Reyðarfjörður is the longest and widest of Iceland’s eastern fjords; more than 30 km. long. Norwegians used to operate whaling stations along the fjord and fishing was frequented along the coastline.
During World War II, Reyðarfjörður was occupied by British forces. The remains of the occupation are fairly visible, ranging from an airport to old barracks. In 1995 a War Time Museum was founded in an empty Freezing Plant extending to some of the old barracks. An interesting museum in a country that was never at war.
In January 1942 a platoon of British soldiers on
winter exercises were caught in a very bad blizzard on the mountain
above Eskifjörður. The family at Veturhús farm rescued and housed 48 of
them but unfortunately another nineperished.
The Icelandic Settlement Centre in Borgarnes, West Iceland, is the place of the week. The centre reveals Egils Saga and the Settlement Saga in an entertaining and simple way by leading the visitor into the adventure world of the sagas by audio guides in 14 different languages.
The Egils Saga exhibition describes one of the most colourful of all the saga characters, Egill the son of Skalla-Grimur. Egill was a great poet but also a viking and ribald abroad. The story intertwines battles and love affairs, sorcery and pagan lore.
The Settlement exhibition portrays the first men who set foot in Iceland and how the country was settled up until the Althingi parliament was founded in the year 930. By using the modern technology of multi-media and theatre an attempt is made to give the visitor a sense of how it must have been to set foot in unsettled territory.
The Icelandic Settlement Centre is open all year, for further information see settlementcentre.is
Dverghamrar (Dwarf Cliff) are peculiar twin columnar basalt cliffs forming a horseshoe shape, just east of the farm Foss down from the Ring Road, 55 km west from Skaftafell.
The Dverghamrar landscape was formed by wave action when the sea level was higher at the end of the Ice Age. Such columns are often found where lava has flowed into water
and been abruptly cooled.
The cliffs are a protected natural site.
Photo Regína Hrönn Ragnarsdóttir