Reykjavik, on the south-west coast of Iceland, is the island's capital and the northernmost capital in the world; it is a quirky, beautiful city full of colourful buildings and creative, welcoming people.
What to do in Reykjavik:
The Icelandic capital boasts a wealth of tours and activities organised for visitors – the highlights of which are arguably a trip to the world-famous Blue Lagoon geothermal spa, snowmobiling, whale and puffin watching and treks on fabulous Icelandic ponies. And of course, no trip would be complete without a nighttime adventure to watch the Northern Lights!
Designated as a UNESCO City of Literature, Reykjavik is home to world-class museums, art galleries and exhibitions. Classical music lovers should head for The Harpa Concert Hall and Cultural Centre where concerts are frequently held.
For the open minded, a visit to the Iceland Phallological Museum has got to be on your list; its displays of silver castings of each member of the Icelandic handball team, and a collection of whale penis’ - amongst many others - are also available as postcards from the gift shop.
Reykjavik is famous for its vibrant nightlife when the city comes alive with music and lights; live music, clubs, and parties start late and go on until the early hours. The atmosphere is friendly, welcoming, safe and inclusive.
Where to eat in Reykjavik
Lamb, dairy and, not surprisingly, fish, all feature highly on the traditional Icelandic menu, but like any cosmopolitan city, you can find a wide range of sumptuous restaurants serving international cuisines in Reykjavik.
Café Flora specialises in wholesome local produce, some grown by the restaurant itself, with delicious snacks, coffee and mouth-watering cakes to top it all off.
If you’re not sure what to eat, head for Glo which serves an eclectic fusion of Greek, Asian, Icelandic and Scandinavian cuisine, with an organic vegetarian twist. Elaborate salads and raw food are their specialities.
Saegreifinn in Old Harbour is a seafood restaurant, and their lobster soup is famous throughout Iceland; your fish is cooked to order in front of you, and the atmosphere is homely and relaxed.
Shopping in Reykjavik:
Surprisingly, Reykjavik is well known for its homegrown designer fashion – Icelandic clothing, accessories and jewellery is globally recognised as stylish and trending.
But top designers also have outlets here, such as Marc Jacobs, and Vivienne Westwood. Shops such as KronKron stock clothes by recognised names in high-street fashion.
If arts and crafts are to your taste, there are many unique and unusual shops that are well worth a browse. GÞ Jewellery has an interesting range of designer jewellery created from lava, and other natural materials, whilst Kirsuberjatréð sells an eclectic range of designer pieces, such as bowls made from radishes, string music boxes and strangely beautiful fish skin handbags.
Iceland is one of the most beautiful and unusual countries in the world and the ideal destination if you want something different from your winter break. So check out the deals on offer at Thomas Cook with our discount vouchers and you could be partying with lively Icelanders this Christmas.