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February 2019

in Reykjavík

Reykjavík’s leading guide to information, events, museums and galleries since 1982


Ljósmyndasafn Reykjavíkur Reykjavík Museum of Photography

Páll Stefánsson

19.01.–12.05.2019

...now

www.reykjavikcitymuseum.is


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WHAT’S ON

CONTENT LIST What’s On Reykjavík City Map

FROM THE EDITOR 6-49 50-51

Events 54-76 Art & Culture

77-81

Shopping & Style

82-85

Pubs & Nightlife

86-89

Wining & Dining

90-95

Practical Info

96-97

Winter in Iceland is an amazing experience. Sure, it’s cold and dark, but that’s quite literally part of the experience. It might not be what you’re used to, but if you have a trick or two up your woolen sweater sleeve, you can have the time of your life. First of all, I wasn’t kidding about that woolen sweater, the key to enjoying everything Iceland has to offer is to dress for the weather. Wear good shoes to keep your toes dry, bring gloves and a warm hat and you’re ready for anything. Looking up at the stars on a dark winter night and seeing the northern lights stretch across the sky is an amazing experience, best enjoyed with warm toes and ears. Secondly, enjoy the moment. Whether you’re looking for the northern lights or speeding over a glacier on a snowmobile, remember to take a moment to take in the experience. It’s tempting to plan your Iceland trip down to the minute but give yourself some time as well to breathe and just enjoy the atmosphere in the city. Thirdly, remember to stay safe. Iceland in the winter is a magical land to explore but it can also be dangerous. If you’re not used to driving on icy roads, consider a guided tour instead of driving on your own. If you’re careful, driving around the country is safe, but remember to check the weather forecast before leaving town. Keep your schedule flexible in case the weather isn’t cooperative. Good news is, it doesn’t really matter where you go in Iceland, there’s always something to see!

What’s On Information Centre, Laugavegur 5.

Gréta Sigríður Einarsdóttir What’s On Editor

Design & production: sbs, sbs@whatson.is

Published by: MD Reykjavík ehf. Laugavegur 5, 101 Reykjavik. Tel.: 551-3600

Content writers: The What’s On Team Ad sales: Reynir Elís Þorvaldsson, reynir@whatson.is

Publisher: Kjartan Þorbjörnsson

Map of Reykjavík: Friðrik Bjarnason

Editor: Gréta Sigríður Einarsdóttir, greta@whatson.is

Printing: Oddi, Ecolabelled Printing Company.

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WHAT‘S ON IN REYKJAVÍK is published monthly, covering events and happenings in and around Reykjavík. Opinions expressed in WHAT‘S ON IN ReykjavÍk are those of the individual authors. While every effort has been made to ensure the information presented is accurate, prices, times, dates and other information may be subject to change.


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WHAT’S ON

THE WHAT’S ON CHECKLIST February is a great month to visit Iceland. Days are slowly getting longer, and you can enjoy the snow or ice skating! Plus, there are plenty of cool events going on. Here are some ideas on how to spend this February in Iceland Go skiing! The Bláfjöll mountains are only a 30-minute drive from the city centre! Get some creamy soft-serve ice cream, while watching the snow fall outside.

Find more articles like this at www.whatson.is

Get out of the city, see some real darkness.

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While you’re there, look up, you just might see some northern lights! Visit a museum on Museum Night, part of the Winter Lights Festival. Eat some traditional Icelandic food, the shark is optional. For an icy adventure, try hiking on a glacier!

While you’re checking things off the list, we encourage you to take photos, and tag them with #whatsonrvk, of course!


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WHAT’S ON

#WHATSONRVK

ON INSTAGRAM

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WHAT’S ON

So you’re in Iceland, enjoying life, seeing the sights and taking in everything our magnificent country has to offer. Why not share it with the world? Tag your photos using #whatsonrvk and your photo might be featured in our magazine next month! On www.whatson.is, you can watch out for every issue published.

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WHAT’S ON

SKYR Legend has it that the Vikings introduced Skyr to Iceland when they settled in the country some 1.100 years ago. Travel back in time to any farm and Skyr would be on the table – essential nourishment for young and old. Generations past may not have been able to measure the nutritional content in the way we can now, but the life-expectancy of the average Icelander was proof enough that something good was going on. Icelanders have ever since loved the smooth texture of this incredibly healthy dairy product and today

ICELAND’S SECRET TO HEALTHY LIVING it plays a big role in the modern lifestyle diet. Skyr is high in protein and a virtually fat-free dairy delight. Thick and creamy in consistency, it is also rich in calcium and other nutrients. Skyr can be found at almost every home and workplace. Enjoyed at breakfast, lunchtime, pretty much anytime, it has also become a healthy “fast-food” for active people on the go. Delicious in smoothies or energy-boosting drinks, it even features on the dessert menus of many top restaurants, which are bringing a contemporary twist to this established favourite.

MS SKYR – PLAIN Skyr was originally only available as plain and was made at every farm in Iceland. Nowadays, there is a huge variety of flavours available but many still prefer the plain one, especially served with sugar and/or cream.

For more information on skyr, visit www.iseyskyr.com

KEA SKYR WITH VANILLA Kea skyr comes from the northern part of Iceland and this is one of the most popular flavours available. The taste is full and creamy with zero fat. It’s mild and creamy flavour also makes it popular as a base for desserts.

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ÍSEY SKYR WITH BLUBERRIES Ísey skyr is a remarkable dairy product unique to Ice­land. High in protein and naturally fat free, Ísey skyr is delicious, rich in flavour with a thick and creamy tex­ture. Ísey is a beautiful Icelandic female name, meaning ice (ís) and island (ey), in honour of the women who passed on Iceland‘s secret to healthy living from generation to generation. ÍSEY SKYR WITH DARK CHOCOLATE AND VANILLA Skyr producers have been experimenting with new flavours in Ísey skyr while still keeping it as nutritious as possible. One of the more recent additions is Ísey skyr with dark chocolate and vanilla flavour. ICELANDIC PROVISIONS SKYR If you find yourself in the US, craving skyr, don’t panic! This is the only skyr available in the US that’s made with traditional Icelandic skyr cultures, passed down through generations of Icelanders. Rich in protein but low in sugar, with flavors that have a Nordic twist, such as Strawberry with Lingonberry. Icelandic provisions skyr is only available in the US and is a sister brand of Ísey Skyr. #icelandicprovisions


ICELAND’S SECRET TO HEALTHY LIVING

HIGH PROTEIN – FAT FREE

#iseyskyr


WHAT’S ON

THE ICELANDIC

BEER EXPERIENCE KALDI

Kaldi is a very mild and comfortable pilsner, dry, fresh, slightly bitter, with notes of roasted barley and hops, and has 5% ABV. You might detect a hint of sweetness as well. The brewery on Árskógssandur, makers of Kaldi beer, was the first microbrewery that opened in Iceland, back in 2006. The regular Kaldi is a pure pilsner, with all the ingredients, except the Icelandic water, coming from the Czech Republic. Even their brewmaster is Czech! Following its success, the brewery opened Kaldi bar in the centre of Reykjavík, where all the varieties of Kaldi beer are available. Kaldi bar is, of course, the best place to get Kaldi, but it’s available in other bars as well, and in bottles at the liquor stores.

EGILS GULL

Egils Gull has followed Icelanders even since the beer ban was lifted on the 1st of March in 1989, aptly named the “Beer Day” and rightly celebrated. A standard light lager, Gull has proved a fantastic companion on Icelanders’ beer adventures, even winding up as the World’s Best Standard Lager at the World Beer Awards in 2011. Brewed in the style of a pale Munich lager, expect a crisp taste with a fresh lemony tang.

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BRÍÓ

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Bríó uses German hops, giving the beer a very distinctive taste and a sweet aroma. Along with the hops, it uses Pilsen malt and underfermented yeast. Bríó is the first beer produced by Borg Brugghús, a brewery that now produces several popular beers all year round along with seasonal beers for summer, Christmas and Easter. Bríó is a pilsner, a style of beer named after the city of Pilsen in the Czech Republic. This style of brewing first emerged in the middle of the 19th century and became so popular that the majority of beer drunk today is a relative of the original pilsner. Bríó was originally brewed as the house beer for Ölstofan but due to its popularity, it’s now available in liquor stores as well as most bars in town.

ÚLFUR

The aroma is of fresh citrus fruits, especially grapefruit, which can also be found in the flavour, along with a strong bitterness that makes you crave another sip. Úlfur was the first Icelandic IPA (India Pale Ale) on the market. It’s in the same calibre as the best produced on the West Coast of the Unites States and surprised many Icelanders with its distinct flavour and aroma. Only American hops are used in the beer and they are added when boiled and after fermentation; a so called “dry hopping” technique. Icelanders took to the beer immediately and it helped clear the way for smaller breweries to try new things.


WHAT’S ON

Although beer and ale have been brewed in Iceland for a long time, beer production was limited during the 20th century, as beer was illegal in Iceland until 1989! Icelanders have more than made up for lost time and the growth in beer production in recent years has been amazing. In just a few years, we‘ve seen many great breweries emerge, filled with ambition and ingenuity, and beer is now the most popular alcoholic beverage in Iceland.

Þorri beers Iceland’s craft brewery scene is booming these days, which is most noticeable in the rising popularity of seasonal beers. In addition to summer beers and Christmas beers, Icelanders like to celebrate the season of Þorri with a beer or two. Þorri starts January 25 this year.

SEGULL 67 ÞORRAÖL Segull 67 Brugghús is a small, family-owned brewing company located in fishing village Siglufjörður, North Iceland. They are housed in an old fish factory that they turned into a modern brewery. Segull 67 Þorraöl is a dark ale/black IPA, which has the flavour of roasted malt, coffee and liquorice root. It combines well with the traditional Icelandic Þorri food.

ÞORRAGULL Gull is one of the most popular Icelandic beers and seasonal varieties have been well-received. Þorragull is a euro pale lager brewed by Ölgerðin Egill Skallagrímsson. Ölgerðin is the oldest producer of beer and soft drinks in Iceland. Þorragull is a fresh and powerful tasting beer with a golden cloudy colour. It’s more bitter than the traditional Egils Gull.

ÞORRA KALDI Þorra Kaldi was first brewed in 2008 but the recipe has changed greatly in the years since. The modern-day interpretation of Þorra Kaldi is a beautiful copper-coloured lager, although if it weren’t for the lager fermentation, Þorra Kaldi would probably be classified as a pale ale. Þorra Kaldi is available in liquor stores as well as the Kaldi Bar downtown!

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SURTUR Borg Brugghús have been experimenting with imperial stouts for Þorri for a while now and they’re getting really good at it. Surtur is the name of a coal-coloured fire demon in the tales of the Norse gods, fitting for the black-as-night beer! You can get Surtur brewed with coffee, a smoked Surtur and Surtur aged in barrels formerly housing Armagnac or rum!

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Seafood

Buffet Everyday from 17:30

+354 552 3030 restaurantreykjavik.is Vesturgata 2, 101 RVK

Salted Cod with almond and chive butter, fig and potatoes

+354 517 4300

geysirbistro.is

Aðalstræti 2, 101 Reykjavík


THE LAXNESS MUSEUM Gljúfrasteinn was the home of writer Halldór Laxness (the winner of The Nobel Prize in Literature 1955) and his family for more than half a century. The house is now a museum, where the author’s home is preserved just as it was when he lived and worked there.

WHAT’S ON

GLJÚFRASTEINN

A number of events are hosted throughout the year. Every Sunday during the summertime there are concerts in the living room at 16:00. The museum is open on Tuesdays to Fridays from 10–16. Audio guides of the house are available in Icelandic, English, German, Swedish and Danish, and an illustrated guide in French. Gljúfrasteinn-Laxness museum is located in the valley of Mosfellsdalur on the way to Þingvellir National Park, only a 20 minute drive from Reykjavik. For more information, go to www.gljufrasteinn.is.

Find more articles like this at www.whatson.is

Tryggvagata 11 - Volcano house Open 11:30-21:00 www.fishandchips.is

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WHAT’S ON

What to Do in Iceland if You Only Have One Day If you only have one day in Iceland, the first advice I will give you is to change your flight and stay for at least a week more. If that’s not an option, my next suggestion would be to use the time you have to the fullest, since Iceland is a unique destination.

IF ICELANDIC GEOLOGY INTERESTS YOU No country does volcanoes like Iceland, there’s a reason it’s called the land of Ice and Fire. The Reykjavík Erupts! volcano hike takes you to a geothermally active area where the effects of the extreme heat underground are clearly visible on the surface. The colours of the earth are akin to a rainbow and there are bubbling cauldrons of mud everywhere. Lava Tube Caving tour, on the other hand, allows you to visit a cave that was formed during a volcanic eruption. The rock formations alone make this tour worth the trip.

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IF YOU JUST WANT TO SEE THE HIGHLIGHTS It’s no coincidence that The Golden Circle is the most popular day tour from Reykjavík. There are three stops on the way that just happen to be three of the most captivating destinations in Iceland, and as an added bonus, the tour doesn’t take up more than half of your day. The stops are Þingvellir, the national park where the Icelandic Parliament congregated since Viking times, Gullfoss, the awe-inspiring waterfall which lends its name to the Golden Circle, and Geysir, an erupting hot spring, guaranteed to wow visitors.

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WHAT’S ON Find more articles like this at www.whatson.is

IF YOU WANT TO SEE A GLACIER Since you’re visiting ICE-land, you might want to check out some icy tours and it doesn’t get any icier than hiking on a glacier. Glacier hikes are relatively easy and professional gear is provided so the tour should be accessible for most people. You get to walk on a glacier, with guides who know everything there is to know about glaciers and Iceland in general, what more could you ask for?

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IF YOU’RE IN THE MOOD FOR A LITTLE LUXURY What’s better than having a spa day? Krauma is a natural geothermal spa in West Iceland, next to Deildartunguhver, Europe’s most powerful hot spring. The water of the natural hot spring is mixed with cool glacial water for perfect temperatures. It has five hot tubs and one cold bath, a relaxation room and two steam baths. If you’re in South Iceland, then head to the Secret Lagoon. It’s situated in a geothermal area with plenty of hot water streaming naturally from the ground and steam rising into the air around you. The beautiful location really lets you feel at one with the Icelandic nature. IF YOU’RE LOOKING FOR AN ADRENALINE RUSH Looking for a thrill? Then go on a buggy ride. A buggy is a fast, sturdy and stable ATV, perfect for everybody who loves the outdoors. When

going on a buggy tour, you better be ready to get dirty, with water splashing up on the side of the tires and dust being blown around your head. Driving a buggy through rough Icelandic terrain, with mud pools, dusty roads and sometimes snow, offers an exciting adventure!

IF YOU READ MOBY DICK AND LIKED IT Marine life abounds in the ocean around Iceland. Of all the creatures that live in these waters, the most spectacular ones have to be the whales. If you’re interested in seeing these immense creatures for yourself, take a whale watching cruise. Even the smallest Icelandic whale you could spot is still the size of a full-grown man, and the largest can reach up to 30 metres in length! If you have a few hours to spare before or after the cruise (or if you get seasick and a cruise is out of the question), check out the Whales of Iceland exhibition for some extra information on these gentle giants.

Whether you are going on tours or staying within city limits, you can be sure of one thing: you won’t have seen enough of what Iceland has to offer. The next time you’re in Iceland (and we’re pretty sure you’ll be back) stop by the What’s On office, or send us an email, info@whatson.is, and ask the staff to help you plan an unforgettable vacation.


WHAT’S ON

Only 35 min. from Reykjavík

A journey into RAUFARHÓLSHELLIR

is a

Breathtaking Experience The highlight of our Iceland trip! The “Must See” event in Iceland Reviewed on TripAdvisor

For more information and bookings: +354 519 1616

www.thelavatunnel.is

+354 760 1000 info@thelavatunnel.is

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WHAT’S ON

Pre-booking is required. Book online at bluelagoon.com

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WHAT’S ON

What to Do in Reykjavík with Kids Though the birth rate in Iceland has dropped in the last few years, it remains higher than the European average, and you could say Icelandic society is family-oriented. That’s good news for those travelling with kids and teenagers, as there is plenty to keep them entertained year-round. Here are a few suggestions of activities with kids in and around Reykjavík. All are accessible by foot, public transportation, private vehicle, or pickup service. None take longer than four hours total and driving time is minimal.

GO ON A WHALE WATCHING CRUISE Age range: 0-99 Season: year-round

Reykjavík’s thermal pools are mostly outdoor and water temperature in the pools and hot tubs ranges from 27 to 42°C to keep you warm even on the coldest days. They’re a popular activity among local families as they’re fun, healthy, and affordable. The showers have kiddie bathtubs and child seats to make washing up easy for the littlest members of your family, there are floaties for those who are learning to swim, and pool toys for the young (and young at heart). Most have shallow kiddie pools and many have water slides as well.

Being out on the water with the chance to see wildlife is exciting for all! Though summer is the high season for whale watching (and the only season to see the popular puffins), whales can be seen off the coast of Iceland year-round. Ships have heated indoor areas for chilly days and provide warm overalls and blankets as well.

FEEDING THE DUCKS Age range: 0-99 Season: year-round Every Icelander has fond memories of childhood trips to the downtown pond to feed ducks with breadcrumbs. Feeding the ducks bread is actually not good for them but birdfeed is easily available. Though ducks are the popular draw, you’ll also see swans, geese and seagulls. When you start to get cold, you can step into the City Hall to check out the large topographical model of Iceland built to scale.

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GO SWIMMING Age range: 0-99 Season: year-round

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WHAT’S ON GO RIDE AN ICELANDIC HORSE Age range: 6-99 Season: year-round The Icelandic horse may be small, but don’t call it a pony! These friendly purebreds are a national treasure and love to meet people. Íshestar Horse Farm provides a riding tour for families that is short enough for the young’uns and appropriate for all levels of experience.

GO CAVING Age range: 5-99 Season: year-round Explore a 2000-year-old cave that was formed by a volcanic eruption. The lava is no longer active, but you and the kids will be as you venture in to experience the unique and colourful stone formations firsthand. Kids must be able to walk on their own and keep pace with the group.

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GO TO THE VOLCANO HOUSE Age range: 0-99 Season: year-round

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Iceland is one of the most volcanically active places on earth. The exhibit of volcanic rocks and minerals at the Volcano House is hands-on, giving you a break from saying “don’t touch that!” The documentaries about Iceland’s most recent eruptions and their effects on the country are short enough to accommodate the attention spans of the youngest while exciting enough for the most bored teenager.

GO SPEND A DAY IN LAUGARDALUR Age range: 0-99 Season: year-round The Laugardalur Valley has several activities for the whole family. The Family Park and Zoo house specimens of most of Iceland’s animals, such as sheep, cows, horses, reindeer, and seals. There are several rides open in the summer and

play areas are open year-round. Laugardalur also houses ice-skating and roller-skating rinks, the largest thermal pool in the city, and the Ásmundarsafn sculpture collection, which includes an outdoor sculpture garden (for those who can’t handle the decorum of an indoor museum… no matter their age).

GO TO A MUSEUM Age range: 0-99 Season: year-round Many of Reykjavik’s museums are child-friendly, housing activity rooms and interactive exhibits. For example, the National Museum of Iceland has a children’s room on the second floor where kids can dress up in Viking attire, including trying out swords, shields, chain mail, and helmets. There are historical objects and models they can play with and a reading section where they can read or listen to stories in English and Icelandic. The Maritime museum also offers a chance to board a National Guard ship from the fifties and Árbær Open Air Museum, a collection of old Icelandic houses, is always popular. If you’re spending a day or two exploring Reykjavík’s museums and swimming pools, consider the Reykjavík City Card. Available for 24hr, 48hr, and 72hr periods for kids and adults, it gives you access to museums, swimming pools, public transport, and more, at one low price.


ONLY

7 KM

FROM CITY CENTER


Riding with Eldhestar

Would you like to experience something different? HORSES & HOT SPRINGS Experience a variety of scenery and excellent riding trails. Tour 3C

SOFT RIVER BANKS This is a tour for the experienced rider! Who would not like to ride in an extraordinary environment? Tour 3B

ICELANDIC DIVERSITY Get in touch with Icelandic nature on horseback and taste the treasures of the nearby sea. Tour 2G

GREAT VARIETY OF HORSE RIDING TOURS JUST OUTSIDE REYKJAVIK Get further information at www.eldhestar.is

Eldhestar, Vellir, 816 Ölfus, Iceland Email: info@eldhestar.is Tel: +354 480 4800


WHAT’S ON All photos courtesy of winterlightsfestival.is

Winter Lights Festival It’s no secret that it gets dark in Iceland in winter, but Icelanders don’t let the darkness get them down. The dark winter nights have their own special charm about them! Celebrating the dark winter nights is what the Winter Lights Festival is all about. Opening night is on February 7, and the opening ceremony will be a beautiful outdoor light installation at Hallgrímskirkja church and a Viking-themed parade. Regular features of the Winter Lights Festival, like Museum Night and Swimming Pool Night, will have their place on the programme, and like last year, the Northern Lights Fun Run will get everyone moving.

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The festival offers a range of events, where the many faces of Reykjavík culture come together. Art and industry, environment and history, sports and culture come together when all the major museums, the swimming pools, and the Harpa music hall join forces and put on an amazing variety of events, all over the city.

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WHAT’S ON Find more articles like this at www.whatson.is 26

LIGHT INSTALLATIONS To celebrate the winter darkness, artists from all over the world have created light installations in the city centre. The works of art range from an interactive lights display over the cover of Harpa, to a group of artists creating a new work of art over the course of the festival. The installations will be lit from 19:00-23:00 all festival long, so be sure to catch them all! MUSEUM NIGHT, FEBRUARY 8 On Museum Night, museums across the whole capital will open their doors to the public at 18:00, and stay open till 23:00. It’s not just a chance to visit your favourite museum, free of charge, but most of the museums also put on special events and offer their visitors a chance to see or hear the museum in a different way. Special Museum Night buses will transport guests between museums, free of charge. See the programme and the Museum Night bus schedule at www.winterlightsfestival.is.

SWIMMING POOL NIGHT, FEBRUARY 9: There aren’t many things that beat sitting in a geothermal hot tub underneath the stars (even northern lights if you’re lucky) feeling toasty warm. On Swimming Pool Night, 12 of the pools in the Reykjavík capital area open their doors to visitors. Entrance is free of charge from 17:00-22:00! During the evening, many of the swimming pools will host special events, creating a unique atmosphere, encouraging guests to take part, dance, sing, or just relax and enjoy the moment.

NORTHERN LIGHTS FUN RUN, FEBRUARY 9 This 4-5 km run through the city centre is not a timed race but an experience where lights, music and beats transform your run into something special. With fun stops scheduled along the way and a music and lights event by the finish line in the Reykjavík Art Museum, the Northern Lights Fun Run is a great way to engage with the city centre in a whole new way. See the programme at www.vetrarhatid.is


24 locations in Iceland


Fish • Lamb • Whale • Icelandic cuisine with a twist Icelandic music and nightlife Mix with the locals . .and all the Icelandic beers in one awsome place!

INGÓLFSSTRÆTI 1A

1 0 1 R E Y K J AV Í K

www.islenskibarinn.is postur@islenskibarinn.is sími: 517 6767

Don’t Fight the Power. Feel It. Welcome to the most powerful exhibition in the world.

“A must-see activity”, “Bucket List”, “Interactive and inspiring”

The exhibition is open every day 9:00-17:00 Info: exhibition@on.is Tel: (+354) 591 2880 www.geothermalexhibition.com


WHAT’S ON

The Wonderful World of Rocks and Minerals

TOURIST ATTRACTIONS 90% of Iceland is basalt. Basalt is a dark grey or black rock, sometimes in a columnar structure, formed by solidification of magma. This type of rock, known as stuðlaberg in Icelandic, has influenced Reykjavík architecture, inspiring buildings such as the National Theatre and Hallgrímskirkja. It can be dense or fine-grained and usually consists of plagioclase, augite and magnetite. Basalt is not unique to Iceland. It makes up most of the world’s oceanic crust, and is found in big quantities in Greenland and Scotland. In Iceland, basalt columns are a popular tourist attraction. Reynisfjara beach on the south coast is one of the locations people flock to for taking pictures of the impressive basalt columns. Svartifoss, a waterfall dropping down black basalt columns, is another spectacular example. OLD-SCHOOL NAVIGATION One Icelandic mineral contributed to science in several ways. Iceland spar is a pure calcite

crystal. Even though Iceland spar can be found in other countries, it got its name because it was first brought to Europe from Helgustaðir in East Iceland in the 17th century. In the age of settlement, Iceland spar was possibly used for navigational purposes. Vikings likely used an object called a sólarsteinn (sunstone) to locate the direction of the sun in cloudy skies and twilight

Basalt

For more information on Icelandic volcanoes, check out www.volcanohouse.is

Iceland was formed roughly 20-25 million years ago by volcanic eruptions, meaning that it’s a volcanic island with many spectacular geological features. Iceland has about 30 active volcanic systems, and more than 100 inactive ones. Volcanoes might stand out the most, but sometimes good things come in small packages. Iceland is home to many interesting and beautiful stones, rocks, minerals and crystals.

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WHAT’S ON

Iceland Spar

For more information on Icelandic volcanoes, check out www.volcanohouse.is

conditions. By looking through the sólarsteinn with the naked eye, the direction of the sun can be identified to within a few degrees. It’s likely that Iceland spar is what used to be known as sólarsteinn. Iceland spar has also been found in an Elizabethan ship that sank in 1592, increasing the odds that the crystal was used to help with navigation long after the magnetic compass became popular.

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The supply in Helgustaðir was mined extensively up into the 20th century. The crystals from Iceland were used in optical instruments like petrological microscopes. The double-refraction property of calcite played an important role in studies of light as a wave. Iceland spar was studied by Christiaan Huygens, Isaac Newton, George Stokes, and William Nicol, among others. These days, synthetic materials have taken over and demand for calcite has ceased. The mine at Helgustaðir was placed under official protection in 1975, prohibiting calcite being removed from the area.

OTHERWORLDLY QUALITIES Is there life on Mars? Well, we don’t know yet. But we do know a lot about Mars’ surface, partly because of a rock that is commonly found in Iceland: palagonite. Palagonite is formed in subglacial and subaquatic eruptions. When water turns into steam on contact with hot lava, small fragments of lava react with this steam to form light-coloured palagonite tuff cones. Even though palagonite is found in other places around the world, it is nowhere as common and easy to study as in Iceland. Palagonite has sparked interest around the world, because similar rocks appear to exist on Mars. Properties of Martian dust match best with a sort of palagonite. Since water is involved in the process of forming palagonite, it has been used as evidence for the existence of water on Mars.

Jasper

A SPLASH OF COLOUR One of the more colourful minerals you can find in Iceland is jasper. Jasper is an opaque, impure rock that can have many different colours – red, orange, yellow, brown, green, and sometimes blue. The colour of jasper is determined by the mineral content of the original sediments or ash it is formed with. The most common colour is red, which is caused by iron. Jasper can have many different patterns, which are formed during the consolidation process. You can find jasper in East Iceland, between Breiðdalur and Borgarfjörður eystri. YOU CAN’T TAKE IT WITH YOU You are not allowed to take rocks or minerals from national parks and protected areas. Removal of Iceland spar, and stalactites and stalagmites, from their original location is strictly forbidden. You are also not allowed to take rocks and minerals from privately owned land without permission. We highly recommend enjoying Iceland’s nature just in Iceland or in the Volcano House at Tryggvagata 11, that houses an exhibition on rocks and minerals. If you are looking for a nice souvenir, check out their gift shop, you can even bring back your very own supply of volcanic ash.

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Mountain Borough

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MOUNTAIN BOROUGH HEALTH AND RECREATION WITH A TOUCH OF HISTORY With outdoor activities as its greatest attraction, get ready for a journey of beautiful hikes in diverse landscapes, historic sites, wool shopping and more, all within the area. Enjoy the hiking paths that lie from the seashore to the mountains. Walk up one of the seven peaks surrounding the area. Learn about the life and works of Nobel Prize laureate Halldór Laxness at his former home, Gljúfrasteinn museum. Take the hiking paths that lie from the museum to the historic Mosfellskirkja church. Go horse riding. Visit the interesting artistic community of Álafosskvos, where they sell handmade arts, crafts and knives; and the Álafoss store, which has been offering handmade wool products at reasonable prices since 1896. Take the kids to Lágafellslaug swimming pool with water slides, jacuzzis, a sauna and a steam bath, and visit Hraðastaðir, a fun petting zoo.

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Romance in Iceland Iceland is the perfect destination for lovebirds, with its scenic views and plenty of opportunities to find yourself alone with your loved one. With Valentine’s Day coming up, you might be interested in the ins and outs of Icelandic romance. We hope this guide will help you plan your romantic day!

CHARMING LOCATIONS Icelanders love summerhouses, even in winter. A wooden cottage, situated in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by beautiful mountains and lakes is perfect for hikes in the surroundings or relaxing in the hot tub under a starry sky with a glass of wine.

Don’t forget to bring a bathing suit! Iceland’s abundance of geothermal water means that Reykjavík has several luxurious swimming pools but for that extra special day, check out some of the natural spas. The Blue Lagoon, with its milky blue water, is the most famous but for more privacy, check out the Secret Lagoon or Laugavatn Fontana.

What is more romantic than kissing under the northern lights? February is a good month for spotting them. Just be sure to get out of the city, the bright city lights often outshine the delicate northern lights. Private northern lights tours are available, even with an addition of a lobster dinner or a starry night soak in a geothermal spa.

Blue Lagoon

Fontana

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First of all, accommodation. Imagine yourself all cuddled up inside, under a blanket in a fancy hotel on the border of the arctic circle. There are plenty of top-notch hotels in Reykjavík with stunning views of the city but consider a hotel outside the city as well!

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ROMANTIC RESTAURANTS For atmosphere: Classically stylish restaurant Grillið has a stunning view over Reykjavík and the surrounding mountains. The fancy restaurant Grillmarkaðurinn is known for the beautiful presentation of their dishes and Nordicinspired decor. For foodies: Are you looking for a food experience? Try the eight-course food and wine pairing menu at Nostra. Visit Sumac for an eclectic meal (with Icelandic ingredients and exotic spices combined) and Búrro for the best tapas. For seafood and Icelandic food: Iceland is famous for its fresh seafood, and Icelandic lobster (technically langoustine) is not to be missed. Check out Fiskfélagið for fine dining, Kopar for a taste of rock crab or Matur and Drykkur for food with a traditional twist.

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GIFT IDEAS

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For men: Most guys would be delighted to get some Þorri beers (beers brewed to celebrate the old Norse month Þorri). You could also go for Icelandic schnapps, like Himbrimi gin made with Icelandic water, the seeds of the angelica flower, and the flowers of arctic thyme. For non-drinkers, try lava salt or music by an Icelandic band.

For women: If you want to get a little more creative than flowers and chocolate, try getting her jewellery designed in Iceland, a hand-knitted Icelandic lopapeysa (woolen sweater), or skin care products with Icelandic herbs or seaweed. A fun surprise!

BÓNDADAGUR AND KONUDAGUR Did you know that Valentine’s Day isn’t traditionally celebrated in Iceland? This doesn’t mean we don’t have special days dedicated to our loved ones, in fact, we have two instead of one! Konudagur and Bóndadagur (Woman’s Day and Husband’s Day) are Iceland’s way of celebrating love but they’re different from Valentine’s Day in one crucial way. Instead of celebrating the love between two individuals, they focus on celebrating the individuals in love.

Konudagur especially is becoming increasingly competitive with Valentine’s Day, since it usually lands within a week or two of it on the calendar. Now, you should already have celebrated Husband’s Day back in January, but you still have a chance to switch your romantic celebrations to the second Sunday after February 14 this year. You will find special Konudagur deals in many places all over the city!


SINCE 1982

TOURIST INFORMATION

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A GUIDE TO READING THE SAGAS OF THE ICELANDERS

The sagas might be several centuries old and originate in a society with completely different values to our own, but the stories they tell are universal and timeless. Just like modern literature, they deal with love, loss, honour, adventure and everything in between. If you want to start reading the sagas but you’re just not sure where to begin, here’s our guide to reading the sagas.

IF YOU LIKE ROMANCE NOVELS AND SOAP OPERAS – START WITH LAXDÆLA SAGA Laxdæla is the thrilling story of bonds of friendship torn asunder for the love of a woman. The love triangle of the formerly inseparable friends Kjartan and Bolli, and the beautiful and clever Guðrún has far-reaching consequences in this heart-wrenching story of honour, destiny, love and betrayal. Will Guðrún follow her heart or her pride? Are they all mere pawns of fate? Will her efforts to overturn destiny prove fruitful… or fatal?

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The Sagas of the Icelanders, written in the 12th and 13th century and telling the stories of the early settlers of Iceland from the 10th century, are an amazing treasure trove of historical knowledge about the early years of settlement in Iceland. Better yet, they’re also impressive examples of literary excellence that still hold their own when it comes to enthralling storytelling.

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WHAT’S ON Find more articles like this at www.whatson.is 38

IF YOU’RE A FAN OF LEGAL DRAMAS AND GREEK TRAGEDIES – START WITH BRENNUNJÁLL’S SAGA Njála, as this saga is affectionately known, is the most revered of all the sagas in Iceland and its main character, Gunnar of Hlíðarendi, is probably the most idealised hero in all Icelandic literature. Familial obligations, honour and, most importantly, love, throw him, his best friend Njáll and everyone they hold dear into a whirlwind of theft, lawsuits, murder and punishments. His fate is marked from the moment he lays eyes on the woman he loves and not even Njáll’s sage advice can save him. As an added bonus, Gunnar’s wife, Hallgerður, happens to be arguably the best female character in all medieval literature. IF YOU’RE INTO FANTASY – START WITH VÖLSUNGA SAGA Völsunga saga has it all, dragons, sleeping beauties, magical swords, revenge and a dash of incest. It’s basically Game of Thrones for the 13th century! It’s the story of the Völsungs, a dynasty of kings and heroes. The best-known story from the saga is the story of Sigurður, the slayer of the dragon Fáfnir. After he kills the dragon, he eats its heart, because magical birds told him to do it. What more do you need to know?

IF YOU LIKE ACTION MOVIES AND ADVENTURE STORIES – START WITH EGILL’S SAGA Egill’s saga tells the story of the fascinating antihero Egill Skallagrímsson and his adventurous travels all over the north of Europe. With a fierce fighter and clever poet with severe anger management issues as main character, Egill’s saga weaves together the stories of the first time Egill killed a man (at the tender age of 7 years old), his impending beheading which he escapes with the aid of some seriously great poetry, and a drunken feast turned massacre (where our hero at one point cuts off a man’s head before vomiting down his neck), to name a few.

All the sagas are available in English in bookstores in Iceland. Additionally, if you’re travelling outside the city limits, we recommend seeking out areas where the sagas are set. Borgarnes and Hvolsvöllur, for example, each have a museum dedicated to the sagas taking place in the area, Egill’s saga and Njáll’s saga respectively.


SHRED ICELAND Hit the slopes at Bláfjöll, Iceland’s largest skiing area, close to Reykjavík. Don’t have a car? The city bus will drop you at Bláfjöll’s front door. Need equipment? You bring the adrenaline, we’ll take care of the rest.

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Travel Safely in Iceland With a subarctic climate and a very small population, Iceland might be a bit different from other popular vacation destinations you visit. Desolate landscapes, mountains, waterfalls, geothermal areas, and the ocean are natural wonders that are not only beautiful but can also catch you off-guard if you travel unprepared. Let the following eight safety guidelines help you when you’re planning your trip to Iceland.

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1. KNOW ICELAND’S EMERGENCY NUMBERS The emergency number is 112. You can dial it free of charge to reach emergency services like ambulances, rescue teams, and the police.

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2. KEEP AN EYE ON THE WEATHER FORECAST Icelandic weather is changeable, and extreme weather can occur. High wind speeds in combination with snow are not uncommon in wintertime and can limit visibility. Always check the weather forecast on www.vedur.is before you head out. 3. CHECK THE ROAD CONDITIONS BEFORE YOU HEAD OUT While checking the weather forecast, make sure to also check the road conditions on www.road.is. The Icelandic Road and Coastal Administration updates their website regularly, showing when roads are closed, slippery, have patches of ice, or are easily passable.

4. BE EXTRA CAREFUL WHEN VISITING GEOTHERMAL AREAS The water in geothermal areas can reach a temperature of up to 100°C. Falling in or slipping can cause serious burns. Luckily, there are clear paths, so make sure to stay on them. 5. DON’T GO TOO CLOSE TO THE OCEAN Sneaker waves – waves that stretch out way farther onto shore then regular waves – are common in South Iceland at Reynisfjara and Kirkufjara beaches. These waves are more powerful than people expect, and accidents can and have proven fatal. Keep a safe distance from the water. 6. STAY ON THE PATH Whether it’s at a waterfall, geothermal area, or during a mountain hike, it’s important to stay on the path. If you see a closed path, do not step over the line. It’s closed for a reason. 7. LET SOMEONE KNOW WHERE YOU’RE GOING If you’re planning to go hiking, camping, or hitchhiking, let someone know where you’re going and when you’ll be back. You can also leave your travel plan on www.safetravel.is. 8. FOLLOW THE UPDATES ON SAFETRAVEL.IS Next to submitting your travel itinerary to SafeTravel’s website, you should use it during your stay to check on safety warnings and updates. SafeTravel offers an indispensable source of information for travellers in Iceland. SafeTravel is also located at the tourist information centre on Bankastræti 2.


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Þorri!

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In the Old Norse calendar, Þorri was the name of a month that ran from late January to February in our current system. Since it was usually the coldest month of the year, Þorri was anthropomorphised into an allegorical figure, like Jack Frost. Þorri is fair but ruthless and some stories claim he’s married to Góa (the following month).

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When Icelanders still worshipped the Old Norse gods, there was usually a blót, or a sacrificial ceremony combined with a festival, to appease the gods and ensure the return of summer. With the conversion to Christianity, this tradition died out, but was resurrected by romantic nationalists in the 19th century, and Þorrablót celebrations (minus the sacrifice) have become tradition. During modern Þorrablóts, people get together to consume a feast of the old-fashioned foods Icelanders used to eat before they had refrigerators. Since it had to be preserved somehow, the dominant flavours are pickled, salted, dried, and smoked. Some of it is quite good, some is not good at all, and almost all of it will seem very strange to those unfamiliar with it. Here’s a handy guide to some of the most popular Þorri food.

— ON THE MENU— BLÓÐMÖR (BLOOD SUET) The name doesn’t sound very appetising, that’s for sure. Still, this blood sausage, a combination of lamb blood and suet mixed with flour, oats and some spices, actually tastes pretty good. Blóðmör is usually boiled and served with mashed turnips and a white sauce that’s like a bit sweeter version of béchamel. Leftovers are sliced and pan-fried. It’s also delicious served cold, with a bowl of cinnamon-sweet rice pudding. HARÐFISKUR (DRIED FISH) Drying fish is a good way to preserve it when you don’t have access to freezers. It also, coincidentally, produces a delicious, savoury snack that’s almost pure protein. It’s best eaten with lots of creamy Icelandic butter. Harðfiskur can be purchased in most supermarkets and at Kolaportið flea market. This is one of the few traditional Icelandic delicacies we can definitely recommend. SVIÐ (SINGED SHEEP HEAD) Svið are sheep’s heads, cut in half, singed to get rid of the fur, and boiled. Svið isn’t bad, the head is pretty good meat. Of course, in centuries past, when there was never too much meat to go around, it made no sense to throw away the head just because it looked icky. Nowadays, we recognise that many find it uncomfortable to literally look their food in the eye, but they can always get sviðasulta, a lamb’s


SÚRSAÐIR HRÚTSPUNGAR (PICKLED RAM’S TESTICLES) Yes, you read it correctly; súrsaðir hrútspungar are ram testicles. They really did use everything back in the day. The testes are pressed into blocks, boiled, and cured in acid whey. This does not sound very tasty – and to be frank, that’s probably because it really isn’t. There are some who enjoy snacking on these sheep balls occasionally, but my guess is that we mostly keep this dish around because we feel like we sort of have to, because it’s tradition. Either that or we just like freaking out tourists.

WHAT’S ON

head terrine, which is sometimes pickled in acid whey. If you’re a first-timer, we recommend at least starting with the unpickled variety, acid-whey-pickled lamb’s head terrine is definitely an acquired taste.

HÁKARL (FERMENTED SHARK) Since fresh shark is poisonous, in order to eat it, you first have to bury it in the ground for 6-12 weeks. After that most of the poison has broken down into ammonia and you can eat hákarl. This explains the pungent odour of ammonia (often compared to the smell of strong, and we mean STRONG, cheese) that this “delicacy” gives off. It’s best washed down with a shot of Brennivín schnapps (an aquavit flavoured with caraway seeds). This pairing is often considered the ultimate test of masculinity. Are you indulging in some Þorri food while in Iceland? Share your experience with us (and the world) by using the hashtag #WhatsOnRvk.

WOMAN’S DAY The first day of Góa, the month following Þorri, is known as Konudagur (Woman’s Day). It falls on February 24 this year, so make sure to take extra good care of the women in your life that day. The men aren’t left out, however, they had their own day a month earlier, the first day of Þorri.

Two Icelandic themed villages

HLI

Ð Á LF TA NE SI

Restaurant & Lodging

The Viking Village is a unique place and it is the only Viking theme Hotel and restaurant in Iceland. We have step by step been developing our facilities over the last 28 years and will hopefully continue to do so in the future. We offer Hotel accommodation and Viking houses. Good for families and groups.

The Fisherman´s Village, our newest 25 rooms accommodation is Hlið in Álftanes only few minutes drive from the Viking Village. Like a country home by the seaside. Such an idyllic place to visit. The restaurant is open for groups in the evenings. Close to the president´s residence.

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Viking feasts - Souvenirs - Live entertainment most nights “You haven’t been in Iceland if you haven’t been to us“ Don’t miss it! Booking: www.vikingvillage.is | +354 565 1213 43


WHAT’S ON Find more articles like this at www.whatson.is 44

THE

NORTHERN LIGHTS

ARE BACK!

The new season may be bringing the end of the bright summer nights, but never fear, the northern lights are here. The aurora has been invisible all summer long, as its faint light is no match for the midnight sun, but as the autumn equinox draws nearer, it’s now getting dark enough in the evenings for the northern lights to strut their stuff.

Seeing the lights is a magical experience and we recommend seeking them out while you’re in Iceland. However, there are a few things every northern lights hunter should keep in mind. The northern lights aren’t a reliable attraction and seeing them can be a matter of being in the right spot at the right time. It’s not all down to luck, however, as there are a few things you can do to maximise your chances of seeing the ethereal lights.

Different ways to see the Northern Lights: GOING BY COACH:

GOING BY BOAT:

Cheap and effective. A northern lights tour by bus or minibus is a good way to see the lights if you’re not too concerned about being surrounded a lot of people and simply travelling by bus. Perhaps not the best time if you don’t see anything – but it’s the cheapest option to see the lights, and it gets the job done.

A great experience regardless of lights. Going by boat and seeing the city from the sea at night, is in itself a great experience. The boat ride is a very good choice for those who want to ensure they get something out of their tour even if no lights are found.superjeep


1 GET OUT OF TOWN

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To p 8 tip s fo r th e no rth er n lig ht s The city lights block the northern lights!

2 MAKE SURE IT’S DARK

Daylight and northern lights don’t go hand in hand!

3 MAKE SURE THE SKY IS CLEAR

The northern lights appear way above the clouds!

4 GIVE IT TIME AND BE PATIENT!

The northern lights don’t come out by order – be patient and you might get lucky!

5 SIGHTINGS CAN NEVER BE GUARANTEED

So we’d recommend a tour that includes some great activity as well as northern lights hunt – so you won’t feel disappointed!

6 WEAR SOMETHING WARM

It can get seriously cold, especially when the sky is clear and you’re waiting for a long time.

7 KNOW YOUR CAMERA!

Taking photos with a flash won’t work. Ever. A tripod and long exposure are your friends!

Lie down on the ground. Look up. Enjoy!

Book your northern lights tour now online or at the What’s On tourist information centre, at Laugavegur 5. GOING BY SUPER-JEEP: Exclusive and thrilling. Going on a hunt for the lights with a specially modified superjeep is a thrilling experience that’s fun and exciting. Sights can of course never be guaranteed, but the off-road action of a superjeep makes for a great adventure, the lights are just an added bonus.

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8 ENJOY IT!

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The northern lights forecast can be found on en.vedur.is/weather/forecasts/aurora/, but it is a little hard to decipher if you’ve never seen it before. Our handy-dandy guide should make things a little bit easier.

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How To Read the Northern Lights Forecast

THE COLORS WHITE means NO CLOUDS, while DARK GREEN means VERY CLOUDY. The different shades of green then mean more, or less, cloudy.

GOING ON A TOUR? There are many tours taking you far from the bright city lights for a better chance of seeing the aurora. These tours will be cancelled if there is no chance of seeing the lights. All major operators can be

trusted to do this, first of all, because there is a high standard of professionalism in Iceland, but more importantly, because they lose money if they take you out needlessly – most of them promise to take you out again for free if you don’t see anything.

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THE NUMBERS The numbers are a combination of how likely it is for the lights to be active and how active they will be. Don’t be discouraged if the number is low, it’s actually very rare for the number to be higher than five. Also, take the scale with a grain of salt; a low number doesn’t mean that they won’t come out or won’t be impressive, and a high number isn’t a guarantee that they will be glorious all through the night.

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WHAT’S ON

R E Y K J AV Í K SIGHTS TO SEE Reykjavik sightseeing has something for everyone! The city is filled with things to do, places to go and stuff to see, but some things are just a little bit more important than others. Check out the map in the centre of the magazine to find the exact location of these Reykjavík sights.

Check out our centerfold map for the locations of these sights

1 | HALLGRÍMSKIRKJA Hallgrímskirkja church is one of Reykjavík’s most iconic buildings and is visible from almost anywhere in the city. It is the largest church and the sixth tallest architectural structure in Iceland. The church tower offers a fantastic view of the city. It’s named after the Icelandic poet and clergyman Hallgrímur Petursson, author of the Passion Hymns. The architect, Guðjón Samúelsson, designed it to resemble the basalt lava flows of Iceland’s landscape. Construction started in 1945 and was finished in 1984.

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2 | PERLAN Standing at 25 metres, Perlan is one of Reykjavík’s most striking buildings. Built on top of the city’s hot water tanks, Perlan is known for its unique architecture. Up on the fourth level, there is a 360 degree viewing platform where you can get the city's best panoramic views for a fee. During the day, the Perlan café is a nice place to get coffee. Surrounding the Perlan is the Öskjuhlíð area, one of the many green spaces in Reykjavík, perfect for a walk on a sunny day. 3 | TJÖRNIN Tjörnin (the pond) is the heart of the city centre and offers some of the most amazing views in Reykjavík. There is no better place in the city to enjoy a beautiful sunset and you can watch or feed a huge variety of birdlife that calls the lake home, while you’re at it. When the lake freezes over in winter, geothermal water is pumped in to defrost an area for the birds, and feeding them is a popular family pastime all year round. Those who can handle the cold take to the lake on ice skates.

4 | AUSTURVÖLLUR When the sun is shining, Austurvöllur is the place to be. Surrounded by cafés and restaurants, this public square is a popular spot for locals to dine outside, soak up some sunshine or recline on the grass with picnics. In fact, whatever the season, Austurvöllur is the place to be. It‘s used for celebrations on holidays and in December, the city‘s biggest Christmas tree is located here. Due to its proximity to the Parliament building, Austurvöllur is also a popular gathering spot for political protesters. At the centre of it all stands a statue of Jón Sigurðsson, the renowned figure who is credited with leading Iceland to independence.


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5 | KOLAPORTIÐ Whether you want to sample dried fish and fermented shark, purchase a bag of Icelandic candy or browse through thrifted clothing, Kolaportið, an indoor flea market, open on the weekends between 11:00-17:00, is your best bet. The atmosphere is unique and the old industrial building is usually filled with people hunting for books or antiques, grocery shopping at the food court, selling their old garments, buying music and DVDs or digging through piles of stuff in search of hidden treasures. We recommend bringing cash, or visiting the ATM at one of the entrances, as the majority of stalls don’t accept cards. 6 | HARPA The whole 28,000 square meters of Harpa stand at the edge of the Reykjavik Harbour. It houses Iceland‘s biggest concert hall, suitable for a broad range of concerts and cultural events, a conference centre with meeting facilities and in-house catering, as well as a couple of fine restaurants. Harpa also hosts promotions, plays, and public events. It‘s open to everyone, always, and you should definitely visit Harpa, whether it‘s to take in a show, buy souvenirs, go to a concert or have a lovely dinner in one of the fabulous restaurants. Harpa was designed by a Danish firm in cooperation with Ólafur Elíasson, an Icelandic artist, and opened to the public in 2011.

7 | THE OLD HARBOUR It’s the first lasting harbour in Reykjavik, although it’s no longer the city’s busiest one. The most visited area is the eastern pier where you’ll find a community of shops, galleries, electric bike and scooter rentals and guided tour operators. You will also find numerous whale watching companies willing to take you out to sea on unforgettable excursions. The area is filled with excellent restaurants (sushi and other seafood, tapas, burgers, etc.) and cafés. The atmosphere at the old harbour is friendly, the air is fresh and salty and there are plenty of interesting activities to check out. 8 | THE SUN VOYAGER A beautiful sculpture of a Viking ship located

9 | HOUSE OF PARLIAMENT Founded in 950 A.D, Iceland‘s parliament, Alþingi, is the oldest extant parliament in the world! For centuries, the parliament gathered in the open air (on the aptly named Þingvellir, Parliament fields) but in recent years, they’ve met in Reykjavík. The House of Parliament is a modest classical building of hewn Icelandic dolerite, and it gives Austurvöllur square a dignified look. The parliament garden behind the building is small but lovely in the summertime.

10 | LAUGARDALSLAUG Every country has traditions when it comes to leisure. Icelanders' favourite pastime is going swimming. Laugardalslaug is the city’s largest pool with extensive facilities, located in Laugardalur Valley. Its facilities include a 50 metres outdoor pool, an outdoor children’s pool and a paddling pool, two waterslides, numerous hot tubs, a steam bath, gym, and a mini golf course. There really is no better place to be on a sunny day, or a cold one for that matter. Right outside you will find a hot dog stand where you can buy traditional Icelandic hot dogs.

Check out our centerfold map for the locations of these sights

by the ocean on a small peninsula by Sæbraut, close to the Reykjavík centre. The sculpture by Jón Gunnar Árnason symbolises the Viking past of the Icelanders and is an ode to the sun. It serves as reminder of our history and heritage when the first Viking settlers came sailing to Iceland. The Sun Voyager looks its best when the sun is setting, at whatever time that may be. The unforgettable view of the sculpture with a backdrop of the ocean and Mt. Esja is every photographer’s dream.

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Check out the article The Reykjavik Sight Experience on pages 48-49 for more information about the places numbered here.

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REYKJAVÍK CITY MAP i

What’s On Tourist Information and Booking Centre Locations Main areas

Sights

Tour Pick Ups

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WHAT’S ON

Museums in Downtown Reykjavík

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Reykjavík’s history reaches more than a thousand years back and the city has a rich cultural heritage. History buffs, art afficionados and budding natural scientists should all find something to pique their interest in the museums of the city centre.

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VOLCANO HOUSE Get to know Iceland’s fascinating geology by exploring their mineral exhibition and watching their documentaries on some of Iceland’s most interesting volcanic eruptions in recent history. 1

REYKJAVÍK MUSEUM OF PHOTOGRAPHY The museum presents both historical and contemporary photography in an artistic, social, and cultural context. Showcased are family photographs, photos from portrait studios, industrial and advertising photographs, press photography, landscape photographs, and more.

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THE SETTLEMENT EXHIBITION In 2001, archaeological remains of a hall from the age of settlement were excavated and The Settlement Exhibition is built around these findings, the oldest relics of human habitation found in Reykjavík. 5

REYKJAVÍK ART MUSEUM The Hafnarhús location of the Reykjavík Art Museum serves as the museum’s institute of contemporary art. Pop artist Erró’s works are as fascinating as the museum’s temporary exhibitions.

THE NATIONAL MUSEUM OF ICELAND The museum, established in 1863, houses some of the nation’s most beloved treasures. The permanent exhibition, Making of a Nation is an engaging way to get to know Iceland’s history. Visit the Culture House’s exhibition Points of View as well for an introduction to the country’s cultural heritage.

THE MARITIME MUSEUM The fishing industry is the cornerstone of Iceland’s economy and The Maritime Museum is the best place to learn more about it. At the museum, you also have a chance to board Óðinn, a former Coast Guard vessel.

THE NATIONAL GALLERY OF ICELAND The National Gallery’s art collection consists mainly of 19th and 20th century art. In its possession are many of the keystones of Icelandic art history, as well as a growing collection of works from other countries.

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WONDERS OF THE VOLCANO In the city centre, by the old harbour

SHOWTIMES 9 AM – 9 PM on the hour, every day.

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Great intro to Iceland! Really interesting documentary and lovely staff! The hands on display of different rocks/volcanic products is great fun.

Tryggvagata 11, Reykjavík, Iceland | +354 555 1900 info@volcanohouse.is | www.volcanohouse.is


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WHAT’S ON

N E W I N TOW N SYSTIR In the space above Iceland’s first Michelin-starred restaurant, Dill, a companion restaurant has recently opened, a “sister” restaurant, if you will. In fact, it’s literally called Systir! Systir is a little less involved of a dining experience, with small plates to share and some amazing cocktails to go with them. If you’re in the mood for a full meal, you can get the chef’s choice of five dishes and you’re bound to leave fully satisfied with lingering flavours of Nordic cuisine on your palate.

REYKJAVÍK ROASTERS ÁSMUNDARSALUR Reykjavík Roasters is by now firmly established as one of the premier places to get a coffee in Reykjavík (and the competition is stiff), so it should count as great news that they’ve opened up a new location in one of the city’s art galleries.

In the former two locations, they’ve managed to create a wonderfully creative and friendly atmosphere and the new café, just a stone’s throw from Hallgrímskirkja church, is no exception.

FLATEY HLEMMUR The delicious pizzas at Flatey are probably the closest you’ll come to having a Neapolitan pizza experience in Reykjavík. Their restaurant in the old harbour district has been serving up Italian-style pizza for a while already, and now you can also enjoy their tasty pies at Hlemmur Mathöll. They have pizzas with innovative ingredients that will make your mouth water but it’s hard to beat the simplicity and freshness of their Margherita or Marinara.

Luna

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LUNA FLÓRENS When you walk into Luna Flórens, you’re not quite sure if it’s a café, a gift shop, a bar, or even a florist. Good news is, it’s all of the above! Luna Flórens describe themselves as a holistic bar and boutique. It’s a quiet piece of oasis in the city’s hubbub, a cosy place to taste delicious cocktails, flowering teas, and luxurious vegan cakes. After enjoying the refreshments on offer, take the time to check out the plants, crystals, and art, available for sale.

Reykjavík Roasters

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EVENTS NOTABLE EVENTS IN REYKJAVÍK FInd more information and events on www.whatson.is/ec 56

Winter Lights Festival

WINTER LIGHTS FESTIVAL

NORTHERN LIGHTS FUN RUN

FEBRUARY 7-10 If the winter darkness is getting you down, don’t let it! Celebrate the season instead. That’s what the Winter Lights Festival is all about, enjoying the darkness and the unique experience of winter lights. The festival offers a range of events, where the many faces of Reykjavík culture come together. All the major museums, the swimming pools, and Harpa join forces and put on an amazing variety of events, all over the city. Regular features of the festival, like Museum Night and Swimming Pool Night, will also have their place on the programme.

FEBRUARY 9 This event is a 4-5km long fun run through downtown Reykjavik where participants will see the city in a new and colourful light. Ditch your inhibitions and go all out in the illuminated streets of Reykjavík. All participants get their very own illuminating merchandise to use during the event, making you a part of the entire show from start to finish. The run isn’t timed as the main objective is not to see who can run the fastest but to have fun along the way. The run ends in the Reykjavík Art Museum in Tryggvagata, with a lights party and live music.

ICELAND SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA PLAYS THE RITE OF SPRING FEBRUARY 21 This Iceland Symphony concert features Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring, one of the most revered orchestral works of the 20th century, as well as one of the most influential — a composition that Pierre Boulez called the “birth certificate of contemporary music.” The work describes a sacred ritual in which one of a group of virgins is selected to dance herself to death, ensuring the arrival of spring. Conductor is Daníel Bjarnason and his Violin Concerto is also on the programme. The programme begins with Arvo Pärt’s tranquil and beautiful Fratres, one of his loveliest works.

Rite of Spring


A RARE, ONCE-INA-LIFETIME OPPORTUNITY Around, on and deep within the awesome Langjökull ice gap glacier. Into the Glacier offers various tours to the World's largest ice tunnel. The ice tunnel and caves are located high on Iceland’s second largest glacier, Langjökull. Daily departures from Klaki base camp, Húsafell center and from Reykjavik. You can choose from various tours and book online at www.intotheglacier.is Tel: +354 578-2550


EVENTS

ONE BILLION RISING

FEBRUARY 1-10 Movie festival German Film Days is organised for the tenth time this year. There are screenings of seven new films showcasing the best of current German cinema. The festival is opened with a screening of the critically acclaimed Mack the Knife – Brecht’s Threepenny Film. On February 9, Bíó Paradís will be turned into a German techno club as closing event of the festival. All films are screened in German with English subtitles. German Film Days is organised by Bíó Paradís in collaboration with Goethe-Institut Denmark and the German Embassy in Iceland.

FEBRUARY 14 The annual dance revolution against gender-based violence will take place in Harpa’s Norðurljós hall for the seventh time. One Billion Rising is a global event where over a billion people come together and dance towards a world where everyone has a right to the same opportunities without fear of violence. In celebration of its 30th birthday this year’s event will be bigger than ever. Don’t miss out on the dance party of the year! Let’s come together and show violence the finger once and for all. Remember the event hashtags, #milljarðurris & #fokkofbeldi

ICELANDIC BEER FESTIVAL FEBRUARY 21-23 Icelandic history books contain a multitude of curiosities but one of the most recent ones is that for the biggest part of the 20th century, beer was illegal in Iceland. It was legalised March 1, 1989 and every year since, Icelanders celebrate the day with, what else, a beer! This is the 8th year running that the guys at Kex Hostel do one better and throw a whole festival to mark the occasion. Expect a chance to taste some of Iceland’s best beers from the most accomplished craft breweries, as well as a selection of tasty imported ones.

Icelandic Beer Festival

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GERMAN FILM DAYS

NOTABLE EVENTS IN REYKJAVÍK

One Billion Rising at Harpa

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EVENTS MUSEUMS & EXHIBITIONS

VOLCANO HOUSE Wonders of the Volcano The Volcano House includes a hands-on mineral exhibition featuring different mineral samples, such as lava from the 2014 eruption of Bárðabunga and ash from the 2010 eruption of Eyjafjallajökull. A documentary in English is screened every hour, on the hour, from 9:00 to 21:00. It focuses on some of the most famous eruptions of Iceland and covers the causes and effects of Icelandic volcanic activity in general. The show is also available in different languages by arrangement. The Volcano House is fun and educational for people of all ages, and kids are especially welcome (free for 0-10 years old).

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The Volcano House is a great stop on your museum day. After standing and reading for hours, it’s nice to sit down and watch a movie.

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The Volcano House is a great late-night activity (the last show is at 21:00), a good replacement if your tour is cancelled, or if the weather is bad (it’s always nice and warm inside). Drop by anytime! For more information, see www.volcanohouse.is.

Wonders of the Volcano

Check out our event calendar at whatson.is/ec for more information and events.


EVENTS MUSEUMS & EXHIBITIONS FInd more information and events on www.whatson.is/ec 62

R E Y K JAV I K A R T MUSEUM Á S M U N DA R S A F N Ásmundur Sveinsson: Under the Same Sky – Art in Public Spaces The sculpture garden at Sigtún is dedicated to the works by Ásmundur Sveinsson (1893-1982). It is also the point where the exhibition Under the Same Sky extends its view to some of the numerous outdoor pieces that the late sculptor has created and installed in places around and outside Iceland. The works in the exhibition are more meditative in comparison to the outdoor sculptures: smaller in scale, made of different materials, and three-dimensional studies to the enlarged works that Ásmundur realised in the end.

Black and White

Sigurður Guðmundsson: Intimacy and Sculpture Sigurður Guðmundsson (b. 1942) studied in Iceland in 1960-63 and then moved to Holland for further studies. He lives and works in Reykjavík, China and Holland. Many, large sculptures by him can be found in public spaces in the Nordic Countries and Central Europe. Sigurður has won many competitions, including a competition for an outdoor artwork by the Children’s Hospital, and for outdoor artwork to mark the turn of the century in Reykjavík.

R E Y K JAV I K ART MUSEUM HAFNARHÚS Erró: Black and White Erró: Black and White has around 30 new and recent black-andwhite paintings by Erró. The works show the artist’s creative energy and innovation. He mixes historical figures with manga and cartoon figures. The material is diverse, and it is safe to say that it covers most of the artist’s interests. Erró is known for his unbridled enthusiasm for most things between

Art in Public Spaces

heaven and earth. Inspired by cartoons and art history, he has created powerful pieces. These paintings are brimming with sarcasm and humour towards social issues and human nature.

Ingólfur Arnarsson: Ground Level Ingólfur Arnarsson has been influential on the Icelandic art scene ever since the early in the eighties. Arnarsson’s drawings are

characterised by delicate lines, precision and time. The exhibition in Hafnarhús’s A-Hall holds new works, precisely executed for the hall space.

D35 Leifur Ýmir Eyjólfsson The series aims to give promising artists a chance to hold their first solo exhibition in a public art museum and direct attention to new and exciting currents in the art world.


THE STEAK HOUSE

Steikhúsið simply means “The Steak House” and that underlines our goal, to focus solely on steaks. Steikhúsið is in the middle of Reykjavík, opposite the old harbor, which has recently formed into a lively neighborhood of restaurants, cafes, artisan stores and work shops. When you visit us, remember to try our “28-day” tendered meat. The heart of the place is a coal oven from Mibrasa, Spain. It is only fitting that we use coal for grilling and baking, since the building housed a blacksmith and metal works in years gone by. THE KITCHEN IS OPEN FROM 17:00 ‘TILL LATE — VISIT WWW.STEAK.IS

Booking: +354 561 1111 & steik@steik.is


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EVENTS MUSEUMS & EXHIBITIONS Kjarval

R E Y K JAV I K ART MUSEUM K JA RVA L S S TAÐ I R

Eyborg Guðmundsdóttir: Circle, Square and Line Eyborg Guðmundsdóttir (19241977) was a unique artist on the Icelandic art scene. Her work is

ÁSGRÍMUR JÓNSSON CO L L EC T I O N KORRIRÓ OG DILLIDÓ PICTURES OF FOLKLORE AND FAIRY TALES BY ÁSGRÍMUR JÓNSSON Step into magic! The visual world of Icelandic folklore and fairy tales created by Ásgrímur Jónsson in his art is a truly enchanted realm. Elves, trolls and ghosts were given

a clear form in Ásgrímur’s art. He first exhibited such pieces in Iceland in 1905. Ásgrímur’s works on folklore themes were well received; in the press, reviewers expressed delight that the folktale heritage was being addressed, for the first time, by an Icelandic artist. Ásgrímur’s depictions of the appearance of elves and trolls met with widespread approval; hence the artist appears to have succeeded in capturing the way that Icelanders in general imagined such beings. The exhibition Korriró og Dillidó offers an ideal opportunity for the entire family to experience the unique supernatural world of elves in their finery, and terrifying trolls, as depicted with passionate sincerity by Ásgrímur Jónsson. The emphasis is on the visitor’s own imagination – offering the opportunity to enjoy this aspect of the cultural heritage, which can throw light upon the fears, dreams and desires of former generations – and their relationship with awe-inspiring Icelandic nature.

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Jóhannes S. Kjarval: ...author of great aspirations Jóhannes Sveinsson Kjarval (1885-1972) was one of the pioneers of Icelandic art in the 20th century and is one of the country‘s most beloved artists. His connection to, and interpretation of Iceland’s natural environment is thought to have taught Icelanders to appreciate it anew, and to have encouraged pride in the country’s uniqueness and the world of adventure to be discovered within it. Kjarval’s subject matter can be categorized into three main groups: landscapes, portraits, and fantasies or works of imagination. These often overlap, however, so that all three kinds may be found in the same canvas.

based on geometric abstract art, where the focus is on visual effects of regular forms, a style known as Op-Art. Eyborg’s work was always based on the primary quality of art, primary forms – circle, square, line – on their internal interaction and stimulus to the optic nerve. During her career she kept exploring the possibilities of abstract art and geometry, and thus was more responsible for the development of the geometric abstraction painting than any other Icelandic artist.

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EVENTS MUSEUMS & EXHIBITIONS

SIGURJÓN ÓLAFSSON MUSEUM CONNECTIONS – SCULPTURES BY SIGURJÓN ÓLAFSSON AND SOME OF HIS CONTEMPORARIES The thirtieth anniversary of the opening of the Sigurjón Ólafsson Museum in October 2018, is marked by an exhibition in which fourteen artists , all of whom had some connection with Sigurjón and his art, engage in dialogue with Sigurjón’s works, in his former studio. The work of all is characterised by a passion for craft. All set out to create spatial works, whether stone sculptures or three-dimensional works in metal, wood, paper or textiles.

NATIONAL GALLERY OF ICELAND

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Oracles

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BEIRÚT, BEYRUT, BEYROUTH, BEYROUT In recent years, the art world as a whole has developed a fascination for the Beirut art scene. This is due in part to the sheer concentration of talent, but also to the seduction of a scene that is multi-generational, supportive, enthusiastic, generous, expansive and truly international. Many of the artists are multilingual and possess double citizenships. The art scene is experienced as – at least from the outside – an Treasures of a Nation In the collection of the National Gallery of Iceland, there are over 11,000 works of various kinds, from various countries and from various periods. In the exhibition a fair selection of works from the collection displays the evolution of art in Iceland from the early 19th century to our times. The exhibition features a variety of media and styles distinguishing this short but eventful history. During the first decades, from 1884 to 1911, the collection was exclusively based on the generous donations of foreign artists, mostly Danish

Connections

and other Scandinavians, but in the early 20th century, Icelandic art became more prominent. Today, only one of every 10 works in the collection of the National Gallery is foreign, despite the fact that foreign artists are still slightly more numerous than Icelandic artists. The generosity of various individuals, artists and other parties can be thanked for the pace with which the collection grew during the last century.

Many of the pioneers of modern Icelandic art bequeathed their works to the nation. In the late 20th century the museum’s purchasing fund increased and with it the collection expanded. There is a long and remarkable trajectory from the fragile drawings of Helgi Sigurðsson (1815-1888) to the frail poet Jónas Hallgrímsson (18071845) to the exquisite sculptures of Margrét H. Blöndal (1970-). inclusive one.


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EVENTS MUSEUMS & EXHIBITIONS

EINAR JÓNSSON MUSEUM This is a museum in the heart of Reykjavík that houses the work of Iceland’s first sculptor Einar Jónsson. The museum contains close to 300 artworks spanning a 60-year career: carvings from the artist’s youth, sculpture, paintings and drawings. A beautiful tree-clad garden adorned with 26 bronze casts of the artist’s works is located behind the museum. The task of the museum is to collect, preserve and display the work of Einar as well as to conduct research on his life and art.

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MUSEUM OF DESIGN AND APPLIED ART

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BEHIND THE SCENES WITH EINAR ÞORSTEINN In 2014, the Icelandic architect and mathematician Einar Þorsteinn Ásgeirsson (19422015) donated most of the contents of his workshop to the Museum of Design and Applied Art in Iceland. The gift included diaries, photographs, drawings, calculations, sketchbooks, models, furniture, and other items relating to his life and work.

Einar Þorstein

Einar Þorsteinn was a pioneer in geometric research and the use of 3D models, through which he was able to study and explain concepts such as five-fold symmetry. He was also ahead of his time in the study of sustainability, as shown in the dome houses he designed in the 1980s, each of which featured its own indoor garden. Einar Jónsson Museum

Einar Þorsteinn can best be described as a true Renaissance man. He was also a collaborator, working closely with the artist Ólafur Eliasson, for example on the glass exterior of the Harpa concert hall in Reykjavik, and

with the architect and inventor Buckminster Fuller. Filing is an exciting and educative process – it deepens

our understanding, sparks new ideas and connections, opens up a dialogue and brings back memories.


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Reykjavík´s Thermal Pools

A source of health

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Hot t ubs and jacuzz i

Saunas, steambat hs

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Thermal pools and baths in Reykjavik are a source of health, relaxation and pureness. All of the city´s swimming pools have several hot tubs with temperatures ranging from 37˚ to 42˚C (98˚–111˚F). The pools are kept at an average temperature of 29˚ C (84˚ F)

Tel: +354 411 5000 www.spacity.is


EVENTS

R E Y K JAV I K M U S E U M O F P H OTO G R A P H Y

Ng Hui Hsien The Weight of Air Ng Hui Hsien’s exhibition emphasises the essences of spaces and situations in relation to the subconscious in Icelandic nature.

Settlemen Exhibition

Photographer Ng Hui Hsien explored Icelandic natural environments in her search for quiet.

THE SETTLEMENT EXHIBITION The Settlement Exhibition An open excavation where Viking ruins meet multimedia technology. Just below ground in downtown Reykjavík, this open excavation uncovers the city’s Viking Age history. Discovered during building work in 2001, these archaeological remains turned out

to be the earliest evidence of human settlement in the city, with some dating to before AD 871±2. Careful excavation revealed a 10th-century hall or longhouse, which is now preserved in its original location as the focal point of the exhibition. Interactive technology immerses you in the world of the Reykjavík farm at the time of the first settlers, including information on how Viking Age buildings were constructed and what life was like in the hall. The Settlement Exhibition is part of Reykjavík City Museum.

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...now | Páll Stefánsson “I’m not looking back: this show is about the present, the moments I am capturing here and now. Refugees on the move, a fast-flowing river that moves inexorably on. A woman half-hidden behind a tussock or hillock. A hillock that becomes a mountain. A fine-looking man who has nothing. Not even a future. “ Páll Stefánsson was born just south of the Arctic Circle, in the Öxarfjörður district of north Iceland, in 1958. He studied photography in Sweden in the last century, 1979-82, and is now a Sony Global Imaging Ambassador. Páll has published 37 books, which include images of the neighboring mountains, as well of a Coptic girl in Alexandria and of long shadows on the yellow sands in Önundarfjörður in Iceland’s West Fjords.

MUSEUMS & EXHIBITIONS

Family Photos

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EVENTS MUSEUMS & EXHIBITIONS

Making of a Nation

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T H E N AT I O N A L MUSEUM OF ICELAND

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From creative printing to artist publishing In this exhibition we are introduced to examples of Icelandic artists’ books from the collection of the National and University Library of Iceland. Examples of printmaking dating all the way back to the latter part of the 19th century to modern day book art. One of the pioneers of artists’ books, Dieter Roth (1930- 1998), made his first book in Iceland around 1957. Since that time, artists’ books have been part of the expression of Icelandic visual artists. During the Reykjavik Arts Festival there will be a special exhibition of Eygló Harðardóttir’s, Sculpture (2016), and the prototype will be exhibited in the Reading Chamber in

the Culture House. The exhibition commemorates the 200th anniversary of the National and University Library, but within the Library there is an increased emphasis on book art.

The Making of a Nation Heritage and History in Iceland The National Museum of Iceland’s permanent exhibition, Making of a Nation – Heritage and History in Iceland, is intended to provide insight into the history of the Icelandic nation from the settlement to the present day. The aim is to cast light on the Icelanders’ past by placing the cultural heritage preserved by the National Museum in a historical context, guided by the question: what makes a nation? The exhibition includes about 2,000 objects, dating from the

Settlement Age to the present, as well as about 1,000 photographs from the 20th century. The exhibition is conceived as a journey through time: it begins with the ship in which medieval settlers crossed the ocean to their new home, it ends in a modern airport, the Icelanders’ gateway to the world..

Discovering Iceland’s Monasteries The exhibition is based on research done by Steinunn Kristjánsdóttir, professor of archaeology at the University of Iceland and the National Museum of Iceland. The research aimed at finding clues on monastic activities in Iceland from the foundation of the earliest one in 1030 to the dissolution of the last in 1554.


EVENTS MUSEUMS & EXHIBITIONS

THE ICELANDIC PUNK MUSEUM The Icelandic Punk Museum is located at Bankastræti 0, an underground location that served as public toilets from 1930 to 2006. The museum honours the music and the spirit that has shaped musicians and bands to this day; people who dared to be different. Objects, photographs, videos, posters, etc. from roughly 1978 to 1992 are on display with texts in Icelandic and English, and the main music from the period is available to guests.

Punk Museum

C U LT U R E H O U S E Points of view This exhibition gives visitors the chance to delve into the collections of six different cultural institutions. A unique journey through Iceland’s visual legacy, offering an innovative guide to a nation’s cultural history.

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Points of View

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Welcome to Jómfrúin, the home of Danish smørrebrød in Reykjavik. It all began in 1888 with Oscars Davidsen’s highly praised smørrebrød restaurant in Copenhagen. An unbroken tradition of quality and Danish culinary culture for the past 100 years. Enjoy! Open every day 11:00 - 22:00 | Lækjargata 4 | 101 Reykjavík | jomfruin.is


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ART & CULTURE Find more recommendations on www.whatson.is 76

ÁRBÆR OPEN AIR MUSEUM

THE SETTLEMENT EXHIBITION

REYKJAVIK MARITIME MUSEUM

REYKJAVÍK CITY MUSEUM Reykjavík’s only open air museum, where you can stroll through the past and experience the way we lived Fun, fascinating and full of surprises, this living museum takes you on a journey through time. Guided tours at 13:00 all year round.

REYKJAVÍK CITY MUSEUM An open excavation where Viking ruins meet digital technology Just below ground in downtown Reykjavík, this open excavation uncovers the city’s Viking Age history. Guided tours on weekdays in February at 11:00.

Kistuhylur, Reykjavík 411-6304 | reykjavikcitymuseum.is Hours: Daily 13-17

Aðalstræti 16, Reykjavík | 411-6370 | www.reykjavikcitymuseum.is Hours: Daily 9-18

REYKJAVÍK CITY MUSEUM A harbour museum exploring Iceland’s dramatic relationship with the sea. The survival of a nation depended on generations of brave fishermen heading into the unknown. Exhibitions and artefacts bring our ocean history to life, from battling the waves, to the ‘Cod Wars’ and beyond. Guided tours of Óðinn Coast Guard Vessel: 13:00, 14:00 & 15:00. Grandagarður 8, Reykjavík | 411-6340 www.reykjavikcitymuseum.is

REYKJAVIK CITY LIBRARY

EINAR JÓNSSON MUSEUM

HAFNARBORG

FREE ENTRY Looking for a place to hang out, browse the internet, get access to Wi-Fi or meet the Reykjavik locals? Then Reykjavik City Library is the perfect place to visit. Have a seat and dip into the latest magazine or relax while checking out their great selection of books.

A museum with indoor and outdoor exhibitions dedicated to the work of Einar Jónsson, Iceland’s first modern sculptor (1874-1954). The museum was built in the early 1900’s when Einar Jónsson offered all of his works as a gift to the Icelandic nation.

FREE ENTRY Hafnarborg has a collection of Icelandic art and regular exhibitions presenting leading Icelandic and international artists. Collection exhibitions are a regular part of the program. Around exhibitions are workshops and guided tours.

Tryggvagata 15, Reykjavík 411-6100 | borgarbokasafn.is Hours: Mon-Thu 10-19, Fri 11-18, Sat & Sun 13-17

Hallgrímstorg 3, Reykjavík 551-3797 | www.lej.is Hours: Tue-Sun 10-17

Strandgata 34, Hafnarfjörður 585-5790 | www.hafnarborg.is Hours: Wed-Mon 12-17

VIÐEY ISLAND

WHALES OF ICELAND

REYKJAVÍK CITY MUSEUM An island, where art, history and nature lie just beyond the city shore The combination of stunning views, historical ruins and contemporary art pieces make Viðey island something special. Just a short boat-ride takes you to another world. Ferry Schedule: Weekends only.

An exhibition in Reykjavík consisting of 23 life-size whale models - fun to touch and explore. Learn more about whales with indepth multimedia and interactive information displays, videos and audio guide in several languages mixed with soothing whale sounds and underwater ambient lighting.

REYKJAVIK MUSEUM OF PHOTOGRAPHY

Viðey Reykjavik 411-6356. www.reykjavikcitymuseum.is

Fiskislóð 23-25 , Reykjavík 571-0077 | www.whalesoficeland.is Hours: Daily 10-17

REYKJAVÍK CITY MUSEUM Reflecting the contemporary, while archiving the past – this is Reykjavík’s home of photography. Reykjavík’s main photography museum offers an ongoing programme of contemporary and historical exhibitions, and an onscreen archive of thousands of images from the past. Tryggvagata 15, Reykjavík | 411-6390 reykjavikcitymuseum.is | Hours: MonThu 10-18, Fri 11-18, Sat & Sun 13-17


Day Tours - All the most exciting places in Iceland

WE’LL TAKE YOU THERE!

RE62

Northern Lights Tour If you don’t see any lights on the RE62 tour ...you can re-book again for free. PRICE Adults (16+): FROM

4.999

12 - 15 years:

2.499

1 - 11 years:

Free of charge.

RE63

Northern Lights – Small Group Tour

If you don’t see any lights you can join our RE62 Northern Lights Tour for free. PRICE Adults (16+): FROM

9.999

12 - 15 years:

4.999

1 - 11 years:

Free of charge.

AIRPORT TRANSFERS The Flybus operates in connection with all arriving & departing flights at Keflavík International Airport. Guaranteed seats

Free WiFi

45 minutes

For our flexible Flybus schedule, please visit www.flybus.is

On www.re.is At your reception

Free WiFi www.re.is BSÍ Bus Terminal 101 Reykjavík

Keflavík Airport to Reykjavík City & vice versa PRICES FROM

2.999 ISK Book now on www.flybus.is


Day Tours - All the most exciting places in Iceland

WE’LL TAKE YOU THERE!

RE24

Golden Circle Direct PRICE FROM

Adults (16+):

6.399

12 - 15 years:

3.199

1 - 11 years:

Free of charge.

RE113

RE15

South Shore Adventure

PRICE FROM

Adults (16+):

10.499

12 - 15 years:

5.249

On www.re.is At your reception

Jökulsárlón Glacial Lagoon

1 - 11 years:

Free of charge. Free WiFi www.re.is BSÍ Bus Terminal 101 Reykjavík

PRICE FROM

Adults (16+):

19.999

12 - 15 years:

9.999

1 - 11 years:

Free of charge.


NATIONAL MUSEUM OF ICELAND

SIGURJÓN ÓLAFSSON MUSEUM

Iceland's leading art museum, established in 1884. Its collection consists mainly of 19th, 20th and 21st century art. The National Gallery possesses a coherent array of Icelandic works and a fine collection of international art. Together they constitute around 11.000 items.

Offers a state-of-the-art exhibitions on the cultural history of Iceland. The permanent exhibition, Making of a Nation - Heritage and History of Iceland, gives a comprehensive picture of Iceland’s cultural history through the ages to the present day.

A museum that Icelandic sculptor Sigurjón Ólafsson’s wife founded as a tribute to his life and work in 1984. She had his studio in Laugarnes converted to an exhibition space to house his collection of works, including sculptures, sketches, drawings and biographical material.

Fríkirkjuvegur 7, Reykjavík 515-9600 | www.listasafn.is Hours: Tue-Sun: 11-17

Suðurgata 41, Reykjavík 530-2200 | www.nationalmuseum.is Hours: Tue-Sun: 10-17

Laugarnestangi 70 553-2906 | www.lso.is Hours: Sat-Sun 14-17

THE ICELANDIC PHALLOLOGICAL MUSEUM

One of the pioneers of Icelandic art and the first Icelander to take up painting professionally. Having died in 1958, he bequeathed all his works, as well as his studio home to the Icelandic nation.

Probably the most unique museum you’ll visit on your trip, the Icelandic Phallological Museum is a one of a kind. Here you’ll find a collection of more than two hundred penises and penile part belonging to almost all land and sea mammals that can be found in Iceland.

The Northern Lights Center, Aurora Reykjavik, allows you to experience the Northern Lights in a completely different way, both if you saw them, but as well if they escaped you while in Iceland. The centre features information, education and of course stunning visuals of the elusive lights that’ll get your heart racing.

Laugavegur 116, Reykjavík 561 6663 | www.phallus.is Hours: Daily 10-18

Grandagarður 2, Reykjavík 780-4500 | www.aurorareykjavik.is Hours: Daily 9-21

PERLAN

VOLCANO HOUSE

This peculiar building, built on top of six water tanks on a hill overlooking the city, houses two exhibitions, The Wonders of Iceland and Water in Icelandic Nature. In addition, Perlan has a recently-opened planetarium, a great restaurant, and an observation deck with a 360¨view of the city and its surrounding nature.

Shows documentaries that give a good idea of real life in Iceland, where volcanoes and earthquakes are a constant threat. There’s also a mineral exhibition, giving a brief overview of Iceland’s geological history and volcanic system, and a boutique, with Icelandic designs, artwork, lava rocks, pumice, bottles of ash and Lava Jewellery.

MUSEUM OF DESIGN AND APPLIED ART

Varmahlíð 1, Reykjavík 566-9000 | www.perlan.is Hours: 9-19

Tryggvagata 11, Reykjavík 555-1900 | www.volcanohouse.is Hours: Daily 9-22

AURORA REYKJAVIK

Its objective is to collect, study and present Icelandic design and crafts from 1900 to the present day. This young museum, the only one of its kind in Iceland, holds regular exhibitions of Icelandic and international design during the year. Exhibitions from the museum‘s own collection are regularly held. Garðatorg 1, Garðabær 512-1525 | www.honnunarsafn.is Hours: Tue-Sun 12-17

Find more recommendations on www.whatson.is

ÁSGRÍMUR JÓNSSON COLLECTION

Bergstaðastræti 74, Reykjavík 515-9625 www.listasafn.is Hours: Sat-Sun 14-17

ART & CULTURE

NATIONAL GALLERY OF ICELAND

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ART & CULTURE

KJARVALSSTAÐIR

ÁSMUNDARSAFN

HAFNARHÚS

Mainly devoted to paintings and sculpture by well established Icelandic and international artists. Kjarvalsstaðir offers a permanent exhibition of key works by one of Iceland’s most beloved landscape painters, Jóhannes S. Kjarval, as well as changing exhibitions that explore various thematic and historical aspects of Icelandic art.

Opened in 1983, the collection is housed in a unique building designed and constructed mostly by the artist himself from 1942-1950. The original building served Sveinsson as studio and home; behind it he built a crescent-shaped structure as a workand exhibition space.

The old harbour warehouse, Hafnarhús, offers a progressive exhibition program with local and international contemporary artists. The work of current notables, art canons and newcomers are presented in six galleries. Hafnarhús is also home to the works of Erró (b. 1932), a significant player in the international pop art scene.

Flókagata 24, Reykjavík 411-6420 | www.artmuseum.is Hours: Daily 10-17

GLJÚFRASTEINN LAXNESS MUSEUM Halldór Laxness is arguably the most famous Icelandic writer of all time, and the only Icelander to have won a Nobel Prize, which he received for literature in 1955. Gljúfrasteinn was his home until his death, and today it is a museum dedicated to his life and work.

Sigtún, Reykjavík 411-6430 | www.artmuseum.is Hours: Daily 13-17

THE NUMISMATIC MUSEUM

THE LIVING ART MUSEUM

FREE ENTRY A selection from the numismatic collection is on display on the ground floor of the Central Bank’s main building in Kalkofnsvegur 1, Reykjavík.

An active exhibition space that has organized many exciting exhibitions throughout the years. They put an emphasis on introducing young Icelandic artists, as well as showcasing work by better-known Icelandic and foreign modern and contemporary artists.

Kalkofnsvegur 1, Reykjavík 569-9600 www.sedlabanki.is Hours: Mon-Fri 13:30-15:30

Find more recommendations on www.whatson.is

Gljúfrasteinn, Mosfellsbær 586-8066 | www.gljufrasteinn.is Hours: Tue-Fri 10-16

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Tryggvagata 17, Reykjavík 411-6400 | www.artmuseum.is Hours: Daily 10-17, Thu 10-22

The Marshall House Grandagarður 20, Reykjavík 551-4350 | www.nylo.is Hours: Tue-Sun 12-18, Thu 12-21

GERÐARSAFN

THE CULTURE HOUSE

THE NORDIC HOUSE

A progressive modern art museum in Kópavogur, dedicated to sculptor Gerður Helgadóttir; the only museum in Iceland dedicated to a woman. Its collection consists of more than 1400 works by Gerður, as well as the works of the most celebrated Icelandic artists of the 20th and 21st century.

Artifacts and works of art from the varied collections of six institutions provide a reflection of Iceland’s visual art history and cultural heritage in the exhibition Points of View, a journey through the Icelandic visual world of past and present.

Iceland maintains strong ties to other Nordic countries, and the center of this cooperation is the Nordic House, designed by acclaimed Finnish architect Alvar Aalto in 1968. The Nordic House is the venue if you want to enjoy the best of Icelandic culture as well as experiencing rich culture of the Nordic countries.

Hamraborg 4, Kópavogur 441-7600 | www.gerdarsafn.is Hours: Tue-Sun 11-17

Hverfisgata 15, Reykjavík 530-2210 | www.culturehouse.is Hours: Daily 10-17

Sturlugata 5, Reykjavík 551-7030 | www.nordice.is Hours: Sun-Tue 10-16, Wed-Sat 9-21


Lunch from 1.690 kr Happy-Hour 600 kr Brewery Tours

BRYGGJAN BRUGGHÚS. GRANDAGARÐI 8. 101 REYKJAVÍK. WWW.BRYGGJANBRUGGHUS.IS


SHOPPING & STYLE

ANNA MARÍA DESIGN

HRÍM

LITTLE CHRISTMAS SHOP

For over twenty years, jewelry designer Anna Maria has created her things of gold and silver, a design that is both pure and timeless. Exceptional attention to detail and craftsmanship create the elegant simplicity that shines through Anna Maria’s products.

Icelanders are known for being a stylish people, whether you judge from their clothes, their homes, or just their lifestyles. At the heart of their stylishness is Scandinavian design, whether it‘s Icelandic or from our neighbouring countries. The Hrím stores offer you the chance to decorate your home (or even yourself) with the classic style of the Scandinavians!

On Laugavegur, in the heart of Reykjavík, you’ll find the very unique Little Christmas Shop—which is dedicated to the spirit of Christmas, all year round. There you’ll find Icelandic decorations and everything needed for that festive spirit. Should not be missed as it is definitely one of the most special and fun stores to visit.

Laugavegur 25, Reykjavík 553-3003 | www.hrim.is

Laugavegur 8, Reykjavík 552-2412

Skólavörðustígur 3, Reykjavík 551-0036 www.annamariadesign.is

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LISTVINAHÚSIÐ

FARMERS MARKET

METAL DESIGN

The oldest ceramic workshop in Iceland established 1927. Three generations of artistic potters. Unique handmade ceramics, Viking masks and various ceramic potteries decorated with lava, made by Gudmundur Einarsson. Located right next to Hallgrímskirkja and the statue of “Leif the Lucky”.

An Icelandic design company and clothing brand, founded in 2005 by a young artist couple, designer Bergthora Gudnadottir and musician Jóel Pálsson. With strong ties to the vibrant Icelandic music and design scene, the Farmers Market design concept and inspiration draws from Icelandic roots, combining classic Nordic design elements with chic modernity.

The jewellery forms which Metal design is known for are inspired by the Icelandic flora. But what stands out the most is the shape “The Coast” that is inspired by the waves of the Icelandic coast.”The coast silver jewellery line is for ladies and gentlemen.

Find more recommendations on www.whatson.is

Skólavörðustígur 43, Reykjavík 551-2850 | www.listvinahusid.is

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Laugavegur 37, Reykjavík 552-1965 | www.farmersmarket.is

Skólavörðustígur 2. Reykjavik 552-5445 www.MetalDesignReykjavik.is

JÖKLA

IGLÓ&INDÍ

CINTAMANI

If you‘er interested in getting some Icelandic design to take back home , be sure to stop by Jökla on your way down the Laugavegur shopping street. You can get Icelandic design for you, your children, or your home and the best thing is that you‘re buying straight from the designers

Loved by parents and children alike and praised in the media for boldness and creativity, Ígló&Indí has offered both parents and children an ever growing collection of clothes with a fresh take on children’s fashion since 2008—representing the best childhood has to offer.

Laugavegur 90, Reykjavík 696 6604

Garðatorg 4, Garðabær 445-2020 | www.igloandindi.com

Nowhere in the populated world does the weather change as fast, or as often as here. Thus Icelandic designers have to meet the requirements of consumers who have to go out all year long in harsh conditions. That‘s where the label Cintamani comes to the rescue. Their goal is to keep us warm, dry and comfortable, whatever the weather may bring. Bankastræti 7, Reykjavík 533-3800 | www.cintamani.is

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EVERY TRIP IS AN ADVENTURE

EXIT THE CITY ENTER THE ADVENTURE WITH GEYSIR CAR RENTAL Geysir Car Rental is located in Geysirland Tourist Info at the Harpa Concert Hall. Get free CDW insurance cover and Unlimited Milage on all rentals. No one way fees and great prices.

Geysirland | Austurbakka 2 | 101 reykjavik | www.geysir.is | info@geysir.is | Tel +354 455 0001 /geysircarrental


SKÓLAVÖRÐUSTÍGUR 14 - 101 REYKJAVÍK - TEL: +354 571 1100


12 TÓNAR

Inside their spacious shop in downtown Reykjavik, Michelsen Watchmakers offer you to browse one of Iceland’s best selection of watches. Along with their own design they also have a wide selection of well-known brands including Rolex, Tag Heuer, Armani, Dolce & Gabbana, Diesel, Movado, Swiss Military and more.

The Icelandic music scene is extraordinarily vibrant, considering the size of the nation. Is there a better souvenir to take home than music from your new favourite Icelandic musician? This shop is a friendly place where you can sit down, listen to a selection of music, enjoy a free espresso, read magazines, or browse their juicy collection of rock literature.

Laugavegur 15, Reykjavík 511-1900 | www.michelsen.is

Skólavörðustíg 15, Reykjavík 511 5656 | www.12tonar.is

GEYSIR HOME

KIOSK

GEYSIR

The Geysir stores have been selling beautifully designed clothes for years but the recently opened Geysir Home focuses on quality design items for the home, everything from candles and linens to ceramics and posters by Icelandic artists. Don’t miss the downstairs art & design gallery, Kjallarinn.

Taking some Icelandic design home is the best possible souvenir of a great trip. Luckily, Icelandic designers are known for their inimitable style! Try stopping by Kiosk, a co-op shop owned by 8 different designers. Not only are the clothes to die for, but the designers also take shifts behind the counter so you get to meet the people behind the design as well!

Rustic, vintage interior, intertwined with the latest fashion in outdoor and woolen clothing. Add some puffin, reindeers and other iconic animals and you‘ve got one of the coolest shops in town. This is one place you‘ll have to visit, if only for the experience.

Skólavörðustígur 12, Reykjavík 519 6033 | geysir.com

Laugavegur 65, Reykjavík 445 3269 | kioskreykjavik.com

Skólavörðustíg 7, Reykjavík Skólavörðustíg 16, Reykjavík 519-6000 | www.geysir.com

THE HANDKNITTING ASSOCIATION OF ICELAND

EPAL

KRINGLAN

Epal’s goal is increase Icelanders interest and respect for fine design by introducing and providing top quality design products from all over the world, particularly Scandinavia. Epal has always been very supportive of Icelandic designers and done what they can to help them promote their design around the world.

Kringlan Shopping Centre is conveniently located close to downtown Reykjavik. Standing at 50.000 sq.m. and equipped with 150 shops and services, including a multiplex cinema, a seven-outlet food court and three themed restaurants, it has something to suit every need.

Laugavegur 70, Skeifan 6, Kringlan & Harpa Reykjavik, Keflavík Airport 568-7740 | www.epal.is

Kringlan 4-12, Reykjavík 517-9000 www.kringlan.is

Renowned for its excellent products and quality. Offering the widest selection of traditional hand knitted Icelandic sweaters, the range of products also includes special designs and a variety of woolen products from leading Icelandic manufacturers. Borgartún 31, Reykjavík Skólavörðustígur 19, Reykjavík 552-1890 | www.handknit.is

Find more recommendations on www.whatson.is

MICHELSEN

MJÚK means “soft”. This Icelandic brand reflects sustainable design, care about nature and people. Stylish and durable blankets, hats and scarves from the purest country in the world. Norse quality - a perfect present for your family. Fast deliveries around Iceland and internationally. Shop online at www.mjukiceland.com. For additional 10% discount use code: 2019. Official retailers: “ISEY”, Laugavegur 23, “Scintilla”, Laugavegur 49, “Borg Galleria”, Borgartún 16, Reykjavík | 832-0567

SHOPPING & STYLE

MJÚK ICELAND

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Tasty Local Cuisine by the old harbour NÝLENDUGATA 14, 101 REYKJAVIK

3 COURSE FESTIVE MENU F R O M N OV E M B E R 15 T H

6.950 kr. FESTIVE PLATTER salmon gravlax, marinated herring, wild goose breast, smoked lamb carpaccio DUCK LEG CONFIT

——— 2018 ———

DESSERT À LA CARTE

I C E L A N D I C R E S TA U R A N T & B A R Table Reservations: +354 517-1800 - www.forrettabarinn.is

Trip - Booking Agency & Tourist Info | Laugavegur 54, Reykjavík | booking@trip.is | +354 433 8747 Open Mon-Sat 09:00-21:00 & Sun 09:00-19:00 | Located directly opposite Bónus Supermarket, on the main street


AMERICAN BAR

One of the coolest bars in Reykjavik these days is Kaldi Bar. In close cooperation with north-Icelandic micro-brewery of the same name, Kaldi offers you a selection of craftbrewed beers on tap. Great happy hour and great fun, Kaldi is a place not-to-be-missed!

American Bar is named appropriately since it’s an American Bar in Reykjavík, of the kind you’re probably familiar with from other countries: there are dudes, chicks and random university students partying to the latest MTV tunes. They specialize in American culture and entertainment.

Klapparstígur 27, Reykjavík 581-2020 www..irishman.is

Laugavegur 20b, Reykjavík 581-2200

Austurstræti 8, Reykjavík 571 9999

KOFINN

B5

DEN DANSKE KRO

This café/bar is in the perfect spot on the main street. This snug basement used to be a butcher’s shop but has been transformed into a comfy place to relax, have a drink and swap tales with friends. As an added bonus, Kofinn doesn’t just have happy hour, they have coffee hour as well!

b5 bar/bistro has become a very popular establishment with the locals of the capital. With its very contemporary and stylish interior, b5 is laid back during the day, while as night falls, the lights dim and the atmosphere changes accordingly.

This homey pub with a Danish theme is popular among locals. Happy hour every day from 4-7pm and live music with talented Icelandic musicians every night. Beer bingo every month and other fun events! Located in the heart of the city centre.

Laugavegur 2, Reykjavík www.ktf.is

Bankastræti 5, Reykjavík 552-9600 www.b5.is

Ingólfsstræti 3, Reykjavík 552-0070 www.danski.is

KAFFIBARINN

BAR ANANAS

THE ENGLISH PUB

Best known as Damon Albarn’s hangout place back in the days, this most famous bar in Iceland is a popular destination for the artsy crowd. During the week it‘s more of a café, but on the weekend the volume rises and KB becomes one of the hottest bars in Reykjavik.

Ten seconds from Laugavegur, you'll find a Beach-Bar/Tiki Bar in downtown Reykjavík. The tropical atmosphere is best enjoyed with a fruity cocktail in hand. At weekends city's best DJs will make guests feel sunny while they enjoy some of the best cocktails in town.

A popular pub in city centre. The English Pub offers happy hour every day from 4-7pm, live music every night, wheel of fortune and all major sport events are shown on 6 HD screens. Special events: Open Mic Tuesday, Guinness Thursday and Whisky Sunday.

Bergstaðastræti 1, Reykjavík 551-1588 www.kaffibarinn.is

Klapparstígur 38, Reykjavík

Austurstræti 12, Reykjavík 578-0400 facebook.com/enskibarinn

Find more recommendations on www.whatson.is

KALDI BAR

A new addition to the thriving pub & bar culture in Reykjavík. Happy hour every day from 12PM to 7PM! Guests can enjoy a game of darts, listen to live music Thursday to Sunday evenings, spin the wheel of fortune and you can even book a private karaoke room! Sláinte.

PUBS & NIGHTLIFE

THE IRISHMAN PUB

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PUBS & NIGHTLIFE

HÚRRA

LEBOWSKI BAR

MICROBAR

Dark and raw, this large bar/club opens up its back room to make a concert venue, with live music or DJs most nights. One of the coolest and hipster friendly places in town and your best bet of catching the next big thing from Iceland.

If you are visiting Iceland for the first time then you must stop by the Lebowski Bar. Open every day from 11AM, happy hour from 4-7PM, food served until 10PM, Quiz every Thursday (free entry), live sport events on 5 HD screens and Reykjavik nightlife every Friday & Saturday.

Beer enthusiasts look no further! In a cellar underneath Restaurant Reykjavík, just off Ingólfstorg square, you will find Micro Bar. This ambitious bar serves only beer from microbreweries! Carrying an impressive 140 different kinds of beers from all over the world, this is definitely the go-to place for beer fans.

Tryggvagata 22, Reykjavík www.hurra.is

Find more recommendations on www.whatson.is

Vesturgata 2, Reykjavík

DRUNK RABBIT

PORT 9

VEÐUR

Every city needs to have a friendly neighbourhood Irish pub and in Reykjavík, that bar is the Drunk Rabbit. It doesn’t matter if you’re going in for a snack, to enjoy the live music they have every night, people-watching in the lively bar, or just enjoying a beer or five in good company, the Drunk rabbit has got everything you need.

Port 9 wine bar is a hidden gem just off the main shopping street. Serving selected wines and a unique blend of appetizers made with the freshest seasonal ingredients, Port 9 is one of the best spots in the city to stop by for a glass of quality wine in a relaxed atmosphere.

This cozy little bar is named after the Icelandic word for weather, Icelanders’ conversation topic of choice in most situations. Offering a selection of wine, beer, and cocktails, Veður is a great spot for hanging out with friends, and the large windows make it ideal for people-watching over a drink.

Austurstræti 3, Reykjavík 553 1041

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Laugavegur 20a, Reykjavík 552-2300 www.lebowski.is

Veghúsastígur 9, Reykjavík 897 8212 www.port9.is

Klapparstígur 33, Reykjavík www.vedurbarinn.is

LOFT HOSTEL

KIKI - QUEER BAR

PABLO DISCOBAR

This hostel café/bar is bright and spacious; the perfect place to start the night. The hall hosts events most nights and on summer afternoons, the balcony is the best place in town for a beer in the sun. Last but not least, Loft has the best foosball table of all the bars in the city centre.

Kiki is the only queer bar in town these days but it is also the best one! If you’re worried you won’t find the place, don’t be. The rainbow coloured street entrance, stream of people in a dancing mood, and the far off sound of dance-heavy beats should lead you where you want to go!

Cocktails, dancing, and a tropical atmosphere, what more can you ask for? Climb up a flight or two of stairs from the central Ingólfstorg square and you’ll find Pablo Discobar, one of the best places in town to get a cocktail and dance the night away.

Bankastræti 7, Reykjavík 553 8140

Laugavegur 22 www.kiki.is

Veltusund 1, Reykjavík 552 7333 www.discobar.is


1–5 hours day tours for beginners to experienced riders. In stunning nature only 15 minutes from Reykjavik! Pre-booked pick up provided.

www.ishestar.is 555 7000


WINING & DINING

FORRÉTTABARINN

TE OG KAFFI

JÓMFRÚIN

Tasty tapas with an Icelandic twist. With a new spin on traditional Icelandic cuisine and an extensive selection of local beer, Forréttabarinn – “The Starters Bar” – is worth seeking out when you need a bite to eat or a place to start your night out in Reykjavík. Whatever you choose from the refreshingly creative menu, you’re in for a treat!

Passion, expertise and craftsmanship are the main characteristics of Te & Kaffi, a family owned chain of coffee houses and speciality coffee roasters. Highly skilled and amicable baristas, exciting and tasty drinks in beautifully designed coffee houses makes Te & Kaffi a must visit.

An open-sandwich restaurant in the Danish tradition offering authentic Danish smørrebrød along with a selection of hot dishes. The restaurant is located in the heart of the city centre and seats 80 guests. It is a popular lunch venue, especially with people from the business sector.

Laugavegur 27, Reykjavík 527-2880 www.teogkaffi.is

Lækjargata 4, Reykjavík 551-0100 www.jomfruin.is

KRYDD RESTAURANT

FJÖRUBORÐIÐ

EARLY IN THE MORNING

KRYDD is an à la carte restaurant that offers a dinner and lunch menu, along with appetizers and a state of the art cocktailbar. On sundays, it offers a brunch buffet between 11:00 AM - 3:00 PM.

What’s the only thing that’s better than a feast of Icelandic langoustine? A feast of Icelandic langoustine in a charming restaurant by the seaside in a tiny, picturesque fishing village. Their langoustine soup alone is well worth the 45-minute drive from the city.

BREAKFAST Early in the Morning is the perfect start to your day, whether you're going hiking on a volcano or just strolling around Reykjavík. This breakfast/brunch spot is hidden away from the hustle and bustle of the city centre, so stop by for a tasty breakfast in a relaxing atmosphere!

Nýlendugata 14, Reykjavík 517 1800 | www.forrettabarinn.is

Find more recommendations on www.whatson.is

Hafnarborg, Strandgötu 34, Hafnarfjörður www.kryddveitingahus.is Open: M-T 11-23, F-S, 11-01, S 11-23

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Eyrarbraut 3A, Stokkseyri 483-1550 www.fjorubordid.is

Veghúsastígur 7-9, Reykjavík 695 1021 Open daily 07:00-10:00

SNAPS

REYKJAVÍK MEAT STEAKHOUSE

ICELANDIC FISH & CHIPS

Snaps is a classic french bistro using local Icelandic ingredients, located at Odinstorg. The location could not be better. Snaps is literally a few steps away from downtown Reykjavik, close to the National Theatre, The National Gallery of Iceland and the two main shopping streets of Reykjavik.

As the name suggests, Reykjavík Meat is the city’s newest new steakhouse. The food is cooked over coals giving it a delicious flavour, and crowning their menu is the award-winning sashi marbled beef. They also offer seafood, lamb and vegetarian and vegan dishes, as well as delicious cocktails!

Óðinstorg, Reykjavík 511 6677 | www.snaps.is

Frakkastígur 8, Reykjavík 557 7665 | www.rvkmeat.is

This is not your run of the mill fish and chip shop! Not only does the restaurant use the freshest fish and ingredients, they serve their fish with delicious skyr-based sauces. This fast-food upgrade is much more nutritious than you‘d think! After eating, we recommend visiting the Volcano House, it‘s in the same building! Tryggvagata 11, Reykjavík 511 1118 | www.fishandchips.is


VISIT REYKJAVIK’S

LARGEST SHOPPING CENTRE FREE SHUTTLE BUS FROM CITY HALL Monday – Saturday To Kringlan Every hour 10 am – 5 pm Sundays: 1, 2, 3, 4 pm From Kringlan On the half hour 11:30 am – 4:30 pm Sundays: 2:30, 3:30, 4:30 pm

kringlan.is

#kringlaniceland


NAUTHÓLL

MATUR OG DRYKKUR

A restaurant opposite the old harbour that offers traditional steak dishes along with some exciting and fairly unorthodox choices. The pride and joy of The Steakhouse is the Mibrasa charcoal oven, a rare oven that is designed to cook the perfect steak by mixing modern technology with ancient tradition.

Looking out over the Nauthólsvík beach, this charming Scandinavianinspired bistro is the perfect oasis from the stress of the everyday. Whether you’re there for a light lunch, a glass of wine on a sunny afternoon, a cup of hot coffee on a cold one, or a lovely dinner with a loved one, Nauthóll is the place to go.

Tryggvagata 4-6, Reykjavík 561-1111 | www.steik.is

Nauthólsvegi 106, 101 Reykjavík 599 6660 | www.nautholl.is

Matur og Drykkur translates simply as Food and Drink. They serve traditional Icelandic recipes with a modern twist – made with the best Icelandic ingredients. Every element of the food is made in-house, from first-class produce and Matur og Drykkur has received the prestigious Bib Gourmand award from Michelin two years in a row.

JOE & THE JUICE

THE ICELANDIC BAR

APOTEK

Joe & The Juice is an on-trend coffee shop / juice bar. The concept answers today’s busy people’s needs for a quick pick-me-up in the form of great espresso drinks, freshly pressed juices, and variety of sandwiches prepared on the spot.

The Icelandic Bar is very aptly named: it is an Icelandic bar. But more than that, it is a bar that aims to preserve the essence of being Icelandic by combining the historical and cultural heritage of this ancient land with the very hip and cutting edge culture of modern times.

An exciting restaurant located in one of the most beautiful corners of Reykjavik, Apotek Restaurant is casual-smart, offering delicious food in a vibrant atmosphere and stylish surroundings. The menu is a fun mix of Icelandic and European cuisine and the dishes are designed to share and enjoy together.

Laugavegur 10, Reykjavík; Smáralind, Kringlan, World Class Laugum, Keflavík Airport www.joeandthejuice.is

Ingólfsstræti 1a, Reykjavík 517-6767 www.islenskibarinn.is

Grandagarður 2, Reykjavík 571-8877 | www.maturogdrykkur.is

Austurstræti 16, Reykjavík 551-0011 | www.apotek.is

KAFFITÁR

ESSENSIA

Mathús Garðabæjar, a feather in the cap of the restaurant flora in Garðabær, has been delighting its customers ever since they opened their doors. Serving everything from fish to pasta to vegetarian fare in exquisite dishes, Mathús Garðabæjar is the perfect place to bring the whole family!

A chain of cafés and espresso bars with over 30 years of experience in serving and roasting high-quality coffee. They operate cafés in 7 locations in Iceland, promising a highly knowledgeable staff and a great cup of coffee procured in a responsible and fair way.

If you’re looking for top-notch Italian food, look no further than Essensia. Using only the best ingredients and preparing them in a way that showcases their quality, the good people of Essensia make sure our whole dining experience is one to remember. Don’t forget about their delicious Italian wines!

Bankastræti 8, Reykjavík 420-2700 www.kaffitar.is/en

Hverfisgata 4-6, Reykjavík 517-0030 | www.essensia.is

Find more recommendations on www.whatson.is

MATHÚS GARÐABÆJAR

Garðatorg 4B, Garðabæ 571 3775 | www.mathus.is

WINING & DINING

THE STEAK HOUSE

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WINING & DINING

MARSHALL RESTAURANT + BAR

LÆKJARBREKKA

THE LOBSTER HOUSE

This elegant Icelandic bistro in the heart of the city centre serves delicious food from Icelandic ingredients in a historic environment. A light lunch or a delicious dinner is perfectly accompanied by people watching in this lovely old building, part of the oldest street façade in Reykjavík.

If you want to enjoy gourmet French cuisine with a nordic twist, then The Lobsterhouse is the right place for you. Our langoustine, “the Icelandic lobster“, is widely know for it’s great taste and one of our most favourable dishes. Dining at The Lobsterhouse is an experience full of warmth and history.

Grandagarður 20, Reykjavík 519-7766 | marshallrestaurant.is

Bankastræti 2, Reykjavík 551-4430 www.laekjarbrekka.is

Amtmannsstígur 1, Reykjavík 561-3303 | www.thelobsterhouse.is

KOPAR

GRILLHÚSIÐ

BREWDOG

Kopar is a restaurant by the old harbour in Reykjavik which has an emphasis on adventure and experience in a brasserie setting. Their menu is composed of various locally sourced ingredients from sea and land, and aims to give you a taste of Iceland in a single evening.

A fun restaurant, with the look and feel of an American Diner. Reasonably priced, offering delicious food and a very good service, you‘ll definitely get great value for your money here. They put a special emphasis on using only high quality ingredients, making for a terrific meal.

Hop lovers, rejoice! UK’s Craft Beer Phenomenon just opened a bar and restaurant in downtown Reykjavik, located at the corner of Hverfisgata and Frakkastigur. Featuring 20 taps including BrewDog’s headliners, seasonals and one off brews as well as great local Icelandic craft beers. Highly impressive food menu and a very cosy atmosphere.

Marshall Restaurant + Bar is situated in Marshallhúsið, a new center for modern art in Reykjavík. Honest approach to food and cooking and an atmosphere of warmth. Icelandic fish and mediterranean inspired fare with vegetarian dishes, pasta and meat.

Find more recommendations on www.whatson.is

Geirsgata 3, Reykjavík 567-2700 www.koparrestaurant.is

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Tryggvagata 20, Reykjavík 527-5000 www.grillhusid.is

Frakkastígur 8, Reykjavík www.brewdog.com

SÆTA SVÍNIÐ

FISH COMPANY

BRAUÐ & CO

This gastropub in the city centre serves classic bistro fare with an Icelandic twist. It’s not just the food that’s delicious, their cocktails are pretty great as well. They also serve a wide selection of Icelandic beers and host bingo and karaoke nights. After a night out, you can even return to the restaurant for a restorative brunch!

Quality, fusion and fun are the Fish Company’s main characteristics. The interior is stylish and the quirky tableware fits in wonderfully. The menu is a world of adventures from starters to deserts. It’s designed to take you on a seafood journey and not only a journey of the Icelandic culinary waters but a trip around the world.

Head out to Brauð & Co. to get your hands on the scrumptious sourdough bread and tasty cinnamon buns. The early bird gets the worm, so don't be late! Keep in mind that the queue can get quite long, but it's well worth it.

Hafnarstræti 1-3, Reykjavík 555 2900 | www.saetasvinid.is

Vesturgata 2a, Reykjavík 552-5300 | www.fiskfelagid.is

Opens early, closes at 18:00. Frakkastígur 16, Reykjavík Hlemmur Mathöll, Reykjavík Fákafen 11, Reykjavík www.braudogco.is


WHERE THE NORTHERN LIGHTS ARE ALWAYS ON DISPLAY

MULTIMEDIA EXHIBITION

TOUR BOOKING Grandagarður 2 | 101 Reykjavík Tel: +354 780 4500

MOVIE THEATER

GIFT SHOP AND GALLERY

open daily 09:00 - 21:00

www.aurorareykjavik.is


VOLCANO & EARTHQUAKE EXHIBITION The Gateway to Iceland’s Most Active Volcanic Area

The Lava Centre

The creation of Iceland

Earthquake simulator

A world class exhibition on volcanoes and earthquakes surrounded by active volcanoes.

Learn how and why Iceland hosts so many volcanic eruptions.

Feel what it’s like when the ground starts to shake and rumble.

MORE INFO AND TICKETS AT

Open every day

Follow us on

www.lavacentre.is

9:00 - 19:00

social media

Iceland Volcano & Earthquake Centre Austurvegur 14, Hvolsvöllur · South Iceland


PRACTICAL INFORMATION

IF YOU NEED MORE INFO, CONTACT INFO@WHATSON.IS

HOW TO ... GET TO THE AIRPORT Iceland’s international airport is located in Keflavík, about 50km from Reykjavík. If you rent a car or take a cab, it will take about 45 minutes to get to Reykjavík. A cheaper but just as reliable option is taking a bus to and from the airport. They connect to flights and will drop you off or pick you up at bus stops close to your accommodation in Reykjavík.

PARK IN THE CITY CENTRE There are different parking zones which charge different rates. Look for a parking sign (a big P on a blue and white sign) indicating zones 1-4. Look for the nearest black terminal to pay, with cash or card. Street parking is limited so consider parking in one of the many parking garages in the city centre.

TAKE THE BUS Strætó is the Icelandic bus company, and their yellow buses are easy to spot around the city. You can only buy a ticket on the bus if you have the exact amount in cash. Tickets can also be bought in 10-11 supermarkets, What’s On and by using the free Strætó app, which also has the latest bus schedules. GO SWIMMING There are 18 swimming pools in the capital area and if you have the time, you should try them all. Swimming is great, but don’t miss relaxing in the hot tubs – this is where the community gathers and socialises. If you haven’t packed a bathing suit, you can rent one at the pool. If you need any more information or want to book a tour while you’re in Reykjavík, visit What’s On at Laugavegur 5 or contact us at info@whatson.is.

Find more information on www.whatson.is

GET MONEY Iceland has its own currency, the Icelandic króna (ISK). It’s best to get króna at any bank (open monday to friday, 9-4), including the one at the Keflavík International Airport (open 24/7). You can either exchange money or go to an ATM to get cash. You don’t need piles of cash, though, as credit card and debit card payments are widely accepted in Iceland.

MAKE CALLS Getting an Icelandic SIM card is easy, you can get them at the airport, phone companies, and of course the What’s On tourist information centre at Laugavegur 5.

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THE ORIGINAL

NORTHERN LIGHTS BY BOAT

AL

SO

TR Y

W HA LE

W AT CH

IN

G

FROM REYKJAVIK

WE GO THE EXTRA MILE +354-560-8800

specialtours.is

GOLD-CLASS ENVIRONMENTAL UMHVERFISFLOKKUN

CERTIFIED TRAVEL SERVICE VIÐURKENND FERÐAÞJÓNUSTA

info@specialtours.is


MEN: Skólavörðustígur 16. WOMEN: Skólavörðustígur 7 & Kringlan. HOME: Skólavörðustígur 12. GEYSIR: Hafnarstræti, Akureyri and Haukadalur. Geysir.com

Profile for MD Reykjavik

What's On - February 2019  

What's On - February 2019