculptor Bertel Torvaldsen.

Wiki: en: Reykjavik Cathedral

  • en: Reykjavík Cathedral
  • de: Dómkirkja
  • es: Catedral de Reikiavik

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