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An unavoidable stop, for many reasons
Perlan (literally, "the pearl") is one of Reykjavík's most striking buildings. You will no doubt see it as you come in the city from Keflavík Airport. Built atop the water tanks that supply Reykjavík's hot water, it is home to an upscale restaurant, an observation deck (with an indoor café, thank goodness), a souvenir shop and the Saga Museum.
We skipped the upscale restaurant, but we had breakfast one morning at the observation deck's café. After indulging in some excellent Belgian waffles, we took in breath-taking views of Hallgrímskirkja, Mount Esja behind central Reykjavík, the adorable Kópavogur Church and the wild landscape.
The Saga Museum, which we didn't have time to see, contains dioramas of major events in Iceland's history. For more info: http://www.sagamuseum.is/enska/english.html.
Everything at Perlan opens at 10 a.m., with the Saga Museum closing at 6 p.m. and the café at 9 p.m.
- Museum Visits
- Budget Travel
Vikings and good-looking water tanks
The Perlan building has the best view in the city. You can see all of the metropolitan area from up on the hill. While I was there the dome was closed for renovations, but the museum was open. It's worth a bus ride out there for the view alone. The museum is small but nice, if on the kitschy side.
- Museum Visits
- Arts and Culture
Main tourist spot in Reykjavik
A nice restaurant with a great view close to the domestic airport. There is also a market selling cheap clothes. You should go onto the viewing platform at sunset for some great photos, and because it's free.
- School Holidays
- Business Travel
Water reservoir with a difference
This is the hot water reservoir for the town. It stores water heated from the ground, which is used to heat the houses in the town.
It has the required spiral staircase (see cathedral tip) and an excellent Cafe with extortionate prices and great views.
There is a fake geysir in the grounds, which explains how the real geysirs work
This water reservoir doubles as a cultural and gastronomical hot spot. It also houses the very entertaining Saga Museum, which gives you a fab insight on Icelandic life in the days of yore! See the Perlan travelogue for more pics and info!
This magnificent glass structure, it's water in the 5 round tanks, and a restaurant and cafe ontop. And the restaurant moves around in circle, a nice place to enjoy the scene from the city.
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