Things to do in Reykjavik in June

June 1, 2023

If you’re in Iceland in June or planning on coming during this time, you’ve picked good month. We’ve mostly(!) moved out of winter mode at this time, it’s getting warmer and the nights are bright and beautiful. Looking for ideas of what to do? Here are our top things to do in Reykjavik in June.


Visit the Botanical Garden, Grasagarður

This hidden gem situated just next to the Reykjavik Zoo and not far from the Laugardalslaug swimming pool, is a perfect getaway for a serene walk amidst the busy city life. Whether you are a couple, a family or just going solo, this is a place to have a walk and have a picnic. It will revitalize you with all the greenery around you while still being pretty much central in the capital of Iceland. If you are a plant lover, this is where you will see many interesting plant species and when you get tired, there is a café available where you can refresh yourselves.

Things to do in Reykjavik in June - Botanical garden


Explore the surreal aboard a midnight tour

Don’t you hate it when you go whale watching at 11 o’clock at night and you can’t see anything around you? Iceland has a solution for you! Why not join one of our Whale Watching Midnight Sun tours and enjoy the magical lighting and landscape around you while at the same time hanging out with our blubbery friends. For photography enthusiasts this tour is a given, as you experience the golden hour like never before. Do note, however, that this is a very mellow tour, so leave your stress behind and enjoy the serenity. An absolute must of things to do in Reykjavik in June.

Things to do in Reykjavik in June - Midnight sun whale watching


Be part of the local festivities

Two important days for Icelanders fall in this month and are thus ideal for our list of things to do in Reykjavik in June. I would like to mention two celebrations starting with the National Day or Þjóðhátíðardagurinn. June 17th is the day commemorating Icelandic independence from Denmark. This day includes parades, concerts, and outdoor activities happening downtown. The second celebration is one that chimes with the company’s core operation since we are a boat-based company. I am of course talking about the Fisherman’s day or Sjómannadagurinn that happens every year on the first Sunday of June which is the 4th of June this year. If you go to the Old Harbour of Reykjavik and the Grandi area on that day you can find some sort of nautical themed fun for yourself that sometimes even includes a short tour with the coast guard flagship Þór.

Things to do in Reykjavik in June - Fishermen's day


Make purple your colour – get lost in lupine fields

All around Reykjavik you can find large swathes of land covered in the beautiful purple colours of the Alaskan lupine. First of all you have to know that this is a controversial topic in Iceland. The story of the Alaskan lupine (Lupinus nootkatensis) in Iceland starts in 1945 when its seeds were brought in a briefcase from Alaska with the aim to revegetate an eroded part of the national wilderness. Pretty to look at for sure, but very few people at the time could have foreseen that it would be today considered by many an environmental disaster as this invasive species takes over more and more land each year. On the other hand, there are some that believe that this plant’s ability to reclaim large, barren land justify its presence in Iceland. Other than being a great conversation starter, it is a sight for sore eyes, whether you agree with its existence on this island or not. In any case, we won’t hold it against you if you get enchanted by this purple symbol of summer that transforms this country into an even more photogenic landscape.

Things to do in Reykjavik in June - Lupine fields

Iceland Nootka Lupin Flower Fields. Wikimedia Commons/Anjali Kiggal


Reconnect with your roots by celebrating the summer solstice

Be it Ancient Greek, Roman, Chinese, Native American or European pagan beliefs, they all had in common putting Summer Solstice at a very central position of celebrating natural phenomena. This comes even more into focus with people that live in extreme latitudes. After enduring cold and darkness for half a year, no wonder the day that the Northern hemisphere is the most tilted towards the sun (and thus the longest day of the year) is a symbol of light, fertility, renewal, good harvest and generally a good feeling that comes with exposure to sunlight. Why not head into nature and celebrate this special day as our ancestors did by having a feast in nature, designing a flower crown or take a walk barefoot in the morning dew. Save the date, June 21st at 14:58 UTC.


See the puffins, because you can

During the wintertime, whale watching and northern lights tours there is quite a few people that ask us about these delightful little birds. Unfortunately, I always must give the sad answer that disappoints them and that is that they are simply not in Iceland. June on the other hand, is an ideal time to visit them and what is best of all, you can do it all from the comfort of the capital city. The islands of Akurey, Engey and Lundey all host decades-old colonies that come there every summer to breed. All these islands are within a 5 km. radius from dock where our boats are moored, so it is just a short ride to the improbability of puffins (this is one of the collective nouns given to a group of puffins, believe it or not!). The puffins are also a must on a your list of things to do in Reykjavik in June!

Things to do in Reykjavik in June - Puffin watching

The puffins say hi!


Written by: Lucas Heinrich, Special Tours guide