Akranes Folk Museum

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Akranes Folk Museum
Byggðasafnið í Görðum Akranesi
A panoramic view of the area.jpg
Former name Akranes Museum Centre (Safnasvæðið á Akranesi)
Established 1959
Location Garðaholt 3, Akranes, Iceland
Type Museum
Public transit access Bus route 57
Website www.museum.is

Coordinates: 64°19′12″N 22°02′42″W / 64.3199°N 22.0450°W / 64.3199; -22.0450 The Akranes Folk Museum (Byggðasafnið í Görðum Akranesi), formerly known as the Akranes Museum Centre (Safnasvæðið á Akranesi), consists of a folk museum, an exhibition hall and a few 19th century buildings and boats in Garðar, Akranes, Iceland. The museum houses several exhibitions, as well as a large open-air museum, which consists mainly of houses and boats, including the old Garðar house and the 86-tonne ketch Sigurfari (Kútter Sigurfari).

The main purpose of the Akranes Folk Museum is to collect, register, preserve, research and display artefacts and other objects of cultural and historical value for the Akranes area and Iceland.[1] The Akranes Folk Museum is located at Garðar in Akranes, near the town's cemetery. It is easily accessible from Reykjavík via car or bus route 57.


The history of the Akranes Folk Museum dates back to 1959, when the museum was founded. Ten years prior, local pastor Jón M. Guðjónsson had started collecting artefacts from the Akranes area. By the time the museum was opened he had already collected between 1500 and 2000 artefacts. Originally located in the old Garðar house, the museum moved to a new location in 1974. The old Garðar house is now part of the museum's house collection. In 2001, a new house, The Museum Hall (Safnaskálinn) was built next to the old museum building. The Museum Hall houses The Iceland Sports Museum, as well as a small gallery for various exhibitions, and a small café, Garðakaffi.


The 86-tonne, two mastered ketch Sigurfari (Kútter Sigurfari) is arguably the museum's most notable artefact, located outside the main museum building. Sigurfari was built in England in 1885, out of oak. It was used for fishing in Iceland until 1919 and in the Faroe Islands until the 1970s. Sigurfari is the only preserved ship of its kind in Iceland. Formerly open to the public, Sigurfari is now unsafe to board and is in need of restoration.

The Akranes Folk Museum preserves and exhibits examples from the past of everyday life in the Akranes area. The museum's collection includes household items, various tools and machinery used by craftsmen, farmers and fishermen, medical equipment, costumes, part of a turf house, etc.

The museum's house collection consists of several 19th and 20th century houses from the Akranes area. Most of the houses have been relocated to the museum area from their original locations. An exception is the old Garðar house, where the Folk Museum was originally housed. This house was built in 1876 as a parsonage and is the oldest house made of concrete in Iceland. The Garðar house is open to the public, as well as Neðri-Sýrupartur, Sandar-Vestri, the Folk Museum building and the Museum Hall. Garðar depicts a late 19th to early 20th century upper-class Icelandic home.

The other houses are Sandar-Vestri, a working class family home built in 1901; Neðri-Sýrupartur, the oldest preserved timber house in Akranes built in 1875; Geirsstaðir, a home and preschool built in 1903; Fróðá, a net and sail workshop built in 1938; Stúkuhúsið, an IOGT meeting house that was originally built as a barn in 1916.

The Iceland Sports Museum is located in the Museum Hall. Opened in 2002, the museum introduces all recognized sports in Iceland. Various sports-related items are on display, such as equipment, trophies and medals, photographs and other memorabilia. A part of the museum is dedicated to sports in Akranes.[2]

Opening hours[edit]

The Akranes Folk Museum is open every day between 10:00 and 17:00 during the Summer (May 15th – September 15th) and offers a guided tour on weekdays at 14:00 all year round, including the Winter season (September 16th – May 14th). It is possible to book guided tours outside opening hours. An insight into the museum's daily events is available on the Akranes Folk Museum Facebook page.[3]


  1. ^ Akranes Folk Museum – Collection policy (not accessible on the web).
  2. ^ "Byggðasafnið í Görðum |". museum.is (in Icelandic). Retrieved 2017-06-08. 
  3. ^ "Byggðasafnið í Görðum Akranesi - Akranes Folk Museum". www.facebook.com. Retrieved 2017-06-08. 

External links[edit]