Reykjavik Photo Spots

Iceland is known for its beautiful landscapes, impressive waterfalls, and hot springs — and for good reason! The beauty of Iceland is truly extraordinary and bucket list worthy. The capital city of Reykjavik offers an incredible introduction to the country and is a vibrant hub for both visitors and locals, with lots to explore. Take time to discover the city’s culture including lively bars and restaurants, unique museums, and local shops. Thanks to the region’s geothermal activity, gorgeous Icelandic landscapes surround the city, making for endless photo opportunities to commemorate your trip. Let’s walk through the best places to take photos in Reykjavik.  📸

Photo: Rakel in Reykjavik for Flytographer. Olivia and Partner capture their time together in Reykjavik at the Rauðhólar with a couple photoshoot.

1. Reykjavik Harbour

Reykjavik’s Old Harbour is an idyllic spot to capture the spirit of this thriving city. It is the heart of Reykjavik, as the city originated here and over time, was developed around the harbour. Picturesque views of fishing boats and Mount Esja contribute to the charm of this special area. 🛥️

The city’s Old Harbour district is a great place to visit, especially on a sunny day when you can enjoy the views across the bay and watch ships come in and out of port. It now serves as a commercial district, home to interesting museums, boutique shops, and eateries. Take your time to explore this area to get a sense of Icelandic culture. 🇮🇸

Photo: Rakel in Reykjavik for Flytographer. Michelle and partner celebrate their couples trip to Reykjavik at the Reykjavik Harbour with a couple photoshoot.

2. Hallgrímskirkja

This iconic church is the tallest building in the city — and Iceland! Due to its size, the striking landmark can be spotted from different areas throughout Reykjavik.

Designed by the architect Guðjón Samúelsson, the church took 38 years to build and was completed in 1986. The spectacular structure is surrounded by a square and includes a statue of Leifur Eiríksson, a hero of Viking-age Iceland — another famous Reykjavik landmark.

Facing the front of Hallgrímskirkja church, you’ll notice the resemblance to basalt columns found throughout the country. This gives a unique appearance to the building unlike any other you’ll see. The impressive stance of the building paired with the vast openness of the square provides a dramatic photo opportunity totally unique to Reykjavik. Inside, climb to the top for stunning views of the city and its surrounding mountains! ⛰️

From here, head down Frakkastígur to the water, where you’ll find the infamous Sun Voyager sculpture. The modern steel sculpture of a Viking longship is an ode to the sun as well as a nod to the country’s history. Artfully displayed along the water, this is a seriously Instagrammable location, especially during sunrise or sunset. 🌅

Photo: Ernir in Reykjavik for Flytographer. Cheryle and partner capture a day in Reykjavik at Hallgrímskirkja with a couple photoshoot.

3. Seljalandsfoss

Seljalandsfoss is an awe-inspiring waterfall located on the south coast of Iceland, right off Route 1 — also known as Ring Road. Because of its accessibility and popularity, this is the perfect place for your first stop on a trip around Iceland. It’s the most photographed waterfall in Iceland. 📸 When you visit, you’ll understand why it’s one of the best places to take photos in Reykjavik!

The waterfall spills over a 60-meter cliff into a winding stream below. Behind the waterfall are various caves that have formed over time due to erosion from the water. And, there are paths that lead behind the waterfall, which makes this a special place to visit. For a unique photo opportunity, follow these paths to get shots of the waterfall with the sprawling Icelandic landscape behind it — a truly picture-perfect scene.

If you’re looking for an adventure, road trip from here toward the next town, Vik. You’ll follow Ring Road and see iconic sights along the way such as a black sand beach, Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon, and Icelandic horses. 🐴

Photo: Ernir in Reykjavik for Flytographer. Kenneth and partner capture their engagement in Reykjavik at the Seljalandsfoss with a proposal photoshoot.

4. Harpa

Set on Reykjavik’s Old Harbour, Harpa Concert Hall is an architectural masterpiece, unlike anything you’ve ever seen. The building’s distinct shape and rows of colourful, honeycomb-esque windows create a jaw-dropping feast for the senses. 😍

Designed by Danish-Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson, the facade is inspired by Icelandic scenery and celebrates the country’s art and culture. Harpa is a hub for many events including concerts, conferences, galas, and more.

If you’re looking for a unique place to take photos, Harpa is definitely one of the best in Reykjavik. The building itself is absolutely stunning and it’s even more beautiful when you capture it from different angles.

Photo: Ernir in Reykjavik for FlytographerRobinson and partner celebrate their engagement in Reykjavik at the Harpa with a proposal photoshoot.

5. Red Hills

It’s no secret that Iceland is known for otherworldly scenery. If you’re looking to capture the magic of Icelandic landscapes, Rauðhólar — or the Red Hills — is a must-see location!

Located on the outskirts of Reykjavik, you’ll feel like you’re on another planet once you see the views of geysers and lava fields that sprawl across the area. The area is a group of pseudocraters and is named after the dark red hue of volcanic rocks. 🌋 Wander along the hiking trails to explore the varying landscape and one of the best places to take photos in Reykjavik.

When you’re done exploring, head down the hill to the visitor center for a free self-guided tour of the museum. The museum has fascinating information about geologic processes and how they formed this unique landscape!

Photo: Ernir in Reykjavik for Flytographer. Kelly and partner capture their honeymoon in Reykjavik at the Red Hills with a couple photoshoot.

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6. Álafosskvós, Mosvellsbær

Located 15 minutes from Reykjavik, Álafosskvosin is a fun area in Mosfellsbær where artisans and artists display and sell handmade products including wool blankets, yarn, and iconic Icelandic sweaters. 🧶

Álafoss was established in 1896, marking the beginning of Iceland’s wool industry. To this day, the original factory houses the Álafoss wool store. The store is a great place to buy Icelandic souvenirs and gifts, as well as handmade products by local artisans. Adjacent to the store, you will spot the beautiful Álafoss waterfall and the Varmá river, which both were used to drive the mills of the old factory. With the waterfall and store in the background, the property provides a beautiful photo opportunity perfect for flaunting your new sweater.

This is a great stop on your way to the Golden Circle, where you can explore Thingvellir National Park, Gullfoss waterfall, and Geysir geothermal area — three of Iceland’s most visited landmarks.

Photo: Ernir in Reykjavik for Flytographer. Georgia and partner enjoy a day in Reykjavik at Álafosskvós, Mosvellsbær with a couple photoshoot.

7. Þúfa, Norðurslóð

Þúfa, Norðurslóð is a unique art installation in the Grandi district of Reykjavik. Designed by Ólöf Nordal, the dome-shaped island is topped with a fishing shed to honour Reykjavik’s fishing history. 🐟 Created as a space for quietness and meditation, both locals and tourists gather here regularly. For a unique backdrop to your photos, be sure to capture Þúfa in the background!

After that, follow the path that winds around the outside of the dome to the top, where you’ll have a vantage point that provides panoramic views overlooking the mountains and Faxaflói Bay. 👀

Photo: Ernir in Reykjavik for Flytographer. Brad and partner capture their time together in Reykjavik at Þúfa, Norðurslóð with a couple photoshoot.

8. Skógafoss Waterfall

Skógafoss is one of Iceland’s biggest and most beautiful waterfalls with an astounding size. Located on the Skógá river, this mighty cascade is clearly visible from Ring Road and is an excellent place to stop and stretch your legs while traveling Iceland’s south coast.

Due to the amount of spray the cascade produces, at least one rainbow is present any time the sun emerges from behind the clouds. 🌈 The land underneath the waterfall is very flat, allowing visitors to walk right up to the wall of water. 

Skógafoss can also be viewed from above, as a steep staircase leads to an observational platform above the cascade. Many nesting seabirds, including puffins, can be found here, depending on the time of year. 🐧

Photo: Ernir in Reykjavik for Flytographer. Emily and partner capture their engagement trip to Reykjavik at the Skógarfoss and Kvernufoss with a couple photoshoot.

9. Öxárfoss Waterfall

Located in Thingvellir National Park, Öxárfoss waterfall is well worth a visit! The impressive waterfall tumbles over the cliffs of Almannagjá gorge, which marks the eastern boundary of the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates. 

Öxarárfoss is one of the most popular attractions of Thingvellir Natural Park, which, in turn, is one of the most popular attractions of Iceland. And understandably so! As two tectonic plates meet in the park, this is the only place in the world where you can stand on two plates. Amazingly, you can see where the plates meet at the Silfra fissure — a rift that spreads throughout the park. For those looking for an unforgettable experience, you can snorkel through Silfra 🤿 to explore the geological marvels of the area. Thingvellir National Park is also a fabulous place to see the Northern lights, as the remote-ness provides the ideal vantage point, while still being close to the city. This one-of-a-kind landscape is one of the best places to take photos in Reykjavik.

Photo: Ernir in Reykjavik for Flytographer. Molly and partner celebrate their engagement together in Reykjavik at the Öxárfoss Waterfall with a couple photoshoot.

10. Krýsuvík

Located about 15 minutes from Reykjavik, Krýsuvík is a captivating area offering views of classic Icelandic landscapes. The geothermal area is defined by bubbling mud pools, hot springs ♨️ and steaming vents, as well as multi-coloured mineral deposits. 

The area has been designated a national park since 1970 and is one of Reykjavik’s most popular attractions. It also happens to be an incredibly photogenic place due to its many colours: bright yellow sulfur terraces contrasted against black lava rock make for the perfect Iceland photography location.

Photo: Rakel in Reykjavik for Flytographer. Alexandra and partner capture their anniversary in Reykjavik at Krýsuvík with a couple photoshoot.

Capturing memories in Reykjavik

Iceland is filled with incredible places to make magical memories. Between the out-of-this-world landscapes, charming city centre, and rich history, Reykjavik is a bucket list destination that offers something for everyone. Connect with a local photographer to capture your memories and discover some of the best places to take photos in Reykjavik. 💫