Visiting Harpa Concert Hall in Reykjavík, Iceland: schedules, prices, tips

Harpa Concert Hall

Harpa Concert Hall and Conference Center, whose walls reflect the surrounding sky, harbor and Reykjavik, opened in May 2011 and is home to the Icelandic Symphony Orchestra and the Icelandic Opera. The building, built in collaboration with renowned artist Olafur Eliasson, has a glass facade composed of small panels that change color with ambient light.

Harpa houses four halls, an auditorium with 1,800 seats, a spacious conference room, boutiques and catering businesses. In addition, the building has a gourmet restaurant, Kolabrautin, and a ground-floor bistro.

Harpa is a striking landmark in Reykjavik and we strongly recommend that you don’t bypass it. It has a great view of Mount Esja and Reykjavík harbor.

Harpa’s design and architecture

Construction of the building began in 2007, but was halted with the onset of the financial crisis in Iceland in 2008. Completion of the project was postponed indefinitely until the government decided in 2008 to fully fund the construction of the unfinished concert hall.

It is the first purpose-built concert hall in Reykjavík. The project was developed with consultants such as pianist Vladimir Ashkenazy and Jasper Parrott of HarrisonParrott.

The principal designers were the Danish architectural firm Henning Larsen Architects and the Icelandic architectural firm Batteriid Architect, who collaborated with the artist Olafur Eliasson. The glass panels of the building’s façade are much like the basalt columns found in many places in Iceland, such as at the Svartifoss waterfall.

In April 2013, Harpa Hall won the European Union Prize for Contemporary Art, presented by the Mies van der Rohe Foundation and the European Commission.

Opening hours

Harpa is open daily from 8:00 to 24:00.

What to see in Harpa?

Harpa is primarily a concert hall. Nevertheless, there are daily tours, during which guests are introduced to all the halls and given a glimpse behind the scenes. A visual tour of Iceland also awaits you. And, of course, there are plenty of great concerts and events every week, so be sure to check the schedule at the ticket office.

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Do I have to pay admission to Harpa?

Admission to the building is free. However, there is a daily tour fee, but it is inexpensive.

Where is Harpa located?

Harpa’s building stands next to Reykjavik Harbor. It can easily be recognized by its impressive facade.

GPS: 64.150475 N, -21.932876 W

Where to stay?

Photos

Harp Concert Hall Harp Concert Hall Harp Concert Hall

Places Nearby

House of Culture

The House of Culture was built between 1906 and 1908 to house the National Library and the National Archives of Iceland.

Reykjavík Art Museum

Reykjavík Art Museum is run by the city.

Eysturvödlur Square

The small Eysturvödlur Square in downtown Reykjavík has been the site of popular gatherings since 1930.

Parliament Building

The Althing was founded in 930 in the Tingvellir valley, which roughly translates to “field for tings.”

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Visiting Harpa Concert Hall in Reykjavík, Iceland: schedules, prices, tips

A 28,000-square-meter, 43-meter-high concert hall and conference center; hyper-modern steel architecture with colorful geometric windows inspired by the Icelandic basalt landscape; home of the Iceland Symphony Orchestra and the Icelandic Opera: the Harpa Concert Hall in Reykjavik bears all this name.

1. Schedule and prices

  • Schedule: Daily 8: 00-24: 00, box office open from 12: 00-18: 00
  • Best time to avoid lines: at least an hour before the show starts, and as for the ticket office, it’s best to buy your ticket early in the afternoon to avoid the risk of lines.
  • Ticket price: guided tour 12,00 euros.
  • Free: you can enter and visit the Harpa concert hall for free, without an audio guide or guided tour.

Visiting Harpa Concert Hall in Reykjavik, Iceland: schedules, prices, tips - Photo 2

1. Schedule and prices

Online tickets and tours. What to see and how to visit Harpa Concert Hall

Harpa Concert Hall has a store with Nordic design merchandise, there are also 2 tour operators who can organize any event thanks to their diverse team, a restaurant-cafe for lunch, a restaurant-bar for dinner and after dinner and finally a great store with all kinds of gifts, books and flowers.

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As for the main structure of Harpa, there are eight main rooms:

Eldborg, the largest room in the entire complex, designed with all the attributes of the best international venues, with acoustic technology capable of adapting to different types of music, conferences and events, with a capacity of 1,800 people.

Visiting Harpa Concert Hall in Reykjavík, Iceland: schedules, prices, tips - Photo 3

Online tickets and tours. What to see and how to visit Harpa Concert Hall

Bjrtuloft (or Bright Lofts) is the area at the top of the Harpa Concert Hall, with spectacular views of Reykjavik, the sea and Mount Esja. It is an ideal elegant venue for business meetings, private dinners and events by appointment. Spread over 2 floors, with a total area of 400 square meters, it accommodates about 200 people inside and almost 300 if you consider the outdoor terrace.

Meeting rooms – Harpa offers a wide range of meeting rooms, the largest of which, the Rma, can also be divided into two parts. Each room has everything you need to hold any type of meeting.

Haloft – on the eighth floor of Harpa is this magnificent room with a view of the west side of the city, the harbor and the surrounding mountains, so much so that it has been called the “Little Roof of Reykjavik,” with its 200 square meters of space, huge screens and a bar with a bar on.

Kaldaln is Harpa’s smallest room, located on the first floor, suitable for any event, conference, concert, meeting. It seats 195 people and has a movable stage that can be used as a platform for various events.

Harpa Concert Hall in Reykjavík, Iceland: schedule, prices, tips - Photo 4

Online tickets and tours. What to see and how to visit Harpa Concert Hall

Norurljs – This hall can host various events, especially small concerts and exhibitions, with a fully customizable specialized lighting system and a capacity of 520 people.

Harpa Concert Hall in Reykjavík, Iceland: schedule, prices, tips - Photo 5

Online tickets and tours. What to see and how to visit Harpa Concert Hall

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Silfurberg is a superb conference room, named after the rare and translucent crystal in Iceland, with a capacity of 840 people, with a mobile stage and acoustic technology, fully adaptable to different events.

Harpa Concert Hall in Reykjavík, Iceland: schedule, prices, tips - Photo 6

Online tickets and tours. What to see and how to visit Harpa Concert Hall

Fli, Eyri, Hrpuhorn, Norurbryggju are various reception and exhibition spaces from 300 to 1000 square meters, suitable for small and large events.

3. Where it is and how to get there

  • By foot: 900 meters from Reykjavik City Council through Vonarstrti, then follow the main Lkjargata route to your destination
  • By bus: starting from the municipality, walk to the Rhsi bus stop, wait for bus 12 or 13 which runs every 15 minutes, and after 5 minutes get off within walking distance of the destination
  • By car: starting from the municipality, the route by car is the same as by bus or on foot, go through the two streets Vonarstrti and Lkjargata, then turn to Inglfsgarur to park right in front of the Harpa concert hall.

4. Useful tips for visiting the attraction

  • Buy a city card: this is necessary to have at your fingertips all the information and possible discounts throughout the city: you can choose from 3 types of cards, depending on how much time you have 24/48/72 hours to visit Reykjavik, cost from 17.50 euros.
  • Minimum time: due to the large size of the building, it is recommended to allow at least a couple of hours to visit, including a guided tour of less than 1 hour and a stop at the various stores and restaurants located in the building.

A visit to Harpa Concert Hall in Reykjavík, Iceland: schedules, prices, tips - Photo 7

4. Useful tips for visiting the attraction

5. Historical notes, curiosities and practical information: what you need to know

Construction on the ashes of the abandoned financial and commercial district started in 2007 by the Danish studio Henning Larsen in collaboration with the Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson, but work was interrupted after just one year because of the severe crisis that hit Iceland in 2008, so much so that for several years it was the only active construction site in the country. Inaugurated on May 4, 2011 with a gala concert by the Icelandic Symphony Orchestra, it is a true symbol of Iceland, whose importance has not diminished over the years and has been reinforced by several international television series that have chosen it as the location for filming some episodes.

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