Life in Ísafjörður

Ísafjörður is the de-facto capital of the Westfjords situated in the remote north western part of Iceland. It is a vibrant and beautiful town with a strong cultural life, including a well known music scene, art and sports. Ísafjörður is the largest community of the Westfjords with more than half of the Westfjords’ total population of 7.000 living in the area. Unique countryside surrounds the town and it is a stone’s throw from the untouched natural beauty of places like Hornstrandir and Jökulfirðir.

There are good communications between Ísafjörður and the capital region of Reykjavík: it is a 5-6 hour drive to the capital along totally paved roads and flying takes just 40 minutes, with generally two flights to and from Ísafjörður each day.

The cost of living for students in Ísafjörður is considerably lower than in Reykjavík. Rent can be as little as half the cost. Almost all services are within walking distance from the University Centre and wide-ranging accommodation options in the centre of town are available to students.

Ísafjörður offers excellent and comprehensive services including: a complete hospital and health centre, a library, music and arts schools, a further education college, primary schools and kindergartens. The town centre offers a range of shops, cafés and restaurants.

In Ísafjörður there are excellent facilities for recreation and sports, there are various sports clubs and a public gym in the town centre. The town boasts excellent winter sports facilities, with a variety of ski slopes and cross country skiing tracks just a stone's throw from the town centre. In addition, there are good watersports facilities and there is a good golf course in the immediate vicinity. Singing is ingrained in the local culture and there are several different amateur choirs in the town.

Ísafjörður’s cultural life is known for being especially vibrant, and the highlights are several annual cultural festivals. The music festivals Aldrei fór ég suður, which is held at Easter, and has become integral to the Icelandic music scene. Then there is the theatre festival Act Alone, which takes place in August, and has also become a regular part of the cultural life of the town and focuses exclusively on monologue and one-man-shows. It is also well worth mentioning that the annual and entertaining European Mud Soccer Championships have taken place in the town since 2004.

The Westfjords region offers endless opportunities to enjoy its dynamic culture and unique nature and we encourage those interested to get to know the region and all it has to offer on

University Centre staff members assist students in every way to become integrated in the Westfjords community.

More information about the services of the town can be found on the Ísafjörður website.