Make The Most of The Reykjavik Nightlife

Reykjavik may be a small city, but Reykjavik's nightlife is far from being small! Here are the best options to go out and party the night away!

image of reykjavik nightlife and the hallsgrimskirkja all light up

blog authorBy Samuel Hogarth shield verificationVerified Expert

    Most of our articles tend to deal with nature and tourism. It is not surprising since it is one of the main attractions in Iceland. Today, we are going to change the subject a bit and focus on something that may surprise you. The nightlife of Reykjavik is world famous and has a large following throughout Europe. We know that Iceland is a cold country, but here we perfectly know how to set the night on fire! Do you want to come?

    Reykjavik Iceland nightlife

    I understand that when you travel to such a peculiar destination as Iceland, it can be difficult to go partying. After a long day of walking and sightseeing, going out to spend the night at bars may sound unappetizing. But that's because you really do not know what Reykjavik’s nightlife has to offer. Do not consider it as just partying, change the perspective, and think of it also as a way to get to know the Icelandic culture.

    Icelanders, contrary to what most people may think, are a very entertaining nation. The ritual of every weekend is the so-called runtur. Runtur means moving from bar to bar; this way, you can have a taste of them all! This partying has some sort of hint of decadence. It is somehow understandable. Not long ago, Iceland had beer and liquor banned; prohibitions were everywhere, so going wild was not trendy back in the old days. And when I say in the old days, I mean twenty years ago, as you can see, that wasn’t that far back in time. Icelanders got drunk with potato vodka spiced with caraway. That was the best they could do to survive six months of cold, harsh winter and darkness.

    Heading to a bar in downtown Reykjavik is a perfect way to sit and observe the Icelandic youth having how. It is a way of getting closer to the local culture, how they interact, how they communicate, their traditions when it comes to partying. Icelanders will not be afraid of foreigners joining them. Most of the Icelandic people have already been abroad at least once in their lifetime. They know other cultures and are eager to learn from them too. Don’t be shy and strike up a conversation! A Hallo! Will indeed make that task much easier.

    We know that Iceland is not a cheap country so whenever you feel like partying, do check for the happy hours. There is a great app called “Appy hour” that will tell you when and where you have promotions on beer and discounted prices across the city.

    Reykjavik Bars and Clubs

    Micro Bar

    Address: Vesturgata 2, 101 Reykjavík, Iceland

    Phone: +354 865 8389

    Fell like discovering the Reykjavik beer scene? Then this is the place to go. At Micro Bar, they are passionate about beer so you will find great craft beer and local options, a great pit stop for any beer fan on a Saturday night. Bartenders are knowledgeable, so if you have any question regarding beer, they will surely help you.

    group of friends enjoying the reykjavik nightlife out

    Lebowski Bar

    Address: Laugavegur 20b, 101 Reykjavík, Iceland

    Phone: +354 552 2300

    Lebowski is not a random name. If you are a fan of the movie produced and filmed by the Cohen brothers, then you find a place to pilgrim. The whole environment of this bar revolves around the movie. Don’t forget the house drink: White Russian cocktails. The great thing about this bar is that you can leave dress codes behind, you can have a shot or a fantastic American styled burger. Heaven on earth.

    Bryggjan brewery

    Address: Grandagardur 8, Reykjavik 101, Iceland

    Phone: +354 456 4040

    Located in the trendiest area of the Reykjavik’s nightlife scene and close to the harbor side, this craft bar offers great beverages as well as typical Icelandic food. The beer collection is exceptional, and they also have vegan options.

    Live music - Reykjavik nightlife

    After bar crawling and having a taste of what bars in Reykjavik are like, it is time to enjoy some good live music. And in this city, we got a couple of options you just cannot miss.

    band playing live music is a must in the reykjavik nightlife scene


    Address: Bergstaðastræti 1, 101 Reykjavík, Iceland

    Phone: +354 551 1588

    Anyone looking for live music and a great atmosphere should head to Kaffibarinn. This fantastic pub is frequented by locals, so it can be a great opportunity to make some Icelandic friends. It is right in Laugavegur, the main street of downtown Reykjavik and it has a London-like subway sign that anyone can easily recognize.

    The English Pub

    Address: Austurstræti 12, 101 Reykjavík, Iceland

    Phone: +354 578 0400

    Live music can be enjoyed not only on Friday or Saturday but during the week too! They also show major international sporting events as they have a huge screen. So if you are a football (soccer) lover, this is a great spot! The pub offers an open mic every Tuesday from 22:00 to 01:00 and their happy hour is from 16:00 to 19:00 daily.

    Now you now, head to the city center of Reykjavik and get ready to get a taste of what the Reykjavik Nightlife is like. You will not be disappointed at all!

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