Your Guide to the Laugavegur Shopping Street in Reykjavík

Laugavegur Street

Reykjavík may be one of the smaller capital cities you have visited, but it still has plenty to offer visitors looking for an easy day to relax or to enjoy some shopping for souvenirs. One of the best places to stop during your tour of Reykjavík is Laugavegur, the main shopping street in the city

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This downtown main street in Reykjavík is best known for its selection of souvenir shops, boutiques, restaurants, and bars, giving you everything you may need in one location. This street is open only to pedestrians for safety. Here’s everything you need to know about Laugavegur street in Iceland.

The History of Laugavegur

Laugavegur directly translates to “pool road” or “water road,” but it is also called “wash road” as it was once a road leading to the hot springs the women of Reykjavík used to do their laundry in the old days. The road was built up in 1885 and developed as the capital grew and developed. The road begins in the east at Kringlumýrbraut near the Kringlan mall and extends west toward Bankastræti, another main road. The street is about 2 km long.

Many recognize Laugavegur as one of the most beautiful streets in Iceland with colorful buildings and plenty to see and do. The popular shopping stretch of the road extends from Hlemmur, the main bus station, to Bankastræti, home ot numerous clubs, restaurants, bars, and more.

Shopping on Laugavegur

Whether you’re ready to do some souvenir shopping before heading home or are looking for dinner, drinks, or an interesting museum, you’ll find it all on the Laugavegur street in Reykjavík. It’s one of the liveliest streets in the city, with numerous people shopping during the day and enjoying the nightlife well into the night.

If shopping is at the top of your list, you can’t go wrong. You’ll find a selection of tourist shops, also called “Puffin Shops,” with an assortment of souvenirs, from refrigerator magnets and stuffed animals to clothing and books. 

You’ll also find specialist boutiques with jewellery, candles, and other high-end products designed and made in Iceland. If you see something you love, pick it up because you may not see it again, but be mindful of imported souvenirs if you want something local.

For those shopping on a budget, the Reykjavík shopping street has something for you, too. You’ll find several secondhand and vintage shops where you can find household goods, jewerly, and clothing at lower prices. You may even find an authentic, handmade lopapeysa for much less than buying new.

Laugavegur’s Museums

A unique museum located near Laugavegur on Bankastræti is the Punk Museum featuring various punk rock memorabilia. This museum is easy to miss as it’s located in an old underground public toilet. Entry is included in the Reykjavík City Card and the Hop On Hop Off bus stops nearby for easy access.

Laugavegur’s Museums

Dining and Drinks on Laugavegur

Whether you’re looking for a place for lunch or dinner or want to enjoy some evening drinks, Laugavegur in Reykjavík is the perfect place to go. You’ll find a variety of restaurants and bars serving various fare, including vegan options, local cuisine, and foreign dishes. You’re sure to find something for everyone.

From traditional Icelandic food at Old Iceland and Íslenska Barinn to foreign cuisine at Austur-Indíafélagið and Gríska Húsid, you can enjoy a delicious meal for lunch or dinner in between your shopping or sightseeing. If you’re looking for breakfast or a snack, Sandholt Bakery, Té og Kaffi, or Brauð & Co offer excellent options, from coffee to cinnamon rolls. Fast food and street eats are also readily available.

Laugavegur Shopping Street Reykjavik

For those looking for a night out, there’s no shortage of bars and clubs on Laugavegur and nearby Bankastræti. Dillon is a popular option for tourists and locals, along with Lebowski Bar. Other exceptional options include Kiki Queer Bar, Kaldi Bar, and Mál og Menning, a bar and bookshop combination. On weekends, visitors can expect bars to be open until at least 3 am.

Don’t Miss This Popular Shopping Street

Laugavegur is not to be missed by visitors looking to make the most of their experience in Reykjavík. From nightlife and dining to souvenir shopping, you’ll find a pleasant stroll down Laugavegur is a great way to spend a day or evening in the city.

When you’re done exploring Reykjavík, booking the best car is the perfect way to see the rest of the country at your leisure. Check out our Iceland car rental reviews for insights and recommendations to ensure a smooth and enjoyable journey.

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