Information about Hellnar

Hellnar is a fishing village with a long history, pictured in summer.

Hellnar is an old fishing village on the westernmost part of the Snaefellsnes peninsula. It used to be one of the largest fishing stations of the peninsula, with the oldest written record of seafaring there from 1560.

History of Hellnar

Historically, the settlement was a hub of activity, with many trading and fishing vessels pulling in and out of the harbour daily. There were many farms around the area, and by 1703, 38 houses.

Though by modern international standards this was nothing, it was rather significant for Iceland at the time.

Throughout the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, however, Iceland began to develop and industrialise, and its fishing and trading industries began to move to Reyjavík, bringing with them many people.

Hellnar, therefore, rapidly lost its population and importance, like many other places in Iceland particularly on the Snӕfellsnes Peninsula. The change in the economy hit Hellnar particularly hard, however, considering it was increasingly neglected for the neighbouring village of Arnarstapi, which was favoured by the ruling Danish.

The settlement was abandoned but for a few farms and a few resilient locals, until tourism began to boom in Iceland. Now, it is a centre for visitors in the area, with many options for rural accommodation.

Hellnar hosts the guesthouse for Snӕfellsnes National Park, which has a very interesting exhibition about the economy of former times, and on the geology, flora and fauna of the park.

Sites near Hellnar

At the shores of Hellnar are spectacular rock formations; much of the Snӕfellsnes Peninsula is incredibly dramatic along its coast, due to the previous volcanism of the area and the waves shattering the brittle lava rock that makes up the land.

Most notable amongst these that can be reached on foot is a protruding cliff called Valasnös. It has tunnels into the cliff, and its colouration is affected by the time of the day, the movements of the sea, and the prevailing weather conditions.

Large colonies of birds nest in the area, although it should be noted that puffins do not.

Hellnar, located at the tip of the peninsula, is a convenient hub for those travelling in their own car, offering easy access to the incredible natural sites nearby. These include the Lóndrangar sea stacks, the mountain Kirkjufell, and the Ytri Tunga seal watching beach.

Like many other places on Snӕfellsnes, it is easy to see the beautiful glacial capped volcano Snӕfellsjökull from the village.

 

Services near Hellnar

All services in 50km radius

Attractions nearby Hellnar

Arnarstapi

Arnarstapi is a village on the southern side of the Snæfellsnes peninsula, once a fishing hub and now a place for travellers to refuel before ...

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Gatklettur

Gatklettur ("Hellnar Arch") is a famous, naturally formed stone arch found between the villages of Arnarstapi and Hellnar on the Snæ...

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Sönghellir Cave

Sönghellir, or 'Song Cave', is a cave on the Snæfellsnes peninsula famed for its echoing quality. The acoustics inside have a magic...

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Rauðfeldsgjá Gorge

Wikimedia. Creative Commons. Emstrur.  Rauðfelsdsgjá, which translates to Red Mountain Rift, is a beautiful gorge in Botnsfjall Mount...

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Lóndrangar

The Lóndrangar basalt cliffs are amongst the many geological wonders of the Snæfellnes peninsula. Geology of Lóndrangar Once a...

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Snæfellsjökull National Park

Snæfellsjökull National Park is found on the tip of the Snæfellsnes Peninsula and is one of three National Parks in Iceland. It is ...

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Vatnshellir Cave

Photo from Into the Underworld | Vatnshellir Caving Tour Vatnshellir Cave is a lava tube on the Snæfellsnes Peninsula and a popular site for ca...

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Snæfellsjökull

Snæfellsjökull is a glacier-capped volcano found on the tip of the Snæfellsnes Peninsula in west Iceland. It stands in a National P...

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Snæfellsnes

Snæfellsnes is a large peninsula extending from West Iceland, often nicknamed ‘Iceland in Miniature’ due to its wealth and diversi...

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Djúpalónssandur

Djúpalónssandur is an arched-shaped bay of dark cliffs and black sand, located on the Snæfellsnes Peninsula in western Iceland.&...

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Búðir

Búðir is a small hamlet in the municipality of Snæfellsbær on the westernmost tip of the Snæfellsnes Peninsula. The ha...

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Ölkelda

  Olkelda is a farm in the south of Snaefellsnes, taking its name from a renowned mineral spring close by. The pristine mineral spring by the O...

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Ólafsvík

Olafsvik is a fishing town of just over a 1000 people, located on the west side of the Snaefellsnes peninsula.  Economy and services Olafsvik h...

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Saxhóll

 Wikimedia. Creative Commons. Credit: Diego Delso.  Saxhóll is one of the most popular craters on the Snæfellsnes Peninsula, f...

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Hellissandur

Photo above from Wikimedia, Creative Commons, by Chensiyuan Hellissandur is a village dating back to the 16th Century, found on the northwesternmost ...

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Skarðsvík Beach

Credit: Wikimedia, Creative Commons. Photo by Ulrich Latzenhofer.  A golden sandy beach found on the northwestern tip of the Snæfellsnes P...

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Kirkjufell

Kirkjufell, or 'Church Mountain', is a distinctly shaped peak found on the north shore of Iceland’s Snæfellsnes Peninsula, only ...

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Grundarfjörður

Wikimedia, Creative CommonsChensiyuan  Grundarfjörður is a small town found on the north coast of the Snæfellsnes Peninsula ...

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Ytri Tunga Beach

Credit: Wikimedia, Creative Commons. Photo by pjt56. Ytri Tunga is a beach by a farm of the same name on the Snæfellsnes Peninsula. Unlike many...

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Melrakkaey

Melrakkaey ("Fox Island") is a small island found at the mouth of Grundarfjörður. Melrakkaey was protected in 1972 and today, onl...

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Tours near Hellnar

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