Where to stay in Reykjavik? Discover the finest accommodations in Reykjavík, including unique hotels, cozy hostels, and luxurious establishments. The abundant selection of lodgings in this celebrated Icelandic capital warrants an extensive search to uncover the truly exceptional places to stay. Our blog guides you in making an informed decision by highlighting the best places to stay in Reykjavik, including the best recommended special hotels.
How to get to Reykjavik in Iceland
Located in southwest Iceland, Reykjavík is Europe’s westernmost capital and the country’s largest city, making it an essential destination on any Iceland travel itinerary.
Although Reykjavík is Iceland’s capital, its international airport is not situated there. Instead, it is found in Keflavik, located slightly further south and west. Nonetheless, the airport is just a 50-minute drive from the city. To reach Reykjavík from the airport at a lower cost, one may use public transportation – either a local bus or the Flybus service.
The key attractions of Iceland are primarily situated in the south and west regions of the island, which are easily accessible from Reykjavík. In just 50 minutes, you can reach Thingvellir, the initial stop on the renowned Golden Circle. On the other hand, it takes roughly two hours to drive north to the Snæfellsnes peninsula or east to the Seljalandsfoss waterfall, which is also the departure point for trips to Vestmannaeyjar Island.
Why Reykjavík is worth a visit
A visit to Reykjavík provides a refreshing contrast to the nature-focused trips typical of Iceland. The city boasts remarkable architecture, museums, and bustling hotspots. While Reykjavík is the only urban center in the nation, its quaint streets and vibrant, colorful houses offer an intimate, village-like ambiance.
Reykjavik’s primary attractions comprise the impressive Hallgrímskirkja Church, the Sun Voyager sculpture by Jón Gunnar Árnason, the architecturally acclaimed Harpa Concert Hall, the historically significant Höfði House, and Tjörnin Lake. Don’t forget to explore the museums in the capital, such as the Perlan Museum, which showcases Iceland’s natural wonders, and the Northern Lights Museum. Excursions like whale watching or visiting the hot springs of the Blue Lagoon or the recently opened Sky Lagoon are essential experiences that shouldn’t be missed.
Reykjavík serves as an excellent starting point for exploring the rest of Iceland. While various day tours are available from the capital, embarking on a self-driving journey with a rental car is even more enjoyable. Traverse the Golden Circle, behold the waterfalls and glaciers located in the south, and embark on a road trip across the Snaefellsnes Peninsula. Given the relatively short distances in Iceland, numerous destinations can be visited within a single day trip from Reykjavík.
Where to stay in Reykjavik
The best place to stay in Reykjavik is in the heart of the city, specifically in the district of Miðborg (also known as Midborg), which is referred to as 101 due to its postal code. The majority of Reykjavik’s restaurants, tourist attractions, and lodgings are located in the northern section of this district, near the well-known Hallgrímskirkja church. This area is the perfect location to stay in Reykjavik.
Though, you can discover excellent lodging options beyond Midborg as well, including remarkable hostels and hotels. In fact, for a truly exceptional overnight experience in Reykjavik, you must venture to the city’s outskirts.
#1 Reykjavík Domes for glamping in a unique dome located just outside Reykjavik. Top-rated amenities include a comfortable bed, hot tub, cozy wood stove, and welcome drink. Guests rave about the exceptional and memorable experience.
Where to stay in Midborg – 101
#2 House of the Snowbird for highly-rated lodging offering guests the opportunity to stay in tastefully decorated apartments situated within a refurbished historic edifice located in Reykjavík’s Old Town, just a 13-minute stroll from Hallgrímskirkja Church. Every apartment comes equipped with its own kitchen, making it a convenient choice for those who prefer not to dine out every night.
#3 Reykjavik Treasure B&B for a B&B elegantly furnished and conveniently located just a 5-minute walk from Laugavegur shopping street. The breakfast menu features freshly baked bread, cold cuts, and fish. Guests can unwind in the cozy garden prior to embarking on their city adventures.
#4 Kvosin Downtown Hotel for a stylish accommodation located in the heart of Reykjavík’s city center, as it’s nestled in a square right behind the iconic Reykjavík Cathedral and Icelandic Parliament. Originally constructed in 1900, this contemporary hotel boasts a terrace, bar, and on-site parking facilities.
#5 Loft Hi Hostel for an eco-hostel well-liked for its private en-suite rooms and dorms. Guests can enjoy a lounge, bar, and rooftop terrace with views of the city. The hostel’s location is incredibly convenient, just a few steps from Laugavegur, the main shopping street in Reykjavik. Additionally, Hallgrímskirkja Church is only a 10-minute walk away, while the Harpa Concert Hall is merely a 5-minute walk away.
#6 Apotek Hotel for a boutique hotel, located only two minutes away from the Laugavegur shopping street, is housed in a listed building that was designed in 1917 by renowned government architect Gudjón Samúelsson. The hotel boasts a top-notch restaurant and bar on the premises. The excellent reviews attest to the hotel’s prime location, delectable breakfast, and capacious, cozy rooms.
#7 Canopy by Hilton Reykjavik City Centre for one of Reykjavik’s top hotels, conveniently located just a brief stroll from Laugavegur shopping street and a mere 500 meters from Harpa Concert and Conference Centre. The elegantly appointed rooms boast minimalist Icelandic decor, while the lobby, restaurant, and bar exude a chic and stylish ambiance.
#8 Kex Hostel for one of the most pleasant hostels in town, situated a mere 250 meters away from the Laugarvegur shopping street. It provides both private and dormitory accommodations. Satisfied guests have expressed their admiration for the excellent location, inviting bar, and amiable ambiance.
Where to stay outside Midborg
#9 Eyja Guldsmeden Hotel for one of the top-rated hotels in Reykjavik, situated outside the tourist district, yet only a 15-minute stroll from Hallgrímskirkja. The hotel’s rooms are charmingly decorated and equipped with cozy four-poster beds. Additionally, guests can rent bicycles to tour Reykjavik’s attractions.
#10 Tower Suites Reykjavik for a Reykjavik hotel boasting a remarkable rating of 9.5. It features chic penthouse suites located on the 20th floor within a contemporary glass tower that presents breathtaking city or sea views. The rooms come equipped with floor-to-ceiling windows and a telescope. While slightly removed from the main attractions, the hotel is only a short 500 m walk from the Laugavegur shopping street and 1 km from the Hallgrímskirkja church.
#11 Hotel Marina for a chic hotel situated in the harbor. It offers convenient access to whale-watching tours. All rooms boast picturesque views of the city or harbor. Unwind by the lobby fireplace or catch an Icelandic film at the nearby Slipp Cinema.
#12 ODDSON Hotel for a charming hotel that boasts a blue-themed decor. While situated outside the city center, convenient bus stops are located across the street, and local attractions can be effortlessly accessed by renting a vehicle from ODDSON.