Einar Jónsson museum in Reykjavík

10 great tips for Photography in Reykjavik and Nearby

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Want some tips about great shooting spots in Reykjavík city? If you prefer to discover and explore nature within the city there are plenty of interesting places to see and shoot photos.

1. Sólfarið or the Sun Voyager

Solfarið or sun-voyager in Reykjavík

You probably wont miss this sculpture located on the seaside at Sæbraut street not so far away from Harpa concert hall. The sun Voyager is a dreamboat or an ode to the sun. This sculpture is extremely picturesque and makes a good foreground with the mt. Esjan or the cityscape in the background. Cool for sunrise and sunset shots too. 

2. Harpa Concert Hall

Harpan concert hall in Reykjavík

Harpan is a concert and conference hall located by the harbour in centre of Reykjavík. It's designed by the Danish firm Henning Larsen Architects in co-operation with Danish-Icelandic artist Ólafur Elíasson. The building is mostly made of glass panels in different colours. You can go inside free of charge and in there you have many cool shooting spots as well as from the outside.

3. Tjörnin City Pond

the pond in Reykjavík

Tjörnin pond which is centrally located down town Reykjavík is beautifully framed with beautiful buildings and colourful houses as well as Reykjavík City Hall. It’s a home of countless ducks, swans and geese that stay there the whole season. Whether it's winter or summer it always makes a great frame for photography. 

4. Hallgrímskirkja Church

Hallgrímskirkja church in Reykjavík

This spectacular architecture stands powerfully at top of Skólavörðustígur street. Its tower rises 73m. You can take the elevator up if you are not afraid of heights. Up there you have incredible view over the city in all directions that is awesome cool to photograph. Tilt shift photography is for example something that is interesting from that point of view. Hallgrímskirkja is a Lutheran church and was designed to mirror the basalt lava flows of Icelandic landscape.

5. Grótta Lighthouse

Grótta lighthouse in Seltarnarnes

Grótta is located at Seltjarnarnes, a neighbouring town of Reykjavík. At high tide it turns into an island but during low tide one can reach Grótta on foot and stay there aprox 6 hours before its flooded again. Grótta is a nature reserve because of the rich birdlife and also a popular outdoor area. The lighthouse with its little black beach makes a beautiful frame especially during sunset. 

This spot is also great when northern lights are active due to little light pollution. Sometimes you may even see surfers having fun in the wild waves crashing there not so far away.

6. Perlan or the Pearl

Perlan or the pearl in Reykjavík

Perlan is a glass building situated on the hill Öskjuhlíð where there was hot water storage tanks before. In 1991 the tanks were updated and a hemispherical structure placed on top. Perlan serves as a restaurant and a café but also there is a Saga museum in there. I recommend stepping out to the balcony because from there you have a great view and perspective over the city and Mt. Esjan as well. 

7. Landakotskirkja Church

Landakotskirkja church in Reykjavík

Landakotskirkja church is a catholic church in Reykjavík located in the western part of Reykjavík. The spectacular building is a distinct landmark in Reykjavík.

8. Reykjavik Old Harbour

the harbour Reykjavík

Reykjavík harbour is also called the old harbour of Reykjavík. This area is filled with colourful houses, shops, restaurants and renovated fishing sheds. In this area you can get guided tours of all sorts both by bus as well as whale and bird watching tours. In this area you will certainly find something to photograph such as street life, boats and houses.

9. Árbæjarsafn Open-Air Folk Museum

Árbæjarsafn museum Reykjavík

In Árbæjarsafn museum there are more than 20 buildings which form a little village. The museum gives you a sense of the architecture and lifestyle from the past. Sometimes they even have domestic animals as horses for example. This museum is open during summer time and sometimes also in December before Christmas. This open air museum is a great place and gives one plenty of good opportunities to photograph and explore.

10. Einar Jónsson Sculpture Garden

Einar Jónsson museum in Reykjavík

The sculpture garden of Einar Jónsson is located very close to the Hallgrímskirkja church at Skólavörðuholt. You can enter the sculpture garden free of charge but if you want to explore the museum there is a small entrance fee about $5.

This place is a hidden treasure in Reykjavík and worth the visit. The sculptures along with the beautiful museum and Hallgrímskirkja church tower in the back makes a great view. Einar Jónsson is Iceland's first recognised sculptor and he offered all of his work as a gift to the Icelandic people on the condition that a museum would be built to house them. 

Hope my tips about places to shoot and explore in Reykjavík was helpful.  If you like to comment on this or if you have an experience about those places you want to share feel free.