Eldheimar volcanic Exhibition
If you have already been riding on a snowmobile, walked the ice on Mýrdalsjökull glacier on top of Katla volcano, visited the Lava Center, experienced the wonders of Katla Geopark and still have not had enough of Iceland's ice & fire history, we suggest that you take a trip to the Westman Islands. The Eldheimar exhibition tells you the story of the 1973 volcanic eruption, without doubt one of the largest natural distasters in Iceland. The exhibition portrays the lives of the people of Heimaey in Westmann Islands before the eruption which started early morning on January 23rd. The inhabitants had to leave the island and many did not return. Lava and ash destoyed third of all the houses and businesses on Heimaey, the only inhabited island.
Now, 40 years later the museum of remembrance Eldheimar was opened up, allowing visitors to go back in time and study this dramatic event. The house at Gerdarbraut 10 which has been buried under ash and lava since the eruption has been excavated and is a part of the exhibition. The guests walk around with a headset, listening to the dramatic time of the duration of the eruption, the evacuation, the rescue and finally the end.
A small island Surtsey near the Westman Islands emerged from the sea south of Heimaey. This eruption lasted for more than three years forming the island. Admission to this little island has been prohibited for the public, only scientists are allowed. The eruption and the new ecosystem which has come alive on the island has been closely surveyed by scientists.
At The World Heritage Committee in July 2008, Surtsey was declared a national property and put on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
The museum is open every day from 11:00 am – 18:00 pm
Distance from Reykjavik to Landeyjahöfn is 134 km.
The ferry Herjólfur sails between the islands and Landeyjahöfn several times a day. The journey takes 35 minutes.