Reykjavik is Iceland´s capital and biggest city and also the most northern capital in the world. Legend has it that the first permanent settler Ingólfur Árnason settled down here. His decision to settle here is based on an old viking tradition which is to cast your seat pillar into the ocean and settle down where they float ashore. The name loosely translated smokey bay which is probably to the geothermal hot springs in the area.
Reykjavik has a population of about 125 000 and is located in the Faxa Bay. Most travellers start ( and end) their journey here after arriving at Keflavik international airport which is about 45 Minutes away. Reykjavik also has an airport which is mainly used for domestic flights to other regions of Iceland and also flights to Greenland. Reykjavik is a popular haven for those looking to get an insight into the Icelandic music scene. Here you do not only find a lot of bars with life music. Reykjavik also hosts some very popular music festivals such as Iceland Airwaves.
The most famous part is the 101 district, describing the centre with the zip code 101. This part of Reykjavik and it´s roaring nightlife became famous though Hallgrimur Helgasons novel "101 Reykjavik". The novel and movie of the same name follow Hlynur, a young man, through his wild life of parties and drinking in the centre of Reykjavik. Especially the bar Kaffibarinn was a central place in both the novel and movie of the same title. In 101 Reykjavik you will also find the shopping streets Laugavegur and Skólavörðustígur. The latter leading from Laugavegur all the way up to Hallgrimskirkja church, one of Reykjavik s major landmarks. From the top of the church you get a great view over the city.
If you walk down Skólavörðustígur and Laugavegur you reach the centre with the parliament located at Austurvöllur square. On sunny days it is crowded with people sitting outside the nearby cafes having a cup of coffee or a cold beer. Only a road away you will find city hall which is located by Tjörnin lake. In the basement of city hall you can admire a 3 D map of Iceland with all it´s elevations.
Nearby you will also find the old harbour from where you can take of for a whale watching tour or simply look at the ships arriving and leaving. Next to the harbour you find Harpa the new concert hall of Reykjavik which was opened in 2011. It usually is the home of the Icelandic symphonic orchestra but also serves as venue for multiple events such as trading shoes, festivals and other celebrations.