The remains of World War 2 in Reykjavik

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We do a lot of walking and exploring wherever we go (check out our walking tour of San Antonio Bay, Ibiza.) Reykjavik was no exception. We walked from one side of the city to another. This was a great alternative to the traditional sightseeing because we planned so poorly that we missed out on a lot of activities here. We were lucky that our exploring efforts brought us a huge reward on our last morning – the remains of World War 2 in Reykjavik.

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We were staying at the Icelandair Hotel Reykjavik Natura on the outskirts of the city. Right beside the hotel was a huge hill named Öskjuhlíð. At the top of this his was the famous Pearl which has panoramic views over the city. It was our aim to climb up to that and nip in before we had to check out. Unfortunately it was closed before 10am so we missed out on that, but we were rewarded for following the hidden paths on the forest-covered hills.

The pathways

The first paths we found led is through so much beautiful greenery. There were paths in every direction you could imagine. We thought they were there by chance, or maybe from kids or dog-owners walking the route so often.

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The remains of World War 2 in Reykjavik
The pathways looped through the trees

Finding old Fort walls

We were first rewarded by finding old walls which you could climb and explore. We later realised these were the walls of an old fort on the hill. You could walk along these and follow them until they dropped or grew to new levels. It was really exciting to find out where they went.

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The remains of World War 2 in Reykjavik
Tasha on the Fort walls

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We were first rewarded by finding old walls which you could climb and explore. We later realized these were the walls of an old fort on the hill.
David on exploring the Fort walls

Finding cover shelters

The next discovery we made when finding the remains of World War 2 in Reykjavik were cover shelters that troops used to shoot from. You know the kind with the little gap to peek out of? These were totally intact still and you could see that locals use them to drink beer in… Shame they didn’t clean up after themselves.

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The remains of World War 2 in Reykjavik
A cover shelter for shooting from

Bunkers

We also found some old war bunkers which were cool but super creepy. It took us a while to muster the guts to go right inside for a proper look.

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The remains of World War 2 in Reykjavik
Tasha wondering whether to take a look from inside

They were cold and creepy and full of art now. I think kids used these for parties too.

The remains of World War 2 in Reykjavik
Inside is full of art now

When we returned to the bottom of the hill we realized that there was a sign that signposted all of the old remains of World War 2 in Reykjavik and exactly where on the hill to find them! It turned out we had managed to explore and find all of them off our own backs – ha!

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It is totally worth going to look at these cool remains of World War 2 in Reykjavik, the view from the hill is totally rewarding too, you can see right over Reykjavik city.

remains of World War 2 in Reykjavik
The views from Öskjuhlíð hill

Have you explored the remains of World War 2 in Reykjavik? What did you think of them?

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Finding the remains of World War 2 in Reykjavik
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18 Comments

  • This is really interesting. I had no idea, that Iceland was even obviously that involved in 2nd WW times. We have been to Iceland and Reykjavik 2 years ago and were impressed but we totally missed to check out these relics. I can imagine this must have been a very special experience, I love to see such old and historical places, in Germany there also a lot of them (of course) – always very impressive and interesting to see them.

  • I never explored this area in Reykjavik though it does look interesting, I never realised they had bunkers. I visited in March so it was still a bit too cold to want to be outside for too long!! Such a great country with so much to see and do, hopefully I will get back there one day in summer so I can explore more of it 🙂

  • Oh didn’t now it would have anything related to WWII! We are looking into going this summer but not sure we will have time to check it out. It is so interesting though. At least for now we are happy to experience is through your eyes and words!

  • I’ve never been to this part of Reykjavik. It’s a shame because being the history buff that I like to think I am, this would be the perfect spot to explore. Maybe that is a reason to consider going back!

  • Its really nice to see a different side of Reykijavic and I had no idea about their involvement in WW2! I can’t wait to get to Iceland itself – and my list of things to see and do and is growing with every post I read – including this one! Thanks for the inspiration!

  • Visiting and exploring the historical monuments is definitely on list in any destination we visit. We had no idea Reykjavik has a wonderful site dedicated to the WWII site. Walking through the bunkers and the shelters sounds like a wonderful experience.

  • I’ve read so much about Reykjavik, Iceland, I’ve even visited and stayed there but had no idea of any world war 2 remains. The Fort and bunkers up there are incredible, I didn’t even know Iceland was involved in World War 2. You photographed the fort and view of the city from up there beautifully.

    • Thank you! I was starting to question myself but we read the signs and they said it was from World War 2! Really cool to see and an amazing view of the city from the top

  • Walking through a city is the best way to see it! I can’t believe what you came across on your journey. I love how you stumbled across everything and ended up seeing the signs afterwards!

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