Reykjavik Scenes

A mix of places in Reykjavik July 13-22, 2021. We stayed at Castle House Luxury apartments by Tjornin (the city pond). There are lovely private gardens in Reykjavik. The boat being painted in the shipyard was almost finished in a week. Pity we didn’t get time to climb up the Perlan dome to see the view. We were running around looking for where we had parked the car instead of sightseeing on the last evening.

Here is Marc’s 8 best things to see in Reykjavik:

  1. To call Reykjavik a city is a bit of an exaggeration. With a population of barely 123,000 I would call it a large town. Apart from the Hallgrimskirkja (the cathedral in the center of town) the tallest buildings are new glass apartment blocks along the shore side of town. Reykjavik has the appeal of a small town. The town center hasn’t been developed like more populous cities with their steel and glass monoliths. Reykjavik still has many one family houses built around the end of nineteenth and early twentieth century. Most have exterior walls of corrugated iron and are painted in a riot of colors. Some are lucky enough to have enough space on their lots for gardens which they take full advantage of by planting as many flowers plants and shrubs as can fit.
  2. All the Icelanders we met were friendly. Just about everyone speaks fluent English. Perhaps better than I from N.Y.C. There are also many British and American ex pats working there.
    On our last day there we parked on a street many blocks behind the cathedral only to forget where it was later that evening. Sherry was beside herself for her laptop and binoculars were in the car. After wandering the streets for hours, we went to a police station for help, thinking that it might have been towed or worse stolen. Then two young policewomen drove us around the area for over an hour but with no results. They said they would keep an eye out for it that night. We returned to our rooms in a most depressed state. At 5 A.M. the front door buzzed and there were the two blond policewomen with the news that they had found the car and forth with they drove us to it. With an hour to spare before leaving for the airport. We wrote a a glowing review and thanks. I hope their captain sees it.
  3. Iceland has some of the best restaurants on any side of the Atlantic. Their lamb is internationally renowned. It is the sweetest best tasting lamb on Earth. There are 800.000 sheep in Iceland and only about 323.000 Icelanders. The sheep roam freely over the island feeding on the lush green fields of grass that grow up the sides of the extinct volcanos. In Iceland lamb is inexpensive compared to here. If one is going to Iceland for a trip of a lifetime, I recommend dining at the better restaurants for the exceptional cuisine. Guide to Iceland booked us excellent rooms and dinners at some of the best restaurants. Two of the finest in Reykjavik are Kopar at the harbor and the Sjavargrillio seafood grill restaurant.
  4. A walk along the shore drive at Saltjarnes is a must for birdwatchers. There is a parking area near the light house. There are fields full of nesting Terns and other birds.
  5. a short boat ride to Videy island less than a mile offshore. In the 18th c. this was the home of an early governor of Reykjavik. The island is covered with deep grass, cliffs of basalt columns, and thousands of birds. The Governor’s mansion has been turned into a part museum and part restaurant where they offer of course lamb on the menu. By then we were trying to save on lunches so did not imbibe. All along our drive we usually had lunch out the back of our S.U.V.
  6. Then there is the closest thing to a skyscraper in Reykjavik, the Hallgrimskirkja. The façade of this Lutheran church mimics the great basalt columns that can be seen in many places along the shores of this isle. In keeping with the tenants of Lutheranism the interior is stark compared to other churches you may have seen before. But this is one of the beauties of this great interior space. After entering turn to face the entry and see above you the pipes of one of the most magnificent organs which ascends several stories in height. Forget the elevator up the tower for a view of the town, what for?
  7. For me it is the bookstores. Many shops don’t open until 10 am and close early. It is said that at least a third of the populous are writers and poets. Of course, you can also find the Sagas and books about them. Sherry bought an expensive book on the birds of Iceland. We saved the receipts to get a tax refund at the airport.
  8. The Handknitting Association of Iceland shop where they sell apparel hand knit by Icelanders using fine Icelandic wool. The quality of their work is exceptional and is priced accordingly. There are many other shops selling the popular Icelandic sweaters, but none can claim to be “handmade”. There are also thrift shops where one can find sweaters in almost new condition at a fraction of their original cost.

23 thoughts on “Reykjavik Scenes

  1. 100 Country Trek 2021-08-29 / 9:41 pm

    Brings back memories of our time there.I would love to visit Videy island ..

    Like

  2. Barbara Bryan 2021-08-28 / 10:06 am

    Your photos make Reykjavik look so attractive and thanks to Marc for the entertaining and informative “8 Best Things”.

    Like

    • Sherry Felix 2021-08-28 / 1:06 pm

      Glad you enjoyed it. I’ll pass on the compliment to Marc. 🙂

      Like

  3. Dan Antion 2021-08-27 / 7:24 pm

    I’m glad you got inside to get a picture of the organ. It’s wonderful. I’m also glad the police helped you find your car. Your photos from throughout the trip have been so interesting to see.

    Like

    • Sherry Felix 2021-08-28 / 5:02 am

      Thanks Dan. I am very thankful. They don’t use tags in cars there for tracking in Iceland for privacy reasons. My VW here has one and I have an app, CarNet, that can locate my car.
      It has been fun reliving the trip.

      Liked by 1 person

        • Sherry Felix 2021-08-28 / 1:18 pm

          According to their police, Icelanders don’t want to be tracked, so no vehicles have tracking devices. In this country rental cars can be tracked, but not there. That is why it took so long to find the stupid car.

          Liked by 1 person

          • Barbara Bryan 2021-08-28 / 3:03 pm

            That is so funny / ironic about tracking your car!

            Liked by 1 person

            • Sherry Felix 2021-08-29 / 8:06 am

              All newer cars with GPS in the US can be tracked. That is why I assumed the police in Iceland would be able to find the car fast. I can locate my car right now. I must be missing something. I don’t see the humor.

              Like

  4. derrickjknight 2021-08-27 / 11:30 am

    Splendid photographs, and good news about the car – I trust the contents were intact

    Like

    • Sherry Felix 2021-08-27 / 12:11 pm

      Everything was there. Including the mud on our boots. The policewomen told us that there is virtually no crime in Reykjavik. Coming form NYC that is something I had trouble believing. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  5. picpholio 2021-08-27 / 7:51 am

    Thanks for these nice impressions, i love the colorful houses.

    Like

  6. Eunice 2021-08-27 / 6:04 am

    There’s so much to like in this post. I love the blue house and the red and green shop – it looks like the building next door to it is covered in street art, I’d love to see that. I like the grey and blue house too. The church organ looks fabulous – I love church organs so just had to Google this one, seems it has 5,275 pipes and is 49ft tall. I would love to see it. I’m glad you finally found your car, it sounds like the two young police women were extremely helpful 🙂

    Like

    • Sherry Felix 2021-08-27 / 10:46 am

      Thanks Eunice. Glad you looked up the organ. It is magnificent. I wish I could have given those two policewomen a real hug. I gave them a virtual one.

      Like

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