West of Reykjavik, on the tip of a beautiful peninsula lies Seltjarnarnes, a residential town and nature reserve flanked by the North Atlantic Ocean. With coastal walking paths encircling the peninsula, Seltjarnarnes draws visitors and locals alike for long nature walks. There you can enjoy amazing sunsets and ocean landscapes known for rich birdlife and the picturesque Grotta lighthouse only accessible during low tide.
Originally, the Seltjarnarnes peninsula covered a big part of Reykjavik, but received its own town status in 1974. Seltjarnarnes has about 4600 inhabitants, and is one of the oldest municipalities in the country.
What to see in Seltjarnarnes
The western part of Seltjarnarnes and Grotta Island are protected nature reserves home to more than 100 different bird species and 140 plant varieties. Seltjarnarnes prides itself on an amazing birdlife and Grotta Island is off limits during nesting season, May-June.
Although an island, Grotta is reachable to the mainland by an isthmus during low tide. There nature and bird lovers can enjoy the area for about six hours before the tide rises and becomes an island again. The charming lighthouse there was constructed in 1897 and fully restored in 1947.
Things to do in Seltjarnarnes
Seltjarnarnes provides plenty of recreational opportunities. For example, it boasts a nine-hole seaside golf course and the city’s only geothermal swimming pool including salt water.
Along the seaside are hiking and walking paths, and seals can often be seen lying out on the rocky beaches. During late summer, a stroll along the coastline provides breathtaking sunsets and sweeping views over Reykjavik city.