Culture Night this Saturday

Culture Night 2018 will be held for the 23rd time on August 18, the birthday of Reykjavík City. No festival in Iceland draws as many people as this one.

There will be all kinds of festivities, including acting, dancing and poetry writing on demand. A number of residents will even offer entertainment in their yards, and you have the option of attending a plastic recycling workshop.

The opening ceremony will take place at Hafnartorg square, downtown. There will be live music and guests have a chance to become acquainted with the area around the square, in addition to viewing an exhibition of the area, which is still under construction. This is a unique opportunity, because the construction area will be closed again, following the festivities, and won’t reopen until construction has been completed.

Among the events scheduled is The Top, directed by the cultural transforming artist, a new role created for Culture Night. The first person to hold that title is actor Jóhannes Kristófer Stefánsson. He will transform the top floor of a parking garage at Hverfisgata 20 into a lounge rooftop bar. Cars will be replaced by people, dust by plants, and traffic noise by cultivated house music.

Brass bands will resolve their decades-long dispute in a battle of bands by Tjörnin pond and fight to the last tune. The prize includes bragging rights that are good for a year. Residents of the Faroe Islands will perform at Reykjavík City Hall as special guests. They will exhibit design from the Faroe Islands, as well as photographs, and musicians will sing their native songs.

Three major concerts will take place downtown, The Rás 2 Concert at Arnarhóll hill, Bylgjan Garden Party at Hljómskálagarðurinn park, and the Hip Hop Festival at Ingólfstorg square. In addition to these, hundreds of musical events are scheduled throughout the city.

Every museum in the city center offers free admission and a diverse program of entertainment into the evening. Harpa Concert Hall offers an ambitious program between 1 and 6 pm, concluding with a fireworks display at 11 pm.

During Culture Night, all of downtown is open to pedestrian traffic only. No motorized vehicles will be allowed between 7 am on Saturday and 2 am Sunday morning. This is done to ensure the safety of pedestrians. Guests are encouraged to go downtown on foot, by bike, or to use public transportation.

Those who must drive from farther away are advised to park in parking lots on Borgartún and in Laugardalur, from where free shuttle rides will be offered to and fro the festivities from 7:30 am on Saturday until 1 am Sunday morning.

Anyone parking illegally will be fined. Bus rides will be free all day, and buses will run according to schedule until 10:30 pm. After that, rides will be more frequent. You can view the schedule here.

Handicap parking spaces will be available on Skúlagata, Túngata and by Tækniskólinn technical high school. You also have the option of taking a taxi to Skólavörðuholt, Skúlagata, Túngata and the BSÍ bus terminal. Accessible restrooms for people with disabilities will be located throughout downtown.

For further information regarding Culture Night, visit




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