Go north
The northernmost county in the country, Norður Þingeyjar, is not very populated. The county stretches from the east side of Tjörnes in the west to Finnafjörður in Bakkafjörður in the east. The population in this vast county number just under a thousand, and the largest village, Þórshöfn on Langanes, is a growing fishing town with 380 people. The other two villages are Raufarhöfn and Kópasker. There are two fjords in the county, Öxarfjörður and
Þistilfjörður, two headlands or peninsulas, Melrakkaslætta and Langanes, one large waterfall, the most powerful in Europe, Dettifoss. North of the waterfall, is one of the most visited places in Iceland, Ásbyrgi. Although Ásbyrgi is very beautiful, it is no more lovely than going north to Langanes, or Melrakkaslétta, the northernmost part of the country, there to take in the silent beauty in Rauðanúp, Rauðanes or in the wide open spaces of Grjótnes, one
of the most beautiful vistas in Iceland. In Norður Þingeyjarsýslá there are 10 churches for the thousand inhabitants, each picturesque in its own way, set in nature so incredibly diverse there on the edge of the world.


Skinnastaður in Öxarfjörður, at 4:10 in the morning, one of ten churches in Norður Þingeyjarsýsla. In the foreground is road 85 which runs through the county, connecting the settlements in this remote area.


Dettifoss, the most powerful waterfall in Europe, seen here from the west. A good road has been laid from Mývatnsveit and north to Öxarfjörður, which makes a trip to Dettifoss suitable for all cars, all year round.

The midnight sun settles on Kópaskeri, the second northernmost village in the country, after
Raufarhöfn, north and east on the Melrakka plain

One of the largest gannet nesting sites in the country is on the remote Stóri-Karl, on the
northern tip of the Langanes peninsula.

Norður-Þingeyjarsýsla :  A7R III, A7R IV : FE 1.8/135mm GM, FE 1.4/24mm GM

Photo & text : Páll Stefánsson