The Westfjords lie entirely outside of the Ring Road’s island-encompassing loop, making them one of the more remote corners of Iceland. The roads are carved into an endless sequence of vast flat-topped mountains punctuated by tiny towns in narrow fjords, often with great pools and hot pots. At the northern edge lies the wild nature reserve of Hornstrandir, only accessible by boat or on foot. To get away from the bustle of the tourist trail, the Westfjords are always a good bet.
Vigur is an island in the middle of Ísafjarðardjúp, famed for its birdlife—including puffins. With more avian residents than humans, there is a single row of buildings, including the tiniest post office ever, and even a windmill. The island is small enough to explore in a day, and there’s a boat that comes and goes from nearby Ísafjörður. Or if you’re the type who prefers to earn your idyllic island time with exercise, it can also be reached by a kayak tour with Ögur Travel or Borea Adventures.
Tungudalur & Seljalandsdalur
The downhill slopes of Tungudalur and the cross-country trails of Seljalandsdalur are the main local ski areas. There are day tours for all skill levels, and if you’re insanely outdoorsy, our panellists also recommend Aurora Arktika, who offer a six-day tour in which you can sail the Westfjords for some backcountry skiing and kayaking.
With its sheer cliffs, wide valleys and abandoned villages, Hornstrandir
More Best Of Iceland Awards
You can buy a copy of the full Best Of Iceland 2018 magazine—an essential guide to having fun in Iceland—here, posted worldwide. We also have a Special Offer double-pack that also includes our Best Of Reykjavík magazine, about places to eat, see, swim, visit, and shop in the country’s capital city, here.