Set on northern Iceland, Akureyri is a charming city that boasts a rich heritage, fascinating culture, marvelous architecture, iconic landmarks, a breathtaking landscape, and lots of fantastic attractions. It is a melting pot of tourists from around the world who want to immerse themselves in its culture or even come for the elusive northern lights, also known as the Aurora Borealis. In the heart of the city, you’ll find the 19th-century church called Akureyri Church. Its windows are designed to show a narrative of the Christian influence in Iceland. Also, while in the city, be sure to visit Minjasafnið á Akureyri, Icelandic Aviation Museum, Akureyri Art Museum, and others to quench your thirst for art. Surely, there are a lot of fun things to do on this side of Iceland. Here is a list of the best things to do in Akureyri, Iceland. Browse below.
1. Marvel at the beauty of Akureyri Botanical Garden
Marvel at the beauty of nature at Akureyri Botanical Garden. Nesting on an elevated land on fjord Eyjafjörður, this place seems like a page from a Disney storybook that will make you sing and dance to your heart’s delight. The garden might be small in size but it is overwhelming with a plethora of flowers of different kinds. If you’re planning a visit, be sure to come during spring or summer, so that you see these beauties in full bloom. Of course, be sure to have your camera ready as this place is definitely Instagram-worthy.
Akureyri Botanical Garden
Address: Eyrarlandsvegur, 600 Akureyri, Iceland
Website: Akureyri Botanical Garden
Opening hours: 8am - 10pm (daily)
2. Learn about the city's history in Minjasafnið á Akureyri - Akureyri Museum
Learn more about the history and heritage of Akureyri in Minjasafnið á Akureyri. Located in Aðalstræti, this fascinating museum features a vast land where you’ll find a stunning museum garden with a 19th-century church as its centerpiece. The garden is much older than most of the structures in the area, and it is one of the reasons why tourists are enchanted to go to Minjasafnið á Akureyri. On the other hand, the museum itself houses artifacts and vintage items that showcase the region’s rich history, especially its thriving industries since the dawn of time up to the present.
Minjasafnið á Akureyri - Akureyri Museum
Address: Aðalstræti, Akureyri, Iceland
Website: Minjasafnið á Akureyri - Akureyri Museum
Opening hours: 1pm - 4pm (daily)
3. Explore the country's aviation history at the Icelandic Aviation Museum
This museum focuses on the aviation industry of the city. It opened its doors in the year 2000. It is a vast property that houses vintage restored planes. As a whole, the collection in the Icelandic Aviation Museum showcases the development of aviation on a national scale. Through a tour in this museum, you will get a glimpse of how the early Icelanders travel by air. Visit the museum and take a journey back in time by browsing through the exhibits and displays in the Icelandic Aviation Museum. Don’t forget to take lots of souvenir pictures.
Icelandic Aviation Museum
Address: Akureyrarflugvelli, 600 Akureyri, Iceland
Website: Icelandic Aviation Museum
Opening hours: Tue - Fri & Sun: 11am - 5pm; Sat: 2pm - 5pm (closed on Mon)
Price: From 7 USD
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4. Marvel at the informative exhibits in Into The Arctic
A modern museum, Into the Arctic, is a marvelous attraction in Iceland that will treat you to a utopia of visuals to help you better understand the country’s history and rich culture. Compared to most of the museums in the city, this one may be smaller in size. But you will not be disappointed by its variety of exhibits that will broaden your imagination. A total of 11 exhibits, each section in the museum tackles a specific aspect of life in the north, including the first settlement, the wildlife, various industries, the coastal side, and others. This museum is like a haven of preserved history that is ready to share its side of the story to its visitors, who are hungry for knowledge.
Into The Arctic
Address: Strandgata, Akureyri, Iceland
Website: Into The Arctic
Opening hours: Sun - Fri: 11am - 6pm; Sat: 11am - 5pm
5. Witness the beauty of Akureyrarkirkja
Your Akureyri escapade would not be complete without dropping by the marvelous Akureyrarkirkja. Also called The Church of Akureyri, this Lutheran church nests in the heart of Akureyri, standing proud like a centerpiece. It is adorned with intrinsic decors and charming stained glass windows. Inside, you’ll find a vintage pipe organ that is still functional up to this day. This cathedral is an architectural masterpiece. No wonder lots of tourists visiting the city always make sure to visit it.
Address: við Eyrarlandsveg 600, Akureyri, Iceland
Opening hours: Mon - Fri: 10am - 7pm (office hours)
6. Explore Akureyri Art Museum
Akureyri Art Museum opened its doors to the public in 1993 and it reflects the imagery of the Bauhaus school of architecture. Compared to most of the museums listed above, this one revolves around contemporary art. Most of the pieces here are donated by locals. The museum also has a section designated for showcasing the artworks of students in vocational schools. If you have a deep understanding and an appreciation for art, you will surely enjoy a field day in this museum. This attraction offers tours and lecture programs to interested parties.
Akureyri Art Museum
Address: Kaupvangsstræti 8-12, Akureyri, Iceland
Website: Akureyri Art Museum
Opening hours: 12pm - 5pm (daily)
7. Unwind in Kjarnaskógur Park
Akureyri boasts a stunning landscape of vast agricultural land and charming parkland. If you want to unwind and just enjoy life, swing by Kjarnaskógur. Set on the southern side of Akureyri, Kjarnaskógur is a fantastic outdoor woodland area where you can reconnect with nature, hike, go camping with friends, marvel at the sight of wildlife in its natural habitat, or just relax and appreciate the beauty and the vibes of the countryside.
Address: Kjarnavegur, Akureyri, Iceland
Website: Kjarnaskógur Park
Opening hours: 24 hours (daily)
8. Attend a function in Hof Cultural and Conference Center
Built for the sole purpose of being a venue of most of the city’s cultural events, Hof Cultural and Conference Center is a modern events place that serves as an entertainment center for the performing arts, various concert events, and other social gatherings. Hof Cultural and Conference Center features state of the art facilities and upscale technical equipment that guarantee the success of the city’s important functions.
Hof Cultural and Conference Center
Address: Strandgata 12, 600 Akureyri, Iceland
Website: Hof Cultural and Conference Center
9. Visit the iconic home of Jón Sveinsson in Nonnahús
Featuring a little wooden house, Nonnahús is a popular attraction and a hidden gem in Akureyri. This charming dark little cabin was built in the 1950s, and since then, considered one of the most iconic structures in the city, reflecting an authentic 19th-century Icelandic architecture. Its name was derived from its first occupant, Jón Sveinsson, “Nonni”, a Jesuit priest and a renowned writer of children’s books. At the present time, Nonnahús serves as a remarkable tourist attraction.
Nonnahús - Nonni's House
Address: Aðalstræti 54, 600 Akureyri, Iceland
Website: Nonnahús - Nonni’s House
Opening hours: 1pm - 4pm (daily)
Price: From 5 USD
10. Admire vintage clothing displayed in Industry Museum
In the long list of museums in Akureyri, you’ll find the Industry Museum. Located in Eyjafjarðarbraut vestri, this museum showcases exhibits and displays of shoes and clothing from Akureyri’s factories. This museum revolves around the garment industries of the city during the middle ages. Aside from vintage garments, the museum houses antique equipment and machinery, from typewriters, utensils, sewing equipment, and other tools. Not only does Industry Museum offer tours, but they also provide entertainment for their guests.
Address: Eyjafjarðarbraut vestri, Akureyri, Iceland
Website: Industry Museum
11. Browse the art exhibits in Safnasafnið
If you can’t get enough of the city’s vibrant art scene, you should not miss visiting the Safnasafnið. Safnasafnið is a gorgeous art gallery in Svalbarðsströnd. It features a stunning exterior design of pastel-colored Icelandic architecture. When you get inside, you will be left in awe by the beauty of the simple and minimalist design of bright interiors, gorgeous hardwood flooring, and dramatic expansive windows that allow lots of natural light and lets guests catch the picturesque views of outside. It houses a collection of artworks that vary from folk art to contemporary art to other distinct crafts. Aside from exhibits and galleries, Safnasafnið features an extensive library where you can grab a book and find your corner to lose yourself in.
Address: Svalbarðsströnd, 601 Akureyri, Iceland
Opening hours: 10am - 5pm (daily)
12. Enjoy a family day at Petting Zoo Daladýrð
Rebbarnir eru sprækir, rólegir og yfirvegaðir í Daladýrðinni.Posted by Daladýrð on Monday, 29 July 2019
On a vacation in Akureyri with your family? If so, you might want to take them to Petting Zoo Daladýrð. Originally a family-run design company, Daladýrð is today a zoo located on a farm. Because of its location, the family decided to open a petting zoo for their friendly animals. Here, you’ll find fascinating Icelandic creatures from domestic ones to more exotic ones. They have kittens, puppies, geese, ducks, horses, sheep, and a lot more. Also, the place sells agricultural products that you might be interested in. They also have a little cafe where you can relax and enjoy a cup of coffee.
Petting Zoo Daladýrð
Address: Íllugastaðavegur Brúnagerði, 601 Akureyri, Iceland
Website: Petting Zoo Daladýrð
Opening hours: 11am - 6pm (daily)
13. Say a prayer at the Catholic Church in Iceland
A vacation would not be complete without visiting a sacred place of worship. If you are a catholic, be sure to drop by the Catholic Church in Iceland and say a few words of thanks and well wishes. Located in Eyrarlandsvegur 26, this marvelous parish is under the supervision of Bishop Reykjavík, Dávid Bartimej Tencer. The church is small and simple but it is flocked by a lot of devotees during masses.
Catholic Church in Iceland
Address: Eyrarlandsvegur 26, Akureyri, Iceland
Website: Catholic Church in Iceland
Opening hours: Fri: 7pm; Sat: 6pm; Sun: 11am (Mass schedule)
14. Have mouthwatering Icelandic cuisine at Noa Seafood Restaurant
Surely, you will never run out of things to do in Akureyri. From visiting a plethora of museums to immersing yourself in nature, to enjoying modern attractions, this city is a haven of rich culture and a marvelous landscape. But that’s not all, Akureyri is also a city of exquisite eats. One testament to that is Noa Seafood Restaurant. Located in Hafnarstræti 22, showcasing an elegant interior design with a cool and airy ambiance and marvelous views, Noa Seafood Restaurant will give you the taste of authentic Icelandic cuisine, which is popular for their mouthwatering seafood dishes and warm tasty stews.
Noa Seafood Restaurant
Address: Hafnarstræti 22, 600 Akureyri, Iceland
Website: Noa Seafood Restaurant
Opening hours: 3pm - 9:30pm (daily)
15. Sample some cocktails at Götubarinn
Aside from a vibrant art scene, iconic landmarks and exquisite eats, Akureyri also has a fabulous nightlife. Unleash your inner social butterfly and check out the vibes in Götubarinn. Located by the street of Hafnarstræti 96, Götubarinn is one of the most popular hangout spots in Akureyri. It showcases an astonishing castle-like exterior while the inside is a high-energy bar with a rustic interior design that is dimly lit with fantastic music playing in the background as you savor your cocktail. To top it all off, the bar closes as late as 4 am. You have so much time to party and make memories with your friends or new-found ones.
Address: Hafnarstræti 96, 600 Akureyri, Iceland
Opening hours: Thu - Sat: 8pm - 4am (closed from Sun - Wed)
16. Go on a shopping spree in Kaupangur
Shopping is a big part of any vacation or tour. If you are on your last day in the city and you want to score some souvenir items, head over to Kaupangur. This is a bustling shopping area with lots of retail stores. Aside from that, it features various restaurants where you can sample delicious food, an ice-cream cafe, convenience stores, a grocery, salons, spas, a gasoline station, and other well-visited businesses.
Address: 600 Akureyri, Iceland
Opening hours: 24 hours (daily)
17. Go swimming at Sundlaug Akureyrar
Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account
Posted by Sundlaug Akureyrar on Thursday, July 18, 2019
If you have an extra day to spare while in Akureyri, make the most of it and take your family to Sundlaug Akureyri. This fun-filled attraction features stunning public swimming pools with fantastic slides which will compel you to dive into it the moment you see it. You can spend a day teaching your kids some diving techniques and make lasting memories. Sundlaug Akureyrar also has other facilities that you can take advantage of, such as a steam bath and a hot tub.
Address: Skólastígur 4, 600 Akureyri, Iceland
Website: Sundlaug Akureyrar
Opening hours: Mon - Fri: 6:45am - 9pm; Sat - Sun: 9am - 7pm
18. Play a few rounds of golf at Jaðarsvöllur
Whether you are a pro golfer or a budding talent, you might want to test your skills in Jaðarsvöllur. Located in Eikarlundur 18 and adorned with picturesque views and a stunning landscape, Eikarlundur 18 offers delightful amenities that will make your golfing experience a fantastic one. It boasts an excellent championship golf course that is a popular venue for the most sought-after golfing tournaments in town, including the Arctic Open golf tournament. For guests who want to learn the ropes of this exciting sport, Jaðarsvöllur offers classes and programs that you can participate in.
Address: Eikarlundur 18, Akureyri, Iceland
19. Experience the city's nightlife at Græni hatturinn
Make the most of your remaining days in Akureyri and immerse yourself in its vibrant nightlife. Visit Græni Hatturinn in Hafnarstræti and listen to high-energy music that will make you dance to the beat. It features local bands and various genres year long. Plus, while listening to lovely music, you can enjoy some beers and tasty appetizers in Hafnarstræti. Check out their website for the list of featured bands and schedules.
Address: Hafnarstræti, Akureyri, Iceland
Website: Græni hatturinn
20. Marvel at the elusive Aurora Borealis at Camping Hamrar
Imagine being one with nature, marveling at the picturesque views, stargazing on a starry night, and if you get lucky, you’ll catch sight of the breathtaking and elusive Aurora Borealis. In the morning, you’ll wake up to the cool embrace of the northern winds. These are life’s simple joys that await you in Camping Harmar. Camping Hamrar is a fantastic campground in Akureyri that is well equipped with essential facilities and more. It has cozy campsites, toilets, and showers for a convenient camping experience. Also, it has a playground for kids, house facilities, cooking essentials, excellent hiking routes, a nearby lake, and more.
Address: Akureyri, Iceland
Website: Camping Hamrar
21. Shop early for Christmas presents at Christmas House
Nesting in Sveinsbær, Hrafnagil, you’ll find a charming shop where it seems like it’s Christmas every day. Christmas House is a fabulous gift shop and souvenir store where you can score lovely gift items that you and your loved ones will surely appreciate. From Christmas decors to scented candles and stuffed toys, you will definitely need a big bag for your goodies. The shop itself is a gem on its own. Be sure to take lots of souvenir photos while at Christmas House, as you may not find something like it anywhere else. Plus, it would be really nice to bring your kids when you visit the place.
Address: Sveinsbær, Hrafnagil, 601 Akureyri, Iceland
Website: Christmas House
Opening hours: 12pm - 6pm (daily)
22. Ski down the slopes of Hlíðarfjall
If you’re a nature lover and an adventure-seeker, you might be interested in exploring the marvelous mountain of Hlíðarfjall while on a vacation in Akureyri. When you visit during the winter, you’ll have lots of fun skiing and snowmobiling as the place is home to two excellent ski resorts in the city. Accommodations will not be a problem for tourists who want to stay nearby as well, as the place is filled with vacation rentals, lodges, and other properties offering bed and breakfast. Also, if you visit during the summer or spring, you can enjoy hiking and camping activities in Hlíðarfjall.
Address: Akureyri, Iceland
23. Play some sports at Thor athletics field
Do you consider yourself a sports enthusiast or are you just a regular Tom who wants to have some fun playing sports and doing cardio activities? If so, head over to the Thor athletics field and burn some calories while having fun. This fantastic sports complex has various facilities for its guests. It has an indoor football field, a volleyball court, a track and field, and a vast open space. Also, it has a fitness facility where you can exercise and tone your body according to your goal.
Thor athletics field
Address: Hamar, Skarðshlíð, Akureyri, Iceland
Website: Thor athletics field
Opening hours: Mon - Fri: 10am - 4pm (closed on Sat & Sun)
24. Hike the trails on Súlur Mountain
Can’t get enough of Akureyri’s natural wonders? If you haven’t been to Súlur Mountain, you must! This gorgeous mountain is a popular hiking site in the city. It has safe pathways that lead hikers to breathtaking views of the area. It nests on the southwestern part of the city, and climbing to the top of it is an easy hike. Plus, there are a lot of fantastic travel agencies that offer hiking trips on the Sulur Mountain. Be sure to look for the one that offers a detailed itinerary with safety gear and essential equipment for a hassle-free hiking journey.
25. Visit the Motorcycle Museum of Iceland
If you are into motorcycles and big bikes, there’s a remarkable museum in Akureyri which centers on that type of transport vehicle. The Motorcycle Museum of Iceland opened its doors to the public in 2011. It houses a century of the development and technology of motorcycles in Iceland. Here, you’ll find some of the oldest models of motorbikes from various brands up to the present ones. Browsing through the artifacts and displays might feel like journeying through time.
Motorcycle Museum of Iceland
Address: Akureyri, Iceland
Website: Motorcycle Museum of Iceland
Opening hours: 10am - 5pm (daily)
Price: 8 USD
26. Gorge on sumptuous food in Bryggjan
Looking for a place to celebrate an important occasion or you just want to treat yourself and your family to some sumptuous dinner? Whatever the occasion is, Bryggjan is a must-try restaurant in Akureyri. Set on the bustling area of Strandgata 49, this fantastic restaurant showcases a stunning rustic interior design with a cool and airy ambiance and lots of natural light. The seating arrangement provides customers enough privacy and coziness. The food is guaranteed fresh and delicious. Plus, it is served in generous portions without crushing your bank account. While in Brygjann, be sure to have a taste of its best-sellers, such as BBQ Grísaloka, Langoustine Pasta, Beef Tenderloin, and more. To top it all off, they have a wide selection of cocktail drinks and premium wines to pair with your plates of exquisite food.
Address: Strandgata 49, 600 Akureyri, Iceland
Opening hours: Sun - Thu: 11:30am - 9pm; Fri - Sat: 11:30am - 9:30pm
27. Go on a wonderful whale watching tour (from USD 94.63)
Complete your Akureyri adventure by joining this exciting and fun-filled three-hour classic whale watching tour offered by Getyourguide. You will be taken to the breathtaking glacier fjord, where you will catch sight of fascinating humpback whales as they swim close to your high-speed ship and try to make contact with you. No need to worry if you’re a meticulous activist as the company providing the experience is environmentally certified. You will be overwhelmed by picturesque views while on the sail. Plus, WiFi is available, so you can share the experience on the spot with your Insta-followers.
Akureyri: 3-Hour Classic Whale Watching Tour
Duration: 3.0 hour
Explore the breathtaking city of Akureyri
Akureyri is definitely one of the most beautiful cities in the world. It offers diverse attractions for any type of tourist. From marvelous natural wonders that adventure seekers will love to fascinating museums for history buffs to modern attractions for families, there are lots to love about Akureyri. If you are planning a vacation in this side of Iceland, use this list as your guide in planning an itinerary. Have a memorable adventure ahead.
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