Arrival in… Reykjavik!

Written by Sam Van den Haute aka CheckOutSam

The great people from the hostel in Tromsø all left the night before. I was the last person from the 'original crew' and left this morning at around 5 AM. I had to take the Flybussen to the airport to catch my 06:30 flight to Reykjavík. These will be the final days of my Scandinavian trip.

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Hi, I'm Sam, the blogger behind CheckOutSam!

Sam Van den Haute has been a full-time world traveler for ten years and has therefore gained a lot of travel and lifestyle inspiration on all continents. Do you still have questions after reading this blog? Ask them in the comments section or send me a message at [email protected] and I'll be happy to help you wherever I can!

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Sun Voyager langs de kade van Reykjavik.

Sun Voyager at the quay of Reykjavik.

I don’t like to have little time when going to the airport and already had several scenarios playing through my head about what could possible go wrong. Of course the Flybussen picked me, and plenty of others, up right on time. And with an hour I had enough time to board my flight to Oslo.

The second flight, to Reykjavík, was as successful and on 1 PM local time, I landed in Iceland. From above you can see why this country is called Iceland… Heaps of snow, ice and mountains.

From the very modern airport, I took the grayline bus that should’ve dropped me off at my hotel. We left in a big bus and were brought to a central location where little busses would take us to the right hotel.

Would, exactly. I was the last passenger on the bus when the driver said that he was gonna drop me off here, because he couldn’t enter that particular road.

I look in the distance and see a couple of road signs, but still I see a couple of cars driving through the street. The driver should’ve just done a little detour to get there. Ughh…

Well, okay then. Five minutes walking isn’t that big of a deal.

With my always helping smartphone, I switch on my 3G internet and search for the exact address of my hotel in Reykjavík.
Two kilometers away.

What? That must be a mistake… I do it again, but get the exact same answer: Two kilometers walking.

Loaded with 15 kilogram on my back and 10 kg in the backpack that I cary on my stomach, I follow -incredibly irritated- the directions of Google Maps.

I paid extra money to be brought to my hotel and then you get this… Grayline is supposed to be a tour operator in Iceland, but if they can’t even find the right hotels I seriously doubt if they can do that with their trips and tours…

Het opera gebouw van Reykjavík.

The opera building in Reykjavík.

One thing is certain; to get back to the airport, I will take another company.

About half an hour later, with a broken back, I arrive at the hotel where I can rest a little.
I noticed immediately that there’s a lot more light in Reykjavík in comparison to Norway, Sweden and Even Denmark. In the meantime it’s 3 PM and there still is plenty of daylight.

I decide to visit some of Reykjavík’s most famous monuments. There aren’t many, but they are located quite far from each other.

First, I walk to the harbour. The Sun Voyager is a modern, metal construction that resembles a boat. Not very special, but with the amazing mountains in the background it becomes a lot more exciting.
Just a couple hundred meters to the left, you can find the íslenska óperan, or the Opera House of Reykjavík. Here all sorts of shows and spectacles are showed to the public. Quite special with all the glass in it.

In the meantime it already gets darker in Reykjavík again. This gives a nice glow over the litty city. I’m back in the center and just walk around a little.
Left of me, I see a beautiful building with a statue in the garden. I think it must be the town hall. Beautiful!

Now, finally I can see the famous church, and probably most famous building of Reykjavík, towering above Iceland.

The grey church is completely inspired on the basalt fields just outside Reykjavík. When you come closer, you will definitely be amazed by the giant and especially beautiful building. Sober, but very special.

The interior is pure white and is very modern. In the meantime it’s already 5 PM and outside it’s dark again. The tower where you get an excellent view over Reykjavík is closed. For this, I definitely need to come back though!

I’m quite hungry from the hectic day and decide to buy some food. Tonight, I’ll buy a cheap heatable lasagne and as my dessert I will eat some sour candy.

In the course of the evening, I get an email from Grayline Iceland where the business owner excuses himself for what happened. To compensate, he offers me a free return ticket from the right hotel to the airport this time…

Well… Glad I sent a complaint!

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