Borgarfjordur where the saga was written

Borgarnes and the surrounding Borgarfjörður region can be regarded as the setting for most of the Icelandic sagas. The area's landscape, nature and culture reflect this heritage and bring history to life

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Borgarfjordur
GPS Points N64° 37' 8.899" W22° 1' 29.227"
Postal codes

310,311,320

Travel directory for Borgarfjordur

The official travel index of Iceland

Others

Hestaferðir Stóra Kálfalæk 2
Travel Agency
  • Stóri Kálfalækur 2
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • 437-1822, 849-5468
Iceland By Horse
Day Tour Provider
  • Litla Drageyri
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • 697-9139
Kimpfler
Travel Agency
  • Hrafnkelsstaðir
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • 896-3749, 893-3749
Ólafur Flosason
Travel Agency
  • Breiðabólstaður
  • 320 Reykholt í Borgarfirði
  • 897-9323
Coldspot
Day Tours
  • Lóuflöt 8
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • 869-1033
Sæmundur Sigmundsson Coach Rental
Bus tours
  • Brákarbraut 20
  • 310 Borgarnes
  • 437-1333, 552-2202
Skrifla Golf Club
Golf Courses
  • Nes, Reykholtsdal
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • 435-1472, 893-3889
Þóra Sif Kópsdóttir
Day Tours
  • Ystu-Garðar
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • 845-6647
Icelands little secret
Day Tour Provider
  • Kveldúlfsgata 22
  • 310 Borgarnes
  • 6980075
Karólína Hulda Guðmundsdóttir
Hiking Tours - Hiking
  • Fitjar, Skorradalur
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • 893-2789
Borgarnes Golf Club
Golf Courses
  • Hamar
  • 310 Borgarnes
  • 437-1663, 437-2000
Hawk The Beard Tours
Day Tours
  • Sóltún 4
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • 845-3637
Hvítá travel
Day Tours
  • Þórólfsgata 12
  • 310 Borgarnes
  • 661-7173

Others

Crater Guesthouse
Guesthouses
  • Brekkuland, Skáli
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • 892-0606
Bakki
Cottages
  • Helluskógur 10
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • -
Hvassafell 2
Guesthouses
  • Hvassafell 2
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • -
Stafholtsey
Guesthouses
  • Stafholtsey
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • 868-6598, 840-1567
Lundur and Klettur
Cottages
  • Brókarstígur 17 & 18
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • -
Hreðavatn
Cottages
  • Hreðavatn 30 (F2109234)
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • 892-8882
Nes
Cottages
  • Víðines 21
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • -
Eiðhús apartments
Apartments
  • Eiðhús
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • -
Kria Guesthouse
Guesthouses
  • Kveldúlfsgata 27
  • 310 Borgarnes
  • 888-0740, 845-4126
Múlakot Cozy Cabins
Cottages
  • Múlabyggð 2
  • 320 Reykholt í Borgarfirði
  • 8961010
Straumfjardara Fishing Lodge
Guesthouses
  • Dal v/Straumfjarðará
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • 864-7315, 894-4096, 435-6674
Böðvarsgata 3
Cottages
  • Böðvarsgata 3
  • 310 Borgarnes
  • 437-1189
Varmaland Camping Ground
Camping
  • Stafholtstungur
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • 775-1012
Lundur
Cottages
  • Brókarstígur 17
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • -
Klettur
Cottages
  • Brókarstígur 18
  • 310 Borgarnes
  • -
Holt
Cottages
  • Helluskógur 7
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • -
Brennistaðir
Farm Holidays
  • Flókadalur
  • 320 Reykholt í Borgarfirði
  • 696-1544, 435-1565
Helgugata Guesthouse
Guesthouses
  • Helgugata 5
  • 310 Borgarnes
  • 695-5857
Bakki and Holt
Cottages
  • Helluskógur 10&7
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • -
Raufarnes Apartment
Bed & Breakfast
  • Rauðanes 2
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • 437-1720, 898-9240

Others

Hundastapi
Farm food direct
  • Hundastapi
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • 437-2352, 836-1252, 895-2352
Grímsstaðir 2
Farm food direct
  • Grímsstaðir 2
  • 320 Reykholt í Borgarfirði
  • 858-2133
Munaðarnes Restaurant
Restaurants
  • Munaðarnes
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • 776-8008
Matstofan - Oriental restaurant
Restaurants
  • Brákarbraut 3
  • 310 Borgarnes
  • 437-2017, 892-8376
Brúarás - Geo Center
Restaurants
  • Stóri-Ás
  • 320 Reykholt í Borgarfirði
  • 435-1270
N1 - Service Station Borgarnesi
Diners
  • v / Brúartorg
  • 310 Borgarnes
  • 440-1333
The Grill House
Restaurants
  • Brúartorg 6
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • 437-1282
La Colina - Pizzeria
Restaurants
  • Hrafnaklettur 1b
  • 310 Borgarnes
  • 437-0110
Hvanneyri Pub
Restaurants
  • Hvanneyrartorfa
  • 311 Borgarnes
  • 8213538
Brennistaðir
Farm Holidays
  • Flókadalur
  • 320 Reykholt í Borgarfirði
  • 696-1544, 435-1565
Olís - Service Staion - Quiznos
Gas station
  • v/Brúartorg
  • 310 Borgarnes
  • 437-1259, 840-1782
Nature
Lava Waterfalls

Hraunfossar - Lava Falls - are beautiful and unusual natural phenomena. Clear, cold springs of subterranean water seep through the lava and run as tiny waterfalls and rapids into the Hvita River.

Hraunfossar have been protected since 1987.

There is a viewpoint at the car park offering an amazing view over the Lava Falls and Hvita River.

Restaurant and souvenir shop open all year round.

Nature
Baula

Baula is a volcanic mountain of a very special pyramidic form. It measures 934 m in height. The mountain is a 3 million years old intrusion, consisting of liparit stone.

For people in good shape, it is well possible to hike up on the mountain from Bjarnardalur, road number 60. But its sides are very steep and there are big and loose stones on the way. On the other hand, the view of the top is very rewarding and you can write into a guestbook there.

History and Culture
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.

Nature
Barnafoss, Children's Falls

The meaning of this waterfall translates into "Children's waterfall", but the signs here indicated that there was a saga describing why it got this name. The saga said that there were two children in the Hraunsás household who were supposed to stay home while the parents went to church for Christmas Mass. When the parents returned from mass, they discovered that the children had disappeared (possibly because the children got bored and decided to go out).

They then followed the children's tracks to this waterfall at the stone natural bridge where the tracks disappeared. The mother concluded that the children must have fallen into the river and drowned. Then, the mother had the arch destroyed in order to ensure no one else faces a similar fate. I've seen some accounts say it was by spell or curse, which induced the bridge's collapse by earthquake. In reality, natural bridges usually collapse over time, and given the powerful erosive forces from the rapidly moving river that undercut whatever was supporting the bridge, that could very well have been the fate of the natural arch here.

Nature
Eldborg Crater

A beautifully-formed crater rising 60m above the surrounding lava.

The spatter cone is the largest crater along a short volcanic rift, 200 m in diameter and 50 m deep. Its last eruption was about 5000-6000 years ago. According to medieval chronics there was also one around the time of the colonisation of Iceland about 1000 years ago, but today it is known that it came from another of the many craters of the valley Hnappadalur which are part of the volcanic system Ljosufjoll, the mountains of the light.

It is easiest to approach Eldborg from Snorrastadir on its southern side, walking 2,5 km through the shrub-covered lava field. It is possible to walk all the way around the crater as well as up it.

Nature
Stálpastaða forest

Stálpastaðir, the farm is abandoned but there are many birch-bushes. Haukur Thors gave the land to the Forestry Service in 1951, since when it has been protected and used for the rather successful cultivation of evergreens.

Nature
Húsafell Walking Tours

Húsafell is a hiker´s dream. Fascinating walking routes are everywhere, with something new at every turn. Dense woods, lava formations, crystal-clear mountain springs, hot water, magnificent ravines, glaciers, rushing glacial rivers and an extraordinary animal and birdlife. Remarkable ancient relics and other signs of human habitation serve to illustrate the past and the relationship between man and nature. Also ubiquitous are Páll Guðmundsson´s curious sculptures, which highlight the uniqueness of the land without imposing on it. Walking routes, such as paths through the woods, may be found for the entire family, while hikers who require more of a challenge might want to hike onto glaciers such as Eiríksjökull or Ok. Visitors who prefer cycling or horse riding will also be able to find challenging routes to suit their wishes. In Húsafell you can get a hiker´s map with 9 marked routes. Here is the hiking map online

Nature
Bjossarolo - playground

Bjossarolo is a playground for children in Borgarnes, not far from Edduveröld or the Settlement Centre .

It was constructed by Bjorn Gudmundsson, a man who was ahead of his time and thought about recycling. He used exclusively things that had been thrown away to build up this special place. At the playground there are for example swings, slides, an old boat, a castle and a lot more in a hollow enclosed by rocks not far from the sea.

And on going there you could look for shells or nice stones on the beach. The small, but very pretty park Skallagrimsgardur is not far away. There you can even find the grave of a saga hero!

Nature
Skallagrimsgardur

In the heart of Borgarnes is Skallagrímsgarður, a small public park which is ideal for a picnic. The park plays an important role in Egil's Saga, as the burial mound of Skallagrímur Kveldúlfsson, Egil's father, is situated there. It is a good idea to relax in Skallagrímsgarður after a visit to Borgarnes swimming pool which is next to the park.

Nature
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.

Nature
Vidgelmir Cave

Víðgelmir is the largest of all caves in Iceland, 148,000 cubic metres, and one of the largest lava caves in the world. It has beautiful ice formations and deep inside there are lava stalactites and stalagmites.

Bones and jewelry from the viking age are a part of the archeological remains found in the cave in 1993. It has been preserved since 1993 and entrance is only allowed with proper guidance. Guides from "The Cave" arrange short (1,5 hour) and long (4 hours) tours. Please contact The Cave for information, availability and schedule.

Víðgelmir lava cave is considered by specialists to be one of the most remarkable caves on earth.

Nature
Paradise Hollow

Paradise Hollow is a beautiful small oasis near the impressive waterfall Glanni.

There is a walking path from the car park to Paradise Hollow and the waterfall. A viewing deck offers a good view of the Glanni waterfall.

A coffee shop is open during the summer months.

Nature
Skorradalur Valley

Skorradalur is the southernmost valley in Borgarfjörður. The Skorradalur lake fills up most of the valley but the lowlands in the west are wide moorlands. There is very little traditional farming practiced today but summerhouses are becoming increasingly common and forests are growing from year to year. The Hvanneyri parish is situated at Fitjar which is deep in the valley. Forestry at Stálpastaðir is in the northern part of the valley where there are beutiful hiking trails. The camping site at Selsskógur is surrounded by lush vegetation, creating good shelter on the banks of the Skorradalur lake.

Other attractions
Borgarfjardarbrú bridge

Borgarfjarðarbrú is the second longest bridge in Iceland after Skeiðarárbrú. It crosses Borgarfjörður, linking Borgarnes to Route 1 (the Ring Road) and connecting the town with other parts of Iceland. It spans 520 m and was opened on 13 September 1981, with repairs being done in 2012. Before the bridge was opened, the Ring Road crossed the Hvítá river 4 kilometres (2.5 mi) upstream of its mouth into Borgarfjörður at the bridge at Ferjukot opened in 1928.

Nature
Olkelda mineral spring

At the farm Olkelda, near Stadarstadur, in the south of Snaefellsnes, there is a mineral spring with carbonated water.

Mineral springs are said to have healing properties, so feel free to take a sip.

The farmhouse is named Olkelda which means mineral spring in Icelandic.

Nature
Deildartunguhver thermal spring

Deildartunguhver highest flow hot spring in Europe !
Deildartunguhver is Europe's most powerful hot spring. It provides 180 l/sec of 100°C hot water.
Most of the water used for central heating in the towns of Borgarnes and Akranes is taken from Deildartunguhver. The hot water pipeline to Akranes is 64 km long, the longest in Iceland and the water is about 78 - 80 degrees when it reaches Akranes. If you take a shower anywhere within a 65 km radius of the spring, you have already bathed in the hot water from this powerful spring!

Nature
Húsafell

In Húsafell surrounding nature you can expect to find dense woodlands, waterfalls, glaciers, rugged lava, crystal springs, wildflowers plus remarkable archaeological remains.Here is a good map with ten hike trails.

Nature
Brakarey Island

Brakarey is connected to the mainland by a bridge. The island was named after Egill's nanny and Skalla-Grimur´s slave Thorgerdur brak, after Skalla-Grimur killed her and she drowned in the sea near it. From the island is a great view over Borgarfjord.

Nature
hallmundarhraun lava field

Hallmundarhraun includes the longest and largest caves in Iceland.
Hallmundarhraun lava field was formed in giant eruption close to the Langjökull glacier around the year 930 and is 8-9 cubic kilometers. Hallmundarhraun includes three caves Surtshellir/ Stefánshellir they are together 3500 meters, longest lava cave in Iceland. Viðgelmir lava tube is the largest of all lava caves in Iceland the tubes volume is well over 150,000 cubic meters.

Nature
Einkunnir

Einkunnir is a 270 ha country park, protected for recreational use and the preservation of the typical landscape of the area. The areas' main characteristics are its rocky islands or bluffs that rise from the areas' vast flat wetlands.

Please follow the marked trails whenever possible. Do not drive off-road, damage geological formations or vegetation. Do not disturb the wildlife or light fires in vegetated areas. Please take your litter with you when you leave.

For the Children
Borgarnes swimming pool

In the sports stadium, you will find both an outside and an inside swimming pool, hot tubs, a steam bath which is fed with steam straight from the Deildartunguhver hot spring, a children's pool and water slides. All in all, an excellent health spa.

Nature
Glanni Waterfall

The Glanni Waterfall on the Norðurá River is said to be the dwelling place of elves and trolls. However, during our visit, we noticed that this waterfall was situated near a golf course nearby an old lava flow (called the Grábrókarhraun lava field) and the hamlet of Bifröst. The falls was one of those wide river-type waterfalls that we saw quite a few of in the country, but this one segmented into at least three side-by-side drops as well as each one having multiple tiers.

History and Culture
Borg

Originally the home of Skalla-Grimur, father of Egill, hero of Egil´s Saga. Its full name means "rock in the marshes".

The farmstead was defined by Kveld-Ulfur, Egill Skalla-Grimsson's grandfather, who got on the wrong side of King Harald Fairhair of Norway and fled to Iceland.

As they approached Iceland on their way from Norway, Kveld-Ulfur became ill and knew he would die. He instructed his son to make a coffin for him, place his body in it and throw it overboard. The son was to select the site for the family farm where the coffin washed ashore. This happened to be at Borg, where Egill's father settled and raised his family.

Today you can see a small church, the large rock that gave the place its name and an interesting sculpture at Borg by Asmundur Sveinsson commemorating Egil´s poem, Loss of a Son. A thoughtful reflection on the emptiness he felt after his son's death.

Nature
Skessuhorn

Skessu­horn (967 m) is a particularly impressive and outstanding peak when the range is viewed from the north. Skessu­horn is located in Borgarfjörður it takes 5-6 hours to hike the mountain and you will need good equipment.

Nature
Krosslaug-natural pool

Krosslaug is in the area of Reykir in Lundareikjadalur and is about 50 meters above the road. The pool is small but the heat of the water is about 42°C. there is a myth stating a healing power of the water in the pool. The surrounding is beautiful and the pool is pretty clean for a natural hot spring.

Nature
Grabrok Crater

The largest of three craters in a short volcanic fissure.

Beautiful scenery over Borgarfjordur is from the top of the Grabrok crater. Mt. Grabrok can be ascended by a marked trail from the main Ring road no. 1.

History and Culture
Reykholt

Reykholt is one of Iceland's most notable historical sites. It houses a cultural centre and a church.

Reykholt is most famous for being the home of Iceland's best-known author Snorri Sturluson during the years 1206-1241. An ancient geothermally-heated pool, Snorralaug, is named after him. It is one of the few things preserved whole from Iceland´s medieval period.

Snorrastofa is a cultural centre and institute for research in medieval studies. Snorrastofa offers historical exhibitions and guided tours and lectures. Music recitals are held in the church of Reykholt.

Visit Reykholts website www.snorrastofa.is

There is one hotel in Reykholt see more here.

Nature
Langjokull Glacier

Langjokull Glacier is the second largest glacier in Iceland, and is approximately 18 km from Husafell (tourist resort).

Excursions onto the glacier are offered from the base of the glacier. On a clear day the view from the glacier is beyond compare.

Nature
Longufjorur Beach

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

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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