Guidebook Updates for Iceland

When we learn of important changes to the information in our guidebooks on Iceland, we post them here. (Of course, it's still smart to reconfirm critical transportation and sightseeing details locally.) Armed with a Rick Steves guidebook and these late-breaking updates, you're set for a great trip!

Across Iceland

  • If your passport is due to expire within six months of your ticketed date of return from Europe, you need to renew it. Allow plenty of time to renew or get a passport, especially while a backlog of applications is causing significant slowdowns — see the US Department of State's travel site for current estimated processing times.

Blue Lagoon & Reykjanes Peninsula

  • Since the Fagradalsfjall volcano, southwest of Reykjavík, has become active (with eruptions in 2021 and 2022), drivers may want to ask locally about any road closures/detours before heading toward the Reykjanes Peninsula.

For books printed before April 2020, the following may also apply:

  • Guided tours of the Reykjanes Peninsula are no longer offered by the major excursion bus companies.

Golden Circle

  • Skyr Guesthouse in Hveragerði has closed.

For books printed before April 2020, the following may also apply:

  • Dalakaffi Café (at Reykjadalur Thermal River) has closed.

North Iceland

For books printed before April 2020, the following may apply:

  • In some printings of the first edition of Rick Steves Iceland, the North Iceland map (pp 284–285 in the first edition) has two errors. The Fosshóll Café (#10) is located incorrectly; its actual location is just south of Highway 1, right at the Goðafoss waterfall. Also, the routes around the Tröllaskagi Peninsula labled as "Option 1" and "Option 2" were switched: Per the text description later in the chapter, the coastal route around the peninsula is Option 1, and the straight-shot route to Akureyri is what the text describes as Option 2.
  • Contrary to what some printings of our Iceland guidebook's first edition state right under the "Orientation to Mývatn" header, Highway 1 runs along the west (not east) and north side of the lake.


  • Edda's Farmhouse in Town has closed.

For books printed before April 2020, the following may also apply:

  • The Ásgrímur Jónsson Collection and the Sigurjón Ólafsson Museum in the National Gallery of Iceland are both now open daily 13:00–17:00.
  • Bus #14 no longer goes to the National Museum of Iceland, bus #12 now does.
  • The Phallological Museum is now open daily year-round 10:00–18:00.
  • The Culture House is now open daily May–mid-Sept and is only closed Monday in off-season.
  • The Árbær Open-Air Museum no longer requires a guided tour in the off-season. It's now open Sept–May 13:00–17:00.
  • Whales of Iceland is now open daily 10:00–17:00.
  • The Museum of Icelandic National Wonders is now called Wonders of Iceland.
  • Harpa's lobby hours have been shortened to 9:00–22:00. Tours now run hourly 11:00–16:00.
  • The Hallgrímskirkja tower now closes at 20:30 May–Sept.
  • The tourist information office is no longer in City Hall. The city now contracts with several What's On tourist information offices around town.
  • The ferry to Viðey island now runs twice a day between mid-May and September.
  • The shuttle bus from Harpa to the Pearl now leaves hourly (top of the hour from Harpa, bottom of the hour from the Pearl). It costs 890 ISK but includes the view deck or can be applied toward the exhibit tickets.
  • The Pearl's hours are now daily 9:00–22:00, and its observation deck is no longer free to enter.
  • Iceland-based carrier WOW Air has ceased operations.
  • The high-end Kiosk co-op has closed.
  • Several recommended eateries have closed: Cafe Haiti, Bike Cave, Myrin Mathus, Ostabúðin Deli, and Mikkeller & Friends.
  • Dill restaurant has moved to Laugavegur 59, second floor.
  • Ölstofa Kormáks og Skjaldar tavern is located at Vegamótastíg 4.
  • The correct telephone number for the Sjávargrillið restaurant is +354 571 1100.
  • Alex Guesthouse has closed.
  • Guesthouse Anna has closed.
  • Heiða's Home has a new email address: [email protected].
  • Icelandair Hótel Marina has a new phone number: +354 560 8002.
  • The Reykjavik Residence Hotel has a new email address: [email protected].

For books printed before October 2018, the following may also apply:

  • I Heart Reykjavík is discontinuing its daily group walking tour (but they still offer a private walking tour).

For books printed before June 2018, the following may also apply:

  • Back to Iceland Travel no longer offers a shared minibus transfer from Keflavík Airport to town (but they still offer a private door-to-door transfer).

South Coast

  • The Katla Geopark Exhibition Center has closed. Some of its exhibits have moved into the Vík tourist information office (which is now called the "Katla Visitors Center").
  • Icelandair no longer operates Hotel Vík. It is now Hotel Vík í Mýrdal, with 78 rooms (+354 487 1480, [email protected]).
  • Hótel Selið has closed.
  • Álfasteinn Country Home has closed.
  • Fosshotel Hekla has closed.

For books printed before April 2020, the following may also apply:

  • Accanum Glacier Café (at Sólheimajökull) has closed.

For books printed before June 2018, the following may also apply:

  • The Eyjafjallajökull Erupts Exhibition on highway 1 is closed.

West Iceland

  • The Kria Guesthouse in Borgarnes has permanently closed. Kria Cottages, about four miles south of Borgarnes, remain open (+354 869 0115, [email protected]).

For books printed before February 2019, the following may also apply:

  • The Hvalfjörður tunnel (connecting Reykjavík to Borgarnes) is now toll-free.
  • The Borgarnes B&B has closed.

Westman Islands

  • At the SEA LIFE Trust Visitor Center, the two beluga whales are no longer in the "care pool," but have been released to a sanctuary in Klettsvik Bay.

For books printed before April 2020, the following may also apply:

  • On Heimaey Island, Fiskibarinn, Subway, and Stofan Bakhus have closed.
  • On Heimaey Island, the SEA LIFE Trust Beluga Whale Sanctuary/Puffin Rescue Center (not the bookstore) now serves as the local tourist information office (at the harbor end of the main drag at Ægisgata 2, daily 10:00–17:00, shorter hours off-season, +354 488 2555).
  • The Sæheimar aquarium of Vestmannaeyjar has closed, and replaced by the new open-air Beluga Whale Sanctuary, housing two beluga whales in Heimaey Island's Klettsvik Bay (across the harbor from Vestmannaeyjar). Its visitors center in Vestmannaeyjar includes an aquarium, puffin rescue center, and in summer a shuttle-boat service allowing visitors to view the whales.