Practical information


Iceland is an island in the North Atlantic. It is home to a progressive and peaceful nation that has formed a modern society where freedom and equality are held in high regard. Iceland continuously ranks near the top for measurements of quality of life, gender equality, and democracy and is one of the highest ranked countries in the world for health care, education and internet availability.

Iceland is a country of extreme geological contrasts. Widely known as “The Land of Fire and Ice”, Iceland is home to the largest glacier in Europe, and some of the world’s most active volcanoes. Iceland is also the land of light and darkness. Long summer days with near 24-hours of sunshine are offset by short winter days with only a few hours of daylight.

The cornerstone of Icelandic culture is the Icelandic language, which has spawned a literary tradition that dates back to the ancient Icelandic Sagas. These are tales of violent blood feuds, traditions, family, and character. A strong literary tradition still thrives in modern Iceland. Icelandic authors publish more books per capita than any other country in the world. Iceland also boasts a prospering music scene, a burgeoning film industry, and Icelandic design is coming of age.

  • Language: Icelandic. English is widely spoken and understood.
  • Currency: The Icelandic króna (plural krónur) – ISK.
  • Time: Iceland is on Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) throughout the year.
  • Size: 103.000 km2 (40.00 sq. miles), slightly bigger than Hungary and Portugal, and slightly smaller than Cuba.
  • Population: 325,000 (January 2014). Median age is 35.6 years.
  • Capital city: Reykjavik. The largest municipalities are Reykjavik* (118,000); Kópavogur* (30,000); Hafnarfjörður* (25,000); Akureyri (17,000); Reykjanesbær (14,000). *Cities in the capital region.
  • Government: Parliamentary constitutional republic.
  • Religion: Predominantly Christian
  • Glaciers: Glaciers cover 11,922 km2 (4,600 sq. miles) of the island’s surface. Vatnajokull National Park is the largest national park in Europe.
  • Highest point: Hvannadalshnjúkur peak 2,110 m.
  • Natural resources: Fish, hydropower, geothermal energy.
  • Flag: Blue with a red cross outlined in white. The colors are symbolic for Iceland: red is for the volcanic fires, white recalls the snow and glaciers, and blue is for the skies above.

Iceland is conveniently located between Europe and the east coast of the United States of America. Travel time is about 5-6 hours by flight from the USA and 2-4 hours from Europe.

Icelandair is the national carrier and there are multiple alternative carriers servicing Keflavik airport, Iceland’s main international airport.


The Reykjavík Global Forum maximises sustainability, and has the ambition of being carbon-neutral.

We have partnered up with Airport Direct who has an existing program of airport shuttles to provide bus transfers for our Conversationists from Keflavík airport to the following hotels from Sunday 17th 14.00h to Monday 18th until 14.00h:

  • Canopy by Hilton
  • Hilton Reykjavík Nordica
  • Icelandair Hotel Reykjavik Marina
  • Icelandair Hotel Reykjavik Natura
  • Reykjavik Konsúlat Hotel by Hilton

The transfers leave every hour from Keflavík Airport and transfer time into Reykjavík is around 50min. Please check in with the Airport Direct transfer desk in the Arrivals lounge to receive your complimentary bus voucher.

The Forum will only provide airport transfers from Sunday 17th 14.00 to Monday 18th until 14.00. If you arrive at other times you will be able to purchase your bus ticket from Airport Direct or make other arrangements. There is no pre-booking necessary for the bus service.

Should you want to book a private car or if you need further information on transportation please contact

Please note that you will have to make your own travel arrangements back to the airport. Your hotel will be able to help you with this.


The Forum will not be providing shuttle busses to various hotels, so it is up to each Conversationist to get to and from Harpa. The exception to this is as follows:

18th November Busses provided:

15.30 Hilton Nordica Hotel  – Welcome Reception

18.00 Welcome Reception – Celebrating Creativity

20.00 Celebrating Creativity – Hilton Nordica Hotel

19th November Busses provided:

08.20  Hilton Nordica Hotel – Harpa

17.15 Harpa – Hilton Nordica Hotel

18.45 Harpa – Hilton Nordica Hotel

20th November Busses provided:

08.20  Hilton Nordica Hotel – Harpa 

17.45 Harpa – Hilton Nordica Hotel


Please find below booking links to 5 hotels near the Harpa Conference Centre (click on the hotel name to book):

Reykjavik Konsúlat Hotel by Hilton
450 m from Harpa (6 mins walk)
Reykjavik Konsúlat Hotel by Hilton is situated in the oldest part of Reykjavík at the junction of Icelandic history and style. This 4 star hotel is situated downtown, only 5 minute walk from Harpa Conference Centre.

Icelandair Hotel Reykjavik Marina
650m from Harpa (7 mins walk)
Reykjavík Marina is a 4 star hotel located by a slipway in the old downtown harbour district of Reykjavík, where it has a unique view of the ocean and is about 7 minutes walk from Harpa Conference Centre.

Canopy by Hilton – To book a room at Canopy please email mentioning the forum in the subject
800m from Harpa (10 mins walk)
The 4-star Canopy By Hilton Reykjavik City Centre Hotel is located downtown, off the high street, less than 10 minute walk from Harpa Conference Centre.

Hilton Reykjavík Nordica
2.8km from Harpa (8 mins by car)
Hilton Reykjavík Nordica is a 4-star hotel located a few minutes drive from Harpa Conference Centre. The hotel’s amenities and facilities include a fine dining restaurant, spa facilities, multiple meeting spaces and a fitness center. On November 18th, lunches will be hosted at Nordica and busses leave from this hotel for activities and Welcome reception.

Icelandair Hotel Reykjavik Natura
3km from Harpa (9 mins by car)
Icelandair Hotel Reykjavík Natura is located a few minutes drive from the Harpa Conference Centre, next to the Reykjavik Airport. The hotel is certified as a Green Hotel and operates accordingly.


For information on passport and visa requirements as well as the Schengen area regulations, visit the website of the Icelandic Directorate of Immigration

Should you need an invitation letter for your visa, please contact us at

Advisory Committee

Advisory Committee
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  • Ann Cairns

    Vice Chairman, Mastercard

  • Hanna Birna Kristjánsdóttir

    Chair of the WPL Executive Board

  • Kristín Árnadóttir

    Ambassador Special Envoy for Gender Equality of Iceland, (on behalf of Gudlaugur Thór Thórdarson, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Iceland)

  • Michele Parmelee

    Deloitte Global Chief People and Purpose Officer

  • Silvana Koch-Mehrin

    President of WPL

  • Victoria Budson

    Executive Director of the Women and Public Policy Program at the Harvard Kennedy School

OUR Team

  • Ana Martínez, Social Media Assistant

    Brussels Office

  • Angela Lowe – Programme & Communities Manager

    Brussels Office

  • Assita Kanko – Special Senior Advisor

  • Avni Kondhia, Project Assistant

    Reykjavík Office

  • Bettina Appel, Programme Director

    Brussels Office

  • Chiara Gonzi, Project Coordinator

    Brussels Office

  • Dee Thomsen – Managing Director

    Reykjavík Office

  • Dominic Nieper – Managing Director

    Reykjavík Office

  • Erik Boman – Accountant

    Brussels Office

  • Eyrún Þorsdottir – Intern

    Reykjavík Office

  • Gioconda Carrera Herrera – Programme Director

    Brussels Office

  • Helga Arnardottir – Press Officer

    Reykjavík Office

  • Hrund Gunnsteinsdottir – Special Programme Advisor

    Reykjavík Office

  • Lilja Dögg – Advisor

    Reykjavík Office

  • Lucia de Luca – Managing Director, Communication and Programme

    Brussels Office

  • Rick Zedník – Managing Director

    Brussels Office

  • Ross Melzer – Partnerships Director

    Brussels Office

  • Sigthruður Armann – WPL Iceland Summit Ambassador/ Coordinator

    Reykjavík Office