Take a leisurely, highly informative stroll through Akureyri, where you'll discover its beginnings as a Danish trading post and visit the town's most treasured landmarks.
This delightful tour begins right at the pier, from which you'll walk into town via a waterfront road called the Strandgata. The views are gorgeous, especially of the surrounding fjord, which is the longest in Iceland. Continuing on through the Artists' Alley, the center of Akureyri's cultural life, you'll come to a hilltop Lutheran church whose modern design has become a symbol of the city. Be sure to note the stained glass window above the altar; it was bought to Akureyri from Coventry Cathedral in England during World War II for safekeeping, as the rest of the window set was destroyed in an air raid.
Then, while walking into midtown, your guide will regale you with stories of Akureyri's history. Developed as a remote Danish trading post in the mid-1500s, Akureyri languished in relative obscurity until about 150 years ago when agriculture and fishing began to flourish. At the Akureyri Museum, you'll gain an even deeper understanding of the past through black-and-white photographs, an ancient burial mound, and exhibits devoted to early trade.
Your formal walking tour ends back at the church, which you'll reach following a coastal route that usually offers fine bird watching. You're welcome to follow the guide back to the pier or remain in town to explore on your own. Designer shops and restaurants serving Icelandic cuisine are abundant along Hafnarstaeti street.
Please note: This tour includes approximately 3 hours of moderate to strenuous walking, at times over gravel pathways. There is an uphill climb to negotiate of approximately 95 steps to reach the church. The tour is not available to wheelchair guests or those with mobility concerns. Participants should be in good physical condition. Weather appropriate clothing that should include a water/wind proof jacket; cap; sunglasses; and comfortable, flat walking shoes with a non-slip sole are recommended.