Íslenska Stríðsárasafnið

East Iceland

During WWII around 3000 Allied soldiers (10 times the local population) were based in Reyðarfjörður. At the top end of Heiðarvegur you’ll find the excellent (but pricey) Icelandic Wartime Museum, which details these strange few years. The building is surrounded by mines, Jeeps and aeroplane propellers, and holds other war relics. Photographs and tableaux provide a background to Iceland’s wartime involvement.

The museum is tucked behind a rusting set of army barracks, built as part of a hospital camp in 1943 but never used for that purpose.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby East Iceland attractions

1. Sjóminjasafn Austurlands

6.12 MILES

Inside the 1816 black timber warehouse ‘Gamlabuð’, the East Iceland Maritime Museum illustrates two centuries of the east coast’s historic herring, shark…

2. Frakkar á Íslandsmiðum

9.57 MILES

Accessed through the lobby of Fosshotel Eastfjords, this quality museum (with very pricey admission) paints a detailed portrait of the French connection…

3. Auroras Iceland

9.61 MILES

Right by the Fosshotel, this exhibition is staged in a restored building from 1882 and displays stunning images of the Northern Lights above…

4. Helgustaðanáma

10.41 MILES

The remains of the world’s largest spar quarry lie east of Eskifjörður. Iceland spar (silfurberg in Icelandic) is a type of calcite crystal that is…

5. Flögufoss

16.11 MILES

From Rte 966 take the turn-off to Flögufoss, a 60m-high waterfall (19km west of Breiðdalsvík), if you feel like a scenic leg-stretch.

6. Viewpoint

16.26 MILES

Take a stroll up to the Hringsjá viewpoint from Fénaðarklöpp, for panoramas over the town and surrounds.

7. Rainbow Street

16.46 MILES

This street is supremely photogenic: a rainbow is painted on the pavement, and the Blue Church serves as a sweet backdrop. It features in many advertising…

8. Minjasafn Austurlands

16.47 MILES

Egilsstaðir’s cultural museum has sweet but unremarkable displays focusing on the region's history, and includes exhibits detailing the wild reindeer of…