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16 San Diego Uptown News | July 22–August 4, 2011


TRAVEL RANDY KALP / TRAVEL REVIEW REYKJAVIK on a shoestring Photography by Bethany Salvon Five attractions in Iceland’s capital city for under $5 In recent years, Iceland’s capital, Reykjavik, has


emerged as an hip alternative to the major European pow- erhouses, like Paris and Rome. Brimming with fashionista charm, Reykjavik, dotted with boutiques, cafés and color- ful two-tone houses, is a city made for walking, and at sun- down it transforms into a playground for indie artists who lace the night air with melody well into the wee hours. Reykjavik’s only drawback is its expense. But like San Francisco or New York City, if you are diligent enough, it’s possible to find affordable attractions to offset the costs of the city’s high-priced nightlife and food.


For less than the price of a pint of Víking Sterkur at a Reykjavik pub, for instance, you can enjoy any of the five following high points of Icelandic culture:


LAUGARDALSLAUG THERMAL POOL Laugardalslaug is a great example of why swimming is a national sport in Iceland despite the country’s proxim- ity to the Arctic Circle. Considered the city’s largest geothermal pool, the complex houses a 50-meter outdoor pool, two water slides, numerous “hot pots” (Jacuzzis), an outdoor children’s pool, a thermal steam bath, indoor gym


and a mini-golf course (weather permitting). An all-day pass to Laugardalslaug costs approximately $2.50 (the locker rental is included in the price). And like the U.S. Postal Service, Laugardalslaug operates in all weather conditions.


HALLGRÍMSKIRKJA CHURCH (CHURCH OF HALLGRÍMUR)


Rising 244 feet above Reykjavik, Hallgrímskirkja see Reykjavik, page 17


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