In the westernmost region of Hafnarfjörður, lava ponds and ancient ruins dot the shoreline, offering a memorable walk that provides insight into an historical area. In the early 1400s Straumsvík was a thriving commercial region. Here, British, Danish, and German merchants battled, each seeking control of goods and the land. Today amidst the lava lagoons and beside the crashing surf, the crumbling ruins bring to life a story of long ago.
Many walkers begin their stroll beside the big white farmhouse. Designed by the former national architect Guðjón Samúelsson, this classic, peaked-roof style farm is a charming landmark. Follow the gravel road or amble along the seaside path to spot the remnants of a deserted village. With a careful eye and a slow gait, it's possible to find old stonewalls, collapsing farms, age-old cairns, fishing tools, or fragments of kitchens, wells, barns, and what was once a cattle pen.
After a few minutes on either path, you'll soon have turned away from the noisy road and the large aluminium plant. From this quiet trail, you can listen as the birds dive into the waves or watch as the sunset glows pink over the Atlantic. Because there is usually less snow along the coastline, this is a lovely walk year-round.