August 31, 2017
Kayla and Katie Green flew in early on a Thursday morning. In reviewing my journal, our day’s itinerary pretty much reads like a grocery list of Reykjavik’s premier watering holes. To say that we spent out first day together eating and drinking our way through Iceland’s capital city would be an understatement. But given our track record when the three of us travel, I don’t think anyone would expect it any other way. Given its quaint and manageable size, Reykjavik makes for the ideal bar crawl destination.
Since moving to Melbourne, I now understand how everyone else’s best day ever begins with a coffee, and Café Babalu was just the spot. We wandered down the street and found ourselves at Matwerk for an amazing lunch. Since I was already on autopilot to order the fresh catch of the day, their halibut did not disappoint. I even enjoyed Kayla’s lamb. Traveler trip: fish and sheep are two dishes that Iceland always knows how to properly prepare!
I would be remiss without mentioning that we spent our afternoon giggling at the sights in the Icelandic Phallological Museum. And yes, you read that correctly. Iceland has a museum full of penises and we got more up close and personal with all varieties of the male reproductive organ than we anticipated. I am still puzzled/intrigued/a little bit dismayed at the foundation of such a place. According to the creator, he came up with the idea in 1974 when he was given a “pizzle” or a bull’s penis as a child to use as a whip to heard cattle. People then started bringing him whale penises supposedly to tease him, and I guess inspiration morphed from there. There are now 289 specimens to feast your eyes on at his museum. Fun fact: can you believe that a sperm whale penis can measure up to 8 feet long? I’ll spare you the nightmares and not share my pictures of our adventures here.
After visiting the hardest place in town, happy hour shenanigans felt very much in order. We kicked things off at Kex Hostel, a former cookie factory overlooking the wharf. Then we sampled craft beers at Kaldi before indulging in White Russians at the Lebowski Bar inspired by the movie, The Big Lebowski. We met a rather burly, but friendly, Viking at a nearby cocktail bar Dillion, who insisted that we take a picture with him. We are still unsure of his reasoning behind insisting on a group photo as he spoke with a very thick accent. But nevertheless, at least we could say we met a real life Viking! Dancing continued at a fun Irish bar (when are Irish bars never not fun?) called Drunk Rabbit before we popped in for last call at Microbar. And no big night out in Reykjavik would be complete without a traditional Icelandic lamb hot dog. Next time, I’ll stick to Taco Bell and pass on ending my evening with such a delicacy.