Reykjavik Nightlife is unlike any other. With over 50 bars lining the main street (Laugavegur) and the small streets leading from it, it can be a daunting task to know where to start. 

The bars in Reykjavik change with the seasons to provide Icelanders with a new favourite place each year, this is why many online accounts or reviews are outdated and many of the places described do not exist anymore. This does however mean that there is always plenty to look at whilst strolling the streets. Everything from small quaint coffee shops to large fancy bistros welcome you from every angle. Due to the small population, many bars have dual personalities. You may walk into one of the most talked about clubs, but when you arrive at 10pm, it's still functioning as a restaurant. Timing on this small island is everything.

Most Icelanders begin drinking at home and then arrive into the city center shortly after midnight. This has been a tradition throughout the years, but as there is an increase in events, people are starting to come out earlier. On Friday/Saturday nights the partying can go on til 6 in the morning, although most bars aim to close around 5,  the Icelanders are generally not even ready to go home then. The crowded bars force everyone out when they close, meaning people are scattered all around town, either greeting friends, looking for food or hailing a cab. 

 Some examples 

Restaurant by day / Popular dance bar by night 

 

  • CAFE OLIVER : Bistro : 3 Floors  : Terrace : Dance/Pop Music : Young crowd : Ladies Nights at weekends : 
  • VEGAMOT : Popular Bistro : Coffee house : Hip hop & RnB : Trendy crowd : Average age 25 - 35
  • AUSTUR : Steakhouse : Popular club : Dance/Pop Music : Average age 25 - 35
  • ESJA : Light food : Cocktail Lounge : Dance/Pop Music : Outdoor seating
  • SQUARE : Restaurant : Dance/Pop Music  : Private event venue
  • B5 : Coffee house : Burger Joint : Dance/Pop Music : Trendy crowd : Average age 25 - 35
  • THORVALDSEN : Bistro : Dance/Pop Music : Average age 30 - 40
  • HVITA PERLAN : Burgers : Nachos : Live Sports : Young Crowd : 3 Floors : Outdoor Seating : Music Varies
  • HRESSO : Bar food : Outdoor seating : Live Music : Dance/Pop Music : Young crowd
Coffee house by day / Concerts / Indie
  •  KAFFIBARINN : Good for coffee  : Alternative : Indie : Intellectual : Mixed crowd
  • PRIKID : Soul Food : Hip hop : Young crowd
  • BAKKUS : Cheap drinks : Alternative : Students : Weekly Events
  • FAKTORY : Alternative : Active with concerts : Indie
Pubs
  • ENGLISH PUB : Live Sports : Bar food : Live Music : Outdoor seating : Mixed Crowd : Wheel of Fortune
  • DEN DANSKE KRO : Live Sports : Live Music : Outdoor seating : Mixed Crowd : Beer Bingo / Quizzes
  • DUBLINER : Live Music : Irish Sessions : Older crowd
  • VIKINGAKRAIN : Traditional Icelandic Food : Viking Market : Outdoor Terrace : Live Music