Sometimes dubbed the Pompei of the North, the Westman Islands offer a peak at the power of mother nature what it is like living next to an active volcano
The Westman Islands is a group of 15-18 islands. The biggest one is Heimaey which is the only one inhabited with a population of 4.400. The islanders have their own traditional culture, like bird hunting, egg collecting and cliff rappelling.
In January 1973 an eruption began in Heimaey and lasted until early July. The ash ruined and buried almost 400 buildings. Shortly after the eruption came to an end 2000 of the 5300 people, who had lived in Heimaey before the natural disaster, moved back. The remains of the eruption are among the island´s most fascinating historical locales. Celebrating that 30 years have passed since the eruption a project has been started which is called the Pompei of the North. It is about saving the remains of the eruption and make them more accessible; including digging up 7-10 houses which disappeared under ashes.
The hostel is located in the towns centre and all services are close by. The reception is located in Hotel Thorshamar (the house next door) and is open from 7am to 11pm.
Opening times (daily/weekly): 07:00 - 23:00
Opening times (over the year): January 1st - December 31st
Fljótsdalur 49 km (ca. 1 hour*) - Árnes 106 km (ca. 1 hour 30 min*) - Skógar 56 km (ca. 1 hour*) - Vík 88 km (ca. 1 hour 20 min*)
Distance from Reykjavík:
151 km (ca. 2 hours 10 min*)
* Waiting time for ferry not included