Hallgrimskirkja, Reykjavik

4.4
#1 of 1,032 in Things to do in Iceland
An unusual-looking church, the design of Hallgrimskirkja was inspired by the forms created when lava cools into basalt rock. The church was designed by Gudjon Samuel in 1937 and constructed between 1945 and 1986. The tower, at 73 m (239.5 ft) tall, dominates Reykjavik's skyline. The view from the top looks out over the entire city, plus the rocky, volcanic landscape and the sea beside the capital. Inside the church, listen to the melodies wafting from the enormous, 25-ton pipe organ. A statue of Leifur Ericsson, the first European to reach America, stands directly outside the strange edifice. A visit to Hallgrimskirkja represents just the start of the adventure when you use our Reykjavik online travel route planner to plot your vacation.
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Hallgrimskirkja Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.0
15,825 reviews
Google
4.5
TripAdvisor
  • A magnificent building. Beautiful architecture, stands out from miles around and only a 7 minute walk from the Main Street of Reykjavík.  more »
  • Would recommend walking here and having a walk around the whole building. Also worth venturing inside but most importantly pay a small price to get a lift to the top. This gives you a fantastic view o...  more »
  • A really interesting site, and a great starting point for your visit. Viewing platform with a modest charge. Outside is bus stop 8 which is very useful for many of the different tour companies.  more »
Google
  • Huge church in Reykjavik. Took over 40 years to finish building it and it is well worth it. Really beautiful inside. We were lucky enough to have someone playing the organ while we were there and it sounded magnificent. You can pay to go up to the top of the tower for excellent views over the city and I would say it was money well spent.
  • A stunning church that feels like it should be a cathedral. Positioned near to the centre of town, this is well worth a visit. The facade is very impressive and the overall simple design makes for a photogenic building. The inside structure has clear lines and is also worth seeing. Entrance to the church is free - worth checking online if there is a service. We took the lift and the few flights of stairs to the top of the tower. The observation room gives stunning views over Reykjavik and beyond - well worth the 1000isk per person.
  • Although an impressive structure, this was not really to my liking. It was impressive to walk up to, and the scale is impressive, but cast concrete really doesn't do it for me - I am rather spoilt with the older and beautiful churches and cathedrals of England, so this as at odds in terms of architecture and spartan adornment. Although I do like minimalism in architecture, it did not strike me as particularly welcome as tend to find churches. However, it was replete with the appropriate peacefulness one would expect of a holy place, and there were some rather wonderful features such as the font and the ceiling is impressive. However, I didn't get the Palm tree lurking in the corner... The views from the tower are impressive, and I could not capture a good enough picture to fully embody the view - Iceland has a stark beauty that can be seen from every angle of the tower, but the pictures do not do it justice. The view is only really accessible if you can squeeze yourself in to the rather small "windows", so may not be suitable for some.
  • Beautifully designed church, it's huge so you can spot it from nearly anywhere in the city. The Leif Erikson statue out front adds an extra bit of awesome to this church. It's located in the center of Reykjavik so it's not too far a walk from anywhere and is surrounded with cool shops and restaurants. Definitely worth the short walk to view.
  • A stunning church. The location of this church is great as it is a great midpoint and walk able from most of the air bnbs and hotels. If you do any tours in Iceland this is usually the pick up and drop off point which is nice as it easily found. You can also go into the church for a small fee and the views from above are absolutely breathtaking.
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