As you can imagine I’ve met a whole lot of Reykjavík visitors this summer. One of the things that has sort of surprised me is how few of my guests know about the Reykjavík City Card and even fewer of them have thought about buying it. It surprises me because it’s such a great deal and for anyone who’s going to stay in Reykjavík for more than a day it should really be part of the standard Reykjavík survival kit. If you don’t believe me, here are five reasons for why you should consider buying the Reykjavík City Card (formerly known as the Reykjavík Welcome Card).
1) The museums
The Reykjavík City Card gives you access to a whole bunch of museums that together give you a great insight into Iceland’s history, the art scene and the lives of the people that lived here back in the day. Among my favorites at the Settlement Exhibition (Reykjavík 871 +/-2), the National Museum and Árbæjarsafn. Basically by visiting two museums the 24 hour card has paid itself up.
The Reykjavík City card also gives you access to the Peting Zoo and family park in Laugardalur.
2) The swimming pools
One of the best things about Reykjavík are the swimming pools all over the city. If you want to know what’s going on in Icelandic society you only have to visit the hotpots in the pools and listen in on people’s conversations. Hot pots to Icelandic people are like pubs to the English. It’s where it’s at!
The Reykjavík City Card gives you access to all the swimming pools in the city but a single entrance fee for an adult in 2014 is 600 ISK. You can also visit the pools as often as you want while the card is valid.
3) The buses
Although Reykjavík is a walkable city there are certain things you might want to check out that are out of the city center like Laugardalslaug swimming pool and Árbær city museum. The Reykjavík City card gives you unlimited access to the Reykjavík City Buses while the card is valid. A single fare for an adult in 2014 is 350 ISK
4) The discounts
The Reykjavík City Card doesn’t just give you access to all of these places and things mentioned above – it also gives you discount of all kinds of tours, restaurants and shops around the city. A full list of discounts can be found on Visit Reykjavík’s website.
5) The convenience
I think one of the biggest draws of buying the Reykjavík City Card is the convenience factor. With the card you don’t have to scramble to find the right change or end up paying too much for the buses because they don’t give change. You also don’t have to take up your wallet and risk high credit card charges in every place you visit or worry about finding a bank to exchange your cash. Instead you just pay once and then go off and explore.