The surprising city 2 hours from London named the best in Europe even though it barely goes over 12C

By Staff

When you think of Europe’s top cities, London is a given. But there’s also Paris, Madrid, Vienna, and many more.

However, Reykjavik probably didn’t cross your mind.

Iceland’s capital has been overlooked for years, but in 2022 it finally got the recognition it deserves – being crowned the best city in all of Europe. Granted, it’s a bit out of the way, being in Iceland and all, and not as quick a trip as London to Paris, but if you give Reykjavik a chance, it really is something special.

READ MORE: European city that’s a cheaper version of Amsterdam that you can get to from London in an afternoon

For starters, it’s like something out of a fairy tale. The city’s name literally translates to ‘Smoky Lake’, referring to the steam that rises from the area’s hot springs.

Plus, if you head to the coast, you can spot whales, puffins, and dramatic coves that look like they’re straight out of an old pirate tale.

You might even get to see the Northern Lights, a breathtaking sight that tourists are amazed by and Icelanders consider quite ordinary. That’s why CountryLiving has named Reykjavik as the best European city of 2022.

The architecture may not be everyone’s cup of tea, with its unique mix of very old and very new, but the slightly rough-around-the-edges style suits the city’s rugged surroundings perfectly. The sight of lit-up church spires against a mountainous backdrop is particularly captivating.

If you’re a food lover, then Iceland’s unique dishes are sure to be an exciting adventure for your taste buds. Vogue has compiled a list of seven must-try foods if you’re keen to experience the local cuisine.

First up is a familiar favourite with a twist – the hot dog, but this one is made from beef, lamb and pork in true Icelandic style. Then there’s Skyr, a thick and creamy dish that’s not quite yoghurt but is sure to be a hit with dairy lovers.

The strangest dish on the list is fermented shark, which even most locals steer clear of. But it’s a symbol of a time when food was scarce and people had to find extreme ways to make it last.

So why not swap your usual Parisian cafes, Madrid sangria and Berlin raves for something a bit different this year?

You can find cheap flights on Skyscanner, and book accommodation on or

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