At the time of writing, it is the shortest day of the year. December 21 is here, and from now on until June, the days will become slightly longer every day.

The weather in December has been good and bad. November was among the warmest ever in Iceland, but when December came around, we went into a cold phase. We had freezing temperatures for days but no snow and hardly any wind.

Then as if by the turn of a switch, we got all the snow in one day as we probably should have gotten throughout the month. Obviously, that disrupted flights to and from the country, and people got stuck on the roads.

However, we’re almost back on track now; Christmas is just a few days away, no matter what happens.
The Christmas bank holidays in Iceland are December 24 (after 13:00), 25, 26 (like a Sunday), 31 (from 13:00), and January 1.

Many restaurants will be closed on the 24th and 25th.

What is open?

Hotel restaurants are the ones that are most likely to be open over the holidays. We’ve compiled a list of opening hours over the holidays. We recommend you save this blog post because we will update it with more restaurants.

Please note that many restaurants require you to book a table during the holidays. Some restaurants, like the Seafood Grill, have a set menu for New Year’s Eve and fixed times.

NameDec 24Dec 25Dec 26Dec 31Jan 1
The Sea Baron11:30 – 15:0011:30 – 15:0011:30 – 15:0011:30 – 15:0018:00 – 22:00
Apotek Kitchen and BarClosed17:00 – 22:0017:00 – 22:0017:00 – 22:0017:00 – 22:00
Food CellarClosedClosed17:00 – 22:3017:00 – 22:0017:00 – 22:30
Sushi SocialClosedClosed17:00 – 23:0017:00 – 22:0017:00 – 00:00
Tapas BarinnClosedClosed17:00 – 23:3017:00 – 22:4517:00 – 22:45
Café Loki09:00 – 17:0010:00 – 22:0008:00 – 22:0009.00 – 22:0010:00 – 22:00
Jörgensen Kitchen and bar11:30 – 00:0011:30 – 00:0011:30 – 00:0011:30 – 00:0011:30 – 00:00
Bastard Beer and FoodClosedClosed11:45 – 01:0011:45 – 01:0012:00 – 01:00
MonkeysClosedClosed17:30 – 22:0011:30 – 22:0017:30 – 23:00
101 Street Food11:00 – 22:0011:00 – 22:0011:00 – 22:0011:00 – 22:0011:00 – 22:00
Hressó Café08:00 – 16:00Closed08:00 – 22:0008:00 – 22:0010:00 – 22:00
The Cat CaféClosedClosed11:00 – 17:3011:00 – 15:00Closed
CarusoClosed14:00 – 21:00Closed14:00 – 21:0017:00 – 22:30
ForréttabarinnClosedClosed16:00 – 22:0017:00 – 22:0016:00 – 22:00
SjávargrilliðClosedClosed17:00 – 22:0017:00 – 22:0017:00 – 22:00
The Fish MarketClosedClosed17:30 – 22:3017:30 – 22:3017:30 – 22:30
Sæta SvíniðClosedClosed17:00 – 23:3011:30 – 23:0017:00 – 23:30

Opening Hours for Krónan, Bónus and Hagkaup

The three biggest grocery store chains in Iceland are Krónan, Bónus and Hagkaup. You can read more about them (and other stores) here.

Opening Hours for Krónan

Opening Hours for Bónus

Opening Hours for Hagkaup

Smáralind Shopping Mall

Christmas Eve09:00 – 14:00
Christmas DayClosed
Boxing DayClosed
Dec 27-2910:00 – 19:00
Dec 3010:00 – 20:00
Dec 3110:00 – 14:00
Jan 1Closed

Kringlan Shopping Mall

Christmas Eve09:00 – 14:00
Christmas DayClosed
Boxing DayClosed
Dec 27-2910:00 – 18:30
Dec 3010:00 – 20:00
Dec 3110:00 – 14:00
Jan 1Closed

Skeifan and Garðabær

Christmas EveOpen until 16:00
Christmas DayClosed
Boxing DayOpens at 10:00
Dec 27-2924h
Dec 3024h
Dec 31Open until 18:00
Jan 1Opens at 12:00

Akureyri, Eiðistorg and Spöngin

Christmas Eve08:00 – 16:00
Christmas DayClosed
Boxing DayOpens at 10:00
Dec 27-2908:00 – 00:00
Dec 3008:00 – 00:00
Dec 3108:00 – 18:00
Jan 1Closed

Swimming Pools

Swimming pools are essential to Icelanders, and there are almost 20 pools in the capital area. These are the opening hours for the holidays.

PoolDec 23Dec 24Dec 25Dec 26Dec 31Jan 1
Álftaneslaug06:30 – 18:0009:30 – 11:30ClosedClosed09:00 – 11:30Closed
Árbæjarlaug06:30 – 18:0009:30 – 13:00Closed12:00 – 18:0009:00 – 13:00Closed
Ásgarður (Garðabær)06:30 – 18:0008:00 – 11:30ClosedClosed08:00 – 11:30Closed
Ásvallalaug06:30 – 17:0008:00 – 13:00Closed08:00 – 17:0008:00 – 13:00Closed
Breiðholtslaug06:30 – 18:0009:00 – 13:00Closed12:00 – 18:0009:00 – 13:00Closed
Dalslaug06:30 – 18:0009:00 – 13:00Closed12:00 – 18:0009:00 – 13:00Closed
Grafarvogslaug06:30 – 18:0009:00 – 13:00Closed12:00 – 18:0009:00 – 13:00Closed
Klébergslaug11:00 – 18:0010:00 – 13:00Closed11:00 – 18:0010:00 – 13:00Closed
Laugardalslaug06:30 – 18:0008:00 – 13:00Closed12:00 – 18:0008:00 – 13:0012:00 – 18:00
Lágafellslaug06:30 – 18:0008:00 – 12:00Closed10:00 – 16:0008:00 – 13:00Closed
Setljarnarnes06:30 – 19:3008:00 – 1:30ClosedClosed08:00 – 12:30Closed
Sundhöllin06:30 – 18:0008:00 – 13:00Closed12:00 – 18:0008:00 – 13:0012:00 – 18:00
Sundhöll Hafnarfjarðar06:30 – 17:00ClosedClosedClosedClosedClosed
Suðurbæjarlaug06:30 – 17:0008:00 – 13:00Closed08:00 – 17:0008:00 – 13:00Closed
Sundlaug Kópavogs06:30 – 20:0008:00 – 12:00Closed08:00 – 18:0008:00 – 12:0010:00 – 18:00
Versalir06:30 – 20:0008:00 – 12:00Closed08:00 – 18:0008:00 – 12:0010:00 – 18:00
Varmárlaug06:30 – 18:0008:00 – 12:00ClosedClosed08:00 – 13:00Closed
Vesturbæjarlaug06:30 – 18:0009:00 – 13:00Closed12:00 – 18:0009:00 – 13:00Closed
Ylströndin11:00 – 15:00ClosedClosedClosedClosed11:00 – 15:00

Your Friend in Reykjavik During the Holidays

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