I first visited Reykjavik in 2012; what now looks as if 1,000,000 years in the past. On that first journey to Iceland I used to be launched to among the island nation’s most well-known sights, each pure and man-made, and an intense love affair with this distant vacation spot was born. Since then I’ve returned three extra occasions with no plans of stopping, and for essentially the most half I’ve explored new areas of the nation every time, delving deeper into what makes it so very particular. There was one commonality on all of my journeys although, the capital metropolis of Reykjavik. I at all times spend not less than a day or two there though, at this level, I actually have carried out and seen every thing there’s to do and see. So why precisely do I preserve returning? At this time I wish to share a number of explanation why I like Reykjavik so very a lot and why, I feel, it ought to be a cease on everybody’s subsequent journey to Iceland whether or not it’s their 1st or 21st journey to the nation.

Reykjavik, Iceland

Deceptively Fascinating

Though the suburbs of Reykjavik do unfold out a bit, the downtown core the place vacationers spend their time is finally a reasonably small place. In complete, the capital metropolis is residence to solely 125,000 individuals and whereas it’s by far the inhabitants middle of the nation, compared to different world cities that’s not giant in any respect. Nevertheless, I’ve discovered over time that there’s lots to see and do in Reykjavik, greater than sufficient to fill a number of journeys to the town. If it’s your first time although, listed here are a number of experiences I feel are to not miss.

  • Head to the highest of Hallgrímskirkja church for gorgeous views of the town
  • Seize lunch at one in all Reykjavik’s well-known sizzling canine stands, the most well-liked snack within the nation (order it the Icelandic method, they’ll know what you imply)
  • Go on a metropolis tour, free or in any other case. A number of firms provide nice intro-tours to Reykjavik and are nicely price it
  • Stroll alongside the marina space and take a ship experience out to identify whales
  • Get pleasure from dinner at one of many many nice eating places in Reykjavik – my favourite is D’Italia

However remember to additionally avoid wasting actions for future journeys. On my final in a single day in Reykjavik, I spent a day touring the town’s well-known live performance corridor, Harpa. Every day excursions in English are given of this gorgeous constructing, and the half hour or so spent with the knowledgeable information was each enjoyable and informative. Plus, the harbor views from the live performance corridor are to not be missed. However I don’t return to Reykjavik repeatedly only for new experiences, I revisit the town for an additional extra amorphous cause.

Pond Reykjavik Iceland


Generally we encounter new cities and even nations that simply really feel proper. We don’t know why, we will’t clarify or quantify it, it simply is. For me, Reykjavik and even Iceland as an entire fall into this very particular class. It’s one of many few locations on this planet that I not solely take pleasure in returning to, I actively plan new journeys as quickly because the earlier ones have completed. No, I in all probability don’t must go to Reykjavik each time I’m in Iceland, it’s simple sufficient to skip and drive round. I’ve seen all the sights, I’ve skilled life within the metropolis and so it’s not from a traveler’s perspective that I preserve returning. I’m going again as a result of I adore it. I like the sensation of the town with its brightly coloured, Danish impressed buildings, the wind coming off the water, the superbly laid again really feel and the spirit of the downtown vacationer core itself. Sure, resulting from Iceland’s unbelievable rise in world reputation, the downtown is touristy at occasions, however that’s okay. As a result of subsequent to that puffin store (what locals name memento shops) could be a fabulous restaurant, or an previous constructing with shocking tales to inform. Most significantly although, I return to Reykjavik to greet an previous pal. It’s like falling again right into a rhythm with somebody you haven’t seen in years. Though time has handed, you decide up proper the place you left off. That’s Reykjavik for me and I adore it.

Harpa Reykjavik Iceland

Dynamic Metropolis

Reykjavik isn’t a metropolis caught in one other time, particularly now it’s rising and altering at an unbelievable tempo. After I first visited in 2012 the nation was starting its ascent to changing into the tourism hotspot that it’s at present. At present, the demand to go to Iceland is rising exponentially – it’s truly at a price that merely can’t be maintained. Nevertheless, this has modified the town and nation in a variety of methods. New buildings, inns and eating places are always going up in Reykjavik; every time I go to it’s a brand new metropolis. This has each benefits and downsides for the traveler in 2018. It implies that there are numerous extra lodge choices, together with some nice luxurious properties just like the Sandhotel the place I stayed final time I used to be on the town. Nevertheless, it additionally means a dramatic improve in costs. Simply up to now few years the price of a median journey has elevated double digits, and that’s exhibiting no indicators of slowing anytime quickly. Eager to benefit from the brand new curiosity in tourism, the online impact has been a extra sturdy and attention-grabbing journey panorama. One factor that I hope by no means adjustments is the indefinable spirit and really feel of the town itself.

As I’ve already written on this submit a number of occasions, I simply actually take pleasure in being in Reykjavik for the only real cause of being in Reykjavik. The tradition, the individuals and every thing else about it make sense to me, we click on and it’s a mini-homecoming after I’m there. I’ve a favourite restaurant I at all times patronize after I’m on the town, I’ve a favourite stroll I attempt to do and I’ve a favourite cafe to seize a fast cup of espresso. It’s good to have these acquainted locations, institutions that make me really feel rather less like a clumsy vacationer and extra like somebody returning to a well-known place. Iceland can also be splendidly quirky, the nationwide character is unbiased and pushed but in addition accepting and warm-hearted. Iceland was remoted for hundreds of years, creating familial ties nearly not like some other place on the planet. In Iceland there aren’t 7 levels of separation, extra like 1 or 2. It’s the “Cheers” amongst the pantheon of countries, a spot the place everybody is aware of your title and is glad you’re there.


Even if you happen to solely have a passing curiosity in social media, there’s little question you’re inundated with photographs from Iceland on a close to every day foundation. There’s a cause for that, it’s a surprising nation with landscapes unparalleled on this planet. Reykjavik is a little bit totally different although and it’s a metropolis not everybody will like, and that’s advantageous. Within the winter it’s darkish and dreary with a wind not like anything I’ve ever encountered. However even then, when the solar appears to have run away eternally, there are nonetheless elements to this nice world capital to like and admire, you simply have to hunt them out. I assume that’s my final bit of recommendation about Reykjavik. Spend time there attending to realize it, to grasp it and recognize it. Stroll away from the puffin retailers and stroll a number of blocks deeper into the town, attempt to study it not as a voyeur however a curious customer after which I feel you’ll begin to take pleasure in returning right here as a lot as I do.