Today I got acquainted with Reykjavik. I walked around on my own, then took a free guided tour that was almost as good as the one in Tallinn, then walked around some more. There were a lot of highlights:
- Tjörnin, the pond. Lots of birds and a nice path around it dotted with sculptures.
I especially enjoyed watching the Arctic terns, which hover like hummingbirds before they dive for fish in the lake. Here's one not doing that:
- The Ráðhús, Reykjavik's city hall, sits at the top of Tjörnin and incorporates the water into its design. It has a really big 3-D map of Iceland that is very cool.
- Hallgrimskirkja, the big white church that is the city's main Lutheran church. I think it looks out of place in this city; for some reason, I think it looks like it belongs in Salt Lake City. I took an elevator to the top of the bell tower for an impressive view.
There's a lot of very fun and cool public art in Reykjavik.
The show at Harpa, How to Become Icelandic in 60 Minutes, was essentially a stand-up comedy act. It was actually quite funny, though there were a fair number of inside jokes. The hall itself is extremely impressive. I learned today that it was being built by one of the bankers who was responsible for Iceland going bankrupt, and after it sat unfinished, the bankrupt government spent a fortune to finish it. The show I went to was in a tiny theatre that probably seats 150 - 200 people, but it has a large main hall (which I couldn't see). It also has a huge lobby area that's filled with sunlight this time of year.
I'm looking forward to the upcoming excursions. Tomorrow: the south coast and Þórsmörk.