The Remote Dwelling on Elliðae

Iceland is a not very densely populated. As of 2017 the population of the whole country was a mere 334,303. That’s less than Leicester in England or Anaheim in California. With plenty of land to go around it’s not surprising that some people chose to live an isolated life.

There can’t be many more isolated than those who spend time on the island of Elliðae. Located in the Vestmannaeyjar archipelago, this island is the location of one of the most remote houses around. The picturesque island of Elliðae was permanently inhabited around 300 years ago by five families who hunted puffins fished, grew crops and raised cattle. By 1930 the remoteness had proven too much for the residents and they abandoned Elliðae for the relative sociability of the Icelandic mainland.

They left behind a sturdy cabin that has been the source of much speculation over the years. Many believed that the island was now owned by Bjork, but this proved not to be the case. Likewise it was speculated that this house was owned and lived in by a curious billionaire, but again this was not the case.

The truth however, is a little less exciting. The cabin is owned by a local hunting group who use the building as shelter when they are on the island hunting puffins.

Elliðae is Iceland’s third biggest island. It was thought to be formed, like most of Iceland, by a volcanic eruption 6000 years ago. It’s not far away from the world’s newest Island, Sturtsey.

There’s no public transport to get out to Elliðae. The closest you can get is the island of Heimaey off the southwest coast which can be reached by boat from the mainland or a flight from Reykjavík. From here you’ll have to befriend a local with a seaworthy vessel and get them to ferry you out!

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