Siglufjordur is the northernmost town in Iceland, located at the foot of towering mountains on the shore of a small fjord bearing the same name. Fishing and the processing of marine products provide the principal source of employment for the town's 1600 residents, as the settlement has developed around one of the country's best natural harbours.
Few towns in Iceland can match the dramatic history of Siglufjordur. As the fortunes of fisheries and the businesses in fisheries alternately soared and plunged, the town became famous or forgotten almost overnight.
At the beginning of the 20th century this was a tiny, half-Norwegian village, which then grew so rapidly that by the middle of the century Siglufjordur was one of the largest towns in Iceland. There are still a number of reminders that for a long time this was the capital of the herring fishery in the North Atlantic. We can get acquainted with the fantastic history of the herring fishery in Iceland at the Herring Era Museum, the only one of its kind in the world.
There is plenty of variety in the life of the town, which includes many sorts of social and cultural activities. Both the church and music school are centres for musical activities, and sports are very popular. Football and handball lead the way, as well as skiing; for decades many of the Icelandic ski champions have come from Siglufjordur.
The splendour of the mountains and natural beauty are practically an invitation to all outdoorsmen. Short hiking trails (about 3-4 km in length) lead from the teeming bird flocks of the waterside some 800-900 metres up to the peaks of the mountains. The most northerly planted woods in Iceland are found here (and the farthest north on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge).
In 1967 the first major tunnel thoroughfare in Iceland was opened through the mountains bordering Siglufjordur, putting an end to the town's traditional isolation during the winter months. The road leading to Siglufjordur ends upon reaching the town. Following this single route out of the town will eventually - by taking enough twists and turns - lead to everywhere else in the world (so that by reversing the picture we can perhaps say that all roads lead to Siglufjordur!). :)
Last updated: 14/1/2015