Mjoifjordur is the name of a fjord and a small village in the East Fjords area of Iceland.
You can visit this beautiful strip of water and a tiny settlement with the same name by taking a slight detour from a seven-day self-drive tour of the Ring Road. Alternatively, you can take your time and explore more of Iceland with a 14-day self-drive tour.
The Mjoifjordur fjord can be a fantastic addition to your Icelandic vacation, especially if you enjoy off-the-beaten-track destinations. The fjord is often referred to as one of the most remote parts of Iceland.
Mjoifjordur is a wonderful place to take some beautiful photos and a great area to enjoy scenic walks away from other tourists.
Photo from Flickr, Creative Commons, by Gerrit van Harreveld. No edits made.
A Hidden Gem
The word “Mjoifjordur,” spelled Mjóifjörður in Icelandic, translates to “narrow fjord,” which is a very accurate description of this long, thin body of water. The Mjoifjordur fjord is 11 miles (around 18 kilometers) long and only 1.3 miles (roughly 2 kilometers) wide, meaning it certainly lives up to its name.
Steep mountains on both sides of the fjord make this an extremely picturesque destination for travelers and locals.
The Mjoifjordur fjord is small, and fewer than 25 people live there. Since it’s so isolated, many tourists overlook the fjord, making this area a hidden gem you can enjoy away from other travelers. You’ll probably feel like you have it all to yourself!
Where Is the Mjoifjordur Fjord?
The Mjoifjordur fjord is part of the East Fjords of Iceland. This area in the Eastern region stretches from the Berufjordur fjord in the south to the village of Borgarfjordur Eystri in the north. It’s a coastal area filled with scenic stretches of water and traditional fishing villages.
The Mjoifjordur fjord is a typical example of one of the East Fjords’ remote inlets, and the village of Mjoifjordur, sometimes referred to as Brekka, is an excellent example of one of the isolated hamlets.
The fjord starts on the east coast of Iceland and stretches inland toward the west. Mjoifjordur village is around 19 miles (approximately 30 kilometers) from the Ring Road.
How to Get to Mjoifjordur Fjord
The Mjoifjordur fjord is located 420 miles (roughly 675 kilometers) from Reykjavik city, traveling along the north side of the Ring Road, meaning it’s quite a distance from the main entry point to the country.
As the East Fjords are so far from Reykjavik, it can take a long time to reach this area of Iceland. However, if you plan to visit the Mjoifjordur fjord from Iceland’s capital, you can fly from Reykjavik to Egilsstadir, the main town of the East Fjords, to shorten your journey time.
If you want to visit the fjord by car, you can do so by traveling on the Ring Road. From here, you can take Road 953 directly to Mjoifjordur fjord and the village.
However, you won’t be able to visit by car from October to April or May, as snow and ice make the route unpassable. According to locals, the first sign of spring is when the snow plow comes through and unblocks the road.
Icy conditions don’t entirely cut off the fjord from the rest of Iceland during winter. A ferry runs between the town of Neskaupstadur and the Mjoifjordur fjord. The boat runs every Tuesday and Thursday, even during the winter (depending on the weather).
Although the road is clear from snow and ice during summer, drivers often still find it easier to hire a 4X4 to travel to the Mjoifjordur fjord. The road is unpaved and has some steep sections, so it’s easier if traveling in a 4X4.
What Makes the Mjoifjordur Fjord Special?
Photo from Wikimedia, Creative Commons, by Austin Matherne. No edits made.
The Mjoifjordur fjord is in a spectacular area with plenty of fascinating history to discover.
The fjord was the base of a sizable whaling operation that employed over 200 people in the early 1900s. It was, at one time, the biggest whaling operation in the world. The remains of the whaling station are situated on the southern edge of the fjord.
On the western edge of the fjord, visitors can see the shipwreck of a WWII US Navy warship. The ship has washed up on the shore and rusted. Tourists can take some amazing photos here with the beautiful fjord waters and the dramatic mountains in the background.
There are also some striking waterfalls in the area around the Mjoifjordur fjord. The Klifbrekkufossar waterfall, for example, is a series of seven waterfalls with a combined drop of 295 feet (roughly 90 meters).
You can reach this series of falls on foot or by car from the fjord. It’s worth a visit, as you can hike to the top. There are several stops and tiers along the way, meaning you can take pictures from every level. The best photos, however, capture the whole waterfall at once, including all seven stages of cascading water.
What Else Can I Visit Near Mjoifjordur?
While visiting the Mjoifjordur fjord, you’ll be ideally situated to explore some other fjords and fishing villages in the East Fjords. Taking the ferry to Neskaupstadur is a fun way to see this fishing town.
You’ll also be able to stock up on supplies here, as this is a larger settlement with restaurants, hotels, and a supermarket.
Other interesting towns in the East Fjords include Egilsstadir, Faskridsfjordur, and Seydisfjordur.
Egilsstadir is the so-called capital of East Iceland. From here, you can easily visit beautiful natural sights such as the Hallormsstadaskogur forest (the largest forest in Iceland) and the Lagarfljot lake, home to a mythical creature called the Lagarfljot Wyrm.
Another interesting thing to do while in the East Fjords is to visit Dalatangi, one of the most easterly points of Iceland. It's around 9 miles (14.5 kilometers) from Mjoifjordur village.
Make sure you visit the stunning yellow lighthouse there. It’s a fantastic spot for some photos to commemorate your time in the East Fjords.