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“If there is any "One" Icelandic museum to see in Reykjavik, this is it!”

Vikin Maritime Museum
Ranked #30 of 180 things to do in Reykjavik
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Víkin – the Reykjavík Maritime MuseumThe Museum is situated in Reykjavik’s picturesque active fishing harbor, only a 10 minute walk from the city center. Enjoy the fantastic view of the boats, fishermen and birdlife before entering the museum. For centuries Icelanders depended heavily on fishing and the sea for survival, and as a result the country has a long and rich maritime history. In the Reykjavik Maritime Museum you can explore this history, including beautiful ship-models, realistic scenery as well as both dried and life fish! The magnificent Coast Guard Vessel Óðinn, who took part in all three cod wars, is a part of the museum, docked outside in the beautiful harbor. Guided tours, please ask at the entrance. A wonderful place for a fun day out with family or friends!
New York
Level 3 Contributor
17 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
“If there is any "One" Icelandic museum to see in Reykjavik, this is it!”
Reviewed August 22, 2014

As a BIG fan of the sea (oceanography, maritime history etc..), I found this small museum a pleasant surprise.

It is rather compact and should not take more than 1 hour to view.

BUT, they do guided tours of the retired coast guard vessel docked just outside. That was rather fascinating as the guide was a retired Icelandic coast guard officer who has really filled us in on the whole culture and history of the coast guard.

As I am not personally a big art fan (and thus might skip the 3 major Reykjavik art museums), for me personally this was definitely a "must see".

Visited August 2014
Thank parisnydude99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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490 reviews from our community

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Houston, Texas
Level 5 Contributor
48 reviews
20 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
“Sadly, No Vikings”
Reviewed August 19, 2014

This is really just a museum about the history of commercial fishing in Iceland. If you're into that, then go see this museum as there are some good exhibits and a few really fantastic historical photos. We spent a little less than an hour here during our visit to Reykjavik.

Visited August 2014
1 Thank baldheretic
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 4 Contributor
29 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed July 31, 2014

Do not be too quick to judge the place. I found the further nI went into the building the more interesting it became and a real story of Icelands fishing industry is well portrayed. I especially like the upper level exhibits... Definitely worth a look and a reasonable entry price.

Visited February 2014
Thank BeardoAustralia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
West Bloomfield, Michigan
Level 4 Contributor
49 reviews
27 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
“Mostly a fishing museum”
Reviewed July 24, 2014

This was the first museum and I saw it with a group of friends. We were expecting a history going back to the vikings, but it turned out to be mostly about fishing, from early family subsistence to large trawlers. If you're into that kind of thing, this is a great choice. People in your posse who aren't into it can get ice cream at the Valdis across the street!

Visited July 2014
Thank skaterdude
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brisbane, Australia
Level 6 Contributor
194 reviews
89 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 185 helpful votes
“Small but very interesting. Covers history of fishing except for whaling which is ignored”
Reviewed July 6, 2014

We spent almost exactly an hour in the museum and very much enjoyed it. It cost ISK 1,300 but is free if you are 70 or over. There is an additional charge if you want to see the ship outside, which we didn't. The museum details the Icelandic fishing industry from its inception and use of just rowing boats and just drying fish to more modern times. It wasn't till much later that salting came in, partly because salt was scarce, and that use of sails came in. Life was extremely hard for fishermen and their families. Even making oilskins took a year. One thing that really affected me was that in the ten years from 1928 to 1937, 152 ships over 12 tons were shipwrecked. The museum has a big map showing all their locations. Many fishermen didn't make it home or were seriously injured.
One thing the museum does not cover is the whaling industry, I presume because it is controversial and Iceland doesn't want to draw foreign attention to it. However whaling is still practised in Iceland and to ignore it in a national maritime museum is, in my opinion, to deny an important part of their heritage, regardless of how we foreigners feel about it.
There is a lift and I believe the museum would be wheelchair accessible. I am pretty certain I saw a toilet for people with disability.

Visited July 2014
2 Thank Marjorie J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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