A weekend city break to Reykjavik, Iceland
My boyfriend is one in one thousand, four hundred and sixty one. That’s not me being soppy, he was born on a Leap Year (and featured in the local paper for the honour!) and so for his official “7th” birthday, I surprised him with a trip to Reykjavik, which was always on our ‘one day’ list.
Reykjavik is becoming more and more popular, I think due in part to the fact that it’s affordable to go there now for a city break. It’s also a beautiful place with lovely, lovely people.
Here are a few of our highlights..
Dirty Burger & Ribs
I love it that these guys don’t fuck about – that’s the actual name of the diner. We discovered, immediately upon landing at the airport, that everything is really expensive in Iceland. We were therefore really pleased not to blow our whole weekend budget on the first day by finding this little gem – a rack of ribs, a burger, two fries and two cans of fizzy juice of under £20! And, the best bit, it was amazing. We were tempted to go back again the second day but managed to resist!
Harpa Concert Hall
Stunning, stunning architecture which blends into the landscape from one view and stands out, almost sparkling, in another. It’s free to go in – you can go around the majority of the building without needing to buy tickets for anything and is even more breathtaking from the inside, as you can see below.
The Laundromat Cafe
This is the most charming cafe and, whilst full of tourists, felt very Icelandic. The bar is a large square in the middle of the room which is lined with bookshelves filled with, wait for it, COLOUR CODED BOOKS! Whoever did that is after my heart! The walls are pasted with maps and it just has a really good vibe, the staff are really friendly and do not begrudgingly speak in English (side note: I did learn ‘takk’ which is thank you). We ordered one dirty brunch (they like the word dirty here) and one basic and just mixed and matched between the two of us until we both had the majority of what we liked best. It was quite pricy, for a breakfast, but totally worth it.
Somehow, Reykjavik manages to do ‘scene’ and ‘hipster’ places without being totally wanky. And Icelanders DEFINITELY know their coffee. We never had a bad cup over the four days we were there (and I drink decaf which is generally rank in the UK). These snaps were taken in Reykjavik Roasters, which features two of my favourite things: caffeine and cacti 🌵☕️
The Blue Lagoon
One word: sublime. I don’t care what anyone says, it might be man-made and it might be gimmicky and it might be expensive but it was the best sixty-odd-quid I’ve ever spent on a bath. We went for the comfort option so that they provided a towel, a face mask and one free drink. I am queen of the bath, so I was always going to enjoy it but the boyfriend is a shower man through and through and he really enjoyed it too. We were expecting to be there for an hour or two and then get bored but we were there for three and a half hours and I still didn’t want to leave. We had made a reservation for the evening so we had to get back otherwise I’d probably still be there now!
Iceland is a beautiful place, we were lucky to be there when it had snowed so it had a really magical quality. Conversely, we had booked a northern lights tour and a whale watching tour which were both cancelled due to the weather. At the time, it was gutting to have planned it all and got so excited for them to be cancelled but now I think it’s just a perfect excuse to go back!
I will do a few reviews of our best dinners whilst in Reykjavik – we never had a bad meal there but there were definitely some highlights!
Have you been to Reykjavik? If we go back anything you can recommend for us to do? The geysirs are already on my list!