You can read about our entire Iceland journey here.
Old Akranes Lighthouse
The lighthouse is actually two lighthouses: the older being the smaller concrete lighthouse, which is one of the oldest in the country, built in 1918; the larger lighthouse is still in use today. Both lighthouses are situated at a rocky point, but offer beautiful views. This is a popular spot to catch the Northern Lights during the winter time. Akranes is a fishing town and you will see a bunch of old and rusty boats as you head to the lighthouses.
Tips: For a small fee, you can head to the top of the larger (in use) lighthouse during the day.
Langisandur is Akranes’ long and sandy beach, making it a very popular outdoor spot in the town. It is a nice place to have a morning stroll or relax in the sun in the afternoon.
Brauða og Kökugerðin (Kallabakarí)
This is a really delicious bakery in Akranes with amazing donuts. They also have other pastries, cakes, breads and sandwiches.
We arrived later in the day to Akranes and did not get a chance to try Gamla Kaupfélagið, but it came highly recommended for its quality food, including fresh seafood, and inviting ambiance.
The White House Apartment
Located about 5-10 minutes walk from the Old Akranes Lighthouse, this Airbnb was super cute, spacious, and very homey. Our host greeted us and even asked us if we wanted some of the fresh fish soup she had just made! The apartment was equipped with everything we needed and there were "Grandma's" handmade items for sale (knitted and crocheted gloves, hats, scarves, and sweaters), which was a nice touch. Book it here: https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/15187312
Visiting The Snaefellsnes Peninsula
We made a pit stop in Borgarnes on our way to Snaefellsnes Peninsula and enjoyed the Ljómalind Local Market, a cute shop with locally made crafts and gifts, and Borgarneskirkja, the town’s church.
Stóri-Kálfalaekur (Icelandic horseback riding)
Our horseback riding experience at Stóri-Kálfalaekur was one of our favorite things we did in Iceland! Icelandic horses are so cute and fun to ride (did you know they have 5 gaits versus the usual 3-4?). Plus, they are a very pure breed as laws and regulations prohibit any other horses to come to the island, and once a horse leaves the island it can never return. We had a private 2-hour ride, where we rode from the farm to the beach. The tide was out and it was amazing to experience riding on the beach... we’ll never forget it!
Tips: The road is gravel for about 15-20 minutes after turning off Route 54 onto Hraunhreppsvegur. Make sure to schedule your ride in advance, and, if interested, ask about beach ride (tide tables will dictate date/time for a beach ride).
This beautiful and remote church is located another 5-10 minutes from Stóri-Kálfalaekur towards the coast, but did not disappoint. There were a bunch of horses roaming around the nearby farms, too.
Right as you reach Snaefellsnes Peninsula, visit Gerðuberg Cliffs for some of the most impressive areas of basalt columns (hexagonal looking stacks) in Iceland. You can hike some of the paths along the cliffs as well.
Búðakirkja is a black church that is located on a lava field covered with grassy flora in a tiny village (Búdir has one hotel and one church!). It is one of our favorite churches that we visited in Iceland for its unique color and the beautiful setting and landscape that surrounds it.
Skarðsvík Beach via Ólafsvík, Rif, Hellissandur
Skarðsvík Beach is a golden colored sandy beach that contrasts beautifully with the ocean's blue-green water and is situated among bare black lava rock. It is located along the furthest west point of the Snaefellsnes Peninsula and you will drive through the cute towns of Ólafsvík, Rif, and Hellissandur to get to this beach.
Tips: If you have time, drive to Öndverðarnes Lighthouse and Svörtuloft Lighthouse.
Djúpalónssandur, also known as Black Lava Pearl Beach, is a pretty pebbled beach surrounded by rocky cliffs, along the western coast of the Snaefellsnes Peninsula at the foot of the Snaefellsjokull. You can admire the beach and ocean views from the top of the cliff or take one of the paths down to the beach and explore.
Snaefellsjoekull National Park
The Snaefellsjoekull National Park surrounds the mountain top of Snæfellsjökull and contains a large glacier. It is a diverse park full of hiking opportunities.
This circular arch rock is located in Arnarstapi and is surrounded by rocky cliffs and pretty flora. The coastline in this area is really pretty, and it is fun to watch the waves crash into the arch and the nearby rocks.
Tips: Stop at Lóndrangar, two volcanic basalt plugs that have emerged through erosion. There is also a viewpoint you can visit right off the main road.
Kirkjufell Mountain, located on its own peninsula, and Kirkjufellsfoss are located on the northern coast of the Snaefellsnes Peninsula. The waterfall is situated in a pretty and surreal setting, with beautiful views.
Stykkishólmur is a town situated on the northern side of the Snaefellsnes Peninsula and locals make a living through fishing and tourism. This town contains a volcano museum, the Norwegian House museum, the Súgandisey Island Lighthouse, and the unique Stykkishólmskirkja church. From Stykkishólmur, you can take a ferry to the north/west fjords as well.
Dinner at Hotel Búdir was amazing. The food, service, and ambiance makes for a truly special experience. You feel like you are in a remote area being on the peninsula, yet are enjoying a gourmet meal within a beautifully appointed hotel (and not too mention the amazing views from the bar and lounge area!). We thoroughly enjoyed the meal, wine list, and the intimate atmosphere.
Tips: You can also stay at Hotel Búdir! It is a very pretty hotel and probably one of the nicest places to stay on the Snaefellsnes Peninsula.
Located in Stykkishólmur, Narfeyrarstofa is a cozy restaurant serving fresh food with local ingredients and seafood. The mussels and fish soup are popular dishes, and you must try the homemade cakes!
Spectacular glacier and ocean view at Stóri Kambur
We decided to stay at this Airbnb on the Snaefellsnes Peninsula, and it did not disappoint. Located on the farm Stóri Kambur, this suite-style space had gorgeous views of the mountains, ocean, and sprawling farmland. It was also equipped with all the essentials we needed for a one-night stay. You can book it here: https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/20134954