"Hafnarfjörður - Reykjavík´s neighouring town." Top 5 Page for this destination Hafnarfjörður by Regina1965

Hafnarfjörður Travel Guide: 58 reviews and 238 photos

The story of Hafnarfjörður.

Hafnarfjörður became a town in 1908 and was mainly built around the harbour with occasional farms there as well. Back then the population was 1.469 but in 2013 it had grown to ca 27.000 people making it the 3rd largest town in Iceland.

Hafnarfjörður is often referred to as Bærinn í hrauninu or the Town in the Lava. It is also referred to as the largest small town in Iceland :)

Hafnarfjörður is part of the Great-Reykjavík area and celebrated its 100-year-birthday in June 2008 with a lot of activities, like a 100 meters' long cake, a big out-side concert, a lot of Viking activities in the Viking village, and dancing in the pier. Take a look at my travelogue for pictures from the festival.

Bjarni Sívertsen 1763-1833 (my ancestor) was a pioneer in Icelandic shipping and trade and has been named the father of Hafnarfjörður and part of his former home hosts the Hafnarfjörður District Museum (see my tip). Here is the official website for Hafnarfjörður.

My mother´s cousin is the Mayor of Hafnarfjörður.

Hafnarfjörður is built on lava and walking through the town you come across big lava rocks in peoples' back-yard. It is a peaceful, friendly and lovely town with great atmosphere. In the old part of town there are lovely quaint little houses, I never get tired of taking a walk there. It is only a ten minutes' drive from Reykjavík, but the energy there is different from that in Reykjavík, much more peaceful.

The Viking Village.

Hafnarfjörður hosts the annual International Viking festival, which is held in June every year. The Viking-festival is held in The Viking Village "Fjörukráin", the Viking restaurant and Hotel Viking in Hafnafjörður. Have a look at their web-site Fjörukráin. The saying goes "you have not been to the real Iceland until you have experienced the Viking Village". "Vikings" from all over the world (mostly Scandinavia and England) gather here and the fun goes on for several days. They sell hand-made stuff, fur, roast a lamb, fight, tell stories and show us the ways of living of the old Vikings. There are a lot of tents where the "valkyrjur" sell fur and hand-made Viking "stuff" and there is also a fortune-teller selling cards. A whole lot of fun and activities.

This is a must if you are visiting Iceland at this time of year. See my tips of the Viking festival and The Viking village. And there are more pictures of the festival in my travelogue on this page.

The Hafnarfjörður harbour.

Hafnarfjörður is built around the harbour which was once one of the main harbours in Iceland. The monument by the harbour is in remembrance of the first Lutheran church in Iceland which German people visiting Iceland from Hamburg built in 1533. It remained at church until 1603 and was taken down in 1608 by the order of Christian IV, King of Denmark.

The people living in Hafnarfjörður are commonly referred to as GAFLARAR.

Here is a good webpage Visit Hafnarfjörður

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:The town is known for its unity and hospitality.
  • Intro Updated Feb 6, 2014
  • Add to Trip Planner (?)
  • Report Abuse

Reviews (28)

Comments (20)

  • Nemorino's Profile Photo
    Apr 7, 2014 at 3:13 PM

    Me again, coming back to look at your updates on this interesting page.
    Tonight at my opera appreciation course my guest, a retired singer, brought along a DVD of herself singing Brünhilde in Wagner’s Ring of the Niebelungen, recorded in Reykjavik about fifteen years ago. Singing with her was an Icelandic singer who for many years now has been a member of the opera ensemble here in Frankfurt.

  • Yaqui's Profile Photo
    Nov 20, 2013 at 9:13 PM

    To know your ancestry is awesome. The museums and village is wonderful. I really like that old toy attic. Excellent page!

    • Regina1965's Profile Photo
      Nov 21, 2013 at 12:51 PM

      Thank you, Dee - we just celebrated the 250th anniversary of our ancestor, Bjarni Sívertsen, last month. And there were celbrations at the District museum.

  • molkron's Profile Photo
    Sep 28, 2013 at 6:41 PM

    Hi Regina,

    My travel plans: I arrive Keflavik airport on 21st October on Icelandair flight FI205 departing Copenhagen 2pm, arriving 3.10pm and staying at Hotel Hafnarjfordur (phone ? 35 (45) 409 700 and I depart on 29th October. I may or may not (by that time) have a mobile #. Let me know,if you wish, how to contact you when I I'm there. Can't wait to see Iceland and meet you and my ancestor, Bjarni!

    Best wishes,


    ps - can you recommend a nice hotel in Copenhagen for the night of 29th October?

    • molkron's Profile Photo
      Sep 29, 2013 at 5:15 AM

      Thanks for fast reply! Do you live in Iceland or elsewhere? I'm guessing Iceland but I assume you travel a fair bit. Why not Copenhagen?

    • Regina1965's Profile Photo
      Sep 29, 2013 at 5:27 AM

      I live in Iceland, but I travel a lot. I have been to Copenhagen many times, but not stayed at a hotel there recently :)

  • molkron's Profile Photo
    Mar 6, 2013 at 4:20 AM

    Regina, Rosa from the Museum contacted me recently and mentioned there will be festival in Iceland this summer to celebrate Bjarni's 250th birthday?? Do you know anything about this (Rosa did not have firm dates). I am considering coming all the way from Australia and would spend a week in Copenhagen also. June 19 will be 65th birthday. Any info would be most appreciated, and I would love to meet you and perhaps more of my relatives (Rosa tells me there are many living in the area). Best wishes, Kirsten

    • molkron's Profile Photo
      Sep 16, 2013 at 1:25 AM

      Thank you. I am really excited about my trip - it will probably be the only time I will make the trip, and I really want to meet you and talk about "family" and other things. I have a reservation at the Hotel Hafnarfjordur (I will arrive on 21st October. Please let me know how I can contact you when I get there - perhaps you can either email me your phone number or leave it for me at the Reception Desk at the hotel. Did you know about the Bjarni Sivertsen event on the 26th October? And have you met or been in touch with Rosa at the Museum? Best wishes, Kirsten

    • Regina1965's Profile Photo
      Sep 16, 2013 at 6:25 AM

      Will write you an e-mail :)

  • Yaqui's Profile Photo
    Jan 27, 2013 at 1:30 PM

    So many neat and interesting sights to see and enjoy! Nice page!

  • Nemorino's Profile Photo
    Jan 16, 2013 at 3:01 PM

    Hi Regina, I see you have done numerous updates since I looked at this page two years ago. It certainly must have been strange for you to visit Sívertsen’s house and see the wax dolls of your own ancestors.

  • molkron's Profile Photo
    Oct 23, 2012 at 12:18 AM

    Regina, You are doing a fantastic job with your Site and I really appreciate the photos of Bjarni's house, etc. As you might recall, I am your long-lost, and very distant "cousin" in Australia. Do you know anything about Bjarni's daughter Jarngerd and her husband Hans Wolner Kofoed. My email is molkron@bigpond.com and name is Kirsten Lagoni (in Australia)

    • Regina1965's Profile Photo
      Nov 1, 2012 at 1:08 PM

      Thanks, I hope you will be able to come for a visit one day - look me up if you get here :)

    • molkron's Profile Photo
      Nov 2, 2012 at 1:47 AM

      You bet! Best wishes, Kirsten

  • Yaqui's Profile Photo
    Feb 15, 2012 at 2:40 PM

    The gallery looks wonderful and I enjoyed learning about the Lave and the hidden people. Fantastic page!

  • balhannah's Profile Photo
    Jan 25, 2012 at 12:49 AM

    Another excellent page! I really love the sound of the Viking festival, sounds like a lot of good fun!

  • Nemorino's Profile Photo
    Dec 12, 2010 at 2:04 PM

    So that makes Bjarni Sigurðsson Sívertsen your great-great-great-great-great-grandfather! Fascinating that you can trace your ancestry back so far.

Regina1965 Visits Here Frequently!


“Bon Voyage :)”

Online Now


Top 1,000 Travel Writer
Member Rank:
0 0 0 6 0
Forum Rank:
0 0 1 4 4

Badges & Stats in Hafnarfjörður

  • 28 Reviews
  • 147 Photos
  • 0 Forum posts
  • 4,663PageViews
  • 0 Cities

Have you been to Hafnarfjörður?

  Share Your Travels  

Travel Interests

See All Travel Interests (5)