Lake Tjˆrnin in the center of Reykjavik, Iceland
Zoonar Dagmar Richar/age fotostock
Despite being so close to the harbor and the ocean, Reykjavík’s city lake has a charm and atmosphere all its own. Bordered by a main road on one side and a string of pretty, colorful residences on the other, the natural, stone-edged Tjörnin is home to a community of ducks, swans, and geese that hang out here even in winter. A popular strolling spot to clear the cobwebs after a night out, it’s also often busy with local families and visitors, who come armed with bread for the waterfowl (but beware of the seagulls—they can be aggressive). The nearby Reykjavík City Hall is also worth a look for its huge 3-D relief map of Iceland, featuring clearly marked glaciers, volcanoes, and fjords.
Reflecting on the Icelandic Cityscape
The natural beauty of Iceland is well renowned , esp. its mesmerizing landscape comprising waterfalls, volcanoes, hot springs, and glaciers. But equally appealing is the perfect cityscape of its capital city! Strolling on the streets of Reykjavík one winter afternoon led me to this frozen lake in the town centre and facing the City Hall - a perfect place for a quick brunch of chocolate chip cookies and vanilla Skyr (traditional Icelandic dessert). I also couldn’t resist a walk on the lake - my first ever experience! I was joined by a bunch of cheerful Icelandic families, who were having some fun and frolic with their little ones. Astoundingly beautiful all year round and particularly fascinating during wintertime (off-peak season), Iceland had a lot to offer besides its many natural wonders. I loved wandering about the streets of Reykjavík (in particular, its lovely shopping district), and appreciating the colored houses and mythical street art along the way. Being extremely well-planned, easy to navigate and tourist-friendly, this small and artsy city is a fine example of urban design!
Feeding the Ducks at Tjörnin
Tjörnin is Reykjavik’s central lake and a highlight in itself. A stroll around it at least once is a must. You can check out the many varieties of birds—though be careful if feeding them as the bigger ones can be a bit aggressive!—and also visit the City Hall, which sits right on the lake, accessed by a narrow bridge. Best of all is walking around the lake at sunrise or sunset and watching the beautiful colors change on the water.
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