Until 1949 the town of Neskaupstadur was only accessible by sea. Today a road winds up from Eskifjordur, past the Oddskard skiing resort, through an old, single-lane tunnel and out the other side, bringing you eventually into Neskaupstadur.
Some interesting facts about Neskaupstadur:
The town was originally built on a farm called "Nes", settled by Egill rauði (“the red”).
The town's fish factory, Síldarvinnslan h/f, operates one of the most advanced fish processing plants in Europe.
Tryggvi Ólafsson one of Iceland’s best known contemporary artists was born here in 1940.
The 2002 Icelandic movie “Hafið” (The Sea) was filmed almost entirely in and around Neskaupstaður.
Nordfjardarnipa (the mountainside area separating Nordfjordur from Mjoifjordur) and the surrounding area became Iceland's first official national park in 1972.
Things to see in Neskaupstadur:
The Avalanche Wall/s (Snófloðagarð)
On December 20, 1974 avalanches came down from the entire mountainside above town killing 12 people. Since then a number of protective barriers/ walls have been built to control any future avalanches. Taking a walk along the paths below, or to the top of, the walls is a wonderful way to enjoy nature and take in some breathtaking views.
The Forest (Skogræktinn)
We have a lovely little forest of pine, birch, elm and a few other trees not to mention all the indigenous flora. Paths have been made for ease of access and here and there you will find picnic tables and benches – even a little playground and grill area. During autumn wild blueberries abound in the forest and especially on the mountainsides – a feast provided by Mother Nature!
Norðfjarðar National Park / Easter Cave (Páskahellir)
Past the lighthouse at the Eastern-most end of town is the Norðfjarðar National Park. Following the lower path will lead you to the Easter Cave which has been naturally carved out by sea erosion. The cave is easily accessed by stairs and well-worth a visit to see not only the beautiful rock formations but also to see the holes in the cave walls left by the trees of a forest that was destroyed when covered in lava about 12 million years ago.
The Museum House (Safnahúsið)
Located in the center of the town the Museum houses an art gallery, a natural history museum and a maritime museum under one roof. The art gallery displays a number of paintings by Tryggvi Ólafsson - one of Iceland's most celebrated contemporary artists. The natural history museum hosts an interesting collection of Icelandic mammals, shellfish, birds, insect and stones. The maritime museum houses a number of finishing and boat related old equipment from Josafat Hinriksson family. A small replica of Josafat's workshop is also an interesting part of the museum. The Museum House is open between 1:00 pm and 5:00 pm during June 1 and August 31.
For more ideas of what to do in the area have a look at our ACTIVITIES page.