Reykjavik Travel Guide
Reykjavik, the Icelandic capital, rocks! It is one of the hottest nightspots in all of Europe, buzzing with an electric nutur culture – Reykjavik's version of the night pub crawl, which can give Dublin's Temple Bar pub scene a run for its money. It has a downtown packed with clubs and bars, more than 100 of them in just a few blocks, at once stylish, edgy and hip, which come alive on weekends after midnight, with DJs spinning the latest tracks and live bands, both hyped and obscure, belting it out at assorted venues into the wee hours of the morning. The city also has a thriving arts scene, with no dearth of exciting art galleries, classy museums and live theater, and a calendar chock full of events and festivals where music and literature are well represented. Besides which, Reykjavik is arguably the greenest city in the world, with the cleanest air of any city, its red-, green- and blue-roofed houses, together with its public buildings and numerous spas and pools, heated entirely by geothermal steam – yep, naturally-occurring steam: good, clean, pure energy! And that's Reykjavik!
Reykjavik is the westernmost capital in Europe and northernmost in the world, situated on Faxafloi Bay in the southwestern part of Iceland. It is named for the bay and the geothermal steam frequently seen rising from both the ground and the waters in the bay: "Reykjavik," in Icelandic, means "Steamy Bay." From Oslo it is 1,088 miles (1,751 km) to the northwest as the crow flies, and from London, 1,175 miles (1,891 km), also northwest.
Reykjavik's principal airport is Keflavik, where virtually all visitors arrive and depart from when visiting Reykjavik and other destinations in Iceland. Several international carriers, including Iceland's national airline, IcelandAir, offer flights to Reykjavik. A secondary airport, the Reykjavik Airport, caters to domestic flights.
Among priorities in Reykjavik are the Lutheran church Hallgrímskirkja, the tallest church in Iceland and the city's most prominent landmark, which was 41 years in the making, 1945-1986, and has a 244-foot (74.5-m) tower that resembles the basalt lava flows unique to Iceland; the Al_ingishúsi_, or Iceland's Parliament House, a classical, hewn dolerite building dating from 1880, significant as the seat of Europe's oldest parliament; and the Hofdi House – Höf_i in Icelandic – the loveliest waterfront mansion in Reykjavik, notably the site of the 1986 Iceland Summit at which American and Soviet presidents Reagan and Gorbachev met for the last time. There are also several good museums in the city, led by the National Museum of Iceland with its antiquarian collection, the Icelandic Phallological Museum that houses the world's largest collection of penises – yes, we're speaking of the male organs – and the Reykjavik Art Museum and Viking Maritime Museum, the latter with fabulous displays of Iceland's maritime history. The city's principal shopping street is Laugavegur, which also has on it most of the bars, clubs, cafés and restaurants. Two other quite popular shopping areas of Rekyjavik, well worth visiting, are Kringlan and the newer Smáralind.
Reykjavik's nightlife is largely centered on Laugavegur, a principal artery right in the heart of downtown, as well as along the side streets that branch off Laugavegur, where a majority of the city's 100-plus clubs and bars are located. Be forewarned, though, that booze in Reykjavik is not inexpensive, which is why most partygoers drink at home before going out on the town.
© Indian Chief Travel Guides
Ischgl is a small mountain village turned hip ski resort, with massive appeal among the party-hearty young crowds. It is... Read More
Andorra la Vella is its own little world, and not just because it’s a 290-square-mile independent principality (a fifth the... Read More
Bariloche (officially San Carlos de Bariloche) is the place to be seen. It is to Argentina what Aspen is to the... Read More
Aspen is America's most famous ski resort. And that's an understatement. For, as a ski complex, Aspen is unsurpassed. Its... Read More
Zermatt is a small but glamorous mountain resort town, with a population of approximately 5,700. It is one of Switzerland's... Read More
St. Moritz is a glitzy, alpine resort town in the celebrated Engadin Valley of Switzerland, with huge notoriety as the... Read More
Lake Tahoe is the premier lake resort of America, and the largest alpine lake in all of North America. It is an absolutely... Read More
St. Anton, Sankt Anton am Arlberg in German, is Austria's premier ski-bum resort! It's actually a small village cum... Read More
Kitzbühel, a small, Tyrolian resort town in the Kitzbüheler Alps, comes with international renown and huge snob appeal, and... Read More