Grímsey is located about 40 km off the northern coast of Iceland and is the most popular place for day trips in the north. With its 5.3 square kilometres and relatively flat terrain, Grímsey can be easily circumnavigated on foot in a couple of hours and you can enjoy several local attractions.

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There is a pleasant hiking trail that runs all around the island along the cliffs and grassy plains. Grímsey has less than a hundred permanent residents. There are two restaurants, a post office, a small shop and a hotel.

The Arctic Circle

Grímsey is the only part of Iceland where you can physically cross the parallel of 66.5° north latitude - the Arctic Circle. The site is located on the northern tip of the island and is marked by a small globe sculpture - right on this spot.

The puffin colony

The other main attraction of Grímsey is the extremely large colony of fun-loving puffins that inhabit the cliffs around the island. In addition to these, there are 20 other species of birds nesting here, including terns, alcids and alcoves.

The bird cliffs can be seen just off the harbour in the island's only village.

How to get there?

Grímsey is connected to the Icelandic "mainland" by regular ferry and by air from the local small airport.


A regular ferry is operated by the Sæfari boat from Dalvík year-round. In winter 3-4 times a week, in summer up to 5 times a week with the timetable set so that you can only take a day trip. Departures from Dalvík are around 9:00 am, the cruise takes 3 hours, so you arrive in Grímsey at noon. The boat always sails back at 16:00, which is plenty of time to walk around the whole island.

By air

Air service is provided by the small regional airline Norlandair year-round only 3 times a week from Akureyri. However, you can try to combine air and sea travel to spice up your transport.

  • A one-way ticket costs about 67 eur
  • Online ticket booking on the web

You can also take advantage of organised whale watching cruises from Húsavík. A day trip to Grímsey costs around 75 000 isk and is organised by agencies such as Gentle Giants.


Are you tempted by remote places like Grímsey and want to enjoy them to the full in the evening and early morning when they are "cleared" of tourist traffic?

Then there's nothing to stop you staying overnight in a superbly rated Guesthouse Básar with prices around 110 eur per night, which is a really good price for Iceland and such a remote place.

There's no Grímsey like Grímsey

Just for the record, we should mention that roughly 300 km to the west, off the Westfjords, is another little island called Grímsey (location on So be careful not to be mistaken. Fortunately, the "other" Grímsey is uninhabited and there are no ferries to it, so there is no real risk of being mistaken and arriving at another Grímsey.

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