Information about Westfjords

A river runs through the Westfjords.

The Westfjords are the westernmost part of Iceland and an unspoilt region of incredible beauty. They are home to some of the country’s most dramatic natural gems and, being off-the-beaten-track attractions in Iceland, these gems are usually far from the crowds.

The Westfjords are a wide area, stretching as a peninsula to the northwest of the mainland. The peninsula is ancient, mountainous and has many fjords of varying length.

The town Ísafjörður serves as the capital of the region, in spite of the fact that it has just 3,000 year-round inhabitants. There are many fishing villages in the fjords, as good fishing banks are found around the Wesfjords, yet all are much smaller.

The agriculture, unlike in the rest of Iceland, is very scant, due to the steepness of the mountains and the limited areas of lowland. Fishing and tourism, therefore, are the driving trades of the region.

While there are many incredible places in the Westfjords, the most iconic and beautiful are listed below.

The Westfjords has many tiny fishing villages and a few small towns.

The Hornstrandir Nature Reserve

Many places in the Westfjords are now deserted, such as the northernmost part of the peninsula, Hornstrandir. Due to the region’s beauty and wildlife, it was made a protected nature reserve in 1975. Its allure, however, was made famous much earlier; the 1834 poem Floriggi by Valdimir Dunjic was based on this area.

Hornstrandir is a holy place for travellers who seek solitude, peacefulness, breathtaking scenery and great hiking trails. It also has a special appeal for animal lovers, as the arctic fox is protected here, and, unlike in the rest of the country, curious of visitors, rather than cautious.

Between May and September, it is also a great place to see puffins.

Dynjandi Waterfall

Dynjandi, meaning ‘Thunderous,’ is considered one of the most beautiful waterfalls in Iceland. It is really a series of waterfalls, seven altogether, with a cumulative height of 100 meters (330 feet), that tumble down steps so perfectly formed they barely seem natural.

How Iceland inspired J. R. R. Tolkien and the Game of Thrones crew is immediately apparent at Dynjandi.

Látrabjarg Bird Cliff

While not technically correct, many say that Europe’s westernmost part is the massive vertical seacliff Látrabjarg, in the westernmost part of the Westfjords. While officially on the North American tectonic plate, Iceland is considered a European country, leading to the confusion.

Over 400 meters (1,312 feet) high, these cliffs are renowned for the millions of seabirds that nest here in summer. These include Atlantic Puffins, which come between May and September. Like the foxes of Hornstrandir, the puffins of Látrabjarg are protected and thus have very little fear of people, allowing visitors to get within metres.

Other than its beauty, Látrabjarg is renowned for the act of heroism that occurred here. In 1947 a British trawler stranded at the base of its cliff. The stranded sailors would have no doubt frozen that night if their vessel had not been seen.

Local farmers, however, did see it. For generations, their families had learnt how to scale down the cliffs on ropes to collect bird eggs, and by using this technique, they abseiled 200 metres (656 feet) to the rescue.

Rauðasandur Beach & Sjöundá

The beach by the cliff is called Rauðasandur, rare for its pale red, almost pink sand. Along with many seabirds, the beach is home to hundreds of seals.

At Rauðasandur one can find the remnants of a farm where one of Iceland’s most notorious alleged killers once resided. Two farmers lived there with their wives, but one fell in love with the spouse of the other and she with him. Though no one knows exactly what happened, their original partners were found dead, and they were later sentenced to death.

This dramatic event later served as an inspiration for Icelandic author Gunnar Gunnarsson's masterful novel The Black Cliffs.


Services near Westfjords

All services in 50km radius

Attractions nearby Westfjords


Djúpavík is a village in the Westfjords of Iceland, located in Árneshreppur which is the least populous municipality in the count...



Wikimedia. Creative Commons. Credit: Jóna Þórunn. Trékyllisvík is an isolated cove found in the Strandir region of...



Gvendarlaug is the name given to a medieval hot pool, hot creek and swimming pool found in Westfjords. It is possible for guests to swim both in t...


Bjarnarfjörður in Strandir

Bjarnarfjörður is fjord in the Westfjords, south of Veiðileysufjörður and north of Steingrímsfjörður. Bjarnarfj&...



Krossneslaug is a geothermal pool located in the remote Strandir region of the Westfjords. Unlike many swimming pools in the region, Krossneslaug ...



Flickr, DavideGorla In the desolate, dramatic, and awe-inspiring Strandir region of the Westfjords, the village of Hólmavík is the larg...



Kaldbakur is the highest mountain in the Westfjords. The mountain, located beween the fjords Arnarfjordur and Dyrafjordur, rises to 998 meters. From ...



Hrolleifsborg is a mountain in the Westfjords, in one of the most remote parts of Iceland. At 776 metres (2545 ft) tall, it is one of the highest pea...



Wikimedia, Creative Commons, Photo by AgainErick Drangajökull is Iceland’s northernmost and lowest lying glacier. Geography of Drangaj&ou...



The fishing village of Drangsnes can be found at the mouth of the Steingrímsfjörður fjord, in the Westfjords of Iceland. Drangsnes is ...



Wikimedia. Creative Commons. Credit: Christian Bickel Litlibær is a historical turf farmstead in northwest Iceland, by Ísafjör...



Vigur Island, half an hour’s boat ride from Ísafjörður in the Westfjords, is famous for its enormous colony of birdlife. Species...



Hestfjörður (translated to “Horse Fjord”) is a fjord in Westfjords, near Vatnsdalur valley, Bolaskógur forest and Hat...



Húnaflói is a bay in north Iceland. Many beautiful fishing villages and fascinating sites sit on its shores.  The most iconic fe...



Súðavík is a fishing village and municipality in the Westfjords of Iceland, positioned just off the west coast of Álftafj&oum...



Ísafjarðardjúp is a large fjord in the Westfjords. It means ‘Icefjord’s Deep’. Ísafjörður &Iac...



Illugastaðir farm can be found on the west side of the Vatnsnes Peninsula. The area has truly stunning views of the eastern Westfjord coastline&nb...



  Hnifsdalur is  a small village of around 250 people in a valley of the same name and is positioned between Bolungarvik and Isafjordur. ...



Ísafjörður is a town in the northwest of Iceland and the largest settlement of the Westfjords of Iceland. It is considered the capit...



  Oskjuvatn is a large crater lake in the Askja caldera in the Dyngjufjoll mountains, north of Vatnajokull glacier. Oskjuvatn is Iceland's s...


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