Reykjavík is a travel-friendly city that boasts lively bars and nightclubs, not to mention an impressive gastronomic scene. The city has a large selection of accommodation options, and staying in a hostel is great choice if you’re looking to meet new people while saving money in a famously expensive city.
Loft is a great choice if you’re a traveller looking to stay in central Reykjavik. Looking out over Laugavegur shopping street and the iconic Hallgrímskirkja church, the hostel is famous for its bar and rooftop terrace and is popular with people of all ages. Offering more than a simple stay, Loft organises activities like painting, yoga and live-music sessions. Though breakfast is included, cash-strapped backpackers also have the option of preparing their own meals in the hostel’s kitchen.
Based in an old biscuit factory, Kex has become a prime location for meeting friendly people and sampling local beer during the on-site bar’s happy hour. Located a short walk from Harpa Concert Hall, the hostel offers scenic views over Mount Esja and the North Atlantic. Ideal for big groups as well as solo travellers, it’s renowned for its regular music events and mix of late-night activities, which includes comedy, pub quizzes, karaoke and even a few open-mic nights. When you’re in need of food, head down to Saemundur í Sparifötunum, the hostel’s gastropub serving everything from fresh fish to vegetarian dishes.
Galaxy Pod Hostel, Reykjavik | Courtesy of Galaxy Pod Hostel, Reykjavik / Hostelworld.com
Situated at the end of the city’s main street, Laugavegur, Galaxy Pod brings the Japanese capsule hotel experience to Reykjavík. Equipped with adjustable lighting, a USB charger, a safety deposit box and your own flat-screen TV, the futuristically designed rooms have a spaceship ambience that allows you to escape the noise, making it an ideal choice for travellers who are looking for privacy and relaxation without paying hotel prices. The hostel has a gaming area, but – if gaming is not your cup of tea – they also host movie nights and have a bar with happy hour.
Reykjavik Downtown HI Hostel, Reykjavik | Courtesy of Reykjavik Downtown HI Hostel, Reykjavik / Hostelworld.com
Sustainability and recycling are the overall themes at Reykjavik Downtown HI Hostel. Based in downtown Reykjavík, less than 200 metres (656 feet) from Grandi harbour, the hostel has an exchange system for clothes, books and toiletries and serves an organic breakfast buffet and fair-trade coffee. Their rooms are bright and spacious and the interiors are Scandinavian-inspired.
Bus Hostel, Reykjavik | Courtesy of Bus Hostel, Reykjavik / Hostelworld.com
Bus Hostel is one of the few accommodation options close to the Perlan: Wonders of Iceland exhibition and Klambratún park. Vibrant and lively, the hostel is situated close to Reykjavík bus terminal, making it an ideal pick for visitors in need of easy access to Keflavík International, the city’s main airport. With a terrace, bar and lounge that are open all year round, the hostel also offers tours and sells tickets for various activities.
Reykjavik City HI Hostel, Reykjavik | Courtesy of Reykjavik City HI Hostel, Reykjavik / Hostelworld.com
This eco-hostel is located outside the city centre, in Laugardalur valley near Iceland’s biggest thermal pool and spa. The modern hostel has a sleek look with a Nordic-inspired interior and a coffee bar, lounge area, patio and garden. A healthy breakfast buffet is available with organic options and fair-trade coffee, and a barbecue is available for guests to use year-round.
This well-equipped hostel is based in Laugardalur district, also known as the Hot Spring Valley. Situated in a quiet residential area, the accommodation is close to multiple hot springs and a cold plunge pool. Rooms are bright and designed to give guests a good night’s sleep, which is also why the sizeable lockers are found outside the dorms, rather than inside. Laekur is located outside central Reykjavík, but only a short bus ride from the city centre, making it a perfect place for guests looking to stay in a quiet neighbourhood without sacrificing easy access to the hustle and bustle of the city.
Beautifully decorated in clean, modern wood tones, B14 feels more like a home than a hostel. The common area is a relaxing haven featuring cushy leather sofas, rugged log stools and a minimalist fireplace, giving it a cosy feel. Set on the outskirts of Reykjavík, the hostel is nevertheless close to many restaurants and bars, as well as Laugavegur, the city’s main street, which runs directly into the centre. The hostel offers entertainment in the lounge area, where visitors can stop by for a night of board games and karaoke.
Visit 101 Hostel and you’ll find two historic buildings that show off classic Icelandic architectural charm. Situated in the heart of Reykjavík, the brightly painted hostel is a five-minute walk from both Sundhöllin swimming pool and Hallgrimskirkja church. The rooms have heated floors and are completely soundproof, making it an ideal place if you’re a light sleeper.