Höfði House and the poet Einar Ben

  • The statue of the poet and entrepreneur Mr. Benediktsson and Höfði House
Apr 17 2016

In recent years, Höfði House in the district of Laugardalur has become one of the major landmarks in Reykjavík the capital of Iceland.  And not without a reason.  It is famous for its history in Iceland and also internationally as a symbol referring to the end of the cold war, after Ronald Reagan president of the United States and Mikhail Gorbachev president of Union of Soviet Socialist Republics had their famous meeting in the house in 1986.

Connected to the poet Mr. Benediktsson

In the minds of Icelanders though, it is often linked to the poet and entrepreneur Einar Benediktsson (1864 -1940), although he only lived in the house for a few years. Mr. Benediktsson moved into the house with his family in 1914 and named the house, Höfði. He was a grand scale entrepreneur who dreamed of things larger than life, and during his lifetime filled his bag of experience with failures and bankruptcy. But he was a person that Icelanders loved and probably one of the first businesspeople in Iceland to find international funding for many of his failed enterprises. And most of the time lived like a King both in Iceland and abroad. But it was first and foremost the poet Mr. Benediktsson that Icelanders admired.  Less than three decades after Mr. Benediktsson passed away a statue of him vas placed in a new small park by Klambratún in the district of Hlíðar.  In 2015, the statue was moved to the lot by Höfði House and stands by the
house near the ocean where many Icelanders feel he belongs.

A bit of a history

The house was built in 1909 for the French Consul Brillouin, who was appointed by the French government at that time to look after the interest of French seamen fishing in Iceland. This was at the same time all the newly renovated houses, the French hospital, and other houses, were built in Fáskrúðsfjörður in the Eastern Region. At that point, the extravagant house was rather far from the main center and other houses in the small town of Reykjavík.  The house was also the home of a physician Mr. Matthías Einarsson father of one of the first female artists in Iceland with international recognition, Louisa Matthíasdóttir. During the second world war, it was the residence of the British consulate visited by Winston Churchill.  After occupying the house for a few years, the consul sold it because of a ghost "the woman in white" that continually disturbed the people living there. From 1967, it has been the official reception for the city of Reykjavík.

Tours and things to do in Reykjavík Iceland

Find an interesting tour in Reykjavík. A tour in Reykjavík or a day-tour to nearby natural wonders, a scenic drive or an adventure tour if you are ready for action.

Ice Super Truck adventure for a day

This adventurous one-day super truck tour takes you to the South coast with an added glacier activity. 

The day starts off with a visit to one of Iceland’s most famous and fascinating waterfalls, Seljalandsfoss. Here you can walk behind the falling water and experience something different.  But you need to be careful as the trail is narrow and most of the time a bit slippery.  Extra caution is required during winter, and proper footwear is recommended. This is one of the most photographed places in Iceland and for a good reason. During the winter, the waterfall is lit up so you can enjoy it’s magic all year round.

Southern Region in Iceland
Ice cave

Natural wonders, ice cave, icberg lagoon, northern lights

The south coast of Iceland is the home of some stunning natural wonders and spectacular places to visit.  This tour highlights the iceberg lagoon Jökulsárlón, the Diamond beach, a visit to an actual Ice cave, and the waterfall Seljalandsfoss.  As evening approaches on our way back to Reykjavík, we start looking for the Northern light’s and make a stop if we spot a glimpse of Aurora Borealis.

 

South Region in Iceland
Aurora Borealis in Iceland

Pursuing the Northern Lights around Reykjavík in a small group

Iceland is a perfect place to see the Northern Lights, Aurora Borealis.  If conditions are right, the Northern Lights can be seen in all regions.  Reykjavík and nearby countryside is an excellent place to search for and see the Northern Lights. Come with us as we search for the best place to experience this unique phenomenon.

Reykjavík
2 Day South Coast Tour - Blue Ice cave - Jökulsárlón - and more

Blue Ice cave - Waterfalls - Jökulsárlón iceberg lagoon - Black Sands at Reynisfjara 

Join this tour along Iceland’s south coast to discover the unique landscape, natural blue Ice cave, glacier tongues, icebergs, lava fields, volcanos, black beaches, mighty rivers, and magic waterfalls.

Global Warming and Climate change adventure tour in Iceland

With a combination of travel and lectures, Geocamp Iceland and Hit Iceland offer a unique opportunity to get a view of and understand how climate change is affecting our planet in the form of a tour.  The trip takes you through exotic locations of volcanoes, glaciers, ice tongues, canyons, craters, lagoons, deep highland, small fishing towns, and other relevant and interesting places.  Our approach for this tour is based on geology, environmental science, and changes in nature.  We will also visit fishing villages to highlight how changes in the environment and natural resources affect various communities and their economy.

Northern Lights tour in Reykjavik

Iceland is one of the best places on the planet to see the Northern Lights.  This tour will take you to see this spectacular phenomenon near Reykjavík. We bring you away from the city lights to a place where the likelihood of a spotting Aurora Borealis increases even further. The destination varies, of course, depending on cloud cover, clear skies, aurora strength and likelihood of a sighting.  Visitors should be aware that although the tour endeavors to show the northern lights to as many of our guests as possible, seeing them is not guaranteed.  In winter weather always plays a large part in Iceland.

Golden Circle tour with Secret Lagoon

Step away from the crowd, the rush, and speed and enjoy the top sights and attractions in the south-western part of Iceland, without all the traffic. Take a convenient bus tour in a smaller bus and with a smaller group (max 16) at a time when fewer visitors are around. Why chase the crowds when you can enjoy the wonders of Iceland in a more friendly setting?  This peaceful excursion takes place in the afternoon and lasts into the evening and allows plenty of time to explore, view and photograph all the spectacular wonders.  And remember that evening in Iceland is bright during spring, summer and into the autumn. 

Þórsmörk tour

Þórsmörk is one of the most spectacular places in Iceland.  It is one of the most accessible areas in the Highland, a deep valley, and oasis cornered with glaciers on three sides.  It is truly a place of ice and fire as one of the glaciers; Eyjafjallajökull has recently erupted with glowing lava flowing into two parts of Þórsmörk.
2 presons minimum

Snæfellsnes Peninsula day tour from Reykjavík

The Snæfellsnes Peninsula is one of the Regions in Iceland that offers an impressive scenic drive, many exciting attractions and natural wonders.  At the end is the Snæfellsjökull glacier towering over the landscape and dominating the view with its mystical power. A power sensed by many locals and visitors alike and inspired literary giants like Jules Verne and our Nobel Prize winner Halldór Laxnes. 
3 persons minimum 

Landmannalaugar

Explore one of the most exciting places in the Icelandic highland in a super jeep day tour from Reykjavík.  Experience the magnificent colors of rhyolite mountains,  visit a beautiful waterfall, meet Hekla the active volcano and take a dip in the most famous geothermal pool in Iceland.   

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