One of the most iconic landmarks in Reykjavík is definitely the Lutheran Church, Hallgrímskirkja.
This church, which took 41 years to build, is known for being the tallest building in Reykjavík standing tall at 73 metres. Hallgrímskirkja is only about four metres shorter than the Smáratorg tower, the tallest building in Iceland.
Not only is this building popular for its height but it is also known for its unconventional architecture as designed by Guðjón Samuelsson, State Architect of Iceland in 1937. Personally, I really think the exterior of the church looks weird and some even declared it to be one of the strangest buildings in the world. However, the cool thing about this church is that its design is inspired by Iceland’s natural beauty.
“Many of Guðjón’s works carry strong references to Icelandic nature, particularly the basalt columns formed when a thick lava flow cools slowly into a polygonal joint pattern. The wings and the steeple of Hallgrímskirkja therefore look like cliffs of basalt columns,” –Iceland Magazine, Oct. 28, 2015
The interior design of the church is similar to its exterior but more beautiful, I would say. It’s simple, clean, and easy to the eyes. Its interior is definitely far from the interiors of the basilicas or cathedrals I’ve seen in London and Venice but still beautifully intricate in its own way.
With it being the tallest building in Reykjavík, it only follows that one gets the best view of the city from the top of Hallgrímskirkja. For 900 ISK (as of Jan. 2016), one can take the elevator up the building. Here’s the view from the top: