The tiny village of Súgandarfjörður is located in a narrow fjord surrounded by steep mountains. Suðureyri is a relatively new village as it didn’t exist as a village at the beginning of the 20th century, and is thus new in historical terms. Before that time, the inhabitable area in Súgandafjörður consisted of a few agricultural farms with access to good fishing grounds, scattered throughout the lowland of the fjord. The fjord has limited reference to the Sagas from the early settlement.
Up until the last decade of the 19th century, the fjord was almost isolated during the wintertime and the only access by sea or walking trails to neighboring farms and villages. In the first decades of the 20-century, a village started to grow with increasing fishing and fish processing ventures although it didn’t connect to the main road system in Iceland until 1940. Even at that time it was connected with a difficult mountain road on Botnsheiði.
Suðureyri had its booming time
In the seventies, the village built a geothermal heating with hot water from Laugar, a nearby farm. Unfortunately, the geothermal venture didn’t last as there are not many geothermal heating plants in the West Fjords, and the village has reverted to electric heating. In the fifties and up until the eighties the village was booming. A small airport was built to enhance communication. The village also built a preschool, primary school, and a middle school and an excellent sports center and swimming pool, a community center, a health center and a church.
Moving towards tourism in addition to the fishing industry
Today the population is around 260, and most of the people work in the fishing industry. Suðureyri is now part of the Ísafjörður municipal. Suðureyri like many of the villages and towns in the West Fjords is moving towards tourism serving people traveling in Iceland. The village offers accommodation and has a small restaurant, a gas station and a small store.
If you are going to visit the Westfjords in Iceland you might be looking for a places to stay. Here you can book from a selection of accommodationin the Suðureyri region.