Yes, odds are that you will need a rainy day guide for Reykjavík. Icelandic weather is very unpredictable and a full day or more of heavy rain and wind is very common. Therefore it is likely that you will run into some difficult weather conditions that don’t allow a drive to the country side, or where visibility will simply too bad for it to make any sense to try. These days can be better spend in Reykjavík. But what to do and where to go?
Check out this slightly retro cinema in downtown Reykjavík. The best part about Bío Paradís is that they regularly show Icelandic movies. This gives you a chance to get cultural with a side of popcorn and soda. Perfect for a rainy day!
My best recommendation for people visiting Iceland is always to get out of the city and experience Icelandic nature. However, it is just too bad when the weather won’t allow it. Luckily you can still get a sense of the breathtaking Icelandic landscapes by visiting FlyOver Iceland, which is a simulated helicopter ride through the country’s amazing nature. A perfect way to enjoy some Icelandic sceneries even on a brutally rainy day.
Perlan is one of the best museums in town. The place itself is an architural gem with a dome of glass on the top floor, where you can get a nice meal or just hang out for a cup of coffee.
The focus of Perlan is largely on Icelandic nature although there is also a little bit about the Icelandic settlers in there. The best thing about Perlan is that the exhibits are very interactional. Also, the place has an artificial ice cave in the basement. So if you tour to the Katla ice cave got cancelled this is a pretty decent substitute.
Interested in more about Perlan? Check out this article.
Whales of Iceland
Whale watching trip got cancelled? Check out the Whales of Iceland museum. Of course it is far from the same as seeing real live whales in their natural habitat. However, this museum does a good job at providing an educational experience through an auto-guided tour that tells you about the museum’s real-size models of various species.
Hot swim or hot yoga
Eventhough the weather is bad and cold the Icelandic swimmingpools are alway hot and pleasant. If it is particularly windy Sundhöllin in the city centre is a good recommendation as the pools at this place is fairly sheltered.
A hot yoga class is also a great way of getting warm and getting your blood flowing. Sólir in Grandi is a great local place with lovely surroundings.
The Secret Cellar
Laugh it up at one of Reykjavík’s comedy clubs; The Secret Cellar. The shows are in English and consist of several smaller acts from various comedians. It is a small, casual place and all acts are in English. Entrance to The Secret Cellar is free just be sure to buy some drinks to support the place.
There is always something musical going on in Reykjavík! After dinner you should definitely go out for a drink and some music. Check out places like Kex Hostel, Húrra, IDNO and Harpa and see if there is something to your liking going on. It can be anything from classical or jazz to hip hop or indie. You never know what this city has in store for you!
What is “bad weather” in Iceland?
A bit of a disclaimer: Bad weather in Iceland is rarely what you perceive as bad weather in your country.
Just because it rains does absolutely not mean that you should just give up on going to the countryside and see some gorgeous Icelandic nature. Extremely often the weather clears up when you are on the road.
Therefore, unless Icelandic weather reports specifically warn you to go for a drive or hike in the region that you are in it is always recommendable to put on your waterproof clothes and get you there.