The 30 minutes it took to drive from Egilsstaðir to Seydisfjordur flew by with all the fantastic scenery along the way.
We stopped to take some Insta-worthy photos of this giant frozen lake and noticed it melting around the edges.
A little further down the road, and just before we began our descent into the port village of Seydisfjordur, we noticed some whitewater rapids and a waterfall. We pulled over to a lookout point and hopscotched over some boulders to get a better sense of the Gufufoss waterfall. This waterfall was the first of several thousand we saw in Iceland—beautiful yes, most impressive, no.
Once we made it to the town of Seydisfjordur, we all double and triple checked the time, because it seemed as if everyone was asleep, or gone. There was no activity on the water (sure it was the weekend), and nobody walked the streets either. No children played in front yards or the playground, and it felt abandoned like a ghost town.
It wasn’t freezing outside in July, but it was cold enough to prevent people from just “chillin” on their front stoops. So we stopped at the Skaftfell Bistro, for a bite to eat. For breakfast really since it was still early.
Skaftfell Bistro – Seydisfjordur
The neoclassical three-story structure was constructed in 1907. It’s now a small lodge, cafe, and workshop. It’s also part of the Skaftfell Cultural Arts Center, offering artist residencies and courses to artists from the area and around the world, with the goal of promoting the robust contemporary art scene in Seydisfjordur.
Upon stepping inside, we first noticed the warmth of the kitchen spilling out into the “bistro” or cafe. The eclectic “workshop” decor highlighted some of the current and past artists’ works, as well as record albums the staff/artists enjoy listening to.
We enjoyed a basic breakfast oatmeal (with all the fixings), and an assortment of cheese, fruit and cured meats. And loads of coffee.
Everyone was friendly and helpful at answering our questions about what to do in town. Once fueled, we strolled through the seaside village and noticed street art on some of the buildings and sculptures peppered about.
We went into a few stores along the water. Aside from the traditional crafts (knitting wool), contemporary Icelandic art is unique, abstract, and at many times whimsical. It’s as if local artists need a good laugh to keep warm during the harsh winters and they surround themselves with jovial characters (Trolls too) to get through six months of darkness annually.
From here, we got back in the car and headed south toward Djúpivogur, another port village where our ferry to a Puffin sanctuary on the Island of Papey awaited our arrival.