A day from Akureyri: Siglufjörður and the Troll-Peninsula

Dalvík, Siglufjörður, Sauðárkrókur and Beyond.

The colourfully named Troll-Peninsula is the area immediately west of Akureyri and is the perfect destination for a day trip. The route north-west from Akureyri would take you through Árskógssandur, where you have a chance to visit the Kaldi Brewery, go whale watching or even take the ferry to Hrísey island, which is a famous birdwatching haven. Further north, you will get to Dalvík, famous for whale watching, and home to the Hvoll folk museum, featuring “Jóhann the giant (2,34m /7ft8in), and the Birdland exhibition. Here you can also go horseback riding or hop the ferry to Grímsey island, the northernmost inhabited point of Iceland which is also renowned for birdwatching.

After that you will pass through a tunnel to a view of the charming fishing town of Ólafsfjörður and have a chance to stop at a rest area in the uninhabited Héðinsfjörður valley. Then you arrive at Siglufjörður, a historic fishing town which rose to prominence during the 1950’s when there was an astounding upswing in the herring fisheries. Here you can visit the Síldarsafnið Herring museum, the largest Marine and Industrial museum in Europe, the Folk Music Centre, which preserves our more traditional music, and there is an endless list of outdoor activities to partake in such as fishing, hiking and sailing into the arctic circle. It’s also a great place to enjoy the local coastal culture with some seafood and a beer at one of the seaside restaurants.

Heading South-West from Siglufjörður on the other side of the peninsula, you will come to Hofsós, which was an important trading town in ages past. Here you can see the old tarred-timber Warehouse, built in 1777, pay homage to the huge and dramatic exodus of Icelanders to Canada at the Icelandic Emigration Center, or view some impressive basalt column rock formations at the nearby black-sand beach. And whatever you do, don’t miss the newly constructed Infinity Pool, where you bathe in the hot geothermal water but look out over the deep blue sea.

If you wish to make even more of your day you might even venture as far west as Sauðárkrókur though it may be getting late at this point. In and around the town you can visit the Glaumbær folk museum and a re-constructed traditional turf house, bathe in the mythological Grettislaug nature pool, or visit the Tannery Visitor’s Centre, the only tannery in Europe where you can see both animal skins and fish-leather being produced. In addition to this you have the option of horseback riding, bird watching, golfing, or even a boat trip to the dramatic Drangey island, famous for its birdlife.

Finally, in the nearby Varmahlíð area, there are companies offering river rafting experiences on both the east- and west- sides of Jökulsá river, one of which is family friendly, and the other not for the faint of heart! After all this, we warmly recommend driving back to Akureyri on the main road and going to sleep, tired but satisfied.

Day Tours, Activities and Adventures