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Wild Life

Blautos

Blautós og Innstavogsnes

At the north western rim of the town Akranes is the estuary nature reserve Blautós and Innsatvogsnes. The river Berjadalsá runs out of the western part of mount Akrafjall and mouths into the cove. The area has an abundance of bird life and is amply vegetated. The landskape is spectacular and has interesting geological formations from the last glacial periods.

The area is used for recreation as it is close to the centre of the town Akranes and the recidents have their stables by the cove Innstavogur.

Many migration birds stop at the area and some birds breed there. Brant gees stay at Blautós and Innstavogsnesi during spring and autumn. It is estimated that about a quarter of the entire brant geese species come by in Blautós and Innstavogsnes and the reserve Grunnafjörður on their way between their winter quarters in Ireland and breeding grounds in Canada.

There are eider ducks breeding in the area and the eider farmers are free to continue their tradition of collecting the eiderdown in early summer.

The area is important as an informative area but also as a recreational area for hiking and riding.

Glymur

Iceland's tallest waterfall, is located in Botnsdalur valley, Hvalfjörður. Leading up to it is a fabulous hiking path that should only be attempted by those not daunted by heights or challenging hikes. Glymur is in the river Botnsá that runs out of Hvalvatn, which is a lake closed by molten lava, some 160 metres deep. In Hvalfjordur in West Iceland you can stand in awe before Iceland's highest waterfall. Standing by the fall you'll have a good view of the surrounding landcape, which is is particularly attractive, as Hvalfjordur is widely considered one of Iceland's most beautiful fjords.The walk, approximately 4 hours roundtrip, will take you from the trailhead at Botnsa river through spectacular scenery including a rock arch and will have you crossing a crystal clear river on a strategically placed log.

Hvanneyri

One of the men of saga hero Egill Skallagrímsson founded the rich farm of Hvanneyri at the time of settlement.

In today's village you may find the Agricultural University of Iceland which is very engaged in the protection of the environment.

Hvanneyri is also the siege of the Icelandic museum for Agriculture and Ullarselið, a wool shop.

In the springtime and autumn a lot of White-fronted Goose stay around the village, they are under protection in the area.

Kolgrafarfjordur and Hraunsfjordur

Kolgrafarfjörður has a lot of wildlife. A large part of the black-backed gull population lives there with 38 other bird species. There are also killer whales, white-beaked dolphins and seals. Hraunsfjörður fjord come from it, long but narrow. At high tide, the flow is so great that the current resembles a rushing river

Londrangar basalt cliffs

Uniquely-formed remnants of ancient basalt volcanic dikes sticking out from the sea.

Londrangar and the hill Svalthufa are the remains of a crater, which has been eroded to its present form by the sea.

The farmers in the area never made or make hay on the hill, because it is said to belong to the elves living in the area.

Younger lava fields surround this old crater ruin. The higher pillar (75m) was first climbed in 1735 and the lower (61 m) in 1938.

Below the hill you may find Thufubjarg cliff where according to a folktale the poet Kolbeinn Joklaskald had an encounter with the Devil.

On these cliffs, puffins and fulmars have their nests.

Longufjorur Beach

Longufjorur is a light sandy beach on the south shore of Snaefellsnes peninsula. This beach is perfect for horseriding with a guide.

Troll Waterfalls

The Troll Waterfalls of the Grimsa river. There is a clear formation in the form of a troll face in the cliff by the river bank.

Take the troll walk and learn about trolls, folk tales and places that connect to the nature and scenery at Fossatun.

An extraordinary view and good spot to see the Skessuhorn mountain peak. Excellent for witnessing jumping salmon in the summer.

West Iceland

Towns & Villages

The population centres in West Iceland are as varied as they are many. Ten places have over 50 residents and Akranes is the most densely populated with 6,500 inhabitants. 

All of the larger communities put ever-increasing emphasis on dynamic tourism where a wide selection of recreation and services are offered.   

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Map Hellissandur, Rif Grundarfjörður Stykkishólmur Búðardalur Dalir Arnarstapi Hellnar Snæfellsnes Bifröst Húsafell Reykholt Borgarfjörður Hvanneyri Borgarnes Hvalfjörður Akranes Ólafsvík Bjarteyjarsandur