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Iceland Mag

Local Recommendations

If you like football and long walks on the beach, Akranes is the town to visit

By Sara McMahon

  • The local. Freyr Bjarnason, a journalist and former footballplayer, shares his favourite spots in his hometown of Akranes. Photo/FB

Freyr Bjarnason, a journalist and a former defender with the top division football team FH, who grew up in the town of Akranes before moving “south” to the capital. For those visiting his hometown he recommends a walk along the white sands of Langisandur beach where one can enjoy a lovely oceanic view or, for football lovers, catch a game with local team ÍA.


Name and occupation: Freyr Bjarnason, journalist.

Spouse:  Sigurbjörg Ósk Sigurðardóttir, teacher.

Children and/or other family members:  Two stepchildren, Aron Blær and Katrín Björt.

What‘s the best thing about Akranes?
“The relaxed atmosphere. Nobody is in a big hurry.  It is also a good place to raise a family. The freedom children have growing up there is great and every place in town is only a bicycle ride away.”

Favourite restaurant:
“Galito. I´ve eaten there a few times and the steak-sandwich I ordered the last time there was delicious!”

Best place for a picnic
“Garðalundur is a beautiful area covered with tall trees in the outskirts of the town, next to the golf course. You can have a nice picnic anywhere in the area, but there is also a place where people can barbeque, which can be very convenient.” 

Your favourite spot:
“Besides my childhood home, I would say Langisandur beach. Every time I visit Akranes I feel the need to go for a walk across the sand, or take a run, and breathe in the fresh sea air. I have fond memories from Langisandur from my childhood. I used to play the game “Shell-king”, where the boy who had the strongest seashell won. I also practised football on Langisandur with the local club ÍA, but only when the tide was low. And one could only hope the ball wouldn´t go flying into the sea and drift away.”

Mention three interesting things to see or do while in town:
“The lighthouse is located in the oldest part of Akranes and was built in 1918. It was opened for the public a couple of years ago and the view from the top is simply magnificent.
“If in town try not to miss a football game if local club ÍA is playing. Akranes is often referred to as a football-town because of its great football tradition and the atmosphere created in the stadium is wonderful during summertime.
“In the Akranes Museum Centre you will find Byggðasafnið í Görðum, an interesting museum where you can i.e. learn about the history of the fishing industry in Akranes.”

What’s the town’s most famous landmark?
“It´s the mountain Akrafjalll. It has been an inspiration to painters, singers and photographers for as long as I remember. A beautiful mountain and I recommend a hike to the highest point, Geirmundartindur peak.”

Name a few  things one can do when travelling with children?
​“The town celebrates its Irish roots with The Irish days in July. A family festival with many different events scattered across town. If the weather is good, both Garðarlundur and Langisandur are also ideal places to bring children.” 


The town of Akranes and the lighthouse. Photo/GVA


Akranes is often referred to as a football-town because of its great football tradition. Here the female football team is seen celebrating a win. Photo/Stefán.


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