Located just off the south coast of Iceland, Westman Island is an archipelago of over 15 islands and 30 cliffs and skerries. The main island is called Heimey (e. Home Island) with a population of around 4200. The Westman Islands is considered to be the largest Atlantic puffin colony in the word and when visiting the island, it is most likely you will meet some beautiful puffins.
In January 1973 the volcano Eldfell, located on the east side of Heimaey, erupted and it lasted until July the same year. It was one of the most dramatic eruptions in Iceland and all of the inhabitants needed to leave the island to the mainland. When the eruption was offically pronounced as being over on the 3rd of July almost one-third of the homes and buildings on the islands had burned down or been covered under the lava and ash. Almost the entire island was covered by a thick layer of ash. Visit Eldheimar museum and get a glimpse into people’s lives on Heimaey before the eruption and learn about the eruption and how it affected the lives of the inhabitants. The highlight of the exhibition is most definitetly the house that used to be located on Gerðisbraut 10, which was buried in ash and lava for over 40 years and has now been excavated and is now a part of the exhibition.
Westman Islands has a lot to offer from hiking to the top of the famous Eldfell, discover the “Elephant” mountain or sail around the islands where it is not uncommon to see whales, seals and puffins.