Best Things To Do in Reykjavik, Iceland

Reykjavik is the capital and the largest city of Iceland. It is the centre of culture and the life of the people in Iceland and it is also the most famous tourist destinations of island. The city was established in 1786 as an official trading town and grew steadily over the next decades, as it transforming it into one of the richest, cleanest, greenest, and safest cities in the world. Today the city boasts natural attractions, outdoor activities, adventure sports, sprawling suburbs, eclectic and colourful houses, green spaces, vibrant museums and stunning galleries, shopping opportunities, fine dining, cultural institutions and a rich lifestyle. One of the best ways to make the most of this beautiful city is to indulge in some of the best tours in Reykjavik which include some of the most stunning sights and natural attractions like Gullfoss Waterfall, Videy Island, Blue Lagoon and Nautholsvik Thermal Beach. The city is home to a plethora of green spaces, parks and gardens including Reykjavík Botanical Gardens, Klambratún Park, Öskjuhlíð Hill and Viðey island. Even though the city is home to a plethora of natural wonders, it also boasts some of the most beautiful modern infrastructural marvels like the Hallgrímskirkja Church, Reykjavik City Hall, Reykjavik Seltjarnarneskirkja (Church) and Imagine Peace Tower. The city also offers some of the most stunning museums and galleries in the world which include National Gallery of Iceland, Reykjavík Art Museum, National Museum of Iceland, Aurora Reykjavik: Northern Lights Center, Volcano House, The Culture House and the Reykjavík City Museum. The city is home to a vibrant performing art scene with theatres like the National Theatre of Iceland, Reykjavík City Theatre and concerts taking place at the city centre.  The city caters to the adventure enthusiasts by offering them a wide variety of outdoor activities to participate in, like whale watching, hiking, horse riding, trekking and catching a glimpse of the iconic northern lights. To experience the magical ambience created by this pristine winter wonderland is a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Things to do in Reykjavik in January

Interestingly named and interestingly made, the excellent settlement museum of Reykjavík 871 2 is one of the first things that you should when you are in Reykjavik. An interactive museum with touch screen displays, give you a complete info on the settlers who resided in the lands of Iceland centuries back. A great place to learn history indeed!

Go on a picnic to the small lake of the Tjörnin filled with Ducks and Swans. Although, compact in size Tjörnin is calm and peaceful. A popular pastime at Tjörnin is to feed the birds and indulge in bird watching. Welcome the winter with a warm visit to the Reykjavik Open Air Museum, locally referred to as the Árbæjarsafn. Located in one of the most refreshing places, Reykjavik Open Air Museum is a unique cultural museum housing some of the never-before-seen artifacts.

Walk past the historic ships and exhibits relating to the fishing industry at the Vikin Maritime Museum, hop on a boat and drift along the waters to the natural wonder of Viðey. The entire atmosphere is relaxing and is a great place for activities. Explore the humongous area of the contemporary and modern art museum of the Reykjavik Art Museum, and for more info on the Icelandic art collections visit the National Gallery of Iceland.

And for things to do in Reykjavik at night, you have ever magical northern lights to look at.

Things to do in Reykjavik in February

Gather at the Reykjavik's focal point square of Austurvöllur which looks charming and is a great place to have a steaming cup of coffee. Take a self-guided tour of what is considered as the literary Mecca of Gljúfrasteinn. The beautiful home set in a lovely location is just quiet and graceful.

Visit the quaintest and the incredibly charming church of Fríkirkjan í Reykjavík. The church looks as if, it is taken right off from a book and the sheer sight of Fríkirkjan í Reykjavík will stay in your heart for years to come. Walk along the gushing river of Elliðaár. Bring in your fishing bait and try catching a salmon from the waters. Elliðaár also comprises of hiking trails and bicycle paths. If Elliðaár doesn't suit your needs, then you should probably try visiting the lake of Elliðavatn. The grounds around Elliðavatn are a part of the natural reserve and makes for an ideal place to spread your blankets. Just be sure to check on the Reykjavik Iceland weather.

Get the real essence of Iceland by glancing through the exhibits in place at the Saga Museum. Complete with eerie-Silicon models and a gripping audiotrack, Saga Museum uncovers the past times of Iceland. It is definitely a wonderful ride into Icelandic history.

Things to do in Reykjavik in March

Witness the beauty of the architectural delight of the church of Hallgrímskirkja. Standing tall, Hallgrímskirkja is the highlight of the landscape and the tallest structure is a personification of Scandinavian simplicity. The tower in the Hallgrímskirkja offers surreal views of the city of Reykjavik.

Constructed in a completely unique way is the glass-domed restaurant of Perlan. A visit to Reykjavik is incomplete without dining at Perlan. The restaurants also offer gorgeous views and comprise of several shops that include Gourmet shop, Souvenir shop, and Christmas shop. Do plan your visit to Perlan, as soon as possible.

Enjoy a live concert at the architecturally splendid concert hall and conference center of the Harpa. Made out of colored glass facade inspired by the basalt landscape of Iceland, Harpa is best visited during the nights, when it glows with light. Go on a trip to the popular tourist attraction of the Golden Circle, brimming with scenic views. Understand history by walking around the National Museum of Iceland, witness the iconic monument of The Sun Voyager up close and be sure to take a million photographs, and make a quick stop at the Icelandic Phallological Museum.

Things to do in Reykjavik in June

In Iceland with your family and kids, visit the science museum of Aurora Reykjavík. While the museum is compact in size, it certainly packs a punch. Connect with the enchanting nature on offer at the Reykjavik Botanical Garden. Totally pleasant and relaxing, Reykjavik Botanical Garden can be visited by everyone. Attend a mass ceremony at the Reykjavík Cathedral, and look around the historic house of the Höfði placed at the center of Reykjavik.

If you are an art lover gaze through the out-of-the-world exhibits at the Kjarvalsstaðir which comprises of some of the best works of the Icelandic artists. If Kjarvalsstaðir is not for you then you must probably head to the Einar Jónsson Museum which is a hidden gem in Reykjavik, complete with marvelous sculptures and a beautiful garden.

Things to do in Reykjavik in July

Feel as if you are underwater by immersing yourself to the sight of the huge whales hanging at the specialty museum of Whales of Iceland. All the exhibits inside Whales of Iceland look lifesize and take you back to the actual experience itself. Pay a visit to the cultural institution of Safnahúsið. Already a photographer or a budding one, then check ou the Reykjavík Museum of Photography. Comprising of more than 5 million photographs, Reykjavík Museum of Photography is a great place to visit. Also, interact with the farm animals at the zoo of Fjölskyldu- og Húsdýragarðurinn.

Things to do in Reykjavik in September

Take on a tour of Ölgerðin Brewery tasting beer. Totally different from the other breweries in the country and in the world, Ölgerðin Brewery is a fun place to visit. Take a walk around the Ráðhús Reykjavíkur, go on a hike to Thufa for a different perspective of Reykjavik. The distinct setting of the place and the wonderful views make it one of the tourist stops in Reykjavik. To let go of all the stress, unwind at the park of Hljómskálagarður.

Things to do in Reykjavik in December

With the preparation for the festivals of Christmas and New Year in full swing, Reykjavik looks stunning with all its lights and the best way to get the best of the city during the time of December is to go shopping as a family to the Christmas markets and sing along to the joyous season. In addition to that, some of the other things to do in Reykjavik in Winter include taking a dip in the geothermal spa of the Reykjavik Iceland blue lagoon, relaxing by the beach of Nauthólsvík, going on a visit to the Volcano House, catch the street performers at their best at the square of Lækjartorg, be enchanted by the sculpture museum of the Ásmundur Sveinsson Sculpture Museum, and go ice skating in the rink at Ingólfur Square.

Free things to do in a Reykjavik

While the things to do in Reykjavik Iceland is in itself list, here are some of the free things you can do in Reykjavik. Take romantic walk along Grotta, unleash your art side at Reykjavík Art Museum, feed the birds by the Lake Tjornin, get tanned under the shiny sun at Nauthólsvík, soak in the amazing views at Perlan, scan the landscape of Elliðaárdalur, and conquer Mount Esja for fascinating views of Reykjavik.

Author: Arundhati Bhand
An animal lover at heart, marketer by education and artist by passion, Arundhati aims to seek out to all that satisfies her diverse interests. She believes that it is only through experiences that one learns, and a traveller of sorts, she strives to ...

Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Reykjavik

Check out the list of top tourist attractions in Reykjavik! These are some inspiring things to do in Reykjavik to create a wish list of your dream destinations.

  1. # 1 of 618 Things To Do in Reykjavik | Added 6304 times in trip plans
    Gullfoss Waterfall

    Tags: Outdoors, Waterfall, Nature

    Address: South, Iceland

    Timings: 24-hrs Details

    Gullfoss waterfall may not be one of the biggest waterfalls but is definitely splendid in its own way! Gullfoss has a dramatic 32 meter drop in the 70 meter deep narrow cannon - a natural wonder of th...Read more

  2. # 2 of 618 Things To Do in Reykjavik | Added 5221 times in trip plans

    Tags: Church, Religious Site, Architecture

    Address: Skolavoroustigur 101, Reykjavik, Iceland

    Timings: 09:00 am - 05:00 pm Details

    It took the architect Guojon Samuelsson over 34 years to build the 74 meters high church; unfortunately he could not live to see his marvelous design! Built in 1974 the aw-inspiring church is situated...Read more

  3. # 3 of 618 Things To Do in Reykjavik | Added 4654 times in trip plans
    National Museum Of Iceland

    Tags: Museum

    Address: Suaurgata 41, 101 Reykjavik, Iceland

    Timings: 10:00 am - 05:00 pm Details

    The national museum of Iceland is nothing but an engaging thoughtful and informative collection of Icelandic cultural treasures. Established in 1863 with just about 15 artefacts, now houses a huge com...Read more

  4. # 4 of 618 Things To Do in Reykjavik | Added 5463 times in trip plans
    Sun Voyager Sculpture

    Tags: Outdoors, Walking Area

    Address: Sculpture & Shore Walk, Reykjavik, Iceland

    Timings: 24-hrs Details

    Facing the splendid mount Esja is this landmark as designed and created by Jon Gunnar Arnason. This sleek structure resembles a Viking ship and was made in honour of the Viking voyages thereby was nam...Read more

  5. # 5 of 618 Things To Do in Reykjavik | Added 2212 times in trip plans
    Reykjadalur Hot Springs

    Tags: Hiking Trail, Hot Spring

    Address: Reykjadalur Hot Spring Trailhead, Reykjadalur, Iceland

    Timings: 24-hrs Details

    ‘Reykjadalur’ means ‘smoking valley’. 45 kilometres out of Reykjavik, the drive to the hot springs alone makes the trip worth it, taking you past some of Iceland’s beauti...Read more

  6. # 6 of 618 Things To Do in Reykjavik | Added 3407 times in trip plans

    Tags: Museum

    Address: Reykjavik, Iceland

    Timings: 10:00 am - 05:00 pm Details

    The open air museum was founded to suffice the need to restore the old Reykjavik traditions. When the society saw the extreme modernisation and their culture losing its roots and the city council deci...Read more

  7. # 7 of 618 Things To Do in Reykjavik | Added 1258 times in trip plans
    Reykjavik 871 2 Settlement Museum

    Tags: History Museum, Exhibition

    Address: Aðalstræti 16, Aðalstræti, 101 Reykjavík, Iceland

    Timings: 09:00 am - 08:00 pm Details

    The name refers to the years 871, plus or minus two years, which is the approximate date of the oldest settlement in Reykjavik. Found in an excavation at Adalstraeti, the settlement location is now th...Read more

  8. # 8 of 618 Things To Do in Reykjavik | Added 4712 times in trip plans
    The Pearl

    Tags: Garden, Food And Drinks, Leisure, Architecture

    Address: Reykjavik, Iceland

    Timings: 10:00 am - 08:00 pm Details

    Overlooking the whole of Reykjavik is The Pearl, a dome shaped building captivating millions of tons of hot water! The walk towards the dome itself is extremely refreshing with perfectly landscaped ga...Read more

  9. # 9 of 618 Things To Do in Reykjavik | Added 4667 times in trip plans
    Volcano House

    Tags: Educational Site

    Address: Tryggvagata 11, 101 Reykjavík, Iceland

    Timings: 09:00 am - 10:00 pm Details

    The volcano house showcases two films on the powerful volcanic eruptions in Iceland. The film skilfully pictures the eruption on Heimaey on 23rd Janury 1973, the devastating eruption caused about 5000...Read more

  10. # 10 of 618 Things To Do in Reykjavik | Added 995 times in trip plans
    Bridge America - Europe

    Tags: Bridge

    Address: Bridge America - Europe Miðlína, Nesvegur, Iceland

    Timings: 24-hrs Details

    It’s possible you will never find another attraction like this anywhere else in the world. Did you know that Iceland is located right on the mid-Atlantic ridge, the division line of the Eurasian...Read more

  11. # 11 of 618 Things To Do in Reykjavik | Added 5208 times in trip plans
    Harpa Conference And Concert Center

    Tags: Performance, Concert, Convention Center, Architecture

    Address: 2,Austurbakki, 101 Reykjavík, Iceland

    Opened in 2011, the center primarily functions as a concert hall, serving as home to four music companies: the Iceland Symphony Orchestra, The Icelandic Opera, The Reykjavik Big Band, and Maximus Musi...Read more

  12. # 12 of 618 Things To Do in Reykjavik | Added 934 times in trip plans
    Lagafellslaug In Mosfellsbaer

    Tags: Water Park, Swimming Pool

    Address: Lækjarhlíð, Mosfellsbær, Iceland

    Timings: 06:30 am - 09:30 pm Details

    This public swimming pool is almost a mini water park. The main attraction here the 25 meter long swimming pool, but that’s hardly the only reason to come. Best of all, all the pools here are th...Read more

  13. # 13 of 618 Things To Do in Reykjavik | Added 953 times in trip plans
    Grotta Lighthouse

    Tags: Light House

    Address: Grótta Island Lighthouse, Iceland, Seltjarnarnes, Iceland

    Timings: 24-hrs Details

    When it comes to lighthouses, you’re almost guaranteed great photo opportunities, and this one delivers. It’s not just because it’s at the tip of the Seltjarnarnes peninsula with lov...Read more

  14. # 14 of 618 Things To Do in Reykjavik | Added 1066 times in trip plans
    Saga Museum

    Tags: History Museum

    Address: Grandagarður 2, 101 Reykjavík, Iceland

    Timings: 10:00 am - 06:00 pm Details

    This is a museum of folkloric history, where key moments in Icelandic history are created in life-sized exhibits. Following the chronological sequence of exhibits gives the visitors a very good idea o...Read more

  15. # 15 of 618 Things To Do in Reykjavik | Added 789 times in trip plans
    Vikin Maritime Museum

    Tags: Museum

    Address: Grandagarður 8, 101 Reykjavík, Iceland

    Timings: 10:00 am - 05:00 pm Details

    There is no separating Iceland’s identity from its maritime heritage. Caught between two oceans, the island’s people depended for a long time on the sea to provide them with food and raw m...Read more

Activities And Tours

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