Major towns and cities

Reykjavik, Iceland Capital


Reykjavík and the Capital area

The Reykjavík area is commonly referred to as Greater Reykjavík since the six surrounding municipalities seem to merge into one with no obvious borders. Greater Reykjavík is home to nearly 60% of the population. Unsurprisingly, this area homes most major administrative and business headquarters in the country as well as some of the main cultural attractions. The capital area is filled with cozy cafes, friendly pubs, and high-energy clubs making it a popular stopover place for young people who want to hit the bars.


Akureyri is the largest town outside Greater Reykjavík. The town is situated Eyjafjörður fjord, the longest fjord in Iceland. Today, Akureyri is the center for trade, services, and communications in north Iceland and has been so for a long time since the oldest references are from 1602. Akureyri prides itself on being a true school town since it offers art and music schools, two secondary schools, and a university. There is a popular ski resort just 10 minutes from the city center.  This beautiful town in northern Iceland was selected number one in "Best places in Europe for 2015" by Lonely Planet.


Ísafjörður is on the West Fjords and is the center of trade for the area. Tunnels have been built through the tall mountains separating Ísafjörður, Suðureyri, Flateyri, and Þingeyri to link the areas together. Those tall and steep mountains are often considered to be what defines the area since they are really a sight to see, a great place to hike as well as being the home of one of the better ski resorts in Iceland. Ísafjörður is a beautiful small town that is rich in cultural attractions such as music festivals, museums, and theatre festivals.


Egilsstaðir is a very young town since the first house in Egilsstaðir was built in 1944. However, since then the town has grown fairly quickly, and nowadays it is a lively town that provides services for East Iceland as well as the many travelers that visit the area. Egilsstaðir is known for having been the country’s execution place. The headquarters for the State Forestry Service is located there. Egilsstaðir is built on the banks of Lake Lagarfljot.  The legend says that a water monster lives in Lagarfljot protecting a treasure.


Höfn is located between Hornafjörður and Skarðsfjörður fjords and forms along surrounding communities are collectively named Höfn í Hornafyrði. The history of the town is traced back to the late 19th century when Ottó Tuliníus decided to move his store from the old town Papaós to Höfn. The old store at Papaós restored and turned into an interesting museum that captures the history of the whole area. Höfn is a common destination for tourists since it is close to both Vatnajökull National Park and Jökulsárlón.