Vestmannaeyjar (westman island), an archipelago of volcanic islands off the south coast with Heimaey being the only inhabited island. Two historical events have shaped this island, the Turkish invasion of 1627 and the devastating eruption of 1973. A project to unearth buried houses was named Pompeii of the North and is still ongoing. Built around one of the excavated houses, the Eldheimar Museum offers an unforgettable experience of remembering that fateful eruption.

Today, Heimaey is a thriving fishing community and a popular tourist destination. There is no shortage of activities on the Westman Islands.

There are six museums you can visit in the town:

  • Eldheimar
  • Sæheimar Natural History Museum and Aquarium
  • Sagnheimar Folk Museum
  • Natural History Museum (Natturugripasafn Vestmannaeyja)
  • Landlyst Museum
  • Beluga Whale Sanctuary

Cliff hanging or Spranga is a favourite past time for the locals, wonderful boat trips around the islands give the opportunity to see whales and puffins closeup. The world’s first whale sanctuary was opened here recently. SEA LIFE Trust Beluga Whale Sanctuary is a brand new visitor and education centre which includes a new puffin hospital for the public to learn more about the project as well as viewing local wildlife.

Heimaey has an airport for flights to and from Reykjavík and the ferry goes to Landeyjarhöfn or Þorlákshöfn on the mainland. Please check which harbour is being used on the day of your departure.

Location on a map

Get directions