In this post we have put our 7 favorite places in Reykjavik recommended to us by the locals. Road tripping the island of Iceland is great and there are so many breathtaking spots that we have dedicated a separate post to everything outside of Reykjavik.
Although Reykjavik is Iceland’s capital and largest town you can easily visit all highlights within a day. However, just take it slow and enjoy all the cozy and culinary hotspots this beautiful town overlooking the southern shore of Faxa Bay that is full of culture and history.
Strolling along streets Hverfisgate and Laugavegur streets for luxury shopping, souvenirs and enjoying the traditional houses, street arts. There are few monuments to explore and do not expect real tourist sightings, they have no Icelandic Eiffel Tower. The Hallgrimskirkja Church is worth a visit as it is Reykjavík’s main landmark and its tower can be seen from almost everywhere in the city.
It is more a city to explore the trendy coffee bars and vegan restaurants and use Reykjavik as a base camp for outdoor activities and visit Iceland’s hidden natural gems. Expect late night drinks, by this we mean 11 pm dinners in summer. However, streets are desolated during the winter season.
Our favorite places in Reykjavik
Prepp – Yes, the number 1 of our favorite places in Reykjavik definitely is Prepp. This popular and hip coffee bar with some vegan options on the menu. It is spacious so even when it is full of people you have plenty room to relax or work with your chill mode on!
Gló – You must have heard that Iceland is expensive, and it is. Gló, currently running 4 mostly vegetarian restaurants in Reykjavik, is a pleasant surprise. For around EUR 18 you get a main course with the freshest of ingredients, almost 100% produced by Icelandic farmers. Their mission is to ‘Our goal is to make it easy for busy people to discover and try new, exciting healthy meals that enrich the mind, body, and spirit. And they do! Enjoy great food and save money…who doesn’t want that!
Reykjavik roasters – Not only one of our favorite places in Reykjavik but also from the Icelandic hipsters. Go there for breakfast, lunch and/or just coffee! Some say they serve the best coffee in town. At least they have the widest variety Reykjavík Roasters offers a diverse variety of coffees from around the world you can find in Iceland. When we were there they served coffee from beans coming from Brazil, Burundi, Colombia, El Salvador, Ethiopia, and Nicaragua.
Apothek bar & restaurant – This chic and classic bar & restaurant, located in the Apothek Hotel is a perfect spot to start your night out in Reykjavik with a cocktail. It is a beautiful oasis in the center of town and if you do not want to have dinner here, there are many top restaurants just around the corner. Definitely one of our favorite places in Reykjavik!
Kaffi Vinyl – this awesome spot for any time of the day must be on our list of happy places in Reykjavik. Start your breakfast there, have a morning coffee, continue with your lunch, work a bit and take a cocktail around five o’clock as an aperitif for your dinner. And even after that, you can stay to dance to the music played from original vinyl records. Definitely one of our favorite (vegan) spots in Reykjavik!
Laundromat – originally this bar/restaurant annex laundry store is from Copenhagen, Denmark. We didn’t do any laundry but took hamburgers and soup for lunch. It is not the cheapest place of Reykjavik but it is a nice spot to take some time to read or write some of your own travel stories while being inspired by all the books and funny posters surrounding you.
Day trips from Reykjavik – Reykjavik is the ideal base camp for exploring this beautiful island as many of the amazing natural wonders are just a few hours away by car or by boat. From the harbor, several companies offer whale, dolphin and puffin viewing trips. By car or bus the golden triangle and Landmannaugar can be done on a day trip but we found it more relaxed to take it a little more laid back and spending the night when it is more than a 90 minutes’ drive one way.
Favorite places in Reykjavik