Western settlement

About 1,200 people now live in Vesturbyggð on the southern side of the Vestfjords, which extends from Barðaströnd and Rauðisandur at Breiðafjörður, to Patreksfjörður and Bíldudalur in Arnarfjörður. The number of inhabitants has increased by 20% in the last five years. All thanks to salmon farming and tourism. From the capital to the west, the westernmost settlement in Europe (if the Azores are excluded) is about a six-hour drive. The route is beautiful, and Vesturbyggð is one of the most beautiful municipalities in Iceland. Not only is the nature beautiful, according to the Icelandic Meteorological Office, Bíldudalur in Arnarfjörður has the most calm weather days in the republic, always smooth weather. The municipality is sparsely populated but large, 1,336 km², and in the small population there are supposedly many Icelandic folklore monsters who seek refuge from us normal people in Arnarfjörður. In Bíldudalur they have a great museum covering these creatures, Skrímslasetrið in Bíldudalur.

Bíldudalur from 1913

Looking west out of Arnarfjörður, just missed a sea-monster!


Looking down towards Arnarfjörður, Bíldudalur at the bottom


Garðar at the bottom of Patreksfjörðu


Reykjavík 06/04/2023 : A7R IV, : FE 1.2/50mm GM. Photographs and Text: Páll Stefánsson