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Campervan hire Reykjavik

Young and modern yet also ethereal and mysterious, Reykjavik is a city truly deserving of the title ‘winter wonderland’.

 

Reykjavik is the world’s most northerly capital, a city of 200,000 inhabitants in a country of only 300,000 people. But its size and remote location only serve to make it more remarkable and an absolutely perfect starting point for a campervan road trip. Astounding natural wonders, surreal cutting-edge architecture, a buzzing art and music scene: the city appeals to city-lovers and nature enthusiasts alike. With an RV rental or campervan hire in Reykjavik, you’ll discover snow-capped mountains, icy seas, and crisp Arctic air. Here, the ultramodern meets the fantastical and the futuristic meets the mythical in a city situated on a dragon-shaped peninsula whose skies are lit up by magical natural light displays — the Aurora Borealis. Endless winter nights are matched by summer’s midnight sun. Ancient Icelandic legends and epic sagas are welcomed into the modern day in the form of striking sculptures. Avant-garde creativity sits alongside a community-minded warmth and friendliness. It may be a bit chilly but the Icelandic low temperatures are a small price to pay for such a range of natural and cultural treasures. Plus, it’s the only capital in the world that is home to a major puffin breeding colony. So choose a campervan hire in Reykjavik and experience paradise, Nordic-style.

 

Practical Information

Depot + Transfer

If you want to hire a campervan for an adventurous road trip in Iceland, we’re right there for you. We’ll meet you at Keflavik Airport (KEF) — only 50 kms away from the Icelandic capital — where you can pick up and drop off your Reykjavik campervan hire – free of charge in regular hours, of course!

Parking in the city

You can park your RV rental in Reykjavik on the street in one of the city’s four parking zones, indicated by different colours, ranging from Zone 1 (red and pink), which costs 275 ISK (€2.25) per hour, to Zone 4 (orange), which costs 150 ISK (€1.25) per hour. There are also several parking lots in Reykjavik that fit campervans and motorhomes, with prices starting around 80 ISK (€0.65) for the first hour and then 50 ISK (€0.41) after that.

Camping grounds nearby

Campsites in and around Reykjavik include Eco Campsite, just 3 km from the city centre, open year round, and with bike rentals also available. Hafnarfjördur Camping is located in the lava park Vídistaðatún and is only a 10-minute drive from downtown Reykjavík. There’s also Mosskogar camping site, around 25 minutes from the city centre by car. All are great places to spend the night in your campervan hire in Reykjavik.

 

About Reykjavik

Legend claims that the first permanent settler in this area was a Norwegian fugitive. Ingólfur threw his öndvegissúlur — a pair of wooden poles — into the sea, vowing to settle wherever they came to shore. They washed up in Reykjavík three years later, so that was where he settled. An unlikely if appealing story, dismissed by historians. More probable is that the steam rising from the springs in the area attracted settlers, explaining the city’s name: Reykjavík translates as ‘Smokey Bay’.

Today, this is a city where the mythical meets modernity. Begin in the ‘Neighbourhood of the Gods’ where roads take their names from Norse religion. Wander down Odin's Street and maybe have a coffee on Thor's Street. Then explore the centre with its colourful and characterful houses. Peruse the shopping streets of Laugavegur, Bankastræti and Austurstræti, taking style inspiration from the city’s fashion-forward residents. Visit the picturesque Grandi where old fishing factories and boat repair shops have been transformed into hip cafes, boutiques, museums, and breweries. Appreciate the street art and marvel at sculptures such as the seaside Sun Voyager. Or take the ferry over to the windswept Videy Island, where you’ll find Yoko Ono’s Peace Tower, with “Imagine Peace” written in 24 languages. Then, if you consider yourself an intrepid world-food explorer, step up and sample the traditional boiled sheep's head. Or, for the truly culinarily courageous, there’s the notorious fermented shark — washed down with a shot of Brennivín, or ‘black death schnapps.’ If you’d rather something a little more familiar, hot dogs are also a national favourite. The hot dog stand Bæjarins bestu, or ‘The Town's Best' has served the likes of Bill Clinton and heavy metal band Metallica.

With a campervan hire/RV rental in Reykjavík, you can also go beyond the city limits to experience Icelandic natural wonders such as Langjökull Glacier, Europe’s second largest glacier, or Hraunfossar Waterfall. If it’s thrills you’re after, consider a whale watching trip or ride on horseback through the red and black volcanic landscape of Rauðhólar, east of the city. Visit the rocky islet of Grótta with its lighthouse, beach and views of Faxaflói bay, Mount Esjan and even the Snæfellsjökull glacier on clear days. And of course, experience the magical, mythical, ethereal Northern Lights.

 

What to discover

In and around the city

Hallgrímskirkja Church

This epic and imposing structure, towering over the centre of Reykjavík, reaches the soaring height of 74.5 m. A surreal and abstract building, more of a spaceship than a church, Hallgrímskirkja was named after pastor and poet Hallgrímur Pétursson. It feels straight out of a fantasy novel but the inspiration was, in fact, the basalt columns of the Svartifoss waterfall in South Iceland. Marvel at the organ — 15 m tall, with 5,275 pipes — then climb to the top of the church to enjoy 360-degree views of the city.

The Perlan

Perched on top of the forest-covered Öskjuhlíð Hill, Perlan, or The Pearl, is a museum and rotating glass dome built on top of the tanks that store hot water for all the residents of Reykjavík. With its many exhibitions detailing the history and landscape of the island, such as a Glacier Exhibition, this is the perfect place to learn more about this intriguing nation — and also enjoy some pretty spectacular views in the rotating restaurant.

Harpa Concert and Conference Centre

Work on this gleaming glass and steel building began in 2007 but was postponed after the financial crisis hit. Finished in 2011, today it stands majestic with architecture inspired by Iceland’s basalt landscape. It hosts a range of musicians, the Icelandic Symphony Orchestra, the Icelandic Opera, and the extremely hip Sónar Reykjavík music festival. Enjoy a drink in the cafe, watch the 15-minute 360° movie about Iceland’s nature, and just generally take in the beauty of this exquisitely-designed building.

 

Recommended locations

Blue Lagoon (Bláa Lónið)

Fancy an RV rental at the Blue Lagoon for a spa trip to a lava field? With a campervan hire in Reykjavik, you can drive out to the Blue Lagoon, a geothermal spa located in a vast, 800­-year ­old lava field in the heart of the Reykjanes Peninsula. Fed by the nearby geothermal power plant, its warm waters are full of minerals, silica, and algae that help cure skin conditions such as psoriasis. Walk along a path carved out of lava to reach the lagoon before dipping into waters that reach temperatures of around 37 degrees. Breathe in the clear mountain air and delight the unique, surreal peace and calm. Or take it up a level and enjoy a massage on a floating mattress.

Gullfoss Waterfall

This spectacular and iconic waterfall is a testament to nature’s power. Located on the Hvítá river and fed by a glacier, the water plunges 32 metres into a canyon whose walls are 70 metres high. It was the site of much controversy during the 20th century after an English businessman tried to use the waterfall’s energy to fuel a hydroelectric plant. His project was thwarted by Sigríður Tómasdóttir, whose father owned the land and who fought to keep the waterfall in the hands of the Icelandic people — even threatening to throw herself into the thundering depths if plans went ahead. Choose an RV rental/campervan hire in Reykjavik and drive your Indie van to the Fulfoss Waterfall. On a sunny day, you’ll be treated to the magical sight of a rainbow appearing over the charging water.

Thingvellir National Park

With a campervan hire in Reykjavik, you can drive 40 km northeast to explore Thingvellir National Park. Thingvellir lies in a rift valley between the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates. Driving your rental RV into the valley, you’ll be faced with a cliff ahead: you are staring face to face with the very edge of North America. Drive through the park to another cliff: this is Eurasia. Walk along the valley floor and appreciate the natural processes that have formed the world as we know it. Ravines caused by the constant shifting of the plates are scattered throughout the area too, the most famous of which is Silfra where you can go diving and enjoy visibility that exceeds 100 metres. Oh, and did we mention Game of Thrones was shot here?

 

Depot Contacts

Phone: +351308 809 080

Email: [email protected]

Address: Brekkustígur 42, Reykjanesbær, Iceland

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