Neskaupstaður is the easternmost urban area in Iceland. The town is situated in a picturesque area at the foot of high and majestic mountains. The fjord and the surrounding mountains offer an ample supply of activities, such as various hiking routes and horse tours. Nes in Norðfjörður became an official trading point in 1895, when a village had already begun to form there. The evolution of the urban area began with a robust saltfish production in 1870 which further supported the fishing industry of Norðfjörður which is very well situated close to rich fishing grounds.
Norðfjörður is currently the most populous urban area of Fjarðabyggð with a population of 1,530. The elementary school Nesskóli, has just over 200 students and the preschool has 80. Neskaupstaður is also home to the Vocational School of East Iceland which offers vocational programs as well as pedagogy, nursing assistant education, vocational training and aquaculture.
Fishing, fish processing and related services are the main industries in Neskaupstaður which is home to one of Iceland’s largest fishing companies, Síldarvinnslan h/f, which runs one of Europe’s largest and most modern fish processing plants which processes pelagic fish for food production. Neskaupstaður is also home to the regional hospital of East Iceland which is a large workplace and big employer. The service level in town is good with good restaurants, hotels and general services. There is also some agriculture in the countryside of Norðfjörður.
Neskaupstaður first became accessible by road in 1949 with the road over the mountain pass Oddskarð which was closed during the winter months. When the Norðfjarðargöng tunnel opened in 2017, Neskaupstaður finally had safe and permanent road access to Eskifjörður.
Neskaupstaður is known for a number of things, e.g., heavy metal festival Eistnaflug and museum house Safnahúsið which is home to three museums; Museum of Natural History, Jósafat Hinriksson’s Smithy and Maritime Museum and Tryggi Ólafsson’s Collection.
One of the things that is so enchanting about Neskaupstaður is the well-preserved old piers and the town’s shoreline often becomes very vibrant over the summer. Boat rides are available from the piers, and seeing the landscape of Norðfjörður from sea, including Rauðubjörg cliffs and sometimes whales, is an amazing experience. A fun activity on land is to drive through the town, as far east as possible, to visit the nature reserve just outside of the urban area. The area has a number of trails and a rich variety of birds in the steep cliffs of Nípan, as well as Páskahellir cave on the shore.
Community organizations and volunteer clubs in Neskaupstaður
Þróttur sports clubs