The Westman Islands (Icelandic: Vestmannaeyjar) are an archipelago off the southwestern of Iceland. The main island, Heimaey, is the only one populated (4,135). The island is accessible only by a ferry leaving regularly from Landeyjahöfn, a small port near Seljalandsfoss, the famous waterfall about halfway between Reykjavik and Vik. The Westman Islands were our last stop on two weeks of hitchhiking from Akureyri back to Reykjavik around the east coast. The island was beautiful, but I’ll be honest…I was completely exhausted and spent more time sleeping in my tent than exploring the steep hills and the strange landscapes left by the huge Eldfell volcano eruption in 1973, which destroyed 20% of the town. If you like Icelandic cinema, the Baltasar Kormákur film Djúpið (The Deep), takes place on and near the island (with mentions of the devastating erruption). Fun fact: Heimaey was home to Free Willy star Keiko the killer whale from 1998-2003 while efforts were underway to reintroduce him to the wild.
[35mm taken with my Canon EOS Rebel 2000. Click here for more pictures from my June Ring Road trip around Iceland]