Insider tips: Reykjavík

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Iceland’s capital Reykjavík is more accessible than ever. Although still not cheap, the country’s financial meltdown makes now a good time to visit this bewitching city. Take in its geothermal pools, world-class restaurants and infamous bar and live music scene, and these insider tips:

  • Peak season runs from June to mid-August – during this time you’ll have the best weather, incredibly long days, the pick of tours, and the best choice of accommodation (but it will be more expensive).
  • Bring a sleeping bag. If you’re on a limited budget you can save a packet by opting for a bed without linen at hostels, guesthouses and some hotels.
  • Always wash thoroughly without a swimsuit before hopping into a spa or swimming pool. The only time we’ve seen Icelanders get angry is when talking about tourists abusing their pools!
  • It rains a lot so bring good waterproof gear. Reykjavík’s mildish climate can rapidly degenerate into heavy rain, biting wind or fog; May, June and July are the driest months of the year.
  • If you plan on joining the Friday- and Saturday-night runtur, when Icelanders hit the streets and pub crawl round Reykjavík’s many drinking dens, don’t head out too early – thanks to the high price of alcohol Icelanders tend to drink at home until around midnight.
  • Only visiting for a weekend and want to squeeze in a visit to the Blue Lagoon? Buses run from Reykjavík to the Blue Lagoon and on to the airport, tickets are great value and include admission to the lagoon.
  • It’s easy to get from Keflavík International Airport into Reykjavík. The Flybus meets all international flights and is by far the cheapest option. The journey takes 50 minutes.

Further information

Get the low-down on local liquor on the Thorn Tree forum.

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