24 Hours in Reykjavik, Iceland

Have you noticed lately that some airlines with flights to and from the US and Europe have grueling layovers in Reykjavik, Iceland, we’re talking 21-26 hour stopovers! You could see this as 1-day wasted laying around the airport scrolling through your social media and e-mails or a chance to get out and have the most unforgettable hours in Iceland. Here’s what to do with your 24 hours in Reykjavik!

AURORA BOREALIS

If you arrive in winter, note that there may be limited hours of sunlight. Around Christmas time, there’s roughly 4 hours of light around noon. It sounds depressing, but actually, this gives you a once in a lifetime opportunity to get out and see Aurora Borealis, The Northern Lights. If you’re at the airport or even downtown Reykjavik, the light pollution may be too much so you will have to charter a tour. But if you’re lucky, sometimes the city will shut off the lights so everyone can enjoy the natural phenomenon. With only 24 hours, I wouldn’t gamble, hire the tour.

Reykjavik Excursions
4 hour tour with pick up from downtown
and airport at about 22:00.
www.re.is/daytours/northern-lights-tour

BLUE LAGOON

The farther out in advance you know you’re stopping over in Iceland, the better, if you want to go to one of the most beautiful, one-of-a-kind natural soaking pool and spa in the world. You must book online and in advance, this is one of Iceland’s most popular destinations for tourists as well as locals. Luckily, due to their limited capacity you will feel as if you’re in a private get-away on some foreign planet.

Blue Lagoon
Charters pick-ups to and from the airport as well
as downtown Reykjavik.
www.bluelagoon.com/blue-lagoon-spa

EAT

Depending on where you’re coming from, the Icelandic krona makes it an expensive place to be. A cup of coffee can cost up to about $8US dollars, but good thing you’re only visiting for 24 hours. Dine like a local at Cafe Babalu, with cozy seating, healthy options, soups, tea, and coffee to warm you from the inside out.

Cafe Babalu
Address: Skolavordustigur 22A

Te and Kaffi
Address: Several located around the city.
www.teogkaffi.is

TRANSPORTATION

Flybus is by far the least hassle and least expensive option to get to and from Reykjavik airport to downtown Reykjavik. A taxi can come in at almost $100USD one-way. The other option would be to rent a car, but be careful driving in the snow. You do not need an international driver’s license, but you do need a driver’s license from your home country.

Fly Bus

SLEEP

You must know it takes about 45 minutes to get from the airport to the city, on a long snowy road lining the fjords. There’s several hotels & Airbnb listings near the airport, but you will get the most of your experience by staying in Reykjavik.

  • Icelandic Hotel
  • Alda Hotel
  • CenterHotel Thingholt
  • Kvosin Hotel

Be sure to contact your Airbnb host about late arrivals if you
have an after-hours landing time.