Don’t be put off by its name. We still can’t pronounce Seyðisfjörður in Eastern Iceland but it is the cutest little town you ever did see. Nestled between snow-capped mountains in a perfect fjord setting, the houses are a painter’s palette of colour.
Yes, it also has a river running through it and the obligatory waterfalls. Anywhere else, the waterfalls would be spectacular but in Iceland, they are just run-of-the-mill waterfalls.
Seydisfjordur is tiny (pop. 665) but it does have everything a tourist would need to spend a pleasant interlude. In-town pleasures include a wonderful interiors store (Gullabuid), bars, art galleries and coffee shops. Of course, there are also the Icelandic essentials such as a thermal swimming pool with water slides for the children.
Traditionally, the town was a fishing village with its riches coming from herring. Nowadays, tourism is big business. There is a Danish cruise line that runs a regular direct service to the town in the summer.
Assuming you don’t get the cruise line into town, the drive into town is down a winding mountain pass past numerous waterfalls. As beautiful as the drive is, it is only a prelude to the charm of the town. It is definitely worth the detour of the Ring Road that most tourists take around Iceland.
Many of the wooden houses (and the pretty blue church) were imported from Norway as kit houses when the herring trade was booming at the turn of the 20th century. These well-preserved homes are still in use as private residences and public buildings.
Although the town has a reputation for being artsy, unlike other artsy towns you don’t get a steady stream of art galleries. It’s much more low-key in its bohemian flair like the little lady who owns the house next door to the supermarket. She crochets covers for rocks in her front garden.
The photos will go a small way towards showing you why this town is just beyond picturesque. I should mention also that the charm of this area extends beyond the town with easily accessible hiking trails nearby.