Things to do in Reykjavik

Arriving in Iceland before the Exploration begins, extending your trip to a couple days after, or wondering where to go during your free time? Our local experts have curated a list of places to visit, to eat and to shop while in Reykjavik.

Let this guide bring you closer to feeling like a local!

Coffee shops


Address: Laugavegur 27 (Closest to the Canopy by Hilton Hotel)

Established in 1984 by Berglind Guðbrandsdóttir and Sigmundur Dýrfjörð, Te & Kaffi operates Iceland’s biggest coffee roastery, a chain of 14 coffeehouses and a wholesale business focusing on coffee, loose-leaf tea, coffee machines and other related products.

Mokka kaffi

Address: Skólavörðustígur 3A

An Icelandic tradition since 1958. Mokka is one of the oldest cafés still in business in Reykjavik and the first one to make coffee with an espresso machine – espresso, cappuccino, and café latte. Mokka also serves hot chocolate and their famous waffles.
From the time of opening the café has doubled as an Art gallery and the walls have been covered with new art for sale. Seats are usually filled by loyal customers. The exhibitions change every month.


Address: Skólavörðustígur 22A

Serves meat, vegan options available. A comfortable walk-up cafe in the city center with a rooftop deck. Offers crepes and lasagna on the menu, as well as cakes and cookies. Cafe drinks including coffee, tea, beer & wine.



Laugavegur is the main shopping street in Reykjavík, renowned for its boutiques, restaurants, and bars. You’ll find everything here!

The Viking

Address: Skólavörðustígur 3

If you are looking for the classic Icelandic souvenir – be it fridge magnets, toy puffins, Viking rune necklaces or books on national culture – look no further than The Viking.

Farmers Market

Address: Laugavegi 37

Here you can find beautifully designed versions of the Icelandic wool sweater, or lopapeysa, which is a staple in Icelandic fashion.

66° North

Address: Bankastræti 5

66 North is an outdoor clothing brand based in Iceland, designing active wear for its very active population. While everything is not necessarily manufactured in Iceland, the brand’s designs often have an Icelandic feel to them.

Blue Lagoon Skin Care Product Souvenirs

Address: Laugavegur 15

Created from the bioactive elements of Blue Lagoon water—silica, algae, and minerals—Blue Lagoon Skincare brings forth radiant, youthful, healthy skin.


Bastard Brew & food

Address: Vegamótastígur 4

Respecting the traditional art of brewing, the restaurant crafts one of a kind beers for real gourmets. Bar with heart and soul of a giant.

Snaps Bistro

Address: Þórsgata 1

French bistro in downtown Reykjavik offering first-class ingredients, quality selection of wines and lots of good vibes.

Íslenski Barinn (The Icelandic Bar)

Address: Ingólfsstræti 1A

The Icelandic bar offers a wide range of Icelandic conventional food, all from the traditional Icelandic meat soup to Icelandic Shark. At the bar you will be able to experience some real Icelandic food the way our ancestor’s made it, but with a little twist.


Address: Bankastræti 12

Prikið is one of the longest-running restaurants in Iceland, having been opened in 1951. It still has some of the old interiors which give the place a timeless feeling and a cozy atmosphere.

Prikið is very vegan friendly as it has several vegan options on the menu.

Must see/do activities (minimal to no costs involved)

Hallgrímskirkja & Skólavörðustígur

Hallgrímskirkja is probably Reykjavík’s best-known landmark. Appreciating the building up close really gives you a sense of its unique character, inspired by columnar lava rock formation. Admission is free, but a trip to the church’s tower will cost you a few ISK.

Skólavörðustígur: The street leading up to the church is famous for its bustling street life, diverse restaurants, art galleries, innovative design shops and quality shopping.

Free Walking Tours

Citywalks offers free, guided, walking tours in central Reykjavík every day. There are actually a few tours each day, which take about 2 hours a piece. Here you will learn about the city and Iceland‘s culture, history and heritage.

City Hall & The Pond

City Hall is the home of a huge 3D printed map of Iceland on the ground floor. The building itself is also quite interesting, bringing us to the next attraction:

Tjörnin, or “The Pond”, by City Hall, has since long become an integral part of Reykjavík city life. It’s home to many of Reykjavík’s best-known houses, as well as up to 50 species of birds that can be seen year round. A part of this area is “Hljómskálagarðurinn”, a large green space with walking paths and play rides for kids.

Austurvöllur & Icelandic Parliament

The Iceland parliament, Alþingi, is one of the oldest parliaments in the world. It was moved to Reykjavík in 1844, after having had its sessions in Þingvellir for almost 900 years. The present parliament building was built in 1881 and is located by Austurvöllur.

Austurvöllur is a public park in 101 Reykjavík, often considered the heart of the city’s downtown area. A popular picnic spot and hang out in summer, this greenfield was also the main location of the “Kitchenware Revolution” in 2008. In the centre of Austurvöllur, a statue of Jón Sigurðsson, Iceland’s national hero, can be found.

The Sightseeing Run (8km)

Check out this great 8km running route that takes in some of the city‘s best sights

For those who like to do their sightseeing on the run, a good place to start would be Tjörnin (The Pond), near City Hall. Tjörnin and its surrounding gardens are lovely, with lively birdlife and beautiful statues to take in. Bring your phone and take a selfie sitting on the bench beside the statue of the poet Tómas Guðmundsson! After you enjoy a run around Tjörnin, it is time for a little uphill climb towards Hallgrímskirkja.

Your next stop is the Sólfar sculpture, with its stunning view of the ocean and Mt. Esja. Harpa concert hall is now close by, and from there you can follow the blue and yellow lines on the pavement towards the old harbour. One there, you’ll run past fishing trawlers, whale-watching boats, restaurants and small shops in the old harbour area, which is gaining more popularity by the day. Finally, on your way back to City Hall, you can finish your sightseeing by running past the Catholic Church, Alþingi and Reykjavík’s cathedral.