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VESTMANNAEYJAR (WESTMAN ISLANDS)

The Westman Islands are a group of islands off the south coast of Iceland. They consist of 15 islands in addition to 30 cliffs and skerries that make up the archipelago. Heimaey is the only island inhabited all year long.

The first sources of the Westman Islands can be found in Landnáma, a medieval Icelandic written work which describes the settlement of Iceland. Landnáma tells the story of Ingólfur Arnarson, Iceland's first settler. His foster brother, Hjörleifur Hróðmarsson, was killed by his slaves. The slaves fled to the islands but Ingólfur Arnarson hunted them down and killed them. These slaves, originated from Ireland, were known as the West Men, thus the name, the Westman Islands. Still today, many places in the Westman Islands bear names from the event.

The first settler of the island of Heimaey was Herjólfur Bárðarson, who lived in the valley Herjólfsdalur, approx. in the year 900.

Three times in the history of the Westman Islands, the population has taken considerable dives. First in the year 1627 during the events known as the The Algerian Pirate Raid when 234 people were captured by pirates from Algeria. The islanders also suffered greatly in the early 18th century, when more than half of all newborns died from neonatal tetanus. Lastly, the population of the Westman Islands went from 5100 to 200, temporarily, during the 1973 volcanic eruption, as all the inhabitants fled to the mainland. Today around 4.300 people live in the Westman Islands.

There are two ways to get to Vestmannaeyjar, by ferry or by plane. The ferry Herjolfur sails up to five times a day from the harbour at Landeyjahöfn to Vestmannaeyjar and back again. The ferry ride takes approximately half an hour. Make sure to book in advance, especially if you intend to bring your car or motorcycle or caravan with you, as the ferry is very popular during summer when Icelanders are on holidays, too. The ferry Herjolfur can be found online and on facebook if you want to plan your trip early, and there is a bus servicing travellers wanting to get to Landeyjahöfn or back to Reykjavík, as well. Vetsmannaeyjar is only 20 minutes away from Reykjavik by plane. Eagle Air Iceland flies two times a day to and from Vestmannaeyjar. For further information please turn to Eagle Air's website where you can get detailed information on flight schedules and prices as well as book online. It's possible to fly with Atlatsflug from Bakki to Vestmannaeyjar. The tourist information in Vestmannaeyjar is also more than ready to assist you if you have any questions regarding your trip.

Visit Vestmannaeyjar invites you to explore our website and find out what the tourist industry has to offer for our visitors in Vestmannaeyjar. On our site you will find general information about the members of the tourist industry, services and upcoming events on the island. You can look for information on how to plan your journey, by ferry or by plane. Entertainment, boat trips and museums, you will find it in visitvestmannaeyjar.is! If you plan to stay overnight, which we totally reconmend, you can find information on accommodation and of course where to dine, restaurants, cafés or just at the typicall Icelandic "sjoppa", we have it all.

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VESTMANNAEYJAR (WESTMAN ISLANDS)
GPS Points N63° 26' 30.662" W20° 16' 37.658"
Postal codes

900

Population

4300

Travel directory for VESTMANNAEYJAR (WESTMAN ISLANDS)

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Others

Vestmannaeyjar Museum
Museums
  • Ráðhúsatröð
  • 900 Vestmannaeyjar
  • 488-2040, 892-9286
Lyngfell horse riding - Ása Birgisdóttir
Tour Operators
  • Lyngfell
  • 900 Vestmannaeyjar
  • 898-1809
Eyjavespur
Car Rentals
  • Höfðavegur 16
  • 900 Vestmannaeyjar
  • 481-1230
Viking Tours
Tour Operators
  • Suðurgerði 4
  • 900 Vestmannaeyjar
  • 488-4884
Stave Church Westman Islands
Saga & Heritage
  • 481-3555
Vestmannaeyjar Archive
Libraries & Archives
  • Safnahúsið við Ráðhúströð
  • 900 Vestmannaeyjar
  • 481-3194
Seabirds and Cliff Adventures Tours
Tour Operators
  • Illugagata 61
  • 900 Vestmannaeyjar
  • 893-2150
H-Göngur
Tour Operators
  • Flatir 16
  • 900 Vestmannaeyjar
  • 859-3559
Þekkingarsetur Vestmannaeyja
Tour Operators
  • Strandvegur 50
  • 900 Vestmannaeyjar
  • 481-1111
24seven
Booking Services
  • Faxastígur 9
  • 900 Vestmannaeyjar
  • 534-4700

Others

Guesthouse Heimir
Guesthouses
  • Heiðarvegur 1
  • 900 Vestmannaeyjar
  • 846-6500
Vestmannaeyjar Camping Ground
Camping
  • Herjólfsdalur
  • 900 Vestmannaeyjar
  • 846-9111
Glamping & Camping
Camping
  • Herjólfsdalur
  • 900 Vestmannaeyjar
  • 846-9111, 863-4224
Vestmannaeyjar Hostel
Hostels
  • Vestmannabraut 28
  • 900 Vestmannaeyjar
  • 481-2900
Guesthouse Hreiðrið
Guesthouses
  • Faxastígur 33
  • 900 Vestmannaeyjar
  • 481-1045, 699-8945

Others

Subway
Diners
  • Bárustígur 1
  • 900 Vestmannaeyjar
  • 571-5277
Café María
Cafés
  • Skólavegur 1
  • 900 Vestmannaeyjar
  • 481-3160
Café Varmó
Restaurants
  • Strandvegur 51
  • 900 Vestmannaeyjar
  • 866-6286, 481-1674
The Puffin
Pubs & Clubs
  • Kirkjuvegur 21
  • 900 Vestmannaeyjar
  • 481-3412
900 Grill house
Restaurants
  • Vestmannabraut 23
  • 900 Vestmannaeyjar
  • 482-1000

South Iceland

Towns & Villages

The south of Iceland has several towns and villages, each with its own style, charm and points of interest. Selfoss is the largest town and has a variety of shops, services, many restaurants and fast food places. Most towns are close to the main route, making them accessible and enjoyable.

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Map Höfn Kirkjubæjarklaustur Vík Vestmannaeyjar Hvolsvöllur Flúðir Laugarvatn Reykholt Laugarás Borg Brautarholt Hveragerði Árnes Selfoss Hella Stokkseyri Eyrarbakki Þykkvibær Þórlákshöfn