National Museum of Iceland

National Museum of Iceland

The National Museum of Iceland in Reykjavik is the best place to visit for a fascinating and in-depth journey through 1200 years of history through impressive exhibitions of artefacts from settlement to the modern age.

History of the National Museum of Iceland

Before the National Museum of Iceland was established in the mid-19th century, the art and objects exhibited today were kept in Danish museums and private collections. The idea of bringing the Icelandic collection together took shape in 1863 as a reflection of the country's growing national identity.

Originally known as the Antiquarian Collection and housed in various places across Reykjavik, including the Cathedral and the Parliament, the artifacts and works of art were not brought together until 1950, when their current home on Suðurgata was inaugurated.

What to see at the National Museum of Iceland?

Spread across three floors, the National Museum of Iceland exhibits more than 2000 pieces and works of art allowing visitors a fascinating and comprehensive journey through Icelandic history, from colonisation in the 9th century up to now.

From Viking drinking horns and ritual masks to beautiful Medieval stained glass windows and photographs showing the country's evolution during the 20th century, visiting the National Museum is the best way to learn about Icelandic culture and one of the must-see attractions during your stay in Reykjavik. Don't miss the Valþjófsstaður door, a 13th-century church door carved with the tale of a knight slaying a dragon and freeing a lion which becomes his companion!

Free audioguide & tour

The National Museum of Iceland offers all visitors a free audio guide service in 9 languages, including English, allowing you to discover more about the history of Iceland and the works on display.

What's more, every Saturday at 11 am, there's a free guided tour included in your museum ticket price. Tours on other days can also be booked for a fee.

Entry to Culture House

Admission to the National Museum also includes access to the Culture House, a smaller exhibition space located in Laugavegur. It doesn't take long to visit so it's worth having a look if you've already bought the National Museum ticket and you've got some spare time.


Daily from 10 - 5 pm
Closed Mondays from 16 September - 30 April


Adults: 2,500 kr (US$ 18)
Children under 18: Free
Students: 1,200 kr (US$ 8.60)
Seniors over 67: 1,200 kr (US$ 8.60)


Bus: lines 1, 3, 6, 12 and 14