Thursday, March 22, 2012

Around The World In 80 Cats #4: Iceland

On the rocks along the waterfront in Reykjavik

I've been reading a lot about Reykjavik lately (ok, maybe just a post on The Hairpin about it), but it seems like the purrfect travel destination to me. I mean, who wouldn't want to float around the Blue Lagoon, experience the Northern Lights, and hang out in a charming city where the streets are lined with...cats?

Cat sitting on a cemetery wall in Reykjavik

Lisa recently wrote in to share her experience vacationing on the Nordic European island, and confirmed its feline-friendly status:

"When my husband and I travel, we always try to find at least one cat to photograph. In 2006, we honeymooned in Reykjavik, Iceland, and were AMAZED at the number of cats everywhere. (I've attached a photo I snapped of a cat sitting on a Reykjavik cemetery wall.) Cats are very popular! I've heard (though I don't know if this is accurate or not), at one point, it was illegal to own a dog in Iceland. As a result, cats became the default pet. Today, you can have a dog, but cats still remain very popular."

(It's unclear to me whether it was ever truly "illegal" to own a dog there, but certain breeds were banned and ownership laws were made very strict, thus discouraging dog ownership.)

There aren't any specific cat-themed tourist destinations to visit in Reykjavik (besides you know, the whole city), but while you're there, you'd be wise to stop by the Grai Kotturinn (''the grey cat'') for breakfast. You (probably) won't see any real kitties in the basement bookshop-cafe, but rumor has it they serve "fluffy Icelandic pancakes smothered in whipped cream and rhubarb jam" that are definitely worth the trip!

"Probably an upper class downtown cat, well fed, well breed, and with royal blood."

Cat napping in a tourist shop

Out for a stroll

Reykjavik is a city of cats

Know of any cat-themed travel destinations or have some cool kitty vacation pics you'd like to share? Email me at!



Veronica said...

Hmm, do you know why the cats in the pictures all have that blue or red thing in their collar?

Catsparella said...

@Veronica Good question! I'll have to look into it!

cindy said...

absolutely beautiful post....the photos you chose capture the feel of iceland. if i had the money, i'd be on my way tomorrow!!

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