Akureyri Town is often called Iceland´s Capital of the North and is the second largest town in Iceland with about 20,000 inhabitants. The name is apt, as it is the hub of all activities in the area. It is a lively town with something of a metropolitan feeling. It was a trading post for centuries and as an established town for well over hundred years, it has thus the flavour of many periods. Commerce, diversified industries, fishing and tourism give employment to the growing population. Akureyri is also an important educational centre for a wide area in the north. The town has a pleasant appearance where may fine old timber houses exist harmoniously along side modern structures. The twin towered church looms over the town. Many visitors find Akureyri the most interesting town in the country with much of its charm derived from well tended gardens where flowers and trees are more in evidence than in most other places.

Attractions in Akureyri

Lystigarğurinn, or the Botanical Garden in Akureyri is a great place to visit during the short flowering season. The many cultural institutions of Akureyri add to the charm and the main Cultural and Conference Center of Akureyri, Hof was opened in 2010. There is a local professional theater, a fine library, a beautiful geothermal open air swimming pool with hot tubs, waterslides and water jets, open all year round and there are many museums in the town. In winter, the snow covered slopes of Mt. Híğarfjall above the town with good ski lifts and other facilities attract host of skiers. The slopes usually provide good skiing opportunities well into May.


Akureyri has an airport and there are daily scheduled flights between Akureyri and Reykjavík that takes about 40 minutes. Driving time between the two towns is about 5 hours.

Nearby attractions

Many of the most popular tourist attractions in the north of Iceland are within a few hours drive from Akureyri, including Lake Mıvatn, Dettifoss Waterfall, Ásbyrgi Canyon and Goğafoss Waterfall and Whale Watching tours are available from Akureyri Harbor. Within the town limits is a beautiful forest called Kjarnaskógur. The forest has been planted in the last 50 – 60 years and is a great recreational area with numerous hiking and biking paths that are also used for cross country skiing in winter. There are many hotels and guesthouses in Akureyri as well as in its surroundings and a public campground with good facilities.

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