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AKUREYRI

G

Akureyri

uide Reykjavík

Area of the North

Shopping ∙ Nightlife ∙ Restaurants Events ∙ Museums ∙ Attractions The ultimate guide and map

Table of Content

Museums & galleries Wining & dining for every budget

Great shopping experience Natures wonderland

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within reach

Akureyri on foot

20 13 -

Tours & activities

OUR BE S T TIPS


SOUVENIR SHOP S H OP OF T HE YEAR 2012

The viking:info Laugavegur 1 ∙ Reykjavík Hafnarstræti 1 - 3 ∙ Reykjavík Hafnarstræti 104 ∙ Akureyri Adalstræti 27 ∙ Ísafjördur

info@the viking www.theviking.is

Ísfjördur

Akureyri Reykjavík

TAX FREE


Akureyri & Surrounding Area Welcome The Fjord of Islands Akureyri all year round Town Culture Family Fun Skagafjörður Siglufjörður Ólafsfjörður Dalvík Mývatn Akureyri on Foot, Bike or Bus

4 6 7 8 9 10 11 11 12 13 14

Museums Major Museums & Galleries

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Eat & Drink Restaurants Cafés Bars, Pubs & Clubs Northern area Dining

22 26 27 28

Shopping Main Shopping Areas Local Designers Wool & Souvenirs Fish-leather & Accessories

32 34 36 38

Tours & Activities Day Trips & Tours Golf & the Northern Lights Children Pools & Spas Biking

42 48 50 51 52

Events Event Calendar

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Accommodation Hotels Guesthouses Camping

60 61 62

Good to Know Transportation Phone & Internet Everything Else Northern Area Map Akureyri - Foldout Map

64 65 65 66 67-68

Iceland today ehf Ofanleiti 2, 103 Reykjavík Tel.:(+354) 552 2620 icelandtoday@icelandtoday.is - www.icelandtoday.is Authors have taken all reasonable care in preparing this handbook, information has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable, but make no guarantee about the accuracy or completeness of its content. © Iceland Today ehf. Material and contents property of publisher. All rights reserved. No part of this work covered by the copyright may be reproduced or used in any form or by any means – without the written permission of the authors and the publisher. Printed and distributed in 20,000 copies. Audited Circulation by SAF Member of the Icelandic Tourism industry Association (SAF)

Akureyri pages 4-14 Museums & Galleries pages 15-20 Museos & Galerías • Musées & Galeries • Museen & Galerien

Eat & Drink

pages 21-30 Comer & Beber • Manger & Boire • Essen & Trinken

Shopping pages 31-40 Museos & Galerías • Musées & Galeries • Museen & Galerien

Tours & Activities pages 41-52

Excursiones & Actividades • Tours & Activités • Touren & Aktivitäten

Events pages 53-58 Eventos • Événements • Veranstaltungen

Accommodation pages 59-62 Alojamiento • Logement • Unterkunft

Good to Know pages 63-68 Bueno Saber • Bon à Savoir • Gut zu Wissen

Other publications by Iceland Today; Reykjavík City Guide, Reykjavík Christmas Guide and Reykjavík City Map

PUBLISHED, EDITED & CREATED BY: IcelandToday ehf. icelandtoday@icelandtoday.is. TEXT ADAPTED & WRITTEN BY: IcelandToday ehf. DESIGN & LAYOUT BY: Markhönnun ehf. PHOTOGRAPHS BY: Ari Magg, Lýður Guðmundsson, Vilhelm Gunnarsson, Auðunn Níelsson, Friðþjófur Helgason & many more. MAPS: Ólafur Valsson. COVERPHOTO: Auðunn Níelsson. PRINTING: Isafold Printing House, Ecolabelled Printing Company. www.isafold.is.


WELCOME TO AKUREYRI If you wish to visit the countryside in Iceland while still being able to choose from a variety of activities and cultural events, Akureyri, the capital of the North, is an essential stop.

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Top 10 things to do

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pon arrival many things will surely catch your eye at once. The ocean view from the bottom of the Eyjafjörður fjord which ends in a body of sea water called “Pollurinn” is an impressive sight, balanced by the town panorama bearing the town church as a crown on top of its steepest hill.

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Spot the lovely hearts placed by locals in the strangest places. Can you see them in the traffic lights, windows or during winter in the mountains?

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Get familiar with Iceland’s energetic cultural heritage

Being the biggest town outside of the Reykjavík area, Akureyri has plenty of cafés, restaurants and activities, but is still small enough to offer the quietude of the countryside. It has become a favourite among tourists, both foreign and Icelandic, striking a balance between a city and a town. The first thing for a visitor to do is probably to take a stroll through the town centre. When visiting why not drop in on a live concert at Græni hatturinn -“the Green Hat” one of Iceland‘s best-known music clubs, or when hunger sets in, grab a bite at one of the many excellent restaurants located in the town centre. Finding accommodation should not be a problem either, as the town has plenty of high standard hotels and guesthouses (although it‘s safer to book in advance during high-season). The Akureyri geothermal swimming pool

of art at any of the town’s many museums & galleries.

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Climb the staircase up the top to Akureyrarkirkja for a panoramic view of the town.

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Walk around the old town surrounded by colourful old houses of the past and enjoy the relaxing atmosphere.

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Challenge the stamina with a night on the town “Akureyri style”. Check out the Green Hat, one of Iceland’s most famous live music clubs.

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Give yourself a treat and ease off in one of the town’s relaxing thermal pools.


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has for many years been one of the country’s most popular pools. It is the ideal place to visit for a refreshing swim or to strike a conversation with the locals. In addition, the pool is a great place for children, although you should be prepared to spend some time convincing them that this time on the slide, really will be the last one.

A vibrant cultural scene For those interested in the arts, Akureyri does not disappoint. The steep hill that is running down from the swimming pool into the centre of town is generally called “Arts’ Alley”

because of the stunning number of art galleries to be found along with design & handcraft shops, workshops and a coffee house also serving as a gallery. The Akureyri Art Museum is located in this same street, an institution that has been one of Akureyri’s cultural pillars since its foundation in 1993. True to its policy the museum keeps its exhibitions diverse, both progressive and carefully selected, interesting and provoking.

A stroll through history Akureyri has a rich and colourful history, not only reflected in its

Take a day tour to the islands Hrísey or Grímsey.

Get astound at the sight of whales and dolphins on whale watching tours.

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Bring back a piece of Icelandic design, clothing or jewellery.

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Give your taste buds a treat at with the freshest

seafood ever from Iceland’s unspoiled waters at any of Akureyri’s many restaurants.

www.visitakureyri.is www.icelandtoday.is

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relatively large number of museums, but also in the town itself. Particularly the older part, situated south of the centre, with its beautiful and well-preserved houses from earlier centuries. Don‘t forget to take a peak at the old part of town. Another thing not to be missed is the Botanical Garden, which in recent years has become one of the town’s most popular sites. Once inside, you have the garden’s wide collection of flora, including specimens of almost every type of plant growing in Iceland, with a total of 7.500 local and foreign specimens. The whole idea of a botanical garden in Akureyri came about by a group of prominent women in 1910 and has grown continuously ever since, offering locals and tourists a shelter from the hustle and bustle of town.

The fjord of islands

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nother aspect of the Eyjafjörður fjord are its islands, from whom its name is derived, literally meaning “the fjord of islands”. Its most famed treasure is the one called Hrísey, an island of about two hundred inhabitants, known for its beautiful nature, diverse bird life and many pleasant walking

trails. A good way to get to know the Hrísey Island is to take one of the so ever-popular tractor sightseeing tours, talk to the locals and enjoy. Grímsey is another popular island, known for being the northernmost settlement in Iceland with the Arctic Circle running straight through it. Despite that, Grímsey’s summers are generally mild and the island holds a rich vegetation. Up to sixty species of birds and one of the biggest puffin colonies in Iceland making Grímsey ideal for bird watching. Regular ferry trips to Hrísey, 15 min on sea, are carried out from Ársskógssandur harbor (20 min drive from Akureyri) and to Grímsey, 3 hours on sea, from the village Dalvík (30 min drive from Akureyri). If preferred you can also travel to Grímsey by air, a 30 min flight from Akureyri Airport. So as you can understand the North of Iceland is an area not to be missed while visiting Iceland. The key to the area is Akureyri, being both the cultural centre of the North as well as a vibrant town bursting of activities and pleasures. A beautiful town full of lively locals who will welcome you every day of the year, even in the heaviest of blizzards.


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ith Akureyri’s vibrant energy and variety of activities and festivals all year, there is no wonder every season brings something extraordinary to charm both visitors and locals.

SUMMER

Being one of Iceland’s northernmost cities, Akureyri could definitely crown itself the city of the midnight sun. Favourite summertime activities include golfing, visiting the Botanical Garden or the Christmas House, dropping in at museum or stroll around town. Akureyri’s outdoor café society is in full summer swing down town with people out in droves to soak up the sun. More than just rainy-day places, we recommend a visit to Akureyri Art Museum offering a great selection of contemporary art. Summer celebrations include the Aviation Days, National Day, Hiking week, Arctic Open golf tournament and Akureyri Family Festival.

AUTUMN

The cultural calendar of Akureyri really gets into high gear during the months of autumn with the yearly theatre and concerts program, starting off with Akureyri Town Festival and many more.

WINTER

SPRING

As spring arrives, visiting the Botanical Gardens is beyond a doubt the destination you want to head to when Akureyri’s flora starts bursting to live. Inhabitants also start blooming as many dig up their running shoes, drag out old bikes for a ride or fire up in their barbecues. As always, there is also plenty on the festival calendar, including Solstice Festival in Grímsey and the Great Fishermen’s Day in Akureyri and Dalvík to mention but a few.

BRACING AKUREYRI

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eing a bustling town, yet surrounded by magnificent nature, is what Akureyri is all about. With stunning mountain view, fresh air and greenery, a more beautiful town setting is hard to find. Those fond of hiking or cycling can enjoy Akureyri’s many trails and routes. Strolling by the harbour will give an invigorating breeze from the ocean while the areas of Glerárgil canyon and the Kjarnaskógur woodlands will leave you fulfilled with peace and serenity. For more healing energy, a visit to some of Akureyri’s thermal pools and spas is surely the ideal option.

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Akureyri truly becomes a winter wonderland over the darker seasons, often with an astonishing sight of the Northern Lights mixed with a twinkle of snow. Another wonder are the ever famous hearts of town, giving a warm feeling all over when they pop up either in the street lights or shining across the ocean from Mt.Vaðlaheiði by Eyjafjörður fjord.

For everyday pleasure, Akureyri has a lot to offer. Soaking in hot tubs is always a treat, but for excitement, activities such as snowmobiling, winter horseback riding and dog sledding are popular options. Also, there is a full in-town calendar of concerts, plays and exhibitions. Being in Akureyri on New Years Eve however is something not to be missed. Not that you can miss it if visiting, as the town practically explodes with colourful fireworks.

AKUREYRI & SURROUNDING AREA

AKUREYRI ALL YEAR ROUND


Filled with geothermal heated water, a soak or swim will leave one rejuvenated both in mind and body. For example, the famous Mývatn Nature Baths are only a bit over an hours drive from town while Akureyri has a few thermal pools open all year round. The city’s thermal pools are always pleasantly warm, whatever the weather,

and most pools are open-air. All have outdoor hot tubs, and most have water slides for the young (and young at heart). Open from early morning until late in the evening; swimming suits and towels are available for a small fee. There is simply no cheaper or healthier way to experience Akureyri and to get to know the locals!

EXCITING AKUREYRI 8

ART & CULTURE

With the energy of a big city, Akureyri boasts of a theatre as well as various museums and galleries open all year round. Visitors can enjoy everything from great displays dedicated to Icelandic history - to small exhibitions with work from local artists. Known for its vivant music and art scene, Akureyri offers nothing but the best. Opening in late August 2010, Hof - Cultural and Conference Centre, is especially designed for such events. Music and other performing art shows have entered its stages with huge success, while Hof also proposes top-notch facilities for conferences and meetings, receptions, parties and exhibitions.

SHOPPING & DESIGN

Did you know that ...

Tax-free shopping is something to keep in

H

amburg, Paris, Edinburgh In the eyes of local people Akureyri has never been a remote small town, and it therefore became natural at the beginning of the 20th century to name new commercial buildings in the downtown area after foreign metropolises. Today these buildings are still standing

mind while strolling the streets of Akureyri - weather searching for souvenirs, unique Icelandic design or designer brands.

WINING & DINING

With Akureyri’s astounding variety of restaurants offering local products such as fresh fish, organic lamb, wild game as well as international cuisine, hungry travellers should be able to devour whatever their hearts desire. One should keep in mind to try the Icelandic hot dog – especially the Akureyri’s way – with red cabbage and Thousand Island dressing! Cafés are also widely spread with happy campers everywhere. Locals enjoy their coffee and cake while chatting with friends and family and visitors are generally delighted to find such delicacy at affordable prices.

in the town centre at the intersection of Hafnarstræti and Kaupvangsstræti. In the Edinburgh house you will find the famous Bautinn restaurant, the Hamburg house now hosts a souvenir shop and the well known coffee house Bláa Kannan (the Blue Coffee Pot) is located in the blue painted Paris house.

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earts all over Heart shaped red traffic lights, glowing gigantic heart made out of light bulbs at

Mt.Vaðlaheiði and red heart stickers, have certainly got the attention of those visiting Akureyri. Starting around the yearly Akureyri Family Festival in 2008 (Ein með öllu) organisers


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o matter what age, travellers should be able to find enjoyable activities aimed at their interest. Splashing around in pools is pleasant for the whole family, as is looking out for whales, trolls or whatever your imagination desires. Akureyri is a safe and clean town offering family oriented environment where high chairs can be found in every café, babies sleep in their prams outside and breastfeeding is nothing to be ashamed of. For a pleasant surprise, Jólagarðurinn (The Christmas Garden) is not far away. Open all year round despite the name and only a few minutes drive from the centre of Akureyri, this beautiful gardens surroundings, with benches and tables provided, makes it an excellent spot for a picnic. The Akureyri’s festival calendar is another thing to keep an eye out for – conventionally filled with activities and festivals. Firm favourites include the First Day of Summer (April), National Day (June 17), Medieval Days at Gásir (July), and Akureyri Family Festival (beginning of August).

On cold days in winter, there is nothing more refreshing than a spin around on skates at the Skautahöllin ice rink. In case you didn’t bring your own skates you can always rent a pair.

SKIING OR SNOWBOARDING

Akureyri is one of the best places in Iceland for cross-country and downhill skiing. The ski area is in Mt.Hlíðarfjall, located 5 km west of the town, about 10 min drive. The top ski station is situated at 1000m above sea level and there is plenty of snow during the winter (end of Nov until the end of April). Good beginner to upper intermediate terrain, as well as off-piste skiing and the slopes are illuminated for night skiing. Why not sign up at the Ski – and Snowboard School and in case you are the travellinglight type of person, check the Ski- and Snowboard rental. For more info check www.hlidarfjall.is/en

imaginable, encouraging as many as possible to participate. The campaign became a success with great participation throughout the whole local community. Heart stickers, recites and quotes that encouraged optimism and positivity touched all.

By the end of November 2008 a huge red heart, the size of a football field, appeared in Mt. Vaðlaheiði located opposite the town of Akureyri on the other side of the bay. Nowadays the lights are white and the heart on the hill beats every winter starting around the first of advent throughout to April. It also sends it positive message by beating during the last weekend of August that coincides with the Akureyri birthday festivities.

www.visitakureyri.is www.icelandtoday.is

working on expanding and improving the activities decided to emphasize the values of family by putting red heart shaped traffic lights at street junctions. During fall that same year and due to certain difficulties caused by the global financial recession, Akureyri’s authorities decided to boost positivism and optimism to each and everyone. The campaign “Smile with your hearts” started spreading its message as widely as

ICE SKATING

AKUREYRI & SURROUNDING AREA

AKUREYRI FOR THE FAMILY


SKAGAFJÖRÐUR CULTURAL HERITAGE

Skagafjörður fjord, situated in northern Iceland is on the of the most flourishing agricultural regions in the country, with extensive dairy and sheep farming in addition to the horse breeding which the region is famous for. The province and its four main villages have played an important role through the ages in the history of Iceland.

Hofsós with its 200 residents is a

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peaceful seaside village and one of the oldest trading centres in Iceland. The old log house from the time of the trading monopoly is one of the oldest in the country hosts the so-called Vesturfarasafn (The Icelandic Emigration centre), dedicated to the westward emigration of the Icelanders at the turn of the 19th century.

Hólar in Hjaltadalur valley, an important

historical place as one of two Episcopal seats in Iceland, created in 1106 and for seven centuries the seat of a bishop and a cathedral school. During these times Hólar played an important role as the capital of northern part of Iceland. Most notorious bishops were Jón Arason the last catholic bishop, who also brought the first printing press to Iceland and Guðbrandur Þorláksson who printed the famous Guðbrandsbible from1584.

Varmahlíð, located in the valley by the

Ring Road No. 1, is a centre of services for the rural community with an excellent school, community house, swimming pool, supermarket, Hotel & Tourist centre etc.

Last but not least is Sauðárkrókur, the largest urban area in Skagafjörður. With its roughly 2600 inhabitants it links a number of industries from shipping and fishing, processing of farm products and skin tanneries to a number of other manufacturing plants. Added to this are a number of service businesses, beauty parlors, hair salons, auto repairs and other ambitious merchants providing residents and visitors with first-class service. At the same time good restaurants, entertainment establishments and a cinema makes sure that no one gets bored stiff.

CRADLE OF HORSEMANSHIP

Skagafjörður is one of the most well known

destinations for horse riding and is often named as the district that is the cradle of Icelandic horsemanship where the history of man and horse has been intertwined for centuries. Skagafjörður is home to many of the famous breeding farms in the land, and many of the best ancestors of the Icelandic horse population come from the district. Every year there are many popular events in Skagafjörður that relate to horses, several horse rental facilities, performances, exhibitions and visits to breeding farms.


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The herring era

Siglufjörður is Iceland’s northernmost town and its fame and fortune have always been linked to the ebb and flow of the fishing industry. Just a tiny shark fishing village in the 1900s, Siglufjörður soon became one of the largest towns in Iceland and the undisputed capital of herring fishing in the north Atlantic. During the heyday of the fisheries the town population swelled to 10.000 men and women drawn north by the prospect of abundant work and the luxury of money. Although the herring has long since disappeared, the town bears the distinct imprint of “The Herring Era”. During the annual event The Herring Era Festival, this year from August 1 – 5, 2013 the town of today changes appearance and takes us back to the golden days of the old herring town it once was, with people all over salting fish at every corner and dancing in the town square. This Family Festival provides entertainment suitable for everyone.  www.sild.is/en

The Harbour

The harbour at Siglufjörður has long been considered one of the best in Iceland. As early as the middle ages, English and Dutch fishing

and merchant ships favoured Siglufjörður as a convenient, sheltered base of operations. By mid-century over 500 boats were active in the local herring fishing fishery, in times of bad weather, hundreds of fishing boats would seek refuge, tying to the docks or anchoring in the fjord to wait out the storm. With the disappearance of the herring from Iceland’s waters by 1970, the old wooden shelters were replaced by permanent concrete. Today, the harbour is frequented by large shrimp trawlers and small cod-fishing boats delivering their catch to local processors. For cruise ship passengers visiting Siglufjörður, the main dock is centrally located just a short walk to local museums, galleries, restaurants and shops.

AKUREYRI & SURROUNDING AREA

Siglufjörður

Dance the midsummer along

The folk music centre was founded in 1999 and officially opened by the president of Iceland during a ceremony held in July 2005. The town is the venue for the annual Folk Music Festival, a gathering which aims to highlight the diversity of folk music and to promote Iceland’s traditional music both locally and abroad. The festival is one of the most popular musical events and it has become a permanent fixture on the musical calendar.  www.folkmusik.is

Siglufjörður & Ólafsfjörður fjords are connected by a new tunnel. Tourists can find many things for amusement in both places. A Natural History Museum is in Ólafsfjörður. In addition, plants and eggs are on display as well as some other stuffed animals. A polar bear for example, rare fish species from the lake of Ólafsfjörður, a fox, a billy goat and crabs.

mysterious retreat

If you think Ólafsfjörður is no more than

a typical small fishing community and that’s all you can expect to find here, then you are definitely wrong. When you drive through the road tunnel entering

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ÓLAFSFJÖRÐUR


the village and see Ólafsfjörður in front of you, its splendour hits everyone. The mountains surrounding the fjord are unusually high and steep, with many beautiful hanging valleys, tempting destinations for those who enjoy short or long hiking tours in fine weather. The waters of Ólafsfjörður Lake, reflect the town along with the mountains and the sky, and occasionally a trout breaks the surface as a reminder of what is up and what is down in this mysterious mountain retreat. The lake itself has a long-lived reputation for mystery, not least because both fresh-water and salt-water fish are caught in it.

SUMMER BLUES

Held for the 13th time, the Ólafsfjördur Blues Festival, June 27 - 29, 2013 in which many major blues artists of the country have been discovered. In addition, there will be blues workshops for the public, for beginners and advanced. Call Ólafsfjarðar Jazz Club (+354) 863 4369 http://blues.fjallabyggd.is

DISCOVER THE GREAT OUTDOORS

The highest sea cliff in Iceland Hvanndalabjarg, (630 m.) where seabirds fill the air, lies west of the fjord. Further out toward the open sea, Héðinsfjörður, a remarkable fjord, appears. This is an ideal place to throw out a fishing line. Ólafsfjörður has become a new and exciting destination for travellers, a community whose tourist development is based upon offering something for the whole family, summer and winter. Hótel Ólafsfjörður is renowned for good food, comfort and hospitality. The midnight sun in Ólafsfjörður is an unforgettable experience. In winter various ski facilities are on offer for all skiers. The town is the home town of Kristinn Björnsson, known among the best Icelandic slalom skiers in the world. Snowmobile trips into valleys and the ice-covered lake are organized by local snowmobile companies.

Ólæti

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A first timer, a very promising music and art festival filled with various entertainment. Starts July 4- 7. Contact info: (+354) 772 1138 (+354) 849 0206, www.facebook.com/olatabelgir

Dalvík

Fish and fun

Dalvík is a community in Eyjafjörður with a population of nearly 2000. The local economy is based upon the fisheries and fish processing, in addition to various industrial and food enterprises, agriculture, services, commerce and trade. The town harbour is a large fishing and commercial port where the ferry Sæfari, sailing from Dalvík, serves the

island of Grímsey, Iceland´s northenmost community, which lies in the Arctic Circle. The ferry to island of Hrísey also plies from Árskógssandur, a small comminty in the municipality.Tourism is a fast growing industry with Cultural house, swimming pool, Birdland exhibition, folk museum, golf course, whale whatcing, horsceback riding and more. Hiking is a popular sport and the surrounding mountains of the Troll peninsula make an excellent scene for hikers. www.dalvikurbyggd.is


History exhibitions

And then some sport

You’ll find a nine-hole golf course seven km. outside of Dalvík at Arnarholt in Svarfaðardalur. Legend says that the original 9th century settlers of the valley are buried here and archaeologists have excavated early medieval remains

MÝVATN NATURE AT ITS BEST

HOT HOT HOT… Lake Mývatn is renowned for its natural beauty and outdoor recreation opportunities. A few places around Mývatn have a particular attraction for travellers. The strange formations of Dimmuborgir, the pseudocraters around Skútustaðir, the hot springs, the Krafla geothermal area and the Mývatn Nature Baths with its milky waters stretching out over the lagoon with 3,5 million litres of warm soothing geothermal water. Laxá River, one of the most bountiful and sought after fishing rivers of the country, runs from Mývatn. The stream Grænilækur, from Lake Grænavatn, is Mývatn’s only source of surface water, the majority of the water coming from underground sources. A large stream of travellers visit Mývatn in the summer, but many believe the lake and its surroundings to be no less impressive in the wintertime. One thing everybody should know is of course that the Icelandic Yule lads live in Dimmuborgir and during the Christmas advent they become quite social, inviting guests to their place and of course they take their annual bath at the Mývatn Nature Baths.  www.jardbodin.is

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www.visitakureyri.is www.icelandtoday.is

Mývatn is the fourth largest lake in Iceland, covering 36.5 square kilometres, or approximately 14 square miles. It is situated 277 meters (908 feet) above sea level, very indented and with more than 40 small islands. Mývatn is shallow, with a maximum depth of only about 5 meters. The area is home to more species of ducks than any other place on earth including the American Barrow’s Goldeneye, which breeds nowhere else in Europe. With a very diverse bird life in general, its natural beauty is unparalleled. Mývatn derives its name from the often-annoying gnat, which is divided into two kinds, of which one has a habit of biting people. These two variations comprise a large number of species, however. The ecological picture would undoubtedly be vastly different if there were no gnats, as they provide a large part of the diet of various birds as well as trout. www.visitmyvatn.is/en

that support the rumours. The golf course is located in spectacular natural environment and is popular with both local residents and visitors. It is possible to rent golf clubs, carts and balls and have a bite at the restaurant during the summer. Over to something totally different made for the thrill seekers: if you are visiting the area during the wintertime you could consider doing some Arctic Helicopter Skiing on Tröllaskagi, Troll Peninsula, in Northern Iceland. The potential for world class downhill skiing is mind blowing with thousands of slopes and peaks waiting for the first skiers with vertical descents of up to 1500m or almost 5000ft. Check out the mountain guys at www.bergmenn.com

AKUREYRI & SURROUNDING AREA

The folk museum Hvoll at Dalvík comprises thousands of items, most of the contributed by local people. In addition the museum holds exhibitions about earthquakes, Jóhann Svarfdælingur, the tallest man in Iceland and Kristján Eldjárn former president of Iceland. It has a natural history collection where the polar bear is most popular. www.dalvikurbyggd.is/byggdasafn


AKUREYRI on foot

bike or bus

By bus

City bus (strætó)

These giant, yellow bananas ploughing through the town are the cheapest way to get around Akureyri. Note that all transportation on city buses is free! Maps are available at bus stations and tourist information centres. Most bus stops with a shelter also include a route map.

Operating hours:

Daily from 06:25 to 23:03 on weekdays and from 12:49 to 18:36 on weekends and holidays. Schedules during weekends depend upon time of year, for further information check the waiting shelter at the Ráðhústorg (City Hall Square) or call (+354) 462 4929. There is no bus service on Good Friday, Easter, Christmas and New Year’s Day.

on foot or bike

Historical path (purple) 4,1 km

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Starting along the shores of Akureyri this path takes you through the oldest part of town with places of historical interest. Passing by the graveyard and towards the slopes of the old potato gardens that’s been in use for over 200 years. From here to the Botanical Gardens and the stunning views from Akureyrarkirkja. Down the church stairs and through the town centre ending at the Ráðhústorg –“Town Hall square”

River and gardens (brown) 5,1km

From the corner of Brekkugata and the statue of the first Viking settlers in the area, Helgi Magri and Þórunn Hyrna, -“Helgi the Lean & Thorunn Hyrna”. From there towards the Glerártorg mall along the river up to the water reservoir and the Akureyri University area. Passing through the green areas down to the town thermal pools and the Akureyri church. Down the church stairs and through the town centre ending at the Ráðhústorg.

The first settlers & town architecture (green) 2,9km During this walk you pass several of the most prominent buildings in Akureyri. Starting at Brekkugata towards the statue of the first Viking settlers in the area, “Helgi the Lean & Thorunn Hyrna”. South by Helgamagrastræti to the towns thermal pool, the Botanical Gardens to Akureyri church and down by the town centre ending at the Ráðhústorg.

The sea & Oddeyrin (pink) 1,9km

Down by Strandgata towards HOF Cultural Center and along the sea to the harbour. Then crossing the streets into one of the oldest parts of town with wooden houses covered with stone imitated covering, typical for older houses in Akureyri. Back towards the town centre ending at the Ráðhústorg.

Akureyri University Swimming Pool Glerár Elementary school

Golf Area

Shopping Center Technical School

Police Station

Camping

The Settlers Akureyri Thermal Pool Botanical Gardens

Hospital

Library

Town Center

Graveyard

Old Town

Akureyri museum

Cultural Center

Oddeyri Old Town


the cultural side For such a small town, Akureyri abounds with museums. You can discover a quirky, young artist at the Akureyri Art Museum, get a feel for the cultural history and daily lives of people in Eyjafjörður at the Akureyri Museum, and finish up the day with a lesson on how to properly decorate the traditional thin-bread Laufabrauð (leaf-bread) at The House of Leafbread.

M

ost of Akureyri’s art collections focus on Icelandic artists from the area. There tends to be a lot of overlap between art, design and retail. In fact, some collections are housed within shops. But don’t let this stop you. You are just as likely to find interesting work there as in any other gallery.

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Check out the website provided here for more information on exhibition schedules, guided tours and events. You can also find up-to-date information at Hof - Tourist Information Centre, Strandgata 12.  www.visitakureyri.is

Akureyri Museum

Opening hours: June 1 – September 15 Daily 10:00 – 17:00 Winter: Thu-Sun. 14:00 – 16:00 Adults: (18+) 900 ISK Aðalstræti 58, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 462 4162 www.minjasafnid.is Free buses: no. 3 & 6

The Museum offers two exhibitions depicting the history of the fjord from settlement to modern times: “Eyjafjörður from Early Times” and “Akureyri – the Town on the Bay”. Many interesting and unique artefacts can be found in the exhibitions relating to the Viking period, the Middle Ages, religion and everyday life. The aim of the Akureyri Museum is the collection; preservation and study of objects and records relating to cultural history, especially such as may throw light upon the daily lives of people in the Eyjafjörður district and their industries. The beautiful surrounding museum garden is an idyllic picnic spot and the 19th century church is not to be missed if you visit Akureyri.

Davíð Stefánsson Memorial Museum Opening hours: June 1 – August 31 Mon-Fri 13:00 – 17:00 Adults (18+) 900 ISK Bjarkarstígur 6, 600 Akureyri. Tel.:(+354) 462 4162 5 min. walk from the Municipal Library

In the green hills of Akureyri stands a house with an exciting history and a unique atmosphere of the 60’s. Built in 1944 by one of Iceland’s most loved poets and writers, Davíð Stefánsson, who lived there until he died in 1964. Davíð had a taste for the finer things in life and was an enthusiastic collector of art and books. His apartment is a testament to his taste, full of books, art collection and other personal articles, just as he left them in 1964. It is almost as if he will return in a few minutes.


Nonni’s house memorial museum

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Opening hours: June 1 – September 1 Daily 10:00 – 17:00 Adults (18+) 900 ISK Aðalstræti 54, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 462 3555 www.nonni.is Free buses: no. 3 & 6

MUSEUMS & GALLERIES

In the oldest part of Akureyri you will find one of the hidden gems of the town, Nonni’s house. It was the childhood home of the writer and Jesuit priest Jón Sveinsson, “Nonni”. He lived there until he went to study to be a Jesuit priest in 1870 - at the time no more than twelve years old. His adventures as a boy became an inspiration for his stories published in over 40 countries around the world, in such diverse languages as Chinese and Esperanto. Built in 1850, Nonni´s house is amongst Akureyris oldest houses and is set up in the spirit of the period with artefacts from Nonni’s life and books from many of the 40 countries where his books were published. Books by Jón Sveinsson in several languages are sold at the museum. Nonni’s house is on the same ground as the Akureyri Museum.

Matthías Jochumsson memorial museum Opening hours: June 1 – August 31 Mon-Fri 13:00 – 17:00 Adults: (18+) 900 ISK Hafnarstræti, 600 Akureyri Below Akureyri church Tel.:(+354) 462 6649 5 min. walk from downtown

Sigurhæðir (Hills of Triumph) is an exhibition dedicated to the reverend and poet Matthías Jochumsson (1835-1920), one of Iceland’s most loved writers and poets, author of the Icelandic national anthem. Matthías had the house built in 1903 and lived there until the end of his life in 1920. Under the auspices of the Memorial Foundation office rooms are rented out, equipped with all the latest technology and intended for the use of scholars and poets engaged in creative writing.

The Center for visual arts

Opening hours: June-August: Tue-Sun 9:00-17:00 Sept-May: Wed-Sun 13:00 - 17:00 Free admission Kaupvangsstræti 12, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 461 2610 www.sjonlist.is

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The Center was founded in 2012 when The Akureyri Art Museum and The Cultural Center were merged. The Center is divided into three distinctly separate venues: The Akureyri Art Center and the multipurpose facilities of Ketilhús (Kettle House) and Deiglan (Melting Pot) all located on the same street, in the heart of Akureyri, affectionally known as Listagil (Art Canyon). The Museum opened its galleries in 1993 and is the oldest of those three establishments. For the past two decades it has been the flagship of the Listagil and has played a prominent role in the cultural life of Akureyri as the first institution outside Reykjavík to concentrate solely on visual arts.


The Icelandic Aviation Museum The Icelandic Aviation Museum, located in a large hangar at Akureyri airport, first opened its doors to the public on the 1st of May 1999. The museums main goal is to preserve Iceland’s aviation history with photographs and detailed texts presenting an interesting and realistic picture of pilots in their everyday activities, traced right up to the present time. The museum contains many types of aircrafts, a plane of the same kind as the first Loftleiðir Airline aircraft as well as the oldest ambulance aeroplane and the first glider built in Akureyri 1937.

Opening hours: June 1 – August 31 Daily 11:00 – 17:00 Winter: Mon- Sat 11:00 – 16:00 Adults: (12+) 1.000 ISK Akureyri Airport, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 461 4400 www.flugsafn.is

The Icelandic Folk and Outsider Art Museum 18

Opening hours: May 19 - August 19 Daily 10:00 – 17:00 August 20 – September 2 Daily 14:00 – 16:00 Adults (14+) 1.000 ISK Svalbarðsströnd, 601 Akureyri (12 km east of Akureyri) Tel.:(+354) 461 4066 www.safnasafnid.is

Safnasafnið is one of Iceland’s most important art museums and the only one collecting folk and outsider art. At present it stores approximately 4100 works. The museum has an extensive exhibition area, a library and research facilities, as well as accommodation for tourists, visiting artists and scholars. The museum presents its collection of folk and outsider art together with progressive modern art without discrimination - quality and sincerity being the only guidelines. In this way the museum has earned itself a rather special place on the Icelandic art scene.

The Old turfhouse Laufás Laufás is mentioned in historical records soon after the settlement of Iceland (874-930) and since the earliest period of Christianity a church has been located there. The existing church was built in 1865 and among its special items is a pulpit from 1698. The farmhouse was rebuilt in an ambitious style in 1853-1882 and is an example of the gabled farmhouse, although significantly larger than the ordinary Icelandic farmhouse of the time. The Laufás farmhouse is furnished with household items and utensils from the period. One of Laufáss characteristics is the brides chamber where brides prepared themselves for the big event. A souvenir shop and café, offering traditional Icelandic cuisine, is located at the service centre.

Opening hours: June 1 – September 1 Daily 9:00 – 17:00 Adults (18+) 900 ISK Grýtubakkahreppur, 601 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 463 3194 / (+ 354) 895 3172 www.minjasafnid.is


Sverrir Hermannsson‘s

Sundry Collection

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Opening hours: May 17 - September 16 Daily 11:00 – 17:00 Sólgarður, Eyjafjarðarsveit, 601 Akureyri (27 km south of Akureyri) Tel.:(+354) 463 1261 / (+354) 699 8474 www.smamunasafnid.is

Disrict Museum Hvoll in Dalvík

Opening hours: June 1 – September 1 Daily 11:00 – 18:00 Winter Sat.14:00-17:00 and by appointment. Adults (16+) 700 ISK Hvoll by Karlsrauðatorg, 620 Dalvík Tel.:(+354) 466 1497 / (+354) 892 1497 www.dalvik.is/byggdasafn

MUSEUMS & GALLERIES

Sverrirs Sundry Collection is a private museum like no other in Iceland. It is not only a historical or agricultural museum, an appliance and household collection, nail and forging compilation, or a key collection, but all of this and much more. For decades Sverrir has collected over thousands of items a year, ranging from gramophone needles to whole private collections of workshop tools. Sverrir has turned this assemblage into interesting exhibits and distinct sculptures that function as unique souvenirs. A cafeteria and a souvenir shop are Iocated at Sólgarður.

The museum’s collection is comprised by thousands of items. The natural history collection contains tools, furnishings and artefacts that provide insight in life and work of the community. The natural history collection contains a large number of Icelandic birds and mammals, the most popular of which is the polar bear. There are exhibits on a number of people from the district who became nationally famous, such as Jóhann Pétursson 234 cm tall, known as “the Giant”, once the tallest man in the world and the president Dr. Kristján Eldjárn. One room at the museum is also dedicated to the large earthquake that struck Dalvík in 1934.

Glaumbær

Opening hours: June 1-September 10 Daily 9:00 - 18:00 Adults (15+) 800 ISK Glaumbær, 560 Varmahlíð 7 km from Varmahlíð, direction Sauðárkrókur Tel.:(+354) 453 6173 www.skagafjordur.is

www.visitakureyri.is www.icelandtoday.is

The district of Skagafjörður certainly flourishes with a rich cultural heritage and an abundance of historical sites. For over half a century the Skagafjörður Heritage Museum has been showing visitors what 18th- and 19th-century daily life was like in rural Iceland. The turf farmhouses of Glaumbær are an excellent example of what is to expect in the district, the authentic buildings display the everyday household in their natural environment of bygone days in Iceland. The first known inhabitants of Glaumbaer lived there in the 11th century as mentioned by the old Viking tales in the Saga of the Greenlanders and the Saga of Eirikur the Red. The present buildings vary in age, the most recent addition having been built in 1876-79.As the last inhabitants moved out, the farm was repaired and declared a conserveda site in 1947. The Glaumbær farmhouse consists of a total of 13 connceted buildings (houses), each with its own roof and function; eating, sleeping, storage, smithy, workshops etc.


Natural History Museum, Ólafsfjörður The Natural History Museum that opened in 1993 is first and foremost a collection of Icelandic birds and an interesting and fascinating place for both adults and children. Birds and eggs are the primary focus in the museum, however there are several other animals such as goats, polar bears, arctic foxes, along with fish and crabs.

Opening hours: June -August : Tue-Sun 14:00-17:00. Aðalgata 14, 625 Ólafsfjörður Tel.:(+354) 466 2651 / (+354) 898 8981

The Herring Era Museum An awarded maritime and industrial museum - where the ‘glory days’ of Iceland’s herring fisheries are brought back to life in three buildings. The oldest one, Róaldsbrakki, built 1907 is a salting station and bunkhouse; Grána is a Opening hours: 1930s-era fishmeal and oil factory. In the summer on the June-August: daily 10:00-18:00 Spring and fall: daily 13:00 – 17:00 museum dock there is a demonstration of salting herring Winter: by arrangement into barrels, singing and dancing to accordion music. The Adults (16+) 1.400 ISK Herring Era Museum at Siglufjörður won the European Museum Award in 2004 as Europes best new museum of Snorragata 10, 580 Siglufjörður Tel.:(+354) 467 1604, www.sild.is industry and technology.

20 The Folk Music Centre The Folk Music Centre in Siglufjörður presents Icelandic folk music in an accessible and entertaining manner through video recordings of people old and young, from all parts of Iceland, singing, chanting and playing traditional instruments. Visitors can take a crack at playing reproductions of an Icelandic fiddle and a langspil (dulcimer), or just listen to the music with a cup of coffee.

Opening hours: June 1-August 31: Daily 12:00 - 18:00 Norðurgata 1, 580 Siglufjörður Tel.:(+354) 467 2300 www.folkmusik.is

more Museums & Galleries... The Icelandic Motorcycle Museum Opening hours: Daily, June 1-Sept.1, 10:00-17:00 Krókeyri 2, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 466-3510 / (+354) 866 3500 www.motorhjolasafn.is The Akureyri Industrial Museum Opening hours: Daily, June 1-Sept.14 10:00-17:00 Saturdays, Sept.15 -May 31 14:00-16:00 Krókeyri, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 462 3600 / (+354) 897 0206 www.idnadarsafnid.is Húni ii Húni II is a 132 gross ton oak ship, built in Akureyri, Iceland in 1963. Today the ship is property of the Akureyri Industrial Museum. When

Húni is docked by the pier it is open to public every afternoon, June 25 August 20, from 13:00 - 17:00 Torfunesbryggja pier, 600 Akureyri. Tel.:(+354) 848 4864 The Municipal Library of Akureyri Opening hours: 16.May -15.Sept Mon-Fri 10.00-19.00 Closed Sat,Sundays 16.Sept.-15.May Mon-Fri, 10:00-16:00 Sat. 11:00-16:00 Brekkugata 17, 602 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 460 1250 www.akureyri.is/amtsbokasafn An Antique Collection of Toys on Display Opening hours: Daily,June 1 -Aug.31 13.00-17.00 Saturdays, Sept.1-May 31 14:00-16:00 and by appointm.

Aðalstræti 46, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 863 4531 The house of shark-Jörundur Opening hours: Daily, June 1- Aug.31 13.00-17.00 Norðurvegur, Hrísey Tel.:(+354) 695 0077 The Grenivík Fisheries Museum Opening hours: Daily, June 15 - Aug.15 13:00-17:00 Sæland 2/Hlíðarendi, 610, Grenivík Tel.:(+354) 698 5610 The Birdland Exhibition Opening hours: Daily, June 1 - Sept.1 12:00-17:00 and by appointment. Húsabakki, Svarfaðardal, 621 Dalvík Tel.:(+354) 466 1551


Wining & Dining in AKUREYRI A 22

kureyri’s restaurant scene is emerging with a unique palate all of its own, embracing the fresh ingredients Iceland offers at home. Icelandic chefs are keen to bring different cultures and cuisines to the local table. A great many of outstanding kitchens can be found in Akureyri with an eye to different flavours using Iceland’s own bounty of seafood, lamb, wild game, organic, greenhouse vegetables and top-notch dairy products. Although fine dining is still popular among Iceland restaurants, many places are moving instead towards more traditional Icelandic “soul food”—fish balls, smoked lamb, plokkfiskur and rúgbrauð, mushy peas, red cabbage, salt cod steaks—the kind of hearty dishes you’d find the nation’s grandmothers cooking. While this sort of food may not be served everywhere, it has definitely made a comeback in the last two or three years and the nation seem happy to have its comfort foods back on the menu. On the other hand, a number of kitchens are taking those fresh Icelandic ingredients and applying them to completely different cuisines. You’ll find Spanish-style Tapas made with local ingredients at Goya-Tapas bar, and some of the best curries (seriously) are on the menu at the Indian Curry Hut. Don’t forget to try one of the new places? Experience the creative menu at the newly opened Hamburger Factory and if you’re still in the mood later in the evening try the great tasting locally brewed beer and listen to some live music at Brugghúsbarinn.

Local delicacies

COST INDICATOR For an idea of how much a standard dish will cost you, follow the dots! But remember, this is not an exact science...

• under 1.500 kr •• 1.500 - 2.500 kr ••• 2.500 kr +

If you’re looking to try a few typically Icelandic goodies, try hangikjöt (smoked lamb), svið (seared lamb face), hákarl (putrified shark), brennivín (great as a chaser with hákarl), skyr – a delicious, high-protein yogurt-like substance, puffin or harðfiskur (dried fish strips).


23 EAT & DRINK

Restaurant on the top floor

Skipagata 14 | Akureyri | Tel.: +354 462 7100 | www.strikid.is

BRYGGJAN RESTAURANT

IN AKUREYRI

………………………………………………………………………………………………

Strandgata 49 • Akureyri • Tel.: +354 440 6600

www.bryggjan.is

www.icelandtoday.is

Y! ENJO


BISTRO Akureyri Backpackers Hafnarstræti 98, 600 Akureyri Tel.: (+354) 571 9050 Pub style hamburgers, sandwiches, light meals, “Today’s special” and brunch on weekends. Amts-Café Ilmur • Brekkugata 17, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 618 9007 Hot meals are offered during lunch for a reasonable price. Múlaberg bistro & bar • • • Hótel Kea Hafnarstræti 87-89, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 460 2017 www.keahotels.is Newly opened bistro located at the Kea Hótel premises.

FAMILY STYLE

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Bryggjan (the Pier) • • Strandgata 49, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 440 6600 www.bryggjan.is Historical factory building by the harbor, today hosting a restaurant with a great menu. Greifinn Restaurant • • Glerárgata 20, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 460 1600 www.greifinn.is Providing a varied menu where everyone can find a meal to his or her liking. Hamborgarafabrikkan • • Hafnarstræti 87-89 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 575 7575 www.fabrikkan.is Great hamburger-style restaurant with a different touch. Located at the corner of Hótel KEA right in the heart of town.

FASTFOOD Ak-inn Hörgárbraut, 603 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 464 6474 Refreshments, grill and drive thru’ kiosk.

Tel.:(+354) 578 6400 Fish & chips and chicken restaurant. DJ Grill Strandgata 11, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 462 1800 Hamburgers, sandwiches, chicken and more. Hlöllabátar • Ráðhústorgi 1, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 462 7200 Grilled sandwiches and subs. Leirunesti Leiruvegur, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 461 3008 Drive-through. Litla kaffistofan Tryggvabraut 12, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 462 2345 Lunch buffet, grill and fast food. Nætursalan/Tikk takk Strandgata 6, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 461 4574 Open at nights on weekends. Subway • Kaupvangsstræti 1, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 461 3400 Glerártorg Shopping Center Gleráreyrum 1, 600 Akureyri Tel.: (+354) 571 6777 Serrano • Ráðhústorg 7, 600 Akureyri Tel.: (+354) 519 6918 www.serrano.is N1 Hörgárbraut, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 461 3012 Grill and drive-through.

Healty OPtion Silva Green Food Syðra-Laugalandi 601 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 851 1360 http://silva.is A green restaurant offering hot vegitarian dishes, organic food, healthy desserts, and fresh shake and juices.

Besti bitinn • • Skipagata 2, 600 Akureyri

YOU HAVE TO TRY ... ... “ein með öllu“ a traditional hotdog with all the fixins’ including ketchup, mustard, remoulade sauce, topped off with fried and raw onions. BUT ... and this is a big but ... only in Akureyri can you ask for “ein með öllu“with 100 Island dressing & red cabbage! Try it ... we dare you!

Brynja Ís It is a well known fact (by the locals, anyway) that Brynju Ís, or Brynjas Ice Cream, is the best in the world. This fact is, of course, contended by many envious and small minded souls. Aðalstræti 3, Akureyri

ICELANDIC / INTL Bautinn Grill • • • Hafnarstræti 92, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 462 1818 www.bautinn.is Good food at affordable prices situated in one of the oldest houses in town. Strikið Bistro • • • Skipagata 14, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 462 7100 www.strikid.is On the top floor with breathtaking, sweeping view of the fjord. Aurora restaurant • • • Icelandair Hótels Þingvallastræti 23 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 518 1000 www.icelandairhotel.com Icelandic food sourced from the best local farmers and fishermen. Krían (The Arctic Tern) Nýja-Sjálandi, 611 Grímsey Tel.:(+354) 467 3112 Countrystyle with fresh white fish, salted fish and auk.Open daily from 15th of May -15th of Aug. or upon agreement at other times.


25 EAT & DRINK

BE SQUARE AND BE THERE Gullfoss and Geysir are surely a must-see in Iceland, but neither is something you eat. That's why we have 15 brilliant and creative hamburgers at the Hamburger Factory. Located on the groundfloor of the highest tower of Reykjavík, and on the groundfloor of the historic Hotel Kea in Akureyri, the Hamburger Factory has been packed with burger-craving customers since it's opening in april 2010. Among the regulars is Iceland's best known fisherman, Eric Clapton. Attention: Our hamburger buns are not round. They are square. Does it taste better? You tell us. The Hamburger Factory has two restaurants in Iceland. The Hamburger Factory Akureyri The Hamburger Factory Reykjavík Kea Hotel. Groundfloor. Höfðatorg Tower. Groundfloor.

Reservations: Tel: 575 7575 fabrikkan@fabrikkan.is www.fabrikkan.is

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Opening hours: Sun.-Wed. 11.00 – 22.00 Thu.-Sat. 11.00 – 24.00


Brekka - Hrísey Island • • Tel.:(+354) 466 1751 www.brekkahrisey.is Open daily from 15th of May til 15th of September.Open upon agreement at other times with some advance.

INDIAN Indian Curry Hut Hafnarstræti 100 b, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 461 4242 Indian take-away in the centre of Akureyri.TALIAN

ORIENTAL Krua Siam • • Strandgata 13, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 466 3800 This restaurant serves Thai food. Pengs Strandgötu 7, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 571 9000 A Chinese restaurant.

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SCANDINAVIAN

STeakhouses

1862 Nordic Bistro • • Strandgötu 12, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 466 1862 www.1862.is A new restaurant in Akureyri’s new Culture and Conference Centre, Hof. The restaurant is inspired by the Danish influence from the past.

Linda Steakhouse • • Hvannavellir 14, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 460 3000 www.lindasteikhus.is Located on the ground floor at the old Linda Chocolate Factory

seafood RUB23 • • • Kaupvangsstræti 6, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 462 2223 www.rub23.is Seafood restaurant with a broad selection of dishes as well as sushi. Örkin hans Nóa • • • Hafnarstræti 22, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 461 2100 Seafood-Gallery, soft and cozy atmosphere with events during evenings and weekends.

italian/pizza

SPANISH

La Vita é Bella • • Hafnarstræti 92, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 461 5858 Italian restaurant right in the heart of town with great selection of first- class table wines.

Goya - Tapas bar • • • Kaupvangsstræti 23, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 519 7650 www.goya.is Little Spain in town combined with international cuisine.

Dominos Pizza • Undirhlíð 2, 603 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 581 2345 Jón Sprettur Kaupangur, by Mýrarvegur, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 464 6464 Specialists in pizza home delivery.

Tapas Canarias -Tasca Rincón Canario Laxdalshús, Hafnarstræti 11 600 Akureyri Tel.: (+354) 461 2900 Specialises in Tapas.

SUSHI Kung Fu Sticks & Sushi Brekkugata 3, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 462 1400 Newly opened at the Town Hall Square.

CAFÉS Bakaríið við Brúna Dalsbraut 1, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 461 2700 Patisserie with light meals. Café Björk Lystigarðinum 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 460 5600 A nice Café in the beautiful Botanical Gardens. Hot coffee and freshly baked goods everyday. Winter opening times are: 11:00 -18:00. Ísbúðin Akureyri- Ís og kaffi Geislagötu 10 600 Akureyri Tel.: (+354) 461 1112 Bláa kannan café Hafnarstræti 96, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 461 4600 Bláa kannan café in the legendary hous Paris opens its doors in the morning with the offer of freshly baked bread.

Torgið Pizza 67 in Siglufjörður

Large menu Coffee and cakes Summer opening: Daily

Tel.:+354 467 2323


27 EAT & DRINK

Brauðbúðin café Hafnarstræti 108, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 460 5930 Well known bakery offering freshly baked bread and cakes. Café Amour Ráðhústorg 9, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 461 3030 An excellent café right on the town square. Café Berg (Dalvík Culture House) Goðabraut 2, 620 Dalvík Tel.:(+354) 460 4000 Cafe with homemade bread and cakes. Flugkaffi Akureyri Airport, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 462 5017 Cafe and a restaurant at the Akureyri airport. Kaffi Ilmur, Ingimarshúsi Hafnarstræti 107b 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 571 6444 Newly renovated traditional tin clad house on The High Street of Akureyri/ Hrafnarstræti. Coffee, tea, cakes, soup and salad bar and more.

Litla Kaffistofan Langholt 1, 603 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 467 2345 Offers freshly baked bread and cakes and luch specials. Located in the same building as Bónus supermarket.

BARS/PUBS Kaffi Jónsson Hafnarstræti 26, 600 Akureyri Tel.: (+354) 461 1126 www.keilan.is Fast food, bowling and bar. Brugghúsbarinn Kaupvangsstræti 23, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 5710590 Cosy bar in the center of town. Its main focus is on beer, made locally by the Brewery Kaldi. Götubarinn Bar Hafnarstræti 96, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 462 4747 “The Street Bar” has a big selection of beers.

DANCE CLUBS Café Amour Ráðhústorg 9, 600 Akureyri

Tel.: (+354) 461 3030 Disco music at night during weekends. Pósthúsbarinn Skipagata 10, 600 Akureyri Tel.: (+354) 866 6186 Pósthúsbarinn is nightclub for 22 years and older. A lounge bar is located within the nightclub. Sjallinn Nightclub Geislagata 14, 600 Akureyri Tel.: (+354) 462 2770 www.sjallinn.is Open only few times a year but still the place for entertainment that offers both live music and discotheque.

LIVE MUSIC Kaffi Akureyri Strandgata 7, 600 Akureyri Tel.: (+354) 461 3999 On weekends, the coffee house becomes one of the hottest night spots in town. Græni hatturinn (Green Hat) Hafnarstræti 96, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 461 4646 Located beneath Bláa kannan café the bar offers different kind of drinks and live music.

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Kaffitorg Café Glerártorg, Gleráreyrar 1, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 462 2200 Kaffitorg Café is located in Glerártorg shopping mall.

Te og kaffi café Hafnarstræti 91-93, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 540 2180 www.teogkaffi.is At the bookstore Penninn Eymundsson. On the menu are various coffee drinks and cakes.


Dining in the northen area

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Sauðárkróksbakaríveitingastofa Aðalgata 5 550 Sauðárkrókur Tel.:(+354) 455 5000

Harbour House Café Gránugata 5b, 580 Siglufjörður Tel.:(+354) 659 4809 www.harbourhouse.is

Restaurant Hólum í Hjaltadal 551 Sauðárkrókur Tel.:(+354) 455 6333 www.holar.is

Restaurant Torgið/Pizza 67 • Aðalgata 32, 580 Siglufjörður Tel.:(+354) 467 2323

Restaurant Ólafshús • • Aðalgata 15 550 Sauðárkrókur Tel.:(+354) 453 6454 www.olafshus.is

Aðalbakarinn Aðalgata 28, 580 Siglufjörður Tel.:(+354) 467 1720

Bakkaflöt 560 Varmahlíð Tel.:(+354) 453 8245 www.bakkaflot.com Restaurant Hótel Varmahlíð 560 Varmahlíð Tel.:(+354) 453 8170 www.hotelvarmahlid.is Áskaffi- kaffistofa Glaumbæ 560 Varmahlíð Tel.:(+354) 453 8855 Tel.:(+354) 699 6102 www.askaffi.is Restaurant Lónakot-Sölvastofa 566 Hofsós Tel.:(+354) 453 7432 www.lonkot.com

Rauðka Café • • Gránugata, 580 Siglufjörður Tel.:+ (354) 461 7733 www.raudka.is Next to Hannes Boy Café at the small boat harbour. Hannes Boy Café • • • Gránugata 23, 580 Siglufjörður Tel.:(+354) 461 7730 www.raudka.is Situated next to the town harbour. Allinn sportbar • Aðalgata 30, 580 Siglufjörður Tel.:(+354) 467 1111

Brimnes Restaurant & Hótel, Bylgjubyggð 2, 625 Ólafsfjörður Tel.:(+354) 466 2400 www.brimnes.is Icelandic seafood and lamb specialities. Nice wine list. Höllin • • Hafnargata 16 625 Ólafsfjörður Tel.:(+354) 466 4000 Við Höfnina • • (At the Harbour) Hafnarbraut 5, 620 Dalvík Tel.:(+354) 466 2040 Kaffi Kú Garður farm Tel.:+(354) 867 3826 www.kaffiku.is Located in the loft above the cow barn at Garður farm where you can watch the cows through a glass wall. Restaurant Sel Hotel • • • Skútustaðir, 660 Mývatn Tel.:(+354) 464 4164 Great dinner buffet and the menu of the house with traditional tasty dishes. Café Borgir Dimmuborgir, 660 Mývatn Tel.:(+354) 464 1144 Offers a selection of traditional local specialties, light meals and a la carte dinner menu. Daddi’s Pizza • • Vogar, 660 Mývatn Tel.:(+354) 464 4399 Affordable pizzas along with wine, beer and soft drinks Vogafjósi (the Shed) • • 660 Mývatn Tel.:+ (354) 464 4303 Cowshed-Café serves homemade local products. Restaurant Hótel Reykjahlíð Reykjahlíð, 660 Mývatn, Tel.:(+354) 464 4142 Local specialties such as lamb, salmon, arctic char, smoked trout and geothermally baked rye bread. Bird Museum Sigurgeirs Ytri-Neslöndum, 660 Mývatn, Tel.:(+354) 464 4477 www.fuglasafn.is Traditional Icelandic food with a rich birdlife right outside the window.


Welcome to Botanical Garden Akureyri

Café Björk | Botanical Garden Akureyri | 460 5600 | cafebjork.is | facebook.com/CafeBjork

Open: kl. 10:00 - 22:00


AKUREYRI

Serving you

LocaLLy brewed quaLity beer Live music

oN THE wEE KENdS opENING Ho URS

sun-wed 17 00 - 01 00 thurs-sat 17 00 - 03 00

Probably THE fR

IENdLIEST STAff IN THE woRLd

BRUGGHÚSBARINN 600 AKUREYRI · TEL +354 571 0590

www.brugghusbarinn.is

CHE CK US OUT ON FACE B OK


shop ‘til you drop The exchange rate over recent years plus the local tax-free service certainly gives visitors great value for their money. On top of this, most retailers offer tax-free receipts, which are meant to save you the local’s sales tax (a hefty 25.5%). If you are a mall shopper, Akureyri has one (maybe not to huge one but a very nice one) – Glerártorg -but if the weather is nice, most people enjoy ducking in and out of the shops and cafés on Hafnarstræti. There’s always something new to see—if not in the stores then at least on the street—people watching is a real treat.

Downtown Akureyri

This is the beating heart of Akureyri where you’ll find the greatest density of independent cafés, restaurants and shops—from handmade sushi to the latest in Icelandic music. Although most shops are lined up on Hafnarstræti and Skipagata, if you wander out into the residential areas you’ll find some smaller shops, bistros and galleries. Here you’ll also find bus stations, taxi stands and tourist info centres.

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Hafnarstræti

The main shopping street Hafnarstræti stretches between the Town Hall Square and Hótel Kea, although most shops thin out towards the southern end. You’ll find street-wear, high fashion, local music and art, quirky souvenirs, cool Icelandic design and all kinds of food and bars along the strip as well as trendy passers-by. Peoplewatching here is a must: morning, noon and night.

RáðhÚstorg Brekkugata This is the main square in Akureyri where you’ll always find something going on. Cosy coffeehouses, galleries, travel agencies as well

as jewellery shops and even the cinema for a late night movie. This is a great place for poking around and doing a puzzle over a cup of coffee.

Skipagata

Branching off the Town Hall Square and leading down towards the seafront and Hof- Cultural & Conference Centre is Skipagata, which is a bit tinier and shorter than Hafnarstræti, you’ll find the bank and shops with an emphasis on arts and crafts.

Glerártorg mall

North-west of downtown, Glerártorg houses some 45 international and local fashion outlet chains, Nettó supermarket, cafés and restaurants. Glerártorg is located almost at a walking distance from the Town Hall Square however if you don’t feel like that excursion, take the bus (free) from nearby Glerárgata (seaside) which stops right outside the mall.

NOTABLE

STORES

FRÖKEN BLÓMFRÍÐUR – the ATTIC

“Miss Blómfríður ” offers a great selection of Icelandic nostalgia of all ages from antiques, vintage to retro. Since the Miss likes all these “things” in excess it also happens that objects produced in the old style will appear in her warehouse, not to mention if it glitters or shines then she just has to buy it. Roses, lace and knick-knacks are also amongst her favourites so from time to time you will find limited quantities of vintage clothing, from various periods, amongst the things in her treasure-chest-shop.  Hafnarstræti 19, Akureyri


For the Great Outdoors

33 SHOPPING

Outdoor clothing, shoes and equipment. www.icelandtoday.is


Akureyri by Design L

ife on this frozen, rugged island in the middle of the ocean has not been easy—it demands a certain level of patience, an iron stomach, and most of all, a deep well of creativity and a knack for finding the humour in a tough situation. Icelandic design reflects these virtues in both its originality and sense of humour.

In such a small place there are fine lines between Iceland’s communities centering on crafts, fine arts and design. And although it is still very much finding its feet, Icelandic design is beginning to develop a personality distinct from its Scandinavian brethren. The design you’ll find in city draws its inspiration from the essence of this place—materials that echo Icelandic nature like moss, lava and ice, and even the unique way Icelanders experience the world, from 24-hour daylight, black sand beaches and a treeless landscape, to the passage of time so far north on the globe.

Kista

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Enjoy interesting design at Kista, housed within the impressive Hof-Cultural Centre of Akureyri. The store displays a wide variety of work by Icelandic designers including jewellery, textiles, wool, and household goods. Come and experience the wonderful space of Hof and its great facilities. The design store puts emphasis on offering a fun and diverse selection of exciting and innovative Icelandic design. Don’t forget to make a visit, browse at your leisure, at Kista and take a bit of Iceland design back home with you. Open:June - August Mon-Friday 09:00-18:00, Weekends 10:00-17:00 Otherwise open Mon-Fridays 11-18, Sat.12-17 Strandgötu 12, 600 Akureyri

SIRKA In Sirka you will find a lot of beautiful and fun gifts, useful household goods and nice gifts for children, all spiced with great Icelandic design. Take a look in the shop. Skipagata 6, 600 Akureyri www.sirka.is Flóra

Located in downtown Akureyri, the concept store and workshop Flóra is something to look out for. Offering selected new and renewed articles from Iceland, Germany, France and Switzerland, the focus is on handcraft or homemade things, produced under people and nature-friendly circumstances. The shop carries things from local artists, craftsmen and producers, everything from clothes, honey, coffee, books, Icelandic

herbs, candles, cups, bottles to bags and many other things. Flóras happenings are mostly art exhibitions, but features also films and smaller lectures as well as other various happenings all year round. Open: weekdays: 11am - 1pm, 4pm - 6pm Saturdays:1pm - 4pm Hafnarstræti 9 0, 600 Akureyri www.floraflora.is

Gallery Listfléttan

Nice gallery in the city centre. Sells different designer objects like paintings, sculptures and the typical Icelandic ceramics. Hafnarstræti 106, 600 Akureyri

Pottar & prik

The aim of the owners is to offer high quality and durable products for the home. Pots & Sticks offers international known brands as well as adding lots of exciting new products from local Icelandic designers. Check out the product designer from north Iceland, Stefán Pétur Sólveigarson, the black sheep coat hanger from local Ratdesign or any of the products from Aunts Design using the classic sweater pattern on their design lines. Glerártorg shopping mall, 600 Akureyri www.pottarogprik.is


35 SHOPPING

Bookstore since 1872

located throughout

the country Penninn og Eymundsson

www.icelandtoday.is

Eymundsson Austurstræti 18 Tel: 540-2130 auafgr@eymundsson.is

Eymundsson Kringlunni norður Tel: 540-2145 Krpe@eymundsson.is

Eymundsson Skólavörðustíg 11 Tel: 540-2350 verslun.skolavordustig@ eymundsson.is

Eymundsson Smáralind Tel: 540-2301 smaralind@eymundsson.is

Eymundsson Strandgötu 31, Hafnarfirði Tel: 540-2160 Hflager@eymundsson.is

Penninn - Keflavík Sólvallagötu 2 Tel: 540-2105 keafgr@penninn.is

Penninn Akranesi Dalbraut 1 Tel: 540-2115 akranes@penninn.is

Penninn Ísafirði Hafnarstræti 2 Tel: 456-3123 IS.afgr@penninn.is

Penninn Akureyri Hafnarstræti 91-93 Tel: 540-2130 akureyri@penninn.is

Penninn Vestmannaeyjum Faxastíg 36 Tel: 482-3683 vestmannaeyjar@penninn.is


Shear Genius T

he sheep in this country far outnumber the people, which is good because Icelanders have a penchant for their ovine friends. Although the lamb chops are delish and the ewe’s milk cheese is divine, it’s these woolly coats that are the prize of Iceland’s flock.

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The wool of the Icelandic sheep has been used to clothe Icelanders for centuries. And for good reason: it’s great stuff. Warm, waterproof, breathable and nearly indestructible. You’ll see the locals walking around in their “lopapeysas”, which is the traditional ring-neck sweater. The unique composition of the Icelandic wool consists of two types of fibres: inner fibres are insulating – fine, soft, and retain warmth well. Outer fibres are water-repellent – long, glossy and keep water out of the garment. All Icelanders have one of these heavy-hitters in their cold-weather arsenal—most likely knit by their granny. But for those of us who don’t have an Icelandic granny, you’re in luck: There are grannies for hire all around the country, knitting like mad to keep the tourists warm.

Souvenir shopping Mývatnsmarkaðurinn at Dimmuborgir Mývatn Market is one of the beststocked stores in the Mývatn area providing a wide range of souvenirs, books, woollens and other clothing at competitive prices open all days from 9:00 to 22:00 during summer. Foreign visitors also enjoy the benefit of tax-free shopping. www.kaffiborgir.is

Fold-Anna - woollen goods Hafnarstræti 100, 600 Akureyri The most common souvenir is Icelandic knitwear. If you hit the right moment, staff can be seen knitting ­behind the counter as you browse. The Víking
- Tourist shop Hafnarstræti 104, 600 Akureyri The Viking sells all sorts of souvenirs and neat gift items to bring back home. The selection includes postcards, outdoor clothing, books, woollen sweaters among Viking statues and shot glasses.

VARMA The warmth of Iceland

The warmth of Iceland Varma is produced by Glófi ehf, the largest knitwear producers in Iceland, located in Akureyri. The Varma brand includes socks, mittens, hats, headbands, gloves, scarves and shawls, as well as a selection of sweaters, cardigans and capes made from high quality Icelandic wool. Their product lines range from traditional styles and patterns following the latest fashion trends. Knitwear designer Laufey Jónasdóttir designs Varma’s new designer knitwear line, Blik. Austursíðu 2, 603 Akureyri www. varma.is

Geysir Hafnarstræti 98, 600 Akureyri Clothing and gift items from all over Iceland, Geysir has its own very popular woollen line as well as other Icelandic designers. A safe card for the last minute souvenir shopping. www.geysir.net Rammagerðin Hafnarstræti 94, 600 Akureyri Newly opened in the old Hamburg house, this 60 year old tourist shop is one of the oldest in Iceland. www.icelandgiftstore.com


Leaf-bread 37 SHOPPING

Laufabrauð, “Leaf-bread” or sometimes even “snowflake bread”, because of the intricate cut-through patterns, is the traditional Icelandic Christmas flatbread. It is first mentioned in writing in the early eighteenth century and more than 200 years ago; it had become the one and only Christmas bread of Northern Iceland. There are many traditional leaf bread patterns, some quite elaborate, others simple. At the Laufabrauðsetur, home to the old north Icelandic tradition of leaf-bread, you will find the history and handicrafts based on the old patterns. The shop and exhibition is also a workshop in order for visitors to experience the tradition that people in Akureyri hold so dear.

The flower of life The flower of life is a recurring pattern in Nordic visual art. The pattern can be traced to Asia, where the term originated. It may be compared to the tree Yggdrasill, the source of life. The design of the Flower of Life is also modelled upon the flower drawings of the artist Sölvi Helgason, one of the most famous wanderers in the history of Iceland. Laufabrauðsetrið Shop Definitely worth a visit at Strandgötu 43, 600 Akureyri or call (+354) 896 4341 www.laufabraud.is

A warm welcome awaits you in Kista, a home to Icelandic contemporary design and souvenirs made in Iceland. Find us in the Cultural Center of Akureyri, Hof. www.visitakureyri.is www.icelandtoday.is

Hof Cultural Center · Strandgata 12 600 Akureyri · Tel. +354 852 4555 Opening hours: Mon-fri 10.00-18.00, Sat 10.00-17.00


Fashionable Fish W

hile fur still holds its own in chilly Iceland, if you plan to ride the everchanging tides of fashion, you’ll need to reach for your salmon coat, your perch boots, your wolffish belt and your cod handbag.

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Icelandic designers have begun exploring uncharted waters by ushering a new material into their designs: fish leather. The material has won popularity because of how it can be sustainably produced. In Iceland the leather is made from fish caught and processed for food. Iceland’s own Atlantic Leather has used their background in traditional tanning and leather to work fish leather into a durable, usable product. However, the skins themselves retain their own distinctive look: salmon creates a delicate, elegant texture, perch is much rougher with coarse scales, wolffish yields a smooth leather with its characteristic black spots, and cod, the pride of Iceland’s bounty, gives a variable texture with both rough and smooth areas. You can check out Iceland’s fish leather designs at most design shops in the Northen area.

The Tannery Centre Located in Sauðárkrókur, north Iceland, the only tannery in Europe which makes fishleather. The Visitor Centre provides visitors with an unusual way to experience the tannery and its products: guided tours of the actual tannery, where fish-skin is expertly processed to make high-quality leather. Products by outstanding designers and craftspeople are offered for sale. Fishleather from Atlantic Leather has caught the imagination of internationally known fashion houses and brands such as Prada and Dior.

Borgarmýri 5, 550 Sauðárkrókur www.sutarinn.is

P.S. Akureyri winter as well as summer No matter whether you spend time in the north during summer or winter you might consider checking out the well-known (to the locals) store Skíðaþjónustan- The Skiservice. For 30 years, Skiservice in Akureyri has been selling skis and ski equipment to their customers in the north. However, should you be here in the summer time, they also trade in new and used bikes. Why not get around the town on bright summer nights on your own bike?  Fjölnisgata 4b, 603 Akureyri.


Shopping Center

39 SHOPPING

Þó

ru

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str æ

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stræti Kaup vang s

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WE ARE HERE

C 5 – 10 minutes walk

Street map

Glerártorg Shopping Center | Akureyri | www.glerartorg.is Open: Mon. - Fri. 10:00 - 18:30 / Sat. 10:00 - 17:00 Sun. 13:00 - 17:00 Netto Discount Store Monday to Firday 10:00 to 19:00 Saturday 10:00 to 18:00 Sunday 12:00 to 18:00

www.icelandtoday.is

Apparel & Fashion Products Electronics and Technology Meals & entertainment Discount Store Home & Office Health & Beauty Jewelry clocks and watches


Kaffi Borgir and Mývatn Market at Dimmuborgir Tel + 354 464 1144 • info@visitdimmuborgir.is • www.visitdimmuborgir.is

Surrounded by phenomenal view, located at the entrance of Dimmuborgir’s lava formation, Kaffi Borgir Restaurant offers tasteful variety of both traditional and local food. Sandwiches & burgers to more traditional food such as Icelandic meat soup, fresh arctic char, smoked lamb and smoked trout to name a few, or a selection of cakes and coffie. Kaffi Borgir is especially known for their “Geysir-bread”,

baked in the ground nearby. The souvenir shop at Dimmuborgir, Mývatn Market, provides a wide range of gifts, both local handmade crafts as well as clothes from the icelandic company 66°North. Foreign visitors enjoy the benefits of tax free shopping. Opening hours, see website. We are looking forward seeing you at Kaffi Borgir and Mývatn Market!

your online guide to iceland

icelandtoday.is 40

Fire

Water

Earth

Ice

The Christmas garden A warm visit

A fire glows and crackles in the fireplace. Christmas melodies and aroma fills the air. It may not be snowing, but it is the season to be jolly in this magical place. The Icelandic Christmas, with all its traditions such as the thirteen Yule Lads and their mother “Grýla”, has a special place of honor. In our little house there is the pleasant smell of smoked lamb “hangikjöt” and our unique hand carved cakes named “Laufabrauð”, cookies, sweets and jam. You will see Christmas artifacts that bear witness to skillful local handicraft as well as decorations from all over the world. Outside you can enjoy your picnic and visit, among other things, a fairytale tower with a large Christmas calendar. In the garden you will also find The Wishing Well of Unborn Children, a place of tranquility and peace. Open all year round. June - August 10:00 - 22:00 September - December 14:00 - 22:00 January - May 14:00 - 18:00 Free admission Jólagarðurinn ehf. - 601 Akureyri Tel.:+354 463 1433


DAY TRIPS & TOURS

onquering a glacier, riding an odd, little horse with five gaits, soaking in eerily warm water heated by the centre of the Earth. The foodie, the outdoorsman, C the thrill-seeker, the bird lover, the music fan, the historian: no matter what you’re

interested in, we have a wide range of activities and day tours to suit any visitor. But more importantly, we’re excited to share our island with you. Come and talk to us at the HOF Tourist Information Centre by the harbour, Strandgata 12 or check out our website www.visitakureyri.is. In the meantime here are some of our picks...

HORSEBACK RIDING

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Not only is Iceland’s herd a horse of a different colour; it’s a horse of an entirely different genetic make-up. Having been bred in almost perfect isolation for over 1000 years, this breed of horse is markedly different than the horses you’ll find anywhere else in the world. In fact, the herd is so protected that once an Icelandic horse leaves the island, it can never return. Small (if you fall, you won’t fall far) and extremely well tempered, the Icelandic horse is known for it’s unique fifth gait: the tölt. The tölt is an unusual gait where the horse seems to crouch down and slide over rough landscape like lava fields. Polarhestar offers lots of different tours from short ones, giving you the opportunity to test-drive the tölt, to several days’ tours for those more experienced.  www.polarhestar.is

Soak in the Culture Icelanders simply cannot walk past hot water without at least sticking a toe in. An impressive place to appreciate this “love of the soak” is in the warm, eerily blue waters of the lagoon at Mývatn Nature Baths, nestled in the landscape of Lake Mývatn. As summer merges into autumn, the landscape becomes a panoramic patchwork dotted with shades of gold and brown, while winter brings its own tapestry of snow, sparkling frosts, and frequent opportunities to enjoy the unforgettable splendour of the Northern Lights. The milky waters stretch out over the lagoon with 3,5 million liters of geothermal warm, soothing waters. At some point sweat it out in a natural steam room or just sit back at the Magma Café and enjoy a relaxing lunch or dinner at the terrace, or inside the modern yet welcoming dining area.   www.jardbodin.is


Myvatn Naturebath Relax

Enjoy

Experience

43 TOURS & ACTIVITIES

Myvatn

Opening hours: Summer 9:00-23:30 Winter 12:00-21:30 Jarðböðin við Mývatn tel.+354 464 4411

www.jardbodin.is

www.icelandtoday.is


WHALE WATCHING & BOAT TRIPS With its clean, clear waters full of life, the ocean surrounding Iceland is a good place to see whales and other sea life like porpoises and water birds not to mention the puffin colonies off the coast. The most frequently seen animals are the amazing minke-, fin- and humpback whales. The whale-watching season runs from April to end of December. www.ambassador.is

GEOTHERMAL WILDerness See Icelandic nature in all its splendour. The steam columns from the geothermal plants at Krafla and Bjarnarflag (Myvatn) are a magnificent sight. Why not make a visit to any of the two green energy plants and get the feeling of the state of the art technology that has powered households and industries of Iceland for decades. Your way back to the town takes you past nature landmarks such as Lake Mývatn, with its unparalleled beauty, and Goðafoss, the scenic waterfall with historic connections to Iceland’s conversion to Christianity in the year 1000. www.nonnitravel.is

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RIVER RAFTING Rafting has been the most popular adventure activity in Iceland for years, creating a memorable family adventure for kids, teenagers and adults who want to share an unforgettable, fun-filled adventure. For years, tours have been rafting down Jökulsá, Glacier River, located a one-and-a halfhour drive west of Akureyri. Pick up for the tours are from Akureyri Backpackers in the town centre. The river itself is a nice mix of beauty and exhilaration, with its towering and magical canyons, this is one of the most scenic and fun trips. Jump off a cliff into the river, get caught up in a friendly water fight, or simply kick back and allow the scenery to blow you away as you float down the meandering waters of the gorge. And honestly, how could you resist hurling yourself into a glacial river? www.arcticrafting.com

Weird world of ice and darkness

Explore Lofthellir Lava Cave located in the area of Lake Mývatn – a world of unique ice formations and darkness to experience. The cave you’re about to see boasts the greatest natural ice sculptures currently known in any Icelandic lava cave. Total length of the cave is about 370 meters with a ceiling height of, at its highest point, about 15 meters. During the excursion at least one hour is spent inside the cave, observing this unbelievable natural phenomena with all its sparkling colours. And as you travel back, why not take the opportunity to see some of the other fantastic sceneries in the same area, such as Dimmuborgir (Dark Castles), one of Iceland’s most popular natural tourist attractions. www.nonnitravel.is / www.sagatravel.is


For all your

outdoor activities

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blekhonnun.is

TOURS & ACTIVITIES

Good equipment will make your travel much more enjoyable!

www.icelandtoday.is

Open weekdays: 11-18 GLERĂ RGATA 32 Saturdays: 10-16 600 AKUREYRI /IslenskuAlparnirAkureyri TEL: 354 461-7879


Quad Adrenaline

ATVs, four-wheelers, quad bikes … I don’t know what you call them, but we call them fun! At Engimýri, conveniently located in the valley of Öxnadalur, right by Highway number 1, only 34 km west of Akureyri, you can take your road-rage to the lava field where these powerful machines eat up the terrain. Quad bikes open up a world that’s normally hidden from the average traveller; the hills and mountains normally only accessible to off-road vehicles. Riding through moss and lava, across black sands and over water in close proximity with nature. Give them a call at Engimýri Guesthouse Tel.:(+354) 462 7518, www.engimyri.is

Sea angling in the north Eyjafjörður, the fjord of islands, one of the longest fjords of the country, is truly the place for some deep-sea fishing excitement. The fishing grounds are near and the surroundings are majestic. Boats are well equipped for deep-sea angling and the tackle awaits you on board. Beware; it might be too much to carry home. The chef at the place you are staying could hopefully help to prepare a good meal from the days catch. For some deap sea angling tour departing from Hauganes harbor, check the guys downtown at Saga Travel. www.visitakureyri.is

Dive the north

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Arctic galore

Iceland is a world-class destination for ski touring. A great area of activity is Tröllaskagi, Troll Peninsula, in northern Iceland, with vertical descents of up to 1500m or almost 5000ft, thousands of peaks and slopes for all abilities making this a paradise for skiers and mountaineers. The fact that it is surrounded by the Arctic Ocean makes it ideal for incredible opportunities, skiing right down to the ocean on stable coastal snow with the excitement of Arctic weather and conditions. Bergmenn Mountain Guides, skilled ski mountaineers for the past 10 years, are the guys to take you for the experience of your life. The season lasts from around mid March until the beginning of June with generally excellent corn skiing and the occasional powder dump. Throw in a mix of volcanic activity, hot springs, lava fields and a unique culture and you will find that Iceland is a true adventure skiing destination. www.bergmenn.com

Scuba Diving in Iceland is truly an expedition of itself. Every plunge into its icy waters is different than the previous one. Iceland has a fascinating variety of marine life, such as sea-snails, crabs, all kinds of fish, jelly-fish, sponges and starfish. Lucky divers may see seals, and maybe even whales while exploring the exciting waters of Iceland! If you’re a diving fan then you’re in for a treat and even for those adventure-seeking visitors that are not experienced divers that want to explore parts normally hidden from the naked eye, no need to worry. Driving two hours from Akureyri you’ll find the geothermal cone Strýtan in Eyjafjörður fjord. The only in the world that you can scuba dive to as others are found at 3000m or deeper. Around 100 liters of freshwater per second at 72°c is coming from the cone. Strýtan is the first underwater protected area in Iceland. Strýtan Divecenter, Huldugil 25, 600 Akureyri Tel.: (+354) 862 2949 www.strytan.is


HIKE & BIKE THE NORTH

The mountain bikes are all GT, 24 gear high quality bikes. All participants on bike tours must wear a helmet and a safety vest and guides carry tools for maintenance and of course an emergency kit for first-aid. Scheduled hiking- and biking tours are offered June, July and August and at other times small groups can ask for tailor made tours and excursions. During the wintertime Hike & Bike offer tailor made tours on cross-country skis or snowshoes in the Mývatn area. Come and enjoy an all-natural activity with the guys at Hike & Bike! www.hikeandbike.is

Offering a wide variety of tours for Groups & Individuals.

www.nonnitravel.is PLEASE KEEP ICELAND & GREENLAND CLEAN - WE THINK GREEN !

www.icelandtoday.is

Iceland & Greenland specialists

47 TOURS & ACTIVITIES

Hike and Bike is an adventure and activity oriented company by Lake Mývatn owned by people that are outdoor enthusiasts, that really love and care for the nature. Hike & Bike offers quality hikingand mountain biking tours in the region of Mývatn. Lake Mývatn and the surrounding area is one of the most beautiful areas of Iceland, known for the steaming lava and hot springs, fissures and formations, flora and fauna and great hospitality. Travellers normally regret when they have to leave, wanting to stay a few more days. The tours vary in length and difficulty, suiting people of all levels. If you are in a hurry and don’t have the time to spend the day on a tour, the short intro tours are great to get to know the nature of the area. For all tours it is recommended wearing sturdy shoes, warm clothes, hat and gloves, as the weather in Iceland is quite unpredictable under the motto: “It’s never bad weather, just people that are not properly dressed”


Golf in Iceland T

Tee Time at the Top of the World

eeing off under the midnight sun. Playing through the rough of a lava field. Landing in a sand trap of black, volcanic sand. Watching your ball soar in the horizon in front of a glacier. Sound like a trip? Welcome to golf at the top of the world.

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Sweeping mountain and ocean views characterize the Icelandic golf experience, with courses that follow the contours of the landscape, a popular trend in golf course design today. Many golf courses in Iceland have been laid out with minimal disturbance to existing terrain in harmony with nature. The creation of golf courses has even been a part of restoring vegetation in the sandy landscapes within lava fields that cover one-tenth of Iceland’s surface. Midnight golf is available in summer due to Iceland’s northerly position on the globe and can be enjoyed both on eighteen-hole courses and nine-hole courses. To ensure your tee time, book your midnight golf well in advance with the golf course. Some golf courses limit the time they allow midnight golf. A must for golfers visiting Akureyri is The Annual International Arctic Open Golf Championship, June 27-29 2013, an event which features round-the-clock mid-summer golf at high latitudes, attracting golfers from all over the world playing on the northernmost golf course in the world. Info at www.arcticopen.is or www.visitakureyri.is For such a small country, we are crazy about golf, with a total of 65 courses on the island. Fifteen are 18-hole courses and fifty are 9-hole courses. In the Akureyri northern area you have about 8 to choose from. For more information visit www.golficeland.org

The amazing northern lights T

ter Win ly On

he northern lights are truly a spectacular phenomenon, and although there is no way to ensure that you’ll see them on your trip, you can at least enlist the help of the locals who know best. Conditions need to be dark, preferably away from the city lights, and as for the weather, look for the three Cs of northern-lights sighting: Cold, Crisp and Cloudless! You’ll normally see them between mid September and mid April. There are a number of northern lights tours to catch a glimpse of nature’s winter fireworks. www.visitakureyri.is


AROUND ICELAND

TOURS & ACTIVITIES

NO NEED TO GO HUNGRY

49

OUR GROCERY STORES ARE ALL AROUND ICELAND

www.icelandtoday.is


Travelling with children?

Y

ou’re in luck because Iceland is definitely a kid-friendly nation (we tend to have a lot of them). Much of Icelandic life is centred on activities with our children and Akureyri is definitely a safe and clean town, offering family oriented environment. village and surroundings, on a hay cart towed by an old tractor. Ferry phone number (+345) 695 5544. www.visithrisey.is

Ice Skating

On cold days in winter, there is nothing more refreshing than a spin around on skates at the Skautahöllin at Naustavegur 1. In case you didn’t bring your own skates you can always rent a pair. Call and check opening hours (+354) 461 2440.

Skiing or snowboarding Bicycling

50

Roll your family through Akureyri; most of the town’s green spaces are set up for excellent cycling tours. Contact the information centre about schedules or rentals.

Super Bowling

Iceland takes bowling to the next level with... disco bowling! Pumping music and flashing lights make this a night to remember. Bowling Akureyri, Hafnarstræti 26, Tel.: (+354) 461 1126

To the Movies

Akureyri-Eyjafjörður fjord is one of the best places in Iceland for cross-country and downhill skiing. Akureyri’s ski slopes are on the mountain Hlíðarfjall located 5 km south of the town, about 10 min by car or local bus. The top ski station is situated at 1000m above sea level and there is plenty of snow during the winter. Good beginner to upper intermediate terrain, as well as off-piste skiing and the slopes are illuminated for night skiing and cross-country skiing is also available. Why not sign up at the Ski and Snowboard School and in case you are the travelling-light type of person, check the Ski and Snowboard rental. For more info check www.hlidarfjall.is/en

After a long day out and about, what better way to relax than a good movie. Icelanders love their movies, but they also love their movie snacks. Be warned that the film will stop in the middle so everyone can get a refill! Remember to check whether kids movies are dubbed or subtitled.

Visit Hrísey Island -the Pearl of Eyjafjörður

Just a short ferry ride away from Árskógssandi, 30 min north of Akureyri, nature and history can be found all over this compact island. In the summer you can have a bite at the island’s restaurant Brekka or pack a picnic. This is a great place to wander the trails, or take a trip around the

Ask about Activities for Kids

Many of the activities and tours are also available for kids. Let them enjoy Iceland with you on tours such as dog sledding, whale watching, horseback riding, kayaking, sea angling and trips to the amazing Nature Baths at Mývatn.


Pools & Spas

come naturally to us

ools and spas are a huge part of the P Icelandic lifestyle. Geothermal water is one of Iceland’s greatest natural

TOURS & ACTIVITIES

resources. It’s used to heat houses and produce electricity, but moreover Icelanders just love to sit in it. Many believe Iceland’s geothermal water includes some great health benefits, especially for skin ailments like psoriasis and eczema. But besides that, these waters imbue the body with a great feeling of well-being. The country has over 170 pools spread around the country. Most swimming complexes include a lap pool, several hot tubs and at least one steam room. If you’d like to treat yourself to Iceland’s loved spa culture, indulge in a trip to the local pool or spa.

51

Thermal pools in Akureyri Sundlaug Akureyrar Þingvallastræti 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 461 4455 Open Summer M-F 06:45-21:00 Sa-Su 08:00-19:30 Winter M-F 06:45-21:00 Sa-Su 09-18:30

Glerárlaug Akureyri Höfðahlíð Tel.:(+354) 462 1539 Open Summer M-F 06:45-18:30 Sa 09:00-13:00 Winter M-F 06:45-08 and 17-21 Sa 09-14:30, Su 9-12

Sundlaugin Hrafnagilsskóla Hrafnagilskóla, 601 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 464 8140 Open Summer M-F 6:30-22:00, Sa-Su 10:00-20:00 Winter M-F 06:30-21 Sa-Su 10-17

Sundlaugin Þelamörk Laugalandi 601 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 462 4718 Open Summer Su-Th 10:0022:00 F-Sa 10:00-20:00 Winter M-Th 17-22:30 F 17- 20 Sa 10-19 Sun 10-22:30

Other thermal pools in the Northern area For more info visit www.swimminginiceland.com Sundlaugin Hofsósi 565 Hofsós Tel.:(+354) 455 6070 Open all day 09:00- 21:00 Sundlaugin á Hólum í Hjaltadal 551 Sauðárkrókur Tel.:(+354) 455 6333 Open M-F15:00-20:00 Sa-Su 10:00-17:00 Sundlaug Sauðárkróks Skagfirðingabraut 550 Sauðárkrókur Tel.:(+354) 453 5226 Open M-F 06.50-21:00 Sa-Su 10:00-17:00 Sundlaugin Steinsstöðum 560 Varmahlíð Tel.:(+354) 453 8812 Tel.:(+354) 899 8762

Sundlaugin Dalvík Svarfaðarbraut 34 620 Dalvík Tel.:(+354) 466 3233 Open 06:15-20:00

Grenivíkurlaug Grýtubakkahreppur 610 Grenivík Tel.:(+354) 463 3218 Sundlaugin Hrísey Austurvegi 5 Hrísey Tel.:(+354) 461 2255 Open Summer M-F 09:30-18:30 Sa-Su 1:30-17:00 Winter Tu,Th 14-20 We,F14-18 Sa 13-16 from March 1st. Sundlaugin Illugastöðum 601 Fnjóskadalur Tel.:(+354) 462 6199 Sundlaug Fjallabyggðar Ólafsfirði Ólafsvegi 4, 625 Ólafsfjörður Tel.:(+354) 4649250 M- T 06:30-19:45 F 06:30-18:45 Sa-Su10:00- 18:00 Sundlaug Fjallabyggðar Siglufjarðar Hvanneyrarbraut 52 Siglufjörður Tel.:(+354) 464 9170 Open M-F 06:30-19:45 Sa-Su 14:00-18:00

Sundlaug Grímseyjar 611 Grímsey Tel.:(+354) 467 3155 Tel.:(+354) 467 3160 Open Summer M-W 20:00-21:30 Sa 14:00-16:00 Winter M,Tu,We 20-21:30 Sa 14-16 Sundlaugin á Laugum 650 Laugar Tel.:(+354) 862 3822 Open M-T 08:00-20:00 F-Su 10:00-18:00 Sundlaugin Reykjahlíð 660 Mývatn Tel.:(+354) 464 4225 open 10:00-21:00 Sundlaugin Svalbarðseyri 601 Svalbarðseyri Tel.:(+354) 461 2074 Open Tue-Thu 17:00-20:00 Su 10:00-13:00 Jarðböðin við Mývatn Jarðbaðshólar 660 Mývatn Tel.:(+354) 464 4411 Open 1/6- 31/8 09:00-24:00 1/9 - 31/5 12:00-22:00

www.visitakureyri.is www.icelandtoday.is

Sundlaugin Varmahlíð 560 Varmahlíð Tel.:(+354) 453 8824 Open M- F 10:30-21:00 Sa-Su 10:30-18:00 Please call in advance during winter.

F 06:15-19:00 Sa-Su 09:00-17:00


AKUREYRI ON TWO WHEELS W

52

hile biking culture in Akureyri isn’t as prevalent as its continental counterparts like Copenhagen and Amsterdam, it’s still a great place to bike because of how much green space the town occupies and how close you are to the great wide open just beyond the town limits. Legally bikes are considered vehicles in Iceland and are meant to be ridden on the right side of the road along with motorists. But bear in mind that most Icelandic drivers are not used to sharing the road with cyclists. You can bike on the sidewalks and walking paths, but only if it doesn’t interfere with pedestrian traffic. It’s also annoying to bike on the sidewalk because most curbs are squared-off instead of sloped, which makes for a bumpy ride. Most cyclists are drawn to the paths outside of Akureyri’s dense, hilly centre.

There are a number of glorious paths along the coast (including Glerárgata to the north and Drottningarbraut to the south) that will take you around the Akureyri area. Another popular attraction is Kjarnaskógur woodlands and valley, a lush, green nature preserve close to the centre. Here you find the first tailor-made mountain bike path in the country inaugurated in the summer of 2008. The round trip is about twelve kilometres. Biking is a great way to get to know Akureyri. Bike tours are organized year round (bikes and helmets provided). Or if you’re up for a real adventure (and less pedalling) then rent a scooter to zoom along the coast and the wilderness on the outskirts of town. Get a tour around the city with a friendly guide and bring your kids along too. To rent a bike, check with Icelandic Adventures in Hafnarstræti 99-101. www.icelandicadventures.is

HOF - cultural pillar

H

of is a cultural building designed for music, other performing arts and conferences. The building was inaugurated in August 2010.

Performers

The hall is the home of the Symphony Orchestra of Northern Iceland, as well as the abundance of great performing artist that you will find in Iceland.

Conferences

The building has two larger conference auditoriums and top-notch facilities for

conferences and meetings, receptions, parties and exhibitions.

Dining & shopping

Hof has a comprehensive restaurant service, Icelandic design & souvenir shop as well as the offical tourist information centre. www.menningarhus.is


JUNE

Blues Festival Ólafsfjörður

June 27-29, 2013 The Blue North Music Festival, held for the 14th time, a festival in which many major blues artists of the country have been discovered. Call Ólafsfjörður Jazz Club (+354) 863 4369 or check www.blues.fjallabyggd.is

54 Arctic Open Midnight

Sun Golf Tournament

June 27-29, 2013 Since 1986 The Arctic Open Golf Championship is an event which features round the clock midsummer golf at high latitudes, attracting golfers from all over the world playing on the northernmost golf course in the world. www.arcticopen.is

JULY

Akureyri Church Concerts July 1-29, 2013

Summer Concerts held every Sunday in July at the Akureyri church. The event

has been held since 1987 and has become an annual event on the musical calendar of northern Iceland.

Ólæti - Music and Culture festival

July 4-7,2013 Ólæti is a music and culture festival happening for the first time in Ólafsfjörður 4.-7. July Call for more info (+354) 772 1138 & (+354) 849 0206 or go to www.facebook. com/olatabelgir

Hiking week in Akureyri

July 1-7, 2013 Annual week in the beginning of July where different hikes in and around Akureyri are offered in different levels ranging from easy 2-4 hours walks up to difficult 24 hours walk (the 24 mountaintops in 24 hours). www.visitakureyri.is

24 Peaks in 24 Hours Hike

July 6, 2013 Glerárdalshringurinn tour (“Around the vally surrounding river Glerá.”) is a large and extensive annual hiking event in July. The hike is about 45 km long and lasts for about 20 to 28 hours with a maximum altitude of 1540 m. Stunning scenery is what awaits all those tempted to participate. www.24x24.is

Folk Music Festival Siglufjörður

July 3-8, 2013

Many of the best musicians of Iceland will perform at the festival, be they folk, jazz, traditional, or classical musicians. Guests can enjoy a variety of workshops and seminars, for children as well as grown-ups. www.folkmusik.is/en

N1 soccer Tournament

July 4-6, 2013 A tournament that has become very strong in junior football where 1,500 boys, with families, meet and play each year. www.ka-sport.is

“pollamót” soccer Tournament

July 6-7, 2013 The “Pollamót” is an annual sporting event held by Icelandair and Þór football club at the beginning of July. It is a football tournament for adult people who want to show they haven’t lost their touch. www.thorsport.is

Reitir – International collaborative project,

July 5-14, 2013 Hosted by Alþýðuhúsið in Siglufjörður, artist home and studio. Participants work collaboratively on sociospecific exploration through creative projects in the public space. Every year the group consists of experts


55 EVENTS

in art, design, theory and science. www.reitir.com

HRÍSEY FESTIVAL

July 12-14, 2013 This event takes place in the middle of July each year. Enjoy a family friendly festival, which includes a “surprise tour of the island” beach tour, campfire and songs. Hrísey is the pearl of Eyjafjordur with a rich birdlife and excellent hiking. Catch the ferry from Árskógsströnd for a 15 min trip over to the island. www.hrisey.net/en/

Nikulás Tournament Ólafsfjörður

July 12-14, 2013 Football tournament for boys and girls.

Motor Bike Days

July 18-21, 2013 Bike days are hosted for the sixth time in Akureyri. All kinds of motorcycles of all sizes and ages including a swap meet, music and food. www.tian.is

Medieval Trading Days at Gásir

AUGUST

Akureyri Family Festival

August 1-4, 2013 The “Ein með öllu” Festival takes place the weekend before the first Monday in August, which is a public holiday in Iceland. The festival is a family event in Akureyri’s best atmosphere. The line-up is diverse and a great number of Icelandic bands perform alongside other artists, happenings and entertainment. Pubs, bars, cafés and nightclubs have extended opening hours during the festival. www.einmedollu.is

The Herring Festival in Siglufjörður

August 1-5, 2013 The town of today changes appearance and takes us back to the golden days of the old herring town it once was, with people all over salting fish at every corner and dancing in the town square. This family festival provides entertainment suitable for everyone. www.siglo.is

The Great Fish Day in Dalvík

August 9-11, 2013 All you can eat - for free! - everybody is invited to a seafood buffet. Fish producers and other

members of society invite guests to a seafood buffet to enjoy a good day at the harbour in Dalvík. A cruise in the fjord, art shows, street theatre and music of all kinds throughout the day in a beautiful environment with spectacular mountains as backdrop.

“Pæjumót” Girls Soccer Tournament

August 9 – 11, 2013 The yearly “Pæjumót” in Siglufjörður attracts over 600 girls aged 8-12 years from various icelandic soccer teams, each determined to beat each other. www.siglo.is

The Arctic Handcraft and Design

August 9-12, 2013 Held at the school Hrafnagilsskóli, south of Akureyri for the 20th time, the Arctic Handicraft and Design Iceland is one of a kind. About 100 individuals are selected to sell their exclusive handicrafts, art and design that often are based on the old Icelandic traditions.

BerRy Days in Ólafsfjörður

August 16-18, 2013 Music Festival with songs and ballads in Ólafsfjörður www.berjadagar. fjallabyggd.is

www.icelandtoday.is

July 19-21, 2013 Gásir was the main trading post in northern Iceland during the Middle Ages, and the place is mentioned many times in Old Icelandic Sagas. Gásir comes to life during these summer festival days with iron forgers, noisy

local and foreign traders, children’s laughter, songs and food. www.gasir.is


Gæran Music Festival

August 22-24, 2013 Music festival in Sauðárkrókur taking place for the third time this year. A number of local musical groups as well as other festival-related events throughout Sauðárkrókur. The festival takes place in the tanning factory, the only one in the country and in Europe that makes fish leather.

56 Akureyri Town Festival (Akureyrarvaka)

August end, 2013 Akureyri Town Festival is celebrated the last weekend in August every year, focused on the birthday of Akureyri as it gained municipal rights in 1862. Concerts, art eventes and much much more. www.visitakureyri.is/en

SEPTEMBER

Laufskála Horse gather

September 28-29, 2013 In Hjaltadalur you will find the most popular horse gather in the country. This annual meeting brings up to three thousand guests, both foreigners and locals. The event normally starts on the Friday evening with entertainment at the Svaðastaðir riding hall. During Saturday the gathering takes place as the herd is being driven out from the Kolbeins valley. The whole event is rounded off on Saturday evening with the ever so popular and crowded dance event.

Poetry Festival September in Siglufjörður www.fjallabyggd.is

OCTOBER

Food Show, “MATUR-INN” in Akureyri

October 11-12, 2013 Local Food Festival takes place every two years and will now be held for the sixth time. www.visitakureyri.is/en

LADIES DAYS

October 2013 Even in the harshest time of winter it’s nice to have a reason to celebrate. On Konudagur, “Ladies Days”, men must remember to treat their partners with something nice, flowers and chocolates are always popular. Get pink and shimmery and enjoy Ladies Days with concerts, exhibitions and everything women love. www.visitakureyri.is/en

NOVEMBER/ DECEMBER

Lighting of RandersChristmastree

November end, 2013 Every year the town of Randers, Denmark, has presented a huge, beautiful Christmas tree for the festive period. The tree is always placed in the Ráðhús Square in the heart of Akureyri where families gather to sing Christmas carols and join in the festivities, most probably

the Yule Lads also make an appearance. And if you are lucky you might see the Yule Cat lurking about. www.visitakureyri.is/en

DECEMBER

Advent & Christmas

December 1-26, 2013 There is plenty on offer for visitors at this charming time of year. Visit the quaint Jólagarðurinn (The Christmas Garden) a 10-minute drive from Akureyri, check out exhibitions, concerts, theatre and markets or explore the fantastic winter landscape around Akureyri. On Christmas Eve and Christmas Day you can enjoy a traditional Icelandic Christmas dinner at some of the best restaurants in town, and taste the local Icelandic delicacies. www.visitakureyri.is/en

The Yule Lads at Dimmuborgir

December 2013 The Icelandic Yule lads live in Dimmuborgir and during the Advent they become quite social, inviting guests to Dimmuborgir and of course they take their annual bath at the Mývatn Nature Baths.

New year’s Eve

December 31, 2013 New Year’s Eve is the perfect time to go a little bit overboard. Join in the celebrations by taking a New Year’s Eve tour or by finding your way to the


Connect to coverage in Iceland

siminn.is I @siminn on Twitter

Pay less with Frelsi Prepaid It can be costly to use your regular phone card overseas. Buy a prepaid SIM card package, which includes a mobile number and an ISK 2000 voucher, in any SĂ­minn store and in kiosks, gas stations and grocery stores.

www.icelandtoday.is

Use Frelsi Prepaid to stay in touch with friends and family

EVENTS

the largest 3G

57


town’s huge bonfire at Réttarhvamm (area on the way up to Hlíðarfjall ski centre) that kicks off the celebrations around 20:00. Then it’s time to reconvene for the big send-off at midnight, where we set off a frankly improbable amount of fireworks to welcome the New Year. www.visitakureyri.is/en

2014 FEBRUARY

WINTER FESTIVAL “ÉLJAGANGUR” BLIZZARD

58

February 2014 An annual winter festival with all kinds of winter sports, Mountain hiking, Cross-country skiing, snow-boarding, downhill skiing, snow scooters, super jeeps, exhibition on new equipment related to winter sports, concerts and much, much more. http://eljagangur.is

MARCH

EASTER ADVENTURE

March / April 2014 Easter in Akureyri is an unforgetable experience. Whether you fancy going to a concert, a trip down the ski slopes of Hlíðafjall, a swim in one of the best pools in the country or treat yourself to a good meal or drink, Akureyri is the right place. www.visitakureyri.is/en

APRIL

Ak Extreeme-Snowboarding competition

Mid April, 2014 The festival was first held in 2002 as part of the idea to create a snowboard festival in Akureyri. For three days the best snowboarders/ skiers in Iceland get together organising this event and hundreds of people turn out to watch the show. www.akextreme.is

Donald Duck Ski Competition

April 23-26, 2014 The competition was first held in 1976 and has become a highly successful annual event. The Donald Duck games are a family affair enjoyed by adults and children alike. www.skidi.is

art without borders

April 26 - May 18, 2014 listanlandamaera.blog.is

MAY

Museums Day in Eyjafjörður

May 3, 2014 The numerous and interesting museums in the fjord organize different programs and open their doors collectively to the public. Entrance to all the Museums on this day is free. www.visitakureyri.is/en

JUNE

Grímsey Family Festival

May/June , 2014 Children games, boat tours, seek out the eggs of the Artic Tern, enjoy seasonal local food, music etc. This annual fest, in the beginning of June, is focused on old traditions from Grímsey, Iceland’s northernmost inhabited island situated on the Arctic Circle 41 km off the North coast. www.grimsey.is

“Bíladagar” AKUREYRI CAR EVENTS

June 2014 One of the largest motor sports events held in Iceland and an annual celebration of all cars, motorbikes and general motor sport vehicles from around Iceland. Races, drag racing, displays and much more fills the programme. The Akureyri Car Club runs a camping

facility for those guests/ enthusiasts who’d like to stay close to the action for the whole of the event. This area also offers open training tracks and Go-kart rental for all guests. www.ba.is

The Fisherman’s Day

May 31-June 1, 2014 Fishing has always been very important to the Icelandic way of living and as Akureyri houses one of the largest fishing companies in Iceland the day is celebrated with various events. Fishing vessels stay docked in the harbour during the celebrations so that sailors can spend the day with their families. www.visitakureyri.is/en

NATIONAL DAY

June 17, 2014 The National Day of Iceland has been celebrated on June 17th since 1944, being the day the Republic of Iceland was formed. A very important celebration for the people of Akureyri as it is to all the people of Iceland. The town is decorated with flags and a full celebratory program starting at 13.00 and runs until midnight, suitable for all ages. www.visitakureyri.is/en

Sun Solstice in Grímsey

June 2014 Enjoy the midnight sun on the longest day of the year at the Artic Circle. www.grimsey.is

Aviation Days

June 2014 As usual, expect a large number of pilots and aircrafts at the Akureyri domestic airport. www.flugsafn.is

Midsummer Festival

June 2014 “Jónsmessuhátíð” Midsummer festival in Siglufjörður. www.siglo.is


GET A ROOM!

W

ith its compact town centre, Akureyri offers a surprisingly wide selection of accommodation— from shabby chic to design boutique and everything in between.

60

hotels

home away from home

Hotels Hótel Akureyri Hafnarstræti 67, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 462 5601 www.hotelakureyri.is Hótel Edda Eyrarlandsvegur 28, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 444 4000 www.hoteledda.is Hótel KEA Hafnarstræti 87-89, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 460 2000 www.keahotels.is Hótel Norðurland Geislagata 7, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 462 2600 www.keahotels.is Icelandair Hótel Akureyri Þingvallastræti 23, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 518 1000 www.icelandairhotels.com Sæluhús-Hótel Apartments Sunnutröð 2, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 618 2800 www.saeluhus.is Sveitahótelið í Sveinbjarnargerði Sveinbjarnargerði, 601 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 462 4500 www.countryhotel.is

outside akureyri

Hólum Hjaltadalur, 551 Sauðárkrókur Tel.:(+354) 455 6333 www.holar.is Sel Hótel Mývatn Skútustaðir, 660 Mývatn Tel.:(+354) 464-4164 www.myvatn.is Hótel Mikligarður V/Sæmundarhlíð, 550 Sauðárkrókur Tel.:(+354) 453 6330 www.mikligardur.is Hótel Natur Þórisstaðir Svalbarðsströnd, 601 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 467 1070 www.hotelnatur.com Hótel Varmahlíð Skagafjörður, 560 Varmahlíð Tel.:(+354) 453 8170 www.hotelvarmahlid.is Hótel Gígur Skútustaðir Mývatn, 660 Mývatn Tel.:(+354) 464 4455 www.keahotels.is/Hotel-Gigur Sveitasetrið Hofsstöðum Skagafjörður, 551 Sauðárkrókur Tel.:(+354) 896 9414 www.hofsstadir.is

Fosshótel Dalvík Skíðabraut 18, 620 Dalvík Tel.:(+354) 466 3395 www.fosshotel.is Hótel Reynihlíð Mývatnssveit, 660 Mývatn Tel.:(+354) 464 4170 www.reynihlid.is Hótel Tindastóll Lindargata 3, 550 Sauðárkrókur Tel.:(+354) 453 5002 www.hoteltindastoll.com Fosshótel Laugar Laugar, 650 Laugar Tel.:(+354) 464 6300 www.fosshotel.is Hótel Reykjahlíð Mývatnssveit, 660 Mývatn Tel.:(+354) 464 4142 Brimnes Hótel Bylgjubyggð 2, 625 Ólafsfjörður Tel.:(+354) 466 2400 www.brimnes.is


GuesthousesFOR ANY BUDGET Guesthouses Akureyri Backpackers Hafnarstræti 98, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 578 3700 www.akureyribackpackers.com

Hótel Íbúðir Geislagata 10, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 892 9838 http://hotelibudir.is Guesthouse Akureyri Hafnarstræti 104, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 462 5600 www.hotelakureyri.is Guesthouse Akurinn Brekkugata 27a, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 461 2500 www.akurinn.is Guesthouse Glerá Hlíðarfjallsvegur, 603 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 462 5723 www.glera2.is

Guesthouse Hofsós Suðurbraut 8, 565 Hofsós Tel.:(+354) 453 7434 www.hofsos.is

Guesthouse Gula Villan Brekkugata 8 & Þingvallastræti 14, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 896 8464 www.gulavillan.is

HestaSport cottages Vegamót, 560 Varmahlíð Tel.:(+354) 453 8383 www.riding.is

Guesthouse Hrafnagil Hrafnagil, 601 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 463 1197 www.hrafnagil.is

6 Hrafnar Hrafnagilsstræti 6 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 770 2020 www.6hrafnar.is

Youth hostel Stórholt 1 Stórholt 1, 603 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 462 3657 www.akureyrihostel.com Guesthouse Mikligarður Kirkjutorg 3, 550 Sauðárkrókur Tel.:(+354) 453 6880 www.mikligardur.is Guesthouse Bakkaflöt Bakkaflöt, 560 Varmahlíð Tel.:(+354) 453 8245 www.bakkaflot.com Lónkot Bucolic Resort Lónkot, 566 Hofsós Tel.:(+354) 453 7432 http://lonkot.com

B33- Íbúðagisting Brekkugata 33 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 896 2219 www.brekkugata.wordpress.com

61 ACCOMMODATION

Apartment - Hafnarstræti Hafnarstræti 81, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 695 3366 www.ibudir.is

Guesthouse Básar – Grímsey Básar, 611 Grímsey Tel.:(+354) 467 3103

Gistiheimilið Brekkusel Heimilisfang: Byggðavegur 97 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 895 1260 www.brekkusel.is Gistiheimilið Sólgarðar Brekkugata 6 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 461 1133

The only 4 star hotel in akureyri situated in the heart of town. With a respectable and friendly appearance the hotel offers 104 rooms, meeting rooms, restaurant and a bar. Museums, shops and restaurant are just around the corner!

www.visitakureyri.is www.icelandtoday.is

Hafnarstræti 87- 89 | Sími 460 2000 | kea@keahotels.is | www.keahotels.is


Gistiheimilið Súlur Þórunnarstræti 93 og Klettastíg 6 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 461 1160 www.sulurguesthouse.is

Íbúðagisting Akureyri Hamratún 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 892 6515 www.ibudagisting.is

Sölvanes farm Sölvanes, 560 Varmahlíð Tel.:(+354) 453 8068 http://solvanes.is

Gistihúsið Brekkugötu 1 Brekkugata 1b 603 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 461 2303 www.internet.is/formi

Helgimagri íbúðagisting Helgamagrastræti 30 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 820 1950 www.helgimagri.com

Gistihúsið Hrafninn Brekkugata 4 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 661 9050 www.hrafninn.is

Holtakot Holtateigur 42 Tel.:(+354) 659 3544 www.orlofsibud.is

Ak-Gisting Norðurbyggð 1d 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 659 3181

Íbúðagisting Margrétar Kotárgerði 29 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 462 5668 www.homeway.com

Heimilisgisting Lækjargötu Lækjargata 9 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 691 7606

Íbúðagisting Munkaþverárstræti 23, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 861 8864 www.altunga.is

Akureyri Perla Norðursins Hafnarstræti 86a & Munkaþverástræti 33 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 865 9429 / 846 2692 www.innrikraftur.is Álfaíbúðir

5 62 Möðruvallastræti 600 Akureyri

Tel.:(+354) 865 9429/846 2692 www.innrikraftur.is Gista.is Gránufélagsgata 43 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 694 4314 www.gista.is Gisting Akureyri Langholt 11 603 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 858 7900 www.gistingakureyri.is

camping Camping site Hamrar by Kjarnaskóg, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 461 2265 www.hamrar.is

Centrum Hostel Hafnarstræti 102 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 892 9838 www.centrumhostel.is

Camping site Þórunnarstræti Þórunnarstræti, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 462 3379 www.hamrar.is

Hálönd by Hlíðarfjallsvegur Tel.:(+354) 460 6100 www.halond.is

Camping site Hólar 551 Sauðárkrókur Tel.:(+354) 899 3231

stay on a farm Hofstaðir Old Farmouse Hofsstaðasel, 551 Sauðárkrókur Tel.:(+354) 896 9414 www.hofsstadir.is Keldudalur houses Keldudalur, 551 Sauðárkrókur Tel.:(+354) 453 6533 www.keldudalur.is

Camping site Sauðárkrókur By the swimmingpool 550 Sauðárkrókur Tel.:(+354) 899 3231 Camping site Varmahlíð Reykjarhóli, 560 Varmahlíð Tel.:(+354) 899 3231 Camping site Bakkaflöt Bakkaflöt, 560 Varmahlíð Tel.:(+354) 453 8245

FJALLADÝRÐ

– Möðrudalur á Fjöllum

Visit us at the highest settled farm in Iceland only 8 km from the ring road!

Experience:

• Local food • Sleeping in a turf house • Guided Askja/Kverkfjöll excursion with the locals • Adventures atmosphere and mountain view • Find out who we are!

www.fjalladyrd.is | fjalladyrd@fjalladyrd.is Tel: 471-1858 or 894-8181


THE inside info ON AKUREYRI H

ere you’ll find the nitty-gritty nuts and bolts of life in the town. Although Akureyri is a relatively small place, it may take some time to figure out how to navigate the town. Most of downtown can be covered by foot, but when you leave the centre things get a little trickier.

domestic air terminal

Air Iceland (not to be confused with Icelandair) offers scheduled 45 min. flights, with departures many times a day, between Reykjavík and Akureyri. Akureyri Municipal Airport (+354) 570 3000 www.airiceland.is

64 Norlandair operates scheduled flight services within the vicinity of Akureyri and also to East Greenland. Trips to Grímsey island are daily over the summertime and three times a week in winter. www.norlandair.is Tel.:(+ 354) 414 6960

From & TO Airport

The airport is located about 3 km south of the town centre and unless you plan to take a taxi, a nice walk through the old town is ideal.

times a week, the whole year from Dalvík to Grímsey island. The trips are Mon, Wed and Fridays.Scheduled trips to Hrísey island are two times a week, Tue and Thursdays. Ferry Sæfari, Tel.:(+354) 853 2211, www.landflutningar.is/ saefari/english

roundabouts and traffic cameras to make sure you don’t go too fast.

The ferry Sævar offers scheduled trips several times a day the whole year between Árskógsandur and Hrísey. The ride takes 15 minutes. The Hrísey island is well known for its great nature and varied birdlife. Ferry Sævar, Tel.:(+345) 695 5544 www.hrisey.net/en

Cyclists

Taxis in Akureyri

Seatbelts

Wearing seatbelts at all times is mandatory and children under the age of five must be strapped into an approved child seat. Bicycles in Akureyri have been increasing greatly and they are now a presence on the road. Give them space.

Parking

Parking meters are a fairly new appearance in Akureyri. However you can get a parking-clock, available at the tourist information in HOF, at banks, some shops and gasoline stations. Follow the instructions on the clocks and regulations regarding free parking areas.  The free parking time is different according to each area ranging from 15 minutes up to several hours. Even though the locals park up on the sidewalk sometimes, don’t be tempted. You will be ticketed.

Take the bus to destinations all around the island. Hof Cultural Center Strandgata 12, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 540 2700 www.bus.is

Taxis in Iceland tend to be rather nice: Mercedes, Audis, etc. You can always pay with a credit card and it is not customary to tip. Taxis can be reached with a phone call or at the taxi stand located in the town centre. BSO Strandgötu, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 461 1010 The one and only in Akureyri

SBA Norðurleið Hafnarstræti 82, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 550 0720 www.english.sba.is

Taxi 17 (at BSO) Tel.:(+354) 892 4257 Offers a specially equipped car for disabled people.

Sterna Hafnarstræti 77, 600 Akureyri Tel.:(+354) 551 1166 www.sterna.is

driving in akureyri Drunk driving If you are caught driving with Speed limits a blood alcohol level of .05

BUS TERMINAls

FERRIES

The ferry Sæfari offers scheduled 3 hour trips three

On city streets the speed limit is generally 50kph / 30mph, unless otherwise posted. There are speed bumps,

Cell phones

If you get caught using your cell phone while driving, you’ll get a big, fat ticket.

then you will be charged with a DWI (driving while intoxicated) and your car will be impounded.


Rush hours

While the idea of “rush hour” is relative in such a small city, Akureyri is a car-based city and its major traffic arteries will fill up from 7:45 to 8:15 and 15:45 to 16:30.

Gas stations

phone&Internet CALLING CARDS

Cell phones work almost all over Iceland. If you think you’re going to be calling a lot, you can also buy phone cards at most grocery- and convenience stores.

Dialling

When dialling internationally in Iceland, dial 00 to get out of the country, then select the country code, then the number. When dialling local numbers you don’t need to include the 354-country code, only the last seven digits.

Cell Phones / GSM

If your cell phone uses a GSM card that is unlocked, you can get an Icelandic SIM card and use the pre-paid service (“Frelsi” in Icelandic). There are currently four service providers in the country: Nova (nova.is), Síminn (siminn.co.uk), Tal (tal.is) and Vodafone (vodafone.is). You can top up your phone through the company’s service number or buy cards from convenience stores.

Phone Centre

Internet Access & Hot Spots

If you have your own device there are hot spots all over, in the town centre area, and you will find WiFi access at almost any café or bar for free (sometimes you have to

The Icelandic phone book lists people by their first names. Seriously. You can access the directory online at ja.is.

Directory information & International assistance

DIAL 118 or DIAL 1811 the 24/7 service for information.

EVERYTHING ELSE Churches in Akureyri

If you are in the mood for a church visit, whether for mass or curiosity, then there is a lot to choose from, open to the public, offering worth-visiting ceremonies all year round. Akureyrarkirkja, 1940, the symbol of Akureyri situated on top of the town slope offering a fantastic over the area. Open weekdays 10:00-16:00. Only summer: Mon-Thu 16:00-19:00 and 18:00-20:00 on Sundays. Péturskirkjan (Catholic Church), an old antique house situated on the town hill close by the Akureyrarkirkja.

University in Akureyri

You don’t need to be a student to check out the educational side of Akureyri. The university offers a variety of interesting programmes. Háskólinn á Akureyri (Akureyri University) is a vibrant international university that has served the town and its rural surrounding since 1987. The university has built a reputation for academic excellence and good industrial relations. www.unak.is

News in English

Daily at 7:30 on FM 92.4/93.5

from June to September

Media

Main daily Icelandic papers are Morgunblaðið (mbl.is) along with Fréttablaðið (visir.is). Iceland Review (www.icelandreview.com)

Opening hours

Public institutions: Monday to Friday from 10:00 to 15:00 or 16:00. General office hours: Monday to Friday from 9:00 to 17:00.

Banks

Monday-Friday most banks open from 9:00 to 16:00.

Shops

Shop hours vary, but they are generally from 10:00 to 18:00 Mondays to Fridays and Saturdays from 10:00 to 16:00.

65

Late night shopping

Open 24/7/365 at Samkaup Strax, Borgarbraut. 10-11 store at Kaupangur, Mýrarvegur. In the summertime, also Hagkaup supermarket, at Furuvellir.

Public HOLIDAYS

June 17 National Day (Lýðveldisdagur) Aug. 5 Merchant’s Weekend (Verslunarmannahelgi) Dec. 24-26 Christmas (Jól) Dec. 31 New Year’s Eve (Gamlárskvöld)

...2014...

Jan. 1 New Year’s Day (Nýársdagur) April 17 Maundy Thursday (Skírdagur) April 18 Good Friday (Föstudagurinn langi) April 20 Easter (Páskar) April 24 First Day of Summer (Sumardagurinn fyrsti), May 1 Labor Day (Verkalýðsdagur) May 29 Ascension (Uppstigningardagur) June 8 White Sunday (Hvítasunnudagur) June 9 White Monday (Annar í hvítasunnu)

useful numbers

The emergency number in Iceland is 112. Use it in any emergency for ambulance, fire department, medical help, police and doctors. Doctors on duty (+354) 848 2600 Weather (+354) 902 0600 Police – Non-emergency Þórunnarstræti 138 (+354) 464 7700

Lost/Stolen Credit Cards

VISA: (+354) 525 2000 MasterCard: (+354) 533 1400 Amex: (+354) 575 5900

www.icelandtoday.is

At the HOF Tourist Information Centre, by the harbour at Strandgata 12, you will find WiFi access, computers and phones for a small fee.

Phonebook & Online Maps

publishes the daily news from Iceland translated in English.

GOOD TO KNOW

Most gas stations are open every day from 8:00 to 23:30— many with 24-hour pay at-the-pump facilities. To pay at the pump your card generally needs to have a chip and a PIN number (although some also accept bills).

buy a coffee). Many hotels and guesthouses also offer free WiFi.


Golf Area

Technical School Camping

Botanical Gardens Hospital

Akureyri Church Graveyard Akureyri museum

Akureyri Thermal Poo


ol

Glerรกr Church

Akureyri University

Swimming Pool Glerรกr Elementary school

Glerรกrtorg Shopping Center

Police Station Library

Town Center


ICELANDIC WOOL

WORN OUT FOR CENTURIES

Offering of clothing & other merchandise that reminds us of good old Iceland

Visit our stores: 101 ReykjavĂ­k, Akureyri and Haukadalur. www.geysir.net

Akureyri Guide 2013  

The Official Akureyri Guide