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  • Writer's pictureEinar Páll Svavarsson

Grindavík town Reykjanes Peninsula evacuated due to possible eruption and seismic activity

Updated: Feb 20

Update 20/02/2024 In Grindavík, eruption is possible after weeks of intense seismic activity and eruptions. The town has been evacuated, and a volcanic alert has been issued! Everything is closed in Grindavík, and visiting the town is not allowed or recommended at the moment. Grindavík is a very dangerous place.


The neighboring famous Blue Lagoon has been closed due to seismic activity and a high possibility of eruption near the Blue Lagoon and Grindavík town. A hazardous situation has developed around and under the Blue Lagoon as an unusual amount of magma has accumulated in recent weeks. There is also a real danger of significant disaster around the lagoon, the power plant at Svartsengi, and in the town of Grindavík.

Grindavík town main entrance street
Grindavík town main entrance street

As a municipality, Grindavík, located at Reykjanes Peninsula, is one of the most attractive towns on the Icelandic coastline. It is a small community of 3,626 people in 2023. The town is gripping from the point of view of being a typical Icelandic fishing town, and it is one of few towns in Iceland which survived the fishing quota system created by the Icelandic government in 1990. A quota system that hit many fishing towns hard. In recent decades, the fishing industry in Grindavík has grown and thrived in sharp contrast to most former fishing towns along the coastline.


Reykjanes Peninsula on the map of Iceland
Reykjanes Peninsula on the map of Iceland

One of the most active fishing towns in Iceland

The old part of Grindavík town
The old part of Grindavík town

Grindavík has many large and small fishing vessels and is one of Iceland's most important fishing harbors. The harbor is one of only two harbors on the whole south coastline. Accordingly, a large portion of its residents works in the fishing industry. The town has grown steadily in recent years and has, in addition to the fishing industry, embraced the growing tourism in Iceland. The community has welcomed to enhance options and enterprises in the local economy. As the town is not far from the Capital Region and Reykjavík, many residents work in Reykjavík. So overall, Grindavík has a relatively strong economic base.


Grindavík has a long history of good management

Grindavík is first and foremost a fishing town
Grindavík is first and foremost a fishing town

Grindavík has a long reputation for being exceptionally well-managed as a town. The town offers typical service to its residents, as any municipality in Iceland offers. The sports club is strong in soccer and basketball, and the town has excellent sports facilities. Schools and kindergarten are good, with a wonderful swimming pool, a library, and healthcare.


As old as the Book of Settlement?

Grindavík offers one of the best camping sites in Iceland
Grindavík offers one of the best camping sites in Iceland

In Iceland, it is customary to brag about and enhance historical events, even small ones, connected to your town or farm or yourself as an individual. Grindavík has the advantage over many other municipals in the Reykjanes peninsula, is mentioned in the Book of Settlement. So it is fair to mention that Molda-Gnúpur Hrólfsson settled in Grindavík around the year 900.


Grindavík is the "hometown" of the Blue Lagoon.

Only a few kilometers from Grindavík is the jewel in the tourism crown in Iceland, the Blue Lagoon. The Blue Lagoon is probably the most renowned landmark in Iceland and the most popular tourist destination in the country. Even though we have many natural wonders, the Blue Lagoon is possibly the best-known tourist attraction in Iceland.


 

Other destinations and natural wonders and volcanos close to Grindavík


Grindavík is also one of the main towns when you take a road trip and visit other exciting destinations to the Reykjanes Peninsula, places like Krísuvíkurberg, Seltun, Gunnuhver, and the Bridge between continents. It is a perfect place to stop when exploring the peninsula. Grindavík has one of the best camping grounds in Iceland and a selection of excellent restaurants. In 2021 when the eruption started at Fagradalsfjall, Grindavík became the center of attention as the eruption is only a few kilometers from the town. Before the eruption, the people in Grindavík experienced repeated earthquakes.

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