There are several excellent record shops in Reykjavik. I try to visit them all whenever I am in town. I head straight for the Icelandic Music sections hoping to find something that’s hard to get in England. Most of the shops do not open early so don’t rush there first thing.

Lucky Records has an enormous stock of new and second hand records and you could easily spend the whole day in there. It is right next to Hlemmur Foodhall so you can also refresh yourself with a pint or three afterwards.

Geisladiskabud Valda and the Reykjavik Record Shop are tiny, but don’t let that put you off as they are stuffed full of records and more. There is another small second hand record shop called Space Odyssey on Skólavörðustígur that focuses on weird and wonderful experimental stuff.

Smekkleysa [which means Bad Taste in English] has now moved to a new location and has been an Icelandic institution since 1986. Their record label has released a wide range of Icelandic music including The Sugarcubes and Sigur Rós.

12 Tonar which was established in 1988 used to offer you a free coffee which was always very welcome but they have now had a revamp and have a nice looking bar in the shop. Sedate by day, the shop comes alive at night with DJ’s. Don’t forget to head to the basement where they have more records as well as a large chess board. 12 Tonar also have a record label and have released music by Eivør and Skúli Sverrisson as well as many other artists.

Icelandic Music

There is more to Icelandic music than just Sigur Ros and Björk , who are both Icelandic institutions now and deservedly so. If you think you do not know Sigur Ros it is likely that you will have heard their music on soundtracks to films and documentaries.

I now have a whole page dedicated to Music from Iceland with a Spotify playlist and lots of links to videos, – click HERE to check it out.

Iceland Airwaves

Just when it gets all cold, dark and wintery, Iceland Airwaves comes to the rescue with a few days of eclectic music from Iceland and beyond. After 2 years of absence due to Covid, Iceland Airwaves returned in 2022. This was my first Airwaves and it was brilliant. I will return! If you want to see some photos of IA 2022 and check out who I got to see live click: HERE.

For more info on IA click on the link-


Quick Links:

Reykjavik Homepage


Places to see for free


Eating and Drinking

Bathing in Reykjavik

Shopping in Reykjavik

Record shops

New Years Eve

The Golden Circle

South and The Blue Lagoon

East of Reykjavik

West of Reykjavik

Further inspiration and Reading