Vestmannaeyjar, or the Westman Islands, is a volcanic island archipelago only a half hour ferry ride from the south coast of Iceland, and just a couple of hours travel from Reykjavík. The natural beauty, wildlife and history will astound everyone who visits this stunning collection of islands. Come with us to explore a true gem of Iceland, one that the locals love to explore themselves.
We start the day with a drive to Landeyjahöfn, as we pass through all the astonishing scenery the south coast of Iceland has to offer, including waterfalls, glaciers and volcanoes where we catch the ferry over to the Westman Islands. The main island, Heimaey, was almost destroyed by a volcanic eruption in 1973 resulting in a full town evacuation. We will go to the Eldheimar Museum and learn all about how the eruption destroyed hundreds of homes and lasted for months, making it the “Pompei of the North”. From here you can see the lava and new section of the island that was created in 1973, with the island increasing in size by over 20% from all the new lava. We will also take the time to make the short hike (approx. 30 minutes up) to the top of Eldfjall volcanic crater, the source of this devastating eruption.
The Westman Islands is home to some of our favourite restaurants. We have lunch at GOTT, whose cosy and delightful restaurant uses only fresh, authentic ingredients. All sauces, broth, soups, bread and cakes are made from scratch at the restaurant, with the fish brought fresh from the market every morning. This is sure to be one of your favourite meals in Iceland, with lunch included in the tour price.
After lunch we have more time to explore the islands. This can be in two ways. With your Hidden Iceland guide you can head to the southern side of Heimaey to explore the cliffs, farms and go on a short walk in the search of puffins. In summer the Westman Islands is one of the best places in Iceland to view Puffins, it is always a delight to see these incredibly cute birds. Alternatively you can join a 1 hour RIB boat ride with our partners from RIB Safari. Exploring the islands by boat is a fantastic and fun way to do it, and RIB Safari will ensure you have one of the more exhilarating rides of your lives. The boat ride takes you deep inside sea caves, and around the small islands scattered of Heimaey that are otherwise inaccessible. If you are lucky you may even get close to the array of wildlife around the islands, like whales and Puffins. It is amazing to see the islands from this angle. If you want to join the 1 hour RIB Boat tour (12,900 ISK / 6,900 ISK per person) please choose this as the optional extra at booking.
This trip is run in summer only, upon request, with a minimum of 4 people per trip. If 4 people are not yet booked you can book 4 people to confirm departure. If we get more sales, we will refund you the extra seats you paid for. Speak to us by email to take this option.