WORK/PROJECT: This project is located on the nature reserve at Hornstrandir which is Iceland's northernmost peninsula, situated in the Westfjords. Our host is a family that runs activities and services in the Old Doctor’s House during summer.
The main task of the project will be digging a trench for water mains and electrical cables. These will be used for a small power plant that the host has recently received permission to build on the premises. The trench has to be manually made because no machines are allowed in the nature reserve. The total length of the trench will be about one kilometre. This project was started last year with the help of SEEDS volunteers. The volunteers will also help to build a small shed (6m2) and a small dam for water intake.
The weather conditions in Iceland are unpredictable so be prepared to experience all kinds of weather and bring warm clothing. The place is only accessible by boat, so volunteers will travel by boat from Bolungarvík.
The work in this camp is very physically demanding.
ACCOMMODATION: SEEDS volunteers will sleep in beds in shared rooms. Please bring your own sleeping bag. The house is well heated, and has a shower and a well equipped kitchen. The electricity is limited but enough to charge cameras and other small electronics. There is no internet and phone connection is very limited. There is a landline available through which volunteers’ families can reach the volunteers.
Volunteers will receive prepared food during the camp. Do not forget to bring some traditional/typical food from your home country for an international evening.
LOCATION: Hornstrandir is on the farthest point in the northwest of Iceland, to the north of the Jökulfirðir and to the northwest of Drangajökull. Hornstrandir is close to the Arctic Circle and on a clear day the snowy mountains of Greenland are visible. No one lives in Hornstrandir throughout winter after social changes resulted in the abandonment of all farms during World War II and in the post-war period.
Hesteyri is a small village of ten houses in Jökulfirðir (e. glacier fjords) which was abandoned in 1952. Farther into the fjord, there are the ruins of an old whaling station which was built by Norwegians in 1897. Hesteyri is a popular starting and ending place for hikers but Hornstrandir is an increasingly popular hiking place. The area is also popular for blueberry and crowberry picking.
LANGUAGE: English will be the language in the camp; basic conversational skills are needed.
TERMINAL: Closest international Airport: Keflavík/Reykjavík (KEF). Bus station: Central Reykjavík (BSÍ).
SEEDS organises the “minibus option”, a shared transport from Reykjavík to the camps and vice-versa, which apart from being cheaper and more convenient, allows volunteers to meet fellow campers and have a relaxed trip while stopping on the way for interesting and tourist sites.
The minibus to this camp will cost EUR 70 (Euros) one way, and EUR 140 (Euros) both ways. This is about 30% cheaper than public transportation services. This includes also the boat ride from Bolungarvík.
EXTRAS / SPECIAL REMARKS: The participation fee is EUR 200 (Euros). Please note that this fee is to be paid to SEEDS on arrival in either Euros or Icelandic krónas.
Volunteers should be motivated to experience life in a very isolated part of Iceland.
Available free time activities in the area include hikes and excursions. The Old Doctor’s house has a good atmosphere, with card games and live music as common evening activities. Musical volunteers should bring their music instruments with them. The host will make a barbeque pit for the farewell party.