Five Free Things to do in Reykjavik:
Iceland is the 9th least densely populated country in the world. This means that once you leave Reykjavik and into the highlands it can be several hours before you pass another human.
The Greater Reykjavik area’s population is around 200,000 whereas Iceland’s population is only around 320,000. This provides a pretty good picture of how desolate and lonely (not necessarily a bad thing!) it can be once you step outside from the city.
To put the population in context, Iceland’s population is smaller than that of the English city of Bristol!
In fact, in Iceland, there are more sheep than people!
With all that in mind we provide our list of the top five free things to do in Reykjavik:
5. Reykjavik City Hall
First up on our list of free things to do in Reykjavik is the City Hall.
Along with housing the mayoral offices, the Reykjavik City Hall was built with the purpose of attracting bird life in mind. This is something it has done successfully as you can see all manner of ducks and geese on the Lake Tjornin.
It has a bold modern design, inside there is a cafe, occasional art exhibits and a fantastic view of the lake.
The highlight is the three dimensional map of Iceland where you can see where in the country people live – some of which might surprise you!
4. Einar Jónsson Sculpture Garden
Number four on our list of free things to do in Reykjavik is the Einar Jonsson Sculpture Garden. The garden outside the Einar Jonsson Museum is full of statues and sculptures for you to look at, and best of all they are free!
Einar Jonsson is an Icelandic sculptor born in the south of the country. He is most famous for his piece “outlaws”. A lot of his work is based on Icelandic heritage and folklore.
You can see examples of his work throughout Reykjavik but the biggest concentration is in the museum and gardens.
3. Northern Lights
In the winter months it is possible (if you are lucky) to see number three on our list of free things to do in Reykjavik – the Northern lights.
If the night is dark, clear and there is high activity (check the aurora forecast activity guide here) then there is a chance you could see one of nature’s most wondrous sights.
The usually green lights of the Aurora Borealis can be seen September through to April.
2. Hallgrimskirkja Church
One of Reykjavik’s highest buildings, Hallgrimskirkja Church, can be seen from the neighbouring hillsides. It is a defining feature of the Reykjavik Skyline.
The exterior is meant to resemble the basalt lava flows that commonly occur in Iceland’s countryside. It is also thought to be similar in style to Copenhagen‘s Grundtvig’s Church.
Check out the opening times on the Hallgrimskirkja Church website.
1. Free walking Tour
Last but not least on our list of free things to do in Reykjavik is a free walking tour. At Five Free Things we love walking tours. Depending on the tour guide, they can be extremely fun and informative, sometimes you can even learn things from a local that wouldn’t appear in any guidebook.
From the Free Walking Tour Reykjavik website:
“Our tour guides are university students. We give you the chance to enjoy this informative and fun tour around the old city center of Reykjavik for free. The tour is just over an hour long and if you are satisfied with our tour we welcome you to make a donation to our educational fund.”
You can visit all the major tourist destinations and learn about the history and culture of Iceland.
That concludes our list of the top five free things to do in Reykjavik, if you have anything to add feel free to leave a comment!