The capital makes a good base for excursions around Reykjavík, including to three of Iceland’s most popular attractions: the site of the old parliament, Alþingi, at Þingvellir, the waterspouts and waterfalls of Geysir and Gullfoss, and Skálholt cathedral – all within simple reach by public transport or, more expensively, on day-long guided tours from the city. Also worthwhile is the Reykjanes peninsula, a bleak lavafield that’s as good an introduction as any to the stark scenery you’ll find further into Iceland, and home to the mineral-rich waters of the Blue Lagoon – the most visited attraction in the country. If you’re only in the city for a short break, or flying on to either the US or Europe, Reykjavík is also the place to fix up two of Iceland’s most ususual trips: either a tour inside the Langjökull glacier near Húsafell or a descent into the extinct volcano at Þríhjúkahellir, southeast of Reykjavík.

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