Patreksfjörður is a place mentioned in The Book of Settlements. It is an ancient place and has been around since the 9th century but didn't grow into a village until the late 18th century and the beginning of the 20th century. Because of the fishing grounds nearby, the fishing farms developed into a trading point when foreign and local entrepreneurs became interested in the fish and the fish products. It is common in small towns and villages around Iceland to trace their beginning and existence to rich fishing grounds right by the shore. Other factors that mattered in their growth are the development of boats and vessels throughout history and also laws and regulations that define "who can fish."
Patreksförður, a victim of the fishing quota law
Patreksfjörður is a good example of a town that had all the necessary resources to grow and sustain itself as a fishing town, but after the Icelandic Government created the fishing quota system in 1990, Patreksfjörður was deprived of its fishing rights and fishing tradition. In 1981, the population of the thriving fishing town was more than 1000; today, the population is less than 700.
Fishing industry remains the largest employer
Although large fishing boats and trawlers have disappeared from the Patreksfjörður fleet along with the quota, fisheries and fish processing are still the primary industry. Others work in the service sector, and as more and more people are discovering the beauty and fascinating history of the West Fjords in Iceland, tourism is growing.
Excellent service and growing activity around tourism
Today, Patreksfjörður is part of a larger municipal, Vesturbyggð, which also includes Bíldudalur and most of the rural surroundings. The community offers the standard services provided to most towns and villages in Iceland: a preschool, an elementary and middle school, a library, and a community center. The municipal collaborates in the Snæfellsnes high school, which has an annex in Patreksfjörður. There is also a good sports center and a swimming pool. This reflects the high value placed on education, well-being, and care for others in the community. Most of the houses are from the fifties, sixties, and seventies, and all houses are heated with electricity.
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 Patreksfjörður region.