Reykjavik Culture & history

Our most recommended Reykjavik Culture & history

Iceland: Northern Lights Bus Tour from Reykjavik

1. Iceland: Northern Lights Bus Tour from Reykjavik

Embark on an evening trip to see the Aurora Borealis. Hear fascinating facts about them from your guides, visit the Aurora Museum, and search to see the lights firsthand. Depart the bright lights of Reykjavík city center to see the dancing lights of the Aurora Borealis. Also known as the “Northern Lights,” it is one of the most spectacular shows during winter months. Head for wherever meteorologists have predicted the lights will be at their best. To get stunning views of the sky you will aim for areas with no artificial light. Hear explanations of how the Aurora Borealis is caused as a result of the gaseous particles in the earth’s atmosphere colliding with charged particles released from the sun’s atmosphere. Benefit from an itinerary that includes stops for you to go outside and take photographs. The locations visited differ from day to day, but you will head in the direction with the most chance of seeing Mother Nature at work. As the tour is weather-dependent, and sightings are not guaranteed, you are also invited to join another Northern Lights tour free of charge if the lights don’t appear.  Explore the Northern Lights in the Aurora Museum. The Northern Lights tour includes a complimentary ticket for a self-guided visit to the museum in Reykjavik, valid on the day you join the tour, from the time you receive confirmation that the tour is on.

Reykjavik: Snaefellsnes Peninsula and Kirkjufell Day Trip

2. Reykjavik: Snaefellsnes Peninsula and Kirkjufell Day Trip

Visit the Snaefellsnes Peninsula on this guided day trip from Reykjavik. See everything Iceland has to offer in one trip including Berserkjahraun lava fields, Snaefellsjokull volcano, and Kirkjufell mountain. Learn the local legends and see a seal colony. Begin your trip in the local town of Borgarnes. Grab some snacks before heading to the peninsula and try to catch a peak of the ice-capped Snaefellsjokull stratovolcano. Arrive at the Berserkjahraun lava field, and learn the origin of its name. Next, head to Kirkjufell, famously known for its role on the "Game of Thrones" television show, and for being the most-photographed mountain in the entire country. Visit the neighboring waterfall, and be swept away by the magic. Then climb the staircase to the top of Saxholl (available from February - November), a 100-meter-high volcanic crater. Reach the top and be rewarded by the stunning views of this 3000-year-old feat of nature. Learn local legends and the history of strong Icelandic ancestry. Venture into the uninhabited settlement of Djupalonssandur, and test your strength as local men used to on the beach. Head to the fishing village of Arnarstapi and witness the beautifully eroded cliffs and the sculpture of Barour Snaefellsas. Finally, discover a deeper understanding of Icelandic history at Budakirkja, or the "Black Church." View historical artifacts from the 19th century. Continue to the enchanting golden-colored beach of Ytri-Tunga. Witness a huge seal colony, laying on the rocks and enjoying the sun.

From Reykjavik: Whale Watching Tour by RIB Boat

3. From Reykjavik: Whale Watching Tour by RIB Boat

Climb aboard a rigid inflatable boat (RIB) equipped with special shock suspension seating for a smoother ride. Look for whales and other marine life in the wild. Travel aboard the 12-meter long boat to get extra close to whales in a way that is safe for passengers and the animals. Benefit from warm flotation suits, life vests, gloves and goggles to keep you cozy and safe, and avail of the services of an experienced guide who will provide information about the animals and bay in English.  Stop by the island of Akurey to look for adorable puffins during the summer. See their nests along the coast during their breeding season. Head out to the bay on a fast and thrilling ride with the wind in your hair. Reach a comfortable cruising speed of 32 knots and get plenty of time in the feeding grounds. Then, take a scenic route back along the coast of Reykjavik. After your tour, you can visit the Whales of Iceland Museum, located in the Grandi harbor district of Reykjavik. Here, you can discover more about the various whale species of the Atlantic, with exhibits on whale biology, migration, and conservation.

Reykjavik: Northern Lights Photo Tour & Aurora Center Ticket

4. Reykjavik: Northern Lights Photo Tour & Aurora Center Ticket

Search for Northern Lights in the most picturesque locations around Reykjavik. Explore the Aurora Centre for an in-depth introduction to this unique phenomenon and learn how to best capture the lights with your camera from expertly trained guides. Begin the tour with an exclusive visit to the Aurora Center Reykjavik to receive a taste of what is to come later in the evening. With the help of interactive and informative displays, be introduced by your guides to the science, mythology, and history behind the lights.  Preset your cameras for the journey ahead and continue onward to the most exclusive locations for perfect Northern Lights photographs. The team will work hard during the day to find the perfect sites according to the weather data for that evening.  Through the tour, receive help and guidance when photographing the Northern Lights to make sure you won't miss a single moment to best capture the aurora lights. Additionally, your guide will also take pictures to share with the group.  Keep warm with hot chocolate and enjoy the stunning winter backdrop of the remarkable places along the trip during this unforgettable photography experience.  Benefit from a small group tour, with a maximum of 18 passengers, ensuring that you get an intimate experience and that your guide will have enough time to assist everyone.

From Reykjavik: Full-Day Horse Riding & Golden Circle Tour

5. From Reykjavik: Full-Day Horse Riding & Golden Circle Tour

This tour is a combination of the Viking Horse Riding Tour and Golden Circle Express Tour, and is perfect for visitors to Iceland who don’t have a lot of time to spare but want to make the most of a day. In the morning you’ll enjoy a ride on an Icelandic horse through the idyllic landscape of Laxnes, located just out of Reykjavik city. The Icelandic horse is a breed that has remained virtually unchanged since the Vikings brought it to Iceland in the 9th century. The riding tour is suitable for all ages and experience levels, from beginner to expert. After your morning ride and a short break you’ll head out on the afternoon portion of the tour, to Þingvellir National Park. Admire its remarkable geological features and see Alþingi, the Icelandic Parliament. Iceland’s Parliament is the oldest still-functioning parliament in the world, and was founded on this site in 930 A.D. Visit the impressive Gullfoss glacial waterfall, the geothermal area around Geysir, and Strokkur with its spouting geysers. You’ll pass through fertile agricultural areas before heading back to Reykjavik over Hellisheiði mountain heath.

Reykjavik: Whales of Iceland Museum Entrance Ticket

6. Reykjavik: Whales of Iceland Museum Entrance Ticket

Visit the largest museum of its kind in Europe at the Whales of Iceland, and see life-size models of 23 types of whales spotted in the waters around Iceland. Spend a few hours gaining a new perspective and greater appreciation for these majestic animals. Take a leisurely 20-minute walk (or a short drive) from the heart of Reykjavík to the harbor. Upon arrival at the Whales of Iceland Museum, play with interactive displays and read detailed information about 23 species of aquatic mammals. Marvel at the leviathan of the sea at a display of a blue whale that stretches nearly the length of a basketball court. Learn more about the narwhal, the “Unicorn of the Sea” and see the “horn” or “tusk” which is actually an elongated tooth. Stroll among the displays of beluga, humpback, minke, and killer whales.  Absorb in-depth information about the marine mammals around Iceland with an audio guide. Visit the Fin Whale Room to learn more about the threats that whales face and what we can do to resolve them. Be sure to watch a screening of the film Sonic Sea, shown daily at 10:30 AM, 12:15 PM, 2:00 PM, and 3:45 PM. All ticket holders are welcome to join the daily guided tours in English at 11:00 AM and 3:00 PM. On your way out, stop by the Whale Cafe for a drink and a snack beneath the whales.

Reykjavik: Northern Lights Luxury Yacht Cruise

7. Reykjavik: Northern Lights Luxury Yacht Cruise

Sail along the beautiful coastline of Iceland from Reykjavik Old Harbor and then head out to Faxaflói Bay to experience the city lights from a different perspective. Step aboard a luxury yacht for a once-in-a-lifetime experience. The main objective of your tour is to get away from the lights to get a glimpse of the Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis) in the darkness of the ocean! Climate conditions permitting, see the natural phenomenon caused when particles from the sun hit the earth’s atmosphere to create a stunning choreography of lights in the sky. Get your cameras ready for some spectacular photo opportunities - the vessel is very stable, making it very convenient when taking photos. Your experienced crew will keep an eye out for Aurora Borealis activity to find the best route to take. Sit back and enjoy the scenery from the vast darkness behind the small islands of Faxaflói Bay, including the island of Viðey where Yoko Ono's Imagine Peace Tower lights up the night sky from October 9 to December 8 (and on a few other days of the year). See the Harpa Concert Hall and Conference Center with its distinctive colored glass façade inspired by the basalt landscape from a different angle. Marvel at The Sun Voyager ode to the sun statue by Jón Gunnar Árnason and the famous house of Höfði where an agreement was signed in 1986 to end the Cold War.   Escape the crowds and benefit from a comfortable yacht cruise with fewer passengers, as group sizes are limited to enhance customer satisfaction and create a more intimate experience. If it gets chilly, wrap up in the warm blankets provide and enjoy hot drinks or refreshments that can be bought from the bar while waiting for the Northern Lights to appear.

Reykjavik: Lava Cave, Hot Springs, and Waterfalls Tour

8. Reykjavik: Lava Cave, Hot Springs, and Waterfalls Tour

After being picked up from your accommodation, you will travel west to the historic area of Borgarfjörður, a region that can be regarded as the setting for most of the Icelandic sagas. First, visit the charming Glanni Waterfall and Deildartunguhver Geothermal Area. Afterward, you will see the great Hraunfossar, a series of waterfalls spread at a distance of around 900 meters. The waters flow out of the Hallmundarhraun, a lava field that was formed around 1,000 years ago during a massive eruption of a volcano lying under a Langjökull glacier. Rivulets streaming from the lava field create one of the most breath-taking views in Iceland, and just a few meters away, you will find another interesting waterfall.  The highlight of the tour is a visit to a colorful Vidgelmir lava cave. Just shy of 1,600 meters in length, the cave features amazing colors and lava formations that lurk in the depths of the earth. The area surrounding the entrance to the cave will allow you to realize just how powerful eruptions of volcanoes can be. Lastly, visit the Reykholt historic site where you can learn about the history of Iceland and see Snorralaug, small hot spring used by local people since the 12th century. This place was first mentioned in medieval writings OF Snorri Sturluson, the famous Icelandic poet, and politician who used to bathe there.

Reykjavik: Whale Watching Tour, Whales of Iceland Exhibition

9. Reykjavik: Whale Watching Tour, Whales of Iceland Exhibition

Board your boat in Reykjavík's Old Harbor and sail to Faxaflói Bay. Faxaflói has a rich variety of wildlife, but you'll most commonly spot minke whales, white-beaked dolphins, harbor porpoises and humpback whales. Ask your knowledgeable guide any questions you have throughout the tour and they'll be happy to answer.  You'll also visit the Whales of Iceland Exhibition. The exhibit features 23 life-size models of all the whale species found in Icelandic waters. Immerse yourself in the exhibit with virtual reality headsets, information stands, audio guides and videos. After the exhibition, grab a coffee and pastry at the café and relax in the exhibit's dreamy ambiance. Whales of Iceland offers two live-guided tours every day, available at 10:30 AM and 1:30 PM. This is free for all ticket holders. Note: You can choose the order in which you do these two activities.

Reykjavik: Midnight Sun Whale Watching Tour

10. Reykjavik: Midnight Sun Whale Watching Tour

Whales are the most mysterious of creatures, and some of the best whale watching in the world is just off the coast of Iceland’s capital, where the ocean currents create excellent viewing conditions. Climb aboard a whale watching boat operated by the only environmentally certified whale watching company in Iceland, and explore the southern part of Faxafloi Bay in the Midnight sun of the summer months. On the 3.5-hour tour you will get up-close to whales such as playful minke, as well as see abundant sea birds, dolphin and harbor porpoise. Whales are seen on more than 95% of summer tours, often surfacing within a few meters from the boats. To ensure that the animals are not disturbed, boats sail at a constant speed towards the whales' habitat. This is part of a sustainability policy, trying to minimize oil use and pollution. Guides have all gone through an extensive training program, based on exclusively developed guiding principles. They will provide valuable information about the wildlife and scenery in an entertaining way. And as a successful whale watching tour is a team effort, the crew work closely with passengers to spot the whales, helping you feel an important part of the experience.

  • Entry tickets
  • Guided tours
  • Private tours
  • Water activities
  • Adventures
23 activities found
Sort by:
Page 1 of 2

Frequently asked questions about Reykjavik

What top attractions are a must-see in Reykjavik?

What are the best day trips and excursions from Reykjavik?

The best day trips and excursions from Reykjavik are:

Reynisfjara Beach

Other Sightseeing Options in Reykjavik

Want to discover all there is to do in Reykjavik? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Reykjavik

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 4,528 reviews

The tour was one of the most memorable experiences of our lives. We had been able to see the beauty of the Aurora Borealis after a few hours of waiting. On this tour, you need to be dressed warmly as it gets super cold at night, and need to be patient as you cannot instantly see the Borealis. Luckily, our tour guide Daniel (the Aurora Whisperer) is very experienced and informative so we learned a lot while waiting for the Aurora Borealis to appear. This tour is a must when you are in Iceland.

What an amazing experience from start to finish! We were very lucky to see the northern lights! Everything about the trip was superb - great boat with lots of blankets, hot and cold drinks and chocolate available to buy and really knowledgeable hosts.

Clean,cosy jacht ,nice staff.We saw the Northen light,unforgivable experience.

Amazing sights that make you feel you walk in the tales of old

comfortable transport very knowledgeable guided (Daniel)