Going to Reykjavik?
Day trips to the Blue Lagoon geothermal spa and booking tours of the northern lights and the Golden Circle are definitely three of the most popular things to do in Iceland, though they aren’t the only things to do while in Reykjavik. Here it’s a few more cool stuff you can do while in Reykjavik:
Take the ferry ride to Videy Island and pay respects to John Lennon
However long you plan to be in Reykjavik, you must take the five-minute ferry ride from Reykjavik Old Harbour to Videy and explore this beautiful island. You won’t only be rewarded by stunning views of Reykjavik but you may also be lucky enough to see the northern lights from there.
Besides soaking in the peaceful atmosphere and the stunning scenery of Videy, you’ll also be able to tour the John Lennon “Imagine Peace Tower” memorial, and see the fantastic beaming light, which is lit up between the 9 October (Lennon's day of birth) and 8 December (Lennon's day of death) and New Year’s Eve.
Experience a hot pot soak in cold freezing weather
Iceland has its fair share of thermal pools areas and one of the must do things in Reykjavik is to go for a relaxing soak in the middle of freezing cold weather. The great thing about thermal pools in Reykjavik such as Laugardalslaug and Vesturbæjarlaug is that they’re fairly inexpensive.
However, the most unique place to go for hot pot soak has to be in the beach area of Nauthólsvík (next to Reykjavik Airport). The geothermal hot pots in Nauthólsvík beach are free to use and, best of all, they’re right in town!
Ride-back an Icelandic horse
Northern Light and snowmobiling tours are certainly some the most popular type of tours to book in Iceland. However, while in Reykjavik you wouldn’t want to miss the chance to ride on a beautiful Icelandic horse through the highland plateau of Reykjavik.
There are a handful of tour operators in the area around Reykjavik such as Laxnes Horse Farm, Eldhestar, and Viking Horses offering horse riding tours, although the nearest horse riding company to Reykjavik is The Icelandic Horse, which is located a few minutes outside of the city (on the way to Lake Rauthavatn).
Sample Icelandic cuisine
Sampling a typical Icelandic dish is no doubt, one of the must do things in Reykjavik. The city of Reykjavik is home to superb restaurants where you can sample lamb and seafood dishes such as lobster soup, fish kebabs, caviar, dolphin and whale meat. You can even get fish & chips Icelandic style from an eatery called “Icelandic Fish & Chips”, which is located right by the harbor (near Life of Whales).
The Fish Company (near the Reykjavik Art Museum), the Seafood Cellar Restaurant and the Icelandic Bar (opposite Austurvöllur Square) are some other popular places to try traditional Icelandic dishes.
Capture an unforgettable sunset from Nes
“Nes” (Seltjarnarnes) is one of the oldest settlements in Iceland and one of the most stunning locales in the country to snap-up some photos. Nes is located on the westernmost tip of the Greater Reykjavík Area and the town’s coastlines offer beautiful views of the ocean, seabird life and the sunsets.
In fact, photographing a sunset from Nes is one of the must do things in Reykjavik that will be definitely worth your while. Be sure though to bring a good camera to take nice shots like the above picture (preferably a full-frame digital SLR camera such as the Canon EOS 5D, the Nikon D700 or Sony DSLR-A900)
Climb Mount Esja
You can’t really say you’ve fully experienced Reykjavik without climbing the famous and glorious Mt Esja to enjoy panoramic views of Reykjavik's skyline. The hike to the top of Mt Esja is fairly easy, though it’s a good idea to hire a local guide or go with someone who knows the mountain to get a better experience. A couple places where you can go and arrange a guided tour of Mt Esja would be “Season Tours” and “Reykjavik Backpackers”.
Saying this, you can easily get to Mt Esja independently by using public transport. You’ll need to catch two buses though: 1) The #15 bus from Hlemmur bus terminal (Reykjavik) to the town of Mosfellsbaer, and 2) take the #27 bus to Mt Esja (which will drop you right by the foot of the mountain).
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