Skagaströnd

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Skagaströnd
Municipality and Town
View from the port
View from the port
Official seal of Skagaströnd
Seal
Municipal location
Municipal location
Skagaströnd is located in Iceland
Skagaströnd
Skagaströnd
Location in Iceland
Coordinates: 65°50′N 20°19′W / 65.833°N 20.317°W / 65.833; -20.317
Country  Iceland
Constituency[1] Norðvesturkjördæmi
Region[2] Norðurland vestra
County Austur-Húnavatnssýsla
Municipality Skagaströnd
Area
 • Total 449 sq mi (1,163 km2)
Population (2009)
 • Total 530
Time zone GMT (UTC+0)
Website Official website
Village church
The lighthouse of Kálfshamarsvík

Skagaströnd is a town and municipality on the north coast of Iceland, on the east coast of the bay Húnaflói.

Notable landmarks include the mountain Spákonufell and the Cap of Spákonufell. The population is 530.

Geography[edit]

History[edit]

Population[edit]

Skagaströnd has been a trading centre since the late 15th century. Today it is a thriving fishing port with seafood processing plants. The people of Skagaströnd have quite often shown their pioneering spirit to enhance the property of the village and its surrounding area. In Skagaströnd is a school for children up to 15 years old, a grocery store, a health care center, a church, service flats for the elderly, a sports center, swimming pool and hot pots, Café, the famous restaurant Kántrýbær and the country and western radio station, a 9 hole golf course, a good campsite and much more. The distance from Reykjavik is 268 km.

A new kind of activities are taking place by the opening of the Nes artist residency and the marine biotechnology science hotel. In preparation is a prophet center for fortune tellers in the spirit of Þordís Spakona.

Sagas[edit]

The first information about a settlement at Skagaströnd comes from the 10th century. Then a prophetess by the name of Þordis lived there at Spákonufell (Prophetess Mountain). She crops up throughout the Icelandic sagas and her reputation was ambivalent as she was skilled in witchcraft. The sagas tell that that Þordis walked up to Spakonufell every day (646 m.) and combed her hair with a golden comb. It is said that she had hidden her gold in the mountain and put a spell on it so that no one could use it except women which were not baptized and who hadn't learnt any of Gods words. In the time of the trading monopoly Skagaströnd was the main trading center for the people in county until around 1900 when trading was established at the nearby town. Port building began in the 1930s and a fish factory was established in 1944 and a herring factory was built in 1946. There were plans to expand the town to about 3000-5000 people however the herring disappeared from Húnaflói and now there are 530 people living at Skagaströnd.

Main sights[edit]

Spánskanöf[edit]

Spánskanöf is situated in Skagaströnd just to the north of the estuary of Laxá in Refasveit. There can be found a very steep drop to the beach, about 40–50 meters. There is a lot of bird life is in the cliffs and reefs out from the shore. The Sagas tell that at this spot Spanish pirates came to land and headed for the vicarage at Höskuldsstaðir. The priest gathered his men to defend the site. The name derives from this encounter with the Spanish invaders .[3]

Marine biotechnology science hotel[edit]

BioPol is a marine biotechnology science hotel established last year. The goal of the company is to examine the biota of Húnaflói-bay, undertake research in the field of biotechnology and support innovation in the field of marine biotechnology. Moreover, the company intends to undertake the marketing and sale of products made from marine organisms. The goals of such research could, among other things, be directed toward the possibility of utilising seafood without previously defined use or known characteristics. Moreover, the research could be directed toward environmental monitoring, with particular emphasis on monitoring changes in the biota, its causes and consequences. www.biopol.is

Nes Artist Residency[edit]

Nes artist residency was founded in March 2008. An international artist residency like Nes provides the artists with a workspace and living quarters during their stay in Skagaströnd. The studios are located in a former fishing plant. The living quarters are in three houses owned by the town. The residency has room for about 15 artists and is planning to expand include up to 20 to 25 artists at the time. The applications will be reviewed in cooperation with SÍM – The Association of Icelandic Visual Artists. Included in the price is a room, with shared kitchen and bathing facilities and a studio space. There will be a number of rooms for single artists but also two to three apartments for artists with families. www.neslist.is

Culture[edit]

Cowboy in the North[edit]

One person, Mr. Hallbjorn Hjartarson, The Icelandic Cowboy, has shown a remarkable initiative in promoting American country and western music. He further runs, at his own expense, a radio station playing only country and western and for many years he held the "Country Festival", which attracted visitors from all over Iceland and from abroad. Actually it can be said that he has made his own culture in Iceland’s musical

Sjúbídú[edit]

Skagaströnd was mentioned in the song Sjúbídú, the Icelandic entry in the Eurovision Song Contest 1996. According to the lyrics, the word shoobe-doo can be understood "from Skagaströnd to Timbuktu". Nearby Kálfhamarsvík is considered one of the most beautiful tourist destinations in Iceland.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Political division
  2. ^ Mainly statistical division
  3. ^ Spánskanöf (Historical Places in Northwest Iceland)

External links[edit]

Media related to Skagaströnd at Wikimedia Commons

Coordinates: 65°50′N 20°19′W / 65.833°N 20.317°W / 65.833; -20.317