Garðabaer is a rapidly growing municipality in the Greater Reykjavik area of Iceland. It is the 6th largest town in Iceland and gained municipal rights in 1976.

The site of Garðabaer has been inhabited since Iceland was first settled in the 9th century. Landnamabok, the Book of Settlement, tells of two farms on the site of Garðabaer: Vifilsstadir and Skulastadir. The former was named after Vifill, who was a slave of Ingolfur Arnarson, the first settler of Iceland. Ingolfur gave Vifill his freedom and he made his home at Vifilsstadir. An archaeological excavation at Hofsstadir in Gardabaer uncovered ruins of a viking house, one of the largest ever found in Iceland.

In Garðabaer farming used to be the main occupation along with fishing.

There are many nature reserves surrounding Garðabaer and the scenery from various sites in Garðabaer is phenomenal.

Bessastadir, the official residence of the president of Iceland, is a part of Gardabaer. Bessastadir was first settled in the year 1000 and served as Royal Norwegian stronghold for some time. Then it became a farm and a school, before being donated to the state in 1941. After that it served as a residence for the regent and later the president.

Population: 10.272


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