<interview by persis shanker>
check into reykjavik downtown hostel and you’re literally checking into a nice little comfort zone while you’re in the city.
cold, weary travelers booked into this place during the winter are ready to just go into grizzly bear hibernation mode thanks to the hostel’s warm, inviting vibes.
the hostel is part of 2 hostelling international venues in reykjavik. it opened its doors in march 2009 and it has been an eco certified place to stay since 2010.
elín edda pálsdóttir, the head of reception at the hostel tells us more about the place and what fun stuff guests can do during their stay there.
reykjavik downtown hostel is a popular place with a lot of guests around the world during the airwaves festival and beyond. besides those activities, what other stuff can the hostel recommend to guests during the winter season?
the hostel is situated in the very heart of reykjavík, only a few minutes from the city’s cafés, bars and restaurants. our receptionists are always willing to recommend different concerts or activites going on around town. here at the hostel we organize documentary and movie nights, and also have our own concert series called “live in the lobby”. we are also happy to help our guests book tours here in reception, in the wintertime you can try everything from glacier hikes or whale watching to bus tours around the beautiful countryside, and then there are also the northern lights tours during the evenings.
are there any volunteer opportunities for guests during their stay here?
yes, there are sometimes opportunities for volunteers to stay at the hostel in exchange for work. volunteer posts are by request and depending on availability and the time of year. we can also sometimes give artists a free nights stay in exchange for performing here at the hostel.
we love the cozy and well-stocked kitchen behind the hostel. it’s a great way for guests to make friends and cook up a storm. what are some local dishes that guests can cook up easily while they are there?
one of our favourite local dishes is the super-easy-to-make “plokkfiskur“, or fish stew. it used to be a staple dish to make with fish leftovers, but nowadays people use fresh fish. here is an english recipe. apart from “plokkfiskur”, we really recommend that people visiting iceland try all kinds of seafood. you can buy cheap fish, shellfish and even minke-whale at kolaportið flea market during weekends.
have there been any celebrities to have dropped into the hostel during the airwaves festival?
all the fabulous artist that made our off-venue program this year one of the best ever are naturally our favourite celebrities but apart from them iceland’s arguably biggest celebrity – bjork – stopped by in our lobby during futuregraphers set.
reykjavik downtown hostel
Vesturgata 17, 101 Reykjavik, Iceland
+354 553 8120