|Shopping in Reykjavik|
Despite rumors that Reykjavik is an expensive city, its prices are generally low. Moreover, when it comes to high fashion or designer wear, Reykjavík prices are usually lower, thanks to reasonably priced retail space and lower overhead.
There is a variety of places to shop in Reykjavík. In the picturesque city centre, you can enjoy walking around the main shopping streets - Laugavegur, Bankastræti, Austurstræti, Hafnarstræti, Skólavördustígur and Hverfisgata.
Laugavegur is the primary commercial artery of downtown Reykjavík, Iceland and one of the oldest shopping streets. The name means "wash road", as it used to lead to the hot springs in Laugardalur where in olden times the women of Reykjavík took their laundry for washing.
It has experienced economic setbacks in recent years mostly because of the increase in popularity of shopping malls, most notably Kringlan and the recent Smáralind. It still maintains the charm of a historical shopping street and is still home to the more exclusive stores in Iceland.
It is also home to many bars, nightclubs and restaurants. On Friday and Saturday nights the street is often filled with people all night long.
Outside the city centre, you'll be able to do some shopping in the warm comfort of a Kringlan Shopping Mall, a couple of minutes drive from the heart of the city, is an elegant mall with over 60 shops, a variety of restaurants and an adventure land for kids.
Further field, in the suburb of Kópavogur, is the country's newest mall, Smáralind Shopping Mall, which opened autumn 2001. Home to the nations first-ever hypermarket, Smáralind covers 63,000 square meters.From Hygea‘s secret beauty salon to the international newspapers of the day at the Eymundsson bookstore, Smaralind has everything to meet your needs. You can visit the furniture and decor store Líf & list, go leather purse hunting at Drangey, or build up your essential glacier hiking gear at 66°N, an Icelandic clothing producer since 1926, specialized in the great outdoors. Watches, engagement rings and design jewellery are available in Carat, Meba Rhodium, Leonard and Jón & Óskar Goldsmiths, to name only a few; some pieces are custom made, others are carved from Icelandic stones with themes inspired by Nordic mythology.
World renowned labels are available in Smaralind‘s bustling fashion stores. If you are looking for Zara, Benetton, Debenhams, Hugo Boss, Oasis, Karen Millen, Levi‘s, Topshop, Dorothy Perkins, Evans, Vero Moda, Jack & Jones, Vila, Name It, Joe Boxer, Dressmann, Ecco, SELECTED, La Senza or Polarn O. Pyret, you‘ll find it in Smaralind. Enough said? Well, if you are pondering on the prices, let us say just this: You will be pleasantly surprised. Relieved, even.
The top notch cinema complex Smarabio receives visitors with brand new international film selection and crispy local pop-corn, at the north end of the mall. The gem of the five hall selection - all equipped for conferences and meetings - is the Luxury Hall, already the talk of the town long before its inauguration in 2001. You will also find a wide range of cafés and restaurants in Smaralind, from take-away coffee bars to TV-chef Jói Fel‘s gourmet bakery to TGI Friday‘s. Along with the local ice-cream store, of course.
And just recently, a great new attraction was added to Smaralind, the new fun center called Skemmtigardurinn, where everyone can find something fun and exciting to do.
Shop for woolen goods (sweaters, jackets, blankets, scarves), gold or silver Viking-theme jewelry, Icelandic art (paintings, photographs, etchings or ceramics), stamps and coins, smoked salmon and herring, lava ornaments, Icelandic folk and popular music, and sheepskins (for cribs, car seats or rugs). The Reykjavik Handcrafter's Center near the Harbor has excellent sweaters and other local items.