Things to do in
Reykjavik

You’ll warm up to Iceland’s capital with volcanic scenery, luxurious hot springs, and landmarks aplenty.

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Our most recommended things to do in Reykjavik

Iceland: Northern Lights Bus Tour from Reykjavik

1. Iceland: Northern Lights Bus Tour from Reykjavik

Embark on an evening trip to see the Aurora Borealis. Hear fascinating facts about them from your guides, visit the Aurora Museum, and search to see the lights firsthand. Depart the bright lights of Reykjavík city center to see the dancing lights of the Aurora Borealis. Also known as the “Northern Lights,” it is one of the most spectacular shows during the winter months. Head for wherever meteorologists have predicted the lights will be at their best. To get stunning views of the sky you will aim for areas with no artificial light. Hear explanations of how the Aurora Borealis is caused as a result of the gaseous particles in the earth’s atmosphere colliding with charged particles released from the sun’s atmosphere. The locations visited differ from day-to-day, but you will head in the direction with the most chance of seeing Mother Nature at work. As the tour is weather dependent, and sightings are not guaranteed, you are also invited to join another Northern Lights tour free of charge if the lights don’t appear.  Explore Northern Lights in the Aurora Museum. The Northern Lights tour includes a complementary ticket to visit the museum in Reykjavik, Grandagarður 2, 101 Reykjavík. 

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Reykjavik: Shuttle Bus Transfer to/from Keflavik Airport

2. Reykjavik: Shuttle Bus Transfer to/from Keflavik Airport

Enjoy a safe and reliable airport transfer between Reykjavik Keflavik Airport (KEF) and your accommodation in Reykjavik or BSI Bus Terminal. Travel stress-free knowing that your seat on the bus is guaranteed and that you will not have to wait long for the service. Benefit from air-conditioned vehicles that are regularly maintained to high hygienic standards. Choose a one-way service to or from the airport and feel safe knowing that your service is reliable and secure. Save yourself the hassle of navigating the public transportation system before or after a long journey. Due to an environmental standpoint, the City of Reykjavik does not allow larger coaches on many of its streets. Therefore, during your transfer, you might have to change from a larger to a smaller bus at the BSI Bus terminal. The staff will make sure you feel confident and provide you all the information on the spot. Do not worry about waiting too long - the buses are scheduled to depart 30-45 minutes after each flight for your convenience. The only thing left to do will be to relax and enjoy the views from the comfort of your seat.

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Reykjavik: Golden Circle Full-Day Tour with Kerid Crater

3. Reykjavik: Golden Circle Full-Day Tour with Kerid Crater

See the best of southwest Iceland on an 8-hour Golden Circle tour by bus from Reykjavik. Visit the spectacular Geysir area, and go to the cascades of Gullfoss Waterfall. Discover where the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates meet in Þingvellir National Park. Travel to the geothermal area of Geysir. Marvel as the active hot spring of Strokkur spouts steaming water 30 meters into the air every 8 minutes. Continue to one of Iceland’s most iconic features at the Gullfoss Waterfall (“Golden Falls“). Feel the spray of the waters of the glacial River Hvítá as it plummets down into a 32-meter deep crevice. Next, enter Þingvellir National Park, where the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates are pulling apart at a rate of a few centimeters per year. Þingvellir was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its cultural value in 2004, and is the site of a stunning rift valley and the Rock of Law, the first Viking parliament. Marvel at the volcanic crater at Lake Kerið, and pass through the Icelandic farms of the south on your drive around the Golden Circle, before returning to your original starting point in Reykjavik.

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From Reykjavik: Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon Full-Day Trip

4. From Reykjavik: Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon Full-Day Trip

Explore the dramatic landscapes of the south of Iceland on a full-day sightseeing tour by bus. Go to the Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon outlet of the largest glacier in Europe, leaning about its history and formation from your local guide. Following a pickup from your hotel in Reykjavik, transfer to the southern coast and the dramatic Glacier Lagoon. Enjoy plenty of time to see the floating icebergs and enjoy the stunning scenery. During the season, make sure to reserve your ticket to the boat cruise on the Jökulsárlón and experience the unique Glacier Lagoon spectacle up close. When you prebook, your place is guaranteed. Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon is Iceland’s largest and deepest glacier lagoon. It branches from Breidamerkurjokull, an outlet glacier of Vatnajokull, Europe’s largest glacier. Return to Reykjavik, stopping at the gorgeous waterfall Seljalandsfoss. You will visit the Diamond beach with black sand, and there will be an additional stop in Iceland's southernmost village at Vík for dinner.

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From Reykjavik to Blue Lagoon: Return Transfer

5. From Reykjavik to Blue Lagoon: Return Transfer

Start your journey from Reykjavik's centrally-located BSI Bus Terminal. The drive from Reykjavík to the Blue Lagoon takes approximately 50 minutes and promises to impress: along the way, marvel at the beautiful lava fields of Reykjanes Peninsula. Once at the Blue Lagoon, relax in milky-blue waters with temperatures of around 100 degrees, at your leisure. When you have enjoyed everything that the Blue Lagoon has to offer, hop on the comfortable bus back to Reykjavik (50-minute drive) or to Keflavík International Airport (20-minute drive)* for your afternoon flight. The transfer to the Blue Lagoon operates according to a set timetable. • From Reykjavík to Blue Lagoon - 9:00 AM; 10:00 AM; 11:00 AM; 1:00 PM; 2:00 PM; 3:00 PM; 5:00 PM• From Blue Lagoon to Reykjavík - 1:15 PM; 2:15 PM; 3:15 PM; 6:15 PM; 8:15 PM

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Keflavik Airport & Reykjavik Hotels: Economy Bus Transfer

6. Keflavik Airport & Reykjavik Hotels: Economy Bus Transfer

Relax on your holiday using a cost effective and efficient transfer, with professional and friendly drivers. With a fixed schedule coach transfer between Keflavík International Airport and Reykjavík bus Terminal, this is the easiest way to get about. This transfer between Reykjavík Terminal and Keflavík Airport takes approximately 45 minutes and all you have to do is sit back and relax. Upon arrival at Keflavík International Airport, locate the service desk outside the arrivals hall, and board your bus right in front of the airport. Buses are on time and depart according to the schedule in connection with every arriving passenger flight. When departing from Reykjavík, make your way to the easy-to-find Reykjavík bus terminal, or conveniently located bus stops in Kópavogur.  For an extra fee, add a hotel connection to your booking to get dropped off or picked-up at your accommodation or nearest bus stop. 

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Reykjavík: Half-Day Guided Hike of Fagradalsfjall Volcano

7. Reykjavík: Half-Day Guided Hike of Fagradalsfjall Volcano

Enjoy an afternoon or evening hike in Geldingadalur Valley, where lava flows from erupting volcanoes, to witness the Fagradalsfjall Volcano. Learn the history of the volcanoes of the area from your expert guide. Get picked up in Reykjavík and set out on a scenic drive surrounded by breathtaking views towards the Fagradalsfjall Volcano and Geldingadallur Valley. Once at the valley, put on your hiking gear and head towards the volcano to hopefully see some live lava flowing. Bring snacks along with you and enjoy them while you watch the spectacular natural show. Afterward, as you drive along the peninsula, your guide will fill you in on the history of volcanos in the area — many long-dormant, now covered by soft green lava moss.

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Reykjavik: FlyOver Iceland Experience

8. Reykjavik: FlyOver Iceland Experience

Hang suspended, feet dangling, in front of a 20-meter spherical screen while a film whisks you away on an exhilarating journey across Iceland. Soar over land, sea and ice. Move with the arctic winds. This is an immersive flight experience. The ride utilizes state-of-the-art technology to give you the feeling of flying. Special effects, including wind, mist and smells, combine with the ride’s motion to create an unforgettable experience.  Before your flight begins, a storyteller and resident troll Sú Vitra will lead you through two unique adventures that’ll ignite your imagination with stories of Iceland, its people and the natural forces at work. Rides commence approximately every 15 to 20 minutes during operating hours. The total experience will take approximately 35 minutes, including the 8.5 minutes you’ll spend on the ride.

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From Reykjavik: South of Iceland Full-Day Trip

9. From Reykjavik: South of Iceland Full-Day Trip

Spend the day exploring the dramatic landscapes of the south of Iceland along with its coastline on a full-day sightseeing tour from Reykjavik. Along the way, discover a variety of rivers, waterfalls, mountains, and glaciers. Following a pickup from listed hotels or guesthouses by bus in central Reykjavík, travel to the gorgeous waterfalls of Seljalandsfoss and Skógafoss. At the waterfall at Seljalandsfoss, walk behind the cascades and feel the spray on your face. Continue to Skógafoss to marvel at the 60-meter drop. Pass the black sand beaches of the southern coast and enjoy the power of the sea. Visit the glacier snout of Sólheimajökull to see an outlet glacier of Mýrdalsjökull. Admire the ever-changing feat of nature up-close. Then, look at the basalt sea stacks in the town of Vik, Iceland’s southernmost village just south of the Mýrdalsjökull glacier, before returning to Reykjavik.

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From Reykjavik: Golden Circle, Kerid Crater, and Blue Lagoon

10. From Reykjavik: Golden Circle, Kerid Crater, and Blue Lagoon

Experience Iceland’s 2 most visited natural attractions, the Golden Circle and the Blue Lagoon, in one day on a comfortable and convenient minibus tour. Depart Reykjavik and head for the Thingvellir National park, where the Eurasian and American tectonic plates converge. Amble through the stunning, lake-filled area, hopping back and forth between continental boundaries, and view the site where the Icelandic parliament was held from 930-1798. Next, head to the Geysir Hot Spring with geothermal pools reaching temperatures of 200 degrees. Witness the Strokkur geyser erupting a plume of boiling water and steam 100 feet in the air. Grab a bite to eat, before heading to the breathtaking waterfall at Gullfoss. Next, visit the Kerid volcanic crater with its deep blue waters, surrounded by vibrant red rock. Finish your tour at the iconic Blue Lagoon. Luxuriate in the warm, geothermal waters, making use of an included silica mud mask, before heading back to Reykjavik.

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Frequently asked questions about Reykjavik

What top attractions are a must-see in Reykjavik?

Planning Your Visit

  • Best time to visit?

    Reykjavík's endless summer days make it a fun place to visit between June and August, but if you want to see the Northern Lights, your best bet is to go in the winter. Bear in mind, however, that the otherworldly phenomenon (also known as the Aurora Borealis) is notoriously difficult to predict. If it's important that you see it, boost your chances by booking a longer holiday and keeping up-to-date with the daily forecasts.

  • How long to stay?

    Reykjavík has a lot of life in it for such a small city. How many days you need depends on what you want from your holiday. A weekend will be enough to see the city's sights, However, if you want to enjoy any of Iceland's scenic excursions, or immerse yourself in the capital's eccentric nightlife and music scene, a week might not be enough!

  • How expensive is it?

    Reykjavík, like most Nordic cities, has a reputation for being quite expensive and, for a city of its size, that's a fair assessment. Ultimately though, Reykjavík is no more expensive than London or Paris. Furthermore, you're unlikely to encounter hidden costs and can expect excellent value for money.

Good to know

  • Language
    Icelandic
  • Currency
    Icelandic Krona (ISK)
  • Time Zone
    UTC (+00:00)
  • Country Code
    +354
  • Best time to visit
    Summer

Insider tips: Planning a trip to Reykjavik

Jurga Rubinovaite is an avid traveler, photographer, and chief adventure planner behind the popular family travel blog Full Suitcase. On her blog, you can find more information and all the details for planning a trip to Reykjavik.

What should I do on my first trip to Reykjavik?

One of the best things to do in Reykjavik is simply walking through the city center and the waterfront area. It's here that you'll find some of the main landmarks of Reykjavik, such as Harpa Concert Hall, Sun Voyager sculpture, and Hallgrimskirkja church (be sure to go up the tower for the best views in Reykjavik!). There are also lots of interesting museums and fantastic attractions such as FlyOver Iceland or Whales of Iceland.

What are some hidden gems to see in Reykjavik?

One of the best local experiences in Reykjavik is going for a swim at one of the many geothermal pools. And while everyone knows the Blue Lagoon, there are also many communal pools with outdoor hot tubs, steam baths, or saunas (and, at a fraction of the cost). The nicest local pool in Reykjavik city center is Sundhöll Reykjavíkur, one of the oldest public baths in Iceland. Located in a beautifully restored historc building, this is definitely one of the best hidden gems of Reykjavik.

How much time should I spend in Reykjavik?

One day is enough for the main highlights of Reyjavik. However, if you want to visit a few museums and tourist attractions and go for a swim at one of the geothermal pools, plan at least 2 days in Reykjavik. In addition, there are lots of great tours such as whale watching or Northern Lights, so you could easily spend several days in Reykjavik and never get bored.

What food is Reykjavik known for?

If there is one meal that you have to try in Reykjavik, it's the Icelandic hot dog. Icelanders are absolutely fond of their hot dogs and believe they are the best in the world! What makes them special is that they are made with the best Icelandic lamb, pork, and beef meet. The best place to try a hot dog in Reykjavik is Bæjarins Beztu Pylsur hot dog stand (literal translation - "best hot dogs in town"). If you are feeling more adventurous, you can also try traditional Icelandic foods like rotten shark or roasted sheep skull.

What is the best way to get around Reykjavik?

The best way to get around Reykjavik is on foot. All the main attractions in the city center are located within walking distance to each other. if you don't feel like walking, you can also take public buses or opt for a hop-on hop-off bus. For the most famous geothermal pools and other attractions outside the city center, you'll need a car or a shuttle bus.

What are the best months to visit Reykjavik?

Reykjavik can be visited the whole year round and there's always plenty to see and do in and around the city. In summer, you will experience endless days and midnight sun, and in winter - polar night and - with a bit of luck - Northern Lights. Reykjavik is also famous for its New Year's celebrations, with great parties and the most impressive firework displays.

What neighborhood should I stay in when I visit Reykjavik? 

The best area to stay in Reykjavik is the city center, also known as 101 Reykjavik. It's here that you will find most of the city's attractions, best hotels, all kinds of shops, and a big variety of cafes, bars, and restaurants. Here you can find a complete guide to the best places to stay in Reykjavik.

Other Sightseeing Options in Reykjavik

Want to discover all there is to do in Reykjavik? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Reykjavik

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 38,089 reviews

Spectacular experience, super organised trip. The snowmobile experience was indescribable, the staff was so helpful and nice that made our day splendid

It was pleasure travelling with GrayLine. Thanks to Get Your Guide, I didn’t know if GrayLine exists. But they are hidden jam

Perfect day, extremely nice and informative guides, the best way to see the beautiful stunning scenery.

The coach was comfortable, on time and had free WiFi which was good. Took about 45 minutes.

A must do trip in Iceland... The guide Iga was super interesting and funny