Visiting Flatey island in Iceland is like going back in time
Breidafjordur bay is one of the better known bays of Iceland. Stuck between the Westfjord peninsula on one hand and Snaefellsnes peninsula on the other the bay is also locally famous for the massive numbers of small tiny islands all over.
Locals here will tell you the exact number of islands in Breidafjordur bay varies for the simple reason that tiny islands become visible with the tide flowing out to sea and then disappear again with the tide coming in. But the number of true islands is about 300 in all.
But remarkably only one is inhabited and then only part of the year. That is Flatey island, among the largest of the islands in the bay and pretty much the only one worth spending any time. Two things make it worth your while. One is the number of old refurbished buildings on the island, many of whom are quite lovely and secondly the island is an oasis with plentiful nice views in all directions.
Why one suddenly finds rows of beautiful old buildings on this remote island can be explained by history as Flatey was decades and centuries ago an important commercial fishing center. The locals were wealthy and jobs for all.
Today the island is more or less only a summer destinations for locals and tourists alike. The only way here is by ferry which crosses the bay once daily in wintertime and twice daily in summertime. The ferry ride to and from is only an hour but expect to pay no less than 34€ / 47$ per person for the luxury in the summer months. Bringing a car is possible but not onto Flatey island.
So, is it worth it? Absolutely. Should you be a tranquil kind of person a night´s stay here would be super. Farmstay here is possible as well as spending the night in a nice old guesthouse. Also camping is an option. However, it is very tiny and a after a couple of hours here you will have seen the houses and most of the island too. Only stay longer if you have ample time and a heart that needs a rest.