Car rental in ReykjavikWhere to pick up
Car rental locations in Reykjavik
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Reykjavik: A Northern Paradise
The sprawling Icelandic capital at the country’s southernmost tip is a veritable traveller’s paradise. Bursting with attractive, spreading suburbs, and home to a vast ethnic diversity, Reykjavik is increasingly sought-after as one of the cleanest, safest and greenest tourist destinations in Europe. Unlike most other cities which are densely concentrated, Reykjavik straddles a vast area of its mother country, with a lot to explore in each of its ten districts. Car hire in Reykjavik is hence unsurprisingly popular, making it possible to go from the thriving city centre to breath-taking natural landscape in the same day.
When to Book Your Car Hire in Reykjavik Iceland
Reykjavik’s somewhat singular climate makes the season of your visit a very important factor in planning your itinerary. The city is stunningly beautiful during summer or winter, presenting a markedly different aspect in each. Visit during summer to make the most of the city’s almost 24 hours of daylight. The long hours until the city’s half-hearted dusk means you can fit in plenty of Icelandic adventures. Marvel at the magnificent setting of the midnight sun, gape at majestic whales breaching the Atlantic waters, or try your hand at salmon fishing in Elidaardaloor Valley. Or invest some of that extra energy in a brisk hike up Mount Keillk, a small volcanic mountain situated just 25 minutes’ drive from the city centre. During winter, the city dons its enchanting garment of snow to transform itself into a winter wonderland. And although the days are dark and the temperatures chilly, the city produces a packed calendar of cultural events, spectacular yuletide festivities, skiing and the luminous beauty of the dancing Northern Lights. Don’t forget to try one of Reykjavik’s many geothermal pools and spas to experience going from cold to deliciously warm in an instant.
Car Rental in Reykjavik Iceland: Things to Remember
Transport in Reykjavik is not as efficient as one might think. The city’s population is low and spread out given its size, with car ownership leaning towards the high side – and with good reason. Trains and trams are noticeably absent, with buses only available in the city itself. A somewhat regular bus service operates to some of the city’s most popular attractions, including the Blue Lagoon (30 minutes away) and the Golden Circle, but this will not be enough to help you explore the whole of the city’s wondrous beauty, and is surprisingly expensive to boot. Car rental in Reykjavik is a flexible and economical way of travelling. There are several cheap options to choose from when hiring a car, ranging from compact family cars to heavy-duty 4x4s. But whatever vehicle you do end up renting, here are some things to keep in mind before putting the key in the ignition:
- Reykjavik residents’ drive on the right and it is possible to overtake on the left.
- Driving in winter may be hazardous due to adverse weather conditions, especially for first-time visitors, with snow, rain, hail and high winds a common experience on Reykjavik’s roads. It is therefore wise to check the weather forecast and road conditions before travelling.
- The speed limits in Iceland are as follows: 30-50 km per hour within the city centre; 80 km per hour on non-paved roads; and 90 km per hour on tarmacked roads between districts.
- Car headlights must be kept on day and night.
- Do not be tempted to venture off the beaten track, however attractive. Off-road driving is illegal in Reykjavik.
- Parking in Reykjavik is not too difficult. Traffic is light when compared to other major cities, and hence you can afford to pick and choose from several multi-storey car parks, parking zones and other such facilities. Parking on the outskirts of the city is a good way to save a few krona – parking rates are more expensive closer to the city centre.
- One thing is for certain: you’ll be driving through some pretty spectacular scenery whenever you’re visiting. Don’t let this distract you – keep your eyes on the road and, if you want to snap some pictures, pull over.