Reykjavik, the vibrant capital of Iceland, is a city known for its stunning natural beauty, rich cultural heritage, and friendly locals. Whether you’re visiting to explore its picturesque landscapes, delve into its history, or experience the unique Icelandic culture, knowing the ins and outs of parking in Reykjavik can make your stay much more enjoyable. This guide provides essential information on Reykjavik parking, including free parking Reykjavik options, understanding parking in Iceland, and tips for parking in downtown Reykjavik.

Aereal view of Reykjavik. You can drive a campervan in Reykjavik

Understanding Reykjavik’s Parking Zones

Another good option is to drive your motorhome into town and park there. If you’re worried about finding parking, fear not. There are many parking zones in Reykjavik.
Here are Reykjavik’s parking zones as well as rates:

Zone 1 (Red and Pink): These are the most central areas, typically the most expensive, with rates up to 600 ISK per hour.

Zone 2 (Blue): Surrounding the central areas, these spots charge around 220 ISK per hour.

Zone 3 (Green): Further out from the center, parking costs drop to 90 ISK per hour.

Zone 4 (Orange): These areas are primarily for residents, with specific regulations and charges of 220 ISK per hour during weekdays.

This map provides pinpointed locations of key parking spots in Reykjavik, offering a quick reference for finding available parking throughout the city:

Free Parking in Reykjavik

While Reykjavik offers various paid parking options, there are also opportunities for free parking:

  • Street Parking: Free before 9 am and after 6 pm on weekdays, and all day on Sundays.
  • Public Holidays: Parking is free on recognized holidays such as New Year’s Day, Easter, and Independence Day, among others.
  • Eco-Friendly Cars: Designated spots offer free parking for eco-friendly vehicles for up to 90 minutes.

Reykjavik night view from the bay

Navigating Paid Parking in Reykjavik

When it comes to paid parking in Reykjavik, understanding the available payment methods and the zoning system is crucial for a hassle-free experience. Here’s a closer look:

Payment Methods

  • Parking Meters and Ticket Machines: These are found throughout the city, especially in paid parking zones. They accept Icelandic Krona coins and, increasingly, credit cards. When using these, you’ll typically enter your vehicle’s registration number and select the duration of your stay. Some machines issue a physical ticket to display on your dashboard, while others register your payment electronically based on your license plate.
  • Mobile Apps: Apps like Parka and Easypark have become popular for their convenience. After downloading the app and registering your vehicle and payment information, you can start a parking session with just a few taps on your smartphone. These apps allow you to extend your parking time remotely without returning to your car, offering a significant advantage over traditional methods. They also provide information on parking zones, rates, and available spots in real-time.

Once you have parked and decided what to do with your campervan in Reykjavik, there are plenty of activities to choose from. You should visit Harpa Concert hall, which is a beautiful building in the middle of the city. Be sure to also stop by Hallgrímskirkja Church, which is the tallest church in Iceland. It’s 74.5 meters (245 feet) tall and has an amazing and imposing organ.

And Iceland’s National Museum, you can visit the permanent exhibitions to find out more about the country’s heritage and history. You’ll discover how the Vikings used to live as well as how the country has developed since Viking times. We also can’t forget the Leif Erikson Monument. He was the first European to arrive on the American continent.

Once you’ve arrived in Reykjavik, you can do things other than just visit the typical tourist activities. What about having an evening out at one of Reykjavik’s best restaurants? You’ll find a lot of different dining establishments in the Lækjargata area and surroundings. Whether it’s sushi, burgers, fish, or typical Icelandic dishes, this area has something for everyone. If you’re still looking for additional nocturnal activities after dinner, park your campervan in the appropriate overnight zone and join the Rúntur Pub Crawl. You’ll wander from one pub to another and experience the different vibe in each place. It’s one of the best ways to explore Reykjavik’s renowned nightlife.

Driving in the highway with a campervan to Reykjavik

Reykjavik is modern, dynamic, and clean. You will not find big skyscrapers or the classic European town with a historical city center here. Rather, it’s full of leisure activities and small pleasures like having an ice cream. We should mention that people from Reykjavik are absolutely crazy about ice cream. Iceland’s capital is a city with personality and is attractive in many ways.

There are many things to do in Iceland depending on how you decide to travel. If you decide to see the island by campervan, don’t let that scare you away from spending time in Reykjavik just because it’s a city. Now that you know what to do with your Campervan in Reykjavik and all the fun activities that await you, what’s stopping you?

Frequently asked questions about parking zones in Reykjavik

Is there free parking in Reykjavik?

Yes, there are free parking options available, especially outside of the central zones, before 9 am and after 6 pm on weekdays, all day on Sundays, and on public holidays.

Is parking difficult in Reykjavik?

While finding parking in the city center can be challenging, especially during peak hours, the zoned parking system and multiple car parks make it manageable with a little planning.

Is it easy to park a car in Reykjavik?

Yes, with an understanding of the parking zones and availability of both street and car park options, parking in Reykjavik can be straightforward.

How do you pay for parking in Iceland?

Parking can be paid for using mobile apps, ticket machines, or parking meters. It’s advisable to have some Icelandic Krona coins for older meters, although many machines now accept credit cards.

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