It is quite popular for tourists to visit Iceland during the summers to explore all the beautiful nature and experience the midnight sun. However, Icelandic winter has a charm of its own. Most Icelanders travel abroad during the summers leaving the city of Reykjavík behind with tons of tourists. In the winter all Icelanders are back to school and work and therefore the winter is a perfect time to experience Icelandic culture to its fullest. Here is a list of things Icelanders love to do in winter and which you should try as well:
1. Go get ice cream. There is never a bad time in Iceland to get Iceland. Even though it’s cold, windy and raining! The trending ice creams shops are “Valdísís” and “Vesturbæjarís”. The latter one is quite special because there you can get ice cream made out of milk instead of cream. It’s healthier!
2. Go to the blue lagoon. Because it’s outside the city there are fewer city lights and therefore a higher chance you’ll see a clear starry sky while soaking in the naturally hot water. If it’s cold and clear enough you might even be so lucky as to see the northern lights.
3. Go to the movies. Icelanders are movie freaks. They are always up to date with the newest movie releases and they are specialists when it comes to actors and actresses’ names and role history. Most Icelanders will go to the movies a couple of time a month at least. The movies are big and have great sound quality.
4. Blow some fireworks. If you’re there around the end of December or beginning of January. New Years eve in Iceland is unlike any other experience with the sky over all Reykjavík lit up in fireworks.
5. Try the local coffee shops on Laugarvegur, the main shopping street. Icelanders have high standards when it comes to coffee making and their tea is as a matter of fact extremely high in quality! Some shops have loads of books and magazine you can read just to make your coffee experience a bit more cozy.
6. Go strolling downtown during the evening. Many bars and cafes will have live music performances from talented artisits. Icelanders see Björk downtown quite often and you might too!
7. Go to Harpa to see a symphony concert! The Icelandic symphony has often held concerts where they play music from famous movies. Themes thay have had in the past include “Star Wars” and “The Lord of the Rings”.
8. Go downtown to play the classic arcade games!
9. Go skiing or snowboarding in the “Blue Mountains” (Bláfjöll).
10. If you’re there in the beginning of November make sure to go to the Icelandic Airwaves. Icelandic Airwaves is a platform for both popular and aspiring music bands and artists to play their music in public. Live music can be heard in multiple places in the heart of Reykjavík. You need tickets to go on venue but those who can’t afford tickets can still listen to loads of wonderful music, even famous artists, play off venue.