Iceland Off the Beaten Path

For my main post on Iceland, see Iceland by an Iceland Evangelist.  There I recommend the Golden Circle, Inside the Volcano and Blue Lagoon as must sees with broad appeal.  Here I go into some out of the way places that I enjoyed.

  • Geothermal Exhibition – 100% of Iceland’s energy comes from renewable sources, including this geothermal power plant.  It’s easy to visit on your way back into Rejkavik from the Golden Circle.  Beautiful modern building.
  • Sigurjón Ólafsson Museum – we stumbled on this gem during a walk by the North Atlantic Ocean in the northern part of Reyjkavik.  There’s a lot of outdoor sculpture and no one really monitoring the situation, so it’s a great place to go after things are closed or to dissipate energy from kids.
  • Iceland Phallological Museum (a.k.a. the Penis Museum).  This small museum on the outskirts of downtown Reyjkavik was basically penises of various species, mostly marine animals, in lab jars.  Apparently there are two humans (men, natch) now living who have pledged their penis to the museum, but at the moment there is no human specimen.
  • Rejkavik Roasters – a coffee lover in our group did the research into the best coffee shop and came up with this one.  I have to say it was a lovely coffee shop.  I don’t drink coffee, but the coffee drinkers declared it subperb, and they made me a mean hot chocolate and the pastry I had was amazing.  The website is all in Icelandi so here are the addresses of their two locations:
    • Kárastígur 1, 101 Reykjavík
    • Brautarholt 2, 105 Reykjavík
  • Pastries at Braud & Co.  If you are anywhere near this shop, you will smell it.  Amazing smells.  Pied Piper like smells.  If you visit the main church, or the penis museum or anything in downtown, you have to detour to this shop.  The smells alone are worth the visit and the pastries are divine.  Address: Frakkastígur 16, 101 Reykjavík.
  • Good places for your Instagram feed.
    • Harpa concert hall.  Look for the honeycomb windows looking out on the sea.  If you climb up into them (not allowed, so have lookout), you can get cool siloutte photos.

      Harpa Honeycomb
      Harpa Honeycomb, Reykjavik, Iceland
    • Top of the main church in Reyjkavik (Hallgrimskirkja).  You can take an elevator to the top and get great panoramic views of the city (very cute, colored Scandanivian type houses) and out to the sea.  instagram-top-of-church
    • Golden Circle.  See my original post for Golden Circle recommendations, but here are a few fun photos you can take there.  At the steam field at Geisir (between the road and the geysers)
      Blowing smoke
      Blowing smoke at Geisir, Golden Circle, Icleand

      Thirsty at Kerid crater lake

      Thirsty at Kerid crater lake, Golden Circle, Icleand


What else do you enjoy in Iceland?  Let everyone know in the comments section.