Tag Archives: Seyðisfjörður

2 September 2019:
Seyðisfjörður, Iceland:
The Pearl in a Shell

By Corey Sandler, Destination Consultant Silversea Cruises

About 36 hours after sailing from Scotland, we arrived at the east coast of Iceland and the port of Seyðisfjörður, which–if you can get past a few extra Icelandic characters–is pronounced just the way it looks. SAY-dis-fuhr-dir.

This is one of Iceland’s most picturesque towns with a collection of 19th century wooden homes, surrounded by beautiful nature. Poet Matthías Johannessen called Seyðisfjörður a ‘pearl enclosed in a shell’.

Like many remote places, it exists because of its protected harbor, established by foreign merchants, mostly from Denmark, and fishermen from Norway. It’s a small town of about 665 people, spread across 82 square miles or 213 square kilometers.

Settlement traces back to the early period of habitation in Iceland. The ruin of a stave church nearby has been carbon-dated to the 10th century, with earlier graves from the 8th century.

On this visit, I went with guests on an adventurous hike up the side of the mountains to visit a valley of waterfalls. It was a treat for the eyes, and an ache to my knees. Here is some of what we saw today:

The Valley of Waterfalls
An abandoned whaling station and village near the mouth of the fjord. All photos by Corey Sandler, 2019. All rights reserved

Seyðisfjörður was home to British and American forces during World War II  and some of the elements of the bases can be seen around the fjord, including a disused landing strip. And this was one of the few places that saw actual combat, or at least an attack, during World War 2.

You can read more about this place by clicking on the Seyðisfjörður tag at the bottom of this blog.

All photos and text Copyright 2019 by Corey Sandler, all rights reserved. See more photos on my website at http://www.coreysandler.com

IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO PURCHASE ANY PHOTO OR AN AUTOGRAPHED COPY OF ONE OF MY BOOKS, PLEASE CONTACT ME.

SEE THE “How to Order a Photo or Autographed Book” TAB ON THIS PAGE FOR INSTRUCTIONS

Now available, the revised Second Edition of “Henry Hudson Dreams and Obsession” by Corey Sandler, for the Amazon Kindle. You can read the book on a Kindle device, or in a Kindle App on your computer, laptop, tablet, or smartphone.

Here’s where to order an electronic copy for immediate delivery:

Henry Hudson Dreams and Obsession: The Tragic Legacy of the New World’s Least Understood Explorer (Kindle Edition)

3 August 2019:
Seyðisfjörður, Iceland:
Trapped in a Pearl Shell

By Corey Sandler, Destination Consultant Silversea Cruises

We have rounded the top of Iceland and reached Seyðisfjörður on the east coast, one of Iceland’s most picturesque towns with a collection of 19th century wooden homes, surrounded by beautiful nature.

Poet Matthías Johannessen called Seyðisfjörður a “pearl enclosed in a shell.”

It exists because of its protected harbor established by foreign merchants, mostly from Denmark. It’s a small town of about 665 people, spread across 82 square miles or 213 square kilometers.

The town sits at the end of the fjord. A road over a mountain connects to the rest of Iceland, about 17 miles to the Ring Road.

Here’s what we saw today, on a beautiful (and scarily warm day) in town and up and over in the central valley.

Seyðisfjörður was one of many places used by British and American forces during World War II and some of the elements of the bases can be seen around the fjord,including a disused landing strip.

And this was one of the few places that saw actual combat, or at least an attack, during World War 2. On February 10, 1944, the British oil tanker El Grillo, at anchor in the harbor was attacked, by three German FW-200 Condor bombers flying from occupied Norway.

The captain chose to scuttle the ship, still laden with bunker oil and defensive weapons. El Grillo, Spanish for The Cricket, is still on the bottom. It was not until 2002 that most of the remaining oil and its weapons were removed. Today it is one of the most popular dive sites in Iceland.

A popular restaurant in Seyðisfjörður—one of only a few in town, but nevertheless said to be one of the best outside of Reykjavik—is called Kaffi Lara, and within it is the El Grillo bar. And they offer a craft beer named after the sunken tanker.

Every week the car ferry MS Norröna of the Smyril Line comes to Seyðisfjörður from Hirtshals in Denmark and Tórshavn in the Faroe Islands.

Which brings us to murder and mayhem. In 2015 the Icelandic television series “Trapped” was set in the town, and partially filmed there.

A very engaging, low-key murder mystery, the show begins when a partial corpse is found in the harbor as the ferry arrives. Across ten episodes we come to know the intense, tormented police chief and his small staff, and also what seems like almost every other resident of town.

The cold and wild winter of Iceland is essentially another character, as a powerful storm cuts off the town from Reykjavik.

The TV series stars Ólafur Darri Ólafsson, a hulking teddy bear of a man who has become Iceland’s unofficial and unlikely hunk. Olafur Darri was born in Connecticut in the United States, but moved to his family’s home country of Iceland and has become the nation’s best-known actor in films and on stage.

All photos and text Copyright 2019 by Corey Sandler, all rights reserved. See more photos on my website at http://www.coreysandler.com

IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO PURCHASE ANY PHOTO OR AN AUTOGRAPHED COPY OF ONE OF MY BOOKS, PLEASE CONTACT ME.

SEE THE “How to Order a Photo or Autographed Book” TAB ON THIS PAGE FOR INSTRUCTIONS

Now available, the revised Second Edition of “Henry Hudson Dreams and Obsession” by Corey Sandler, for the Amazon Kindle. You can read the book on a Kindle device, or in a Kindle App on your computer, laptop, tablet, or smartphone.

Here’s where to order an electronic copy for immediate delivery:

Henry Hudson Dreams and Obsession: The Tragic Legacy of the New World’s Least Understood Explorer (Kindle Edition)

8 July 2018:
Seyðisfjörður, Iceland:
Feeling Trapped?

By Corey Sandler, Destination Consultant Silversea Cruises

We have rounded the corner at the top of Iceland to Seyðisfjörður on the east coast, one of Iceland’s most picturesque towns with a collection of 19th century wooden homes, surrounded by beautiful nature.

Poet Matthías Johannessen called Seyðisfjörður a “pearl enclosed in a shell.”

It exists because of its protected harbor,

It’s a small town of about 665 people, spread across 82 square miles or 213 square kilometers although most near the harbor.

Silver Wind at the dock today.

Settlement here traces back to the early period of settlement in Iceland. The burned down ruin of a stave church nearby has been carbon-dated to the 10th century, with earlier graves from the 8th century.

The modern history of the town began in 1848, with settlement by Norwegian fisherman.

I went with guests on a tour of the highlands. It is almost impossible to point a camera anywhere in Iceland and not come away with a good photo. Here is some of what I saw:

Photos by Corey Sandler, 2018. All rights reserved.

MURDER, THEY WROTE

Every week the car ferry MS Norröna of the Smyril Line comes to Seyðisfjörður from Hirtshals in Denmark and Tórshavn in the Faroe Islands.

Which brings us to murder and mayhem, at least in fiction.

In 2015 the Icelandic television series “Trapped” was set in the town, and was partially filmed there.

“Trapped” is a very engaging, low-key murder mystery that focuses on a partial corpse found in the harbor as the ferry arrives. Across ten episodes we come to know the intense, tormented police chief and his small staff, and also what seems like almost every other resident of town.

The TV series stars Ólafur Darri Ólafsson, a hulking teddy bear of a man who has become Iceland’s unofficial and unlikely hunk. Olafur Darri was born in Connecticut in the United States, but moved to his family’s home country of Iceland and has become the nation’s best-known actor in films and on stage.

Copyright 2018 by Corey Sandler, all rights reserved.

IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO PURCHASE AN AUTOGRAPHED COPY OF ONE OF MY BOOKS, PLEASE CONTACT ME.

SEE THE “How to Order a Photo or Autographed Book” TAB ON THIS PAGE FOR INSTRUCTIONS

————-

Now available, the revised Second Edition of “Henry Hudson Dreams and Obsession” by Corey Sandler, for the Amazon Kindle. You can read the book on a Kindle device, or in a Kindle App on your computer, laptop, tablet, or smartphone.

If you would like to purchase an autographed copy, please see the tab on this page, “HOW TO ORDER A PHOTO OR AUTOGRAPHED BOOK”

Here’s where to order an electronic copy for immediate delivery:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00IA9QTBM

Henry Hudson Dreams and Obsession: The Tragic Legacy of the New World’s Least Understood Explorer (Kindle Edition)

IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO PURCHASE AN AUTOGRAPHED COPY OF ONE OF MY BOOKS, PLEASE CONTACT ME.

SEE THE “How to Order a Photo or Autographed Book” TAB ON THIS PAGE FOR INSTRUCTIONS