The magical winter landscape

Snow time is Show time in the Westfjords

Listen up, all ye inhabitants of warmer climes! Winters in the Westfjords are calling and you have a chance to experience what true blue, freezing cold looks, sounds and feels like. Winters in the Westfjords are beautiful, unique, and fabulous: even for those who don’t want to just sit with a cup of hot cocoa

Westfjords town tours

Hornstrandir: where homes became history

When descendants of the original residents set up temporary homes every summer on Hornstrandir, there’s something to be said for roots. You learn, with time, that they indeed run deep. A beautiful-but-unforgiving place to live, this northernmost claw of the Westfjords was eventually abandoned in the early 1950s, when locals decided they could no longer

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Stories of a culture: the folklore of the Westfjords

Among the very first parts of Iceland colonised by the early Norse settlers, the Westfjords’ folklore is echoes wise old people in a new land. It marks the close relationship between nature’s bounties and man’s destiny, the legacy of the sea and a rugged, remote terrain set in extreme climes. Stories of sea monsters and

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Puffins: the ‘clowns of the sea’

Atlantic puffin pairs mate for life and share parental responsibilities. Small, sturdy and utterly unmistakeable, the Atlantic (a.k.a. common) puffin is a member of the auk family of sea birds that breeds in and around Iceland. Called ‘lundi’ in Icelandic, the bird, with its cute, waddling walk and penguin-like colours juxtaposed with a colourful beak

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Chasing the puffin party

The Atlantic puffin holds pride-of-place in Iceland, but especially in the Westfjords, that is able to boast of the largest sea bird cliffs and prettiest islands from where you can see them. A word of caution though: just because they are confident in body language and far from shy, it does not mean that they

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Beaches in every hue

The beaches of the Westfjords tell their own story. Majestic, unexplored and different, it’s time you got acquainted with them. Sure, they aren’t the Bahamas or Hawaii, but the beaches of the Westfjords need to be nothing other than themselves. They have nature on their side. Raudasandur Did this beach get its name from the

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Isafjordur at a glance

Ísafjörður (often adapted as Isafjordur in other languages) is the name of the largest town and de-facto capital of the Westfjords region. The name loosely translates to “Iced fjord” because part of its sheltered landward end freezes on cold days in winter—unlike most other fjords. Isafjordur town centre sits on a large peninsula in the

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The Wild Westfjords at a glance

The stunning and mysterious Westfjords region is a large peninsula in northwest Iceland. It is one of the country’s administrative districts, with infrastructure including a regional police commissioner, court service, general hospital, health & safety directorate and more. The region’s nine municipalities work together in key areas of shared interest to give them a strong

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Svalvogar: encircling the dream

Svalvogar is the dream road that promises to take your breath away with its sheer beauty and natural bounties. Its rugged charm is not for everybody. For those with an appetite for adventure, often along abandoned and uninhabited terrain in a super jeep or mountain bike, the Svalvogar route is straight out of a thriller.

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Strandir: The coasts of sorcery and scenery

Strandir (simply ‘Coasts’ in English) comprises the eastern edge of the Westfjords peninsula and boasts of beaches strewn with driftwood. There are seals and Arctic foxes, waterfalls, hot springs, and wild vistas interspersed with tiny villages and amazing tales of sorcery in centuries gone by. The posterchild for rural depopulation in Iceland in the 20th

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The horse with five gaits

In solitary splendour the Icelandic horse has thrived and flourished since the first settlers brought their horses with them to Iceland over a thousand years ago. The unique Icelandic breed is remarkably social, curious, fun-loving, friendly and inquisitive. After centuries in the role of “most essential servant”, the horse also has a strong mind and

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Honeymoon in the Westfjords

With a week or two in hand, and a newly minted spouse on your arm, surely it’s time to head to Iceland, and specifically the Westfjords, for the honeymoon of your dreams! The pristine landscapes, jaw dropping beauty, and happy solitude far away from the thundering crowds are among the region’s biggest draws. What better

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Forage for treats

The gorgeous Icelandic landscapes are more than just hiking, biking and swimming: they’re also delicious, if you know where to look. Grab a bucket or basket to hold your treasures and get set to cook with what you can find in this land so full of edible flowers, fruit, seaweed, mushrooms and seafood. There’s something

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A bounty of blossoms

The ‘land of fire and ice’ doesn’t sound particularly rosy, perhaps, but there are few more lovely sights than an Icelandic meadow or valley in spring and summer. The volcanic soil, the round-the-clock daylight, and the regular rain make for a landscape of lush green, studded with delicate flowers. People’s gardens at home are often

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A tasty twist

Alright then: chances are you have a vague idea about Iceland’s ‘crazy’ food culture that features some of the seemingly freakiest food on the planet. Allow us to stop you right there. Sure, these ‘delicacies’ exist, but Iceland offers so much more. It’s all about farm-fresh ingredients, delicious dairy and seafood to die for. Local

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Peak the Westfjords

The often-demanding routes to the top of the region’s tallest mountains are best undertaken with the help of a guide. The Westfjords is already a beautiful and remote region, but high above sea level the lonely tranquillity is next level. The photo ops are as endless and unparalleled as the landscape and it is one

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Made in the Westfjords ❤️

The Westfjords region is pure and clean partly thanks to the fact that it does not have large-scale industry. This doesn’t mean there’s nothing being made here, though. Far from it. Fishing and farming have historically been the backbones of the Westfjords economy. Tourism has grown in the last couple of decades but still remains

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The call of the wild

Given the unique topography and climate, the wildlife of the Westfjords is of great interest to most visitors. Diverse species of birds, seals, whales, dolphins, and the Arctic fox are everywhere. All you need is some planning, efficient guidance and patience. Here are some of the most commonly found fauna. Seals One of the most

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Cruising the Westfjords

While most visitors visit the Westfjords on a road trip, there is something to be said for the timelessness of ocean travel. Visitors arriving by sea have arguably the most historically accurate vision of Iceland, where long journeys in centuries past were often taken by sea rather than by land. Some roads now considered essential

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A big world for little ones: Westfjords with kids

Like most parents, chances are you’re lamenting that your kids don’t do enough things outdoors; whether for want of time, opportunity, or interest. If this is among your chief quibbles, what better way to introduce your kids to the myriad mysteries of nature, wildlife and the outdoors than the wondrous Westfjords? The range of activities

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The Westfjords winds of romance: a proposal to remember

There are a million ways to pop the question to the love of your life. One way is to frequent the usual romantic capitals of the world; maybe London, Paris, Rome, or Casablanca; the other is to push the envelope a bit further and propose in a destination off the beaten track, like the Westfjords.

Aldrei music festival

The sounds of the fjords

The music of Iceland is a famously celebrated mix of every genre you can imagine – with emphasis on folk and pop, as well as classical and contemporary music. Among this cacophony, the Westfjords region has its own strong voice, thanks to artists like Between Mountains, Celebs, Skuli Mennski, Grafik, Arny Margret, and the rock

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Sporting events of the Westfjords

Apart from the endless opportunities for hiking, biking, kayaking, and camping, there are specific sporting events that have become indispensable parts of the Westfjords calendar. The Fossavatan Ski Marathon The oldest ski race in Iceland, the Fossavatn Ski Marathon traces its Isafjordur history back to 1935, and in 2014 it became part of the coveted

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On exciting turf: the turf roofed houses in the Westfjords 

The architecture of a region tells multiple stories on a singular platform: stories of survival and ingenuity, of making the most of the raw materials available in that geography and time, of progress and hope and of man’s eternal quest to make himself a little more comfortable. All the above narratives hold true even in

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Pools of joy: The hot springs of Westfjords

“A spring of naturally hot water, typically heated by subterranean volcanic activity.” That’s what the dictionary says. All good so far, except there’s no definition to adequately explain how much of a coveted experience they actually are, especially in the Westfjords, Iceland. They’re where visitors like to unwind, take a dip, relax, laugh, swim and

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Of Collectors’ items & curious memories: The museums of the Westfjords 

To think of museums simply as places to see collections of old items is to miss the point. Museums are much more than that, especially the ones in the Westfjords. A fine mix of history and folklore, art and heart, craft and culture, and above all, a crucible of human ingenuity in an environmentally extreme

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Roll call of flavour: A taste of the Westfjords

They say the best way to get to know a place is to eat it. The distinctive taste of the fruit, the warmth of traditional sweets and the aroma of free-range meats infused with local herbs will tell you amazing stories of heritage, culture, survival, creativity, and love. The cuisine of the Westfjords is distinctly

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Best local experiences in the Westfjords

It’s one thing to visit the Westjords, another to delve deep into the essence of this remote, but individualistic region. If it’s the latter you wish to do, here are some tips on how you can experience the life of a local. Hike every mountain Hiking comes naturally to most Icelanders and the rugged Westfjords

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The Arctic Fox: A solid saga of survival

This little creature is to Iceland what the Bengal tiger is to India and the kangaroo to Australia: synonymous with the local country and fully resonant with its topography. The Arctic fox is Iceland’s only native land mammal. Also known as the snow, polar or white fox, this creature is the smallest member of the

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Drinking in the Westfjords

The bars of the Westfjords are the perfect place not just to eat and drink but also to bond with the locals, experience the culture and get a feel for what life in the remote towns and villages is like. Husid, Isafjordur Husid, or ‘The House’, is a cafe by day and a cozy bar

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