You’ll find the town of Reyðarfjörður in East Iceland, nestled at the top of the fjord that shares its name. Stretching over 30 km (18 mi) inland, Reyðarfjörður is the longest fjord on the east coast.
With a population of over 1,300 people, this scenic town is the second largest in the Fjarðabyggð municipality. Like most other coastal villages in Iceland, you’ll find its history is rooted in fishing. But these days, the backbone of the town’s economy isn’t fishing.
Instead, Reyðarfjörður owes its growth to trading and the Alcoa Fjarðaál, an aluminum smelter that’s been operating here since the early 2000s. Stop over as you make your way around the east coast and you’ll find shops, along with cafes and restaurants where you can refuel. For instance, you could grab a pastry at Sesam Braudhús, a popular local bakery that serves up freshly made Icelandic treats.
If you’re a history buff, you’ll also want to stop by the Icelandic Wartime Museum near the harbor. In 1940, Reyðarfjörður was the largest military base for the British Army. Learn about Iceland’s role as a base for the Allied forces during World War II, and check out artifacts, including weapons and military trucks.
Before you hit the road again, explore the breathtaking Eastfjords on one of the region’s many hiking paths. For a bird’s eye view of the fjord, take the way up Grænafell mountain.
Fun fact: Reyðarfjörður town, and its dramatic fjord, were the filming locations for the hit British TV series, Fortitude.