Skeggjastaðakirkja - The Oldest church in East Iceland

On the side of route 85 near to Bakkafjörður there is a pretty church with neat blue trim around the windows and doors. Washes of light blue from forget-me-not’s coat the surrounding roadside verges. On bright sunny days the blue of the church merges with Bakkaflói Bay below and the vast Arctic sky above. On more overcast days the blue is a reminder of what could be. Whatever the weather the influence of the sea is ever present in the driftwood used to construct the building.

Skeggjastaðakirkja is the oldest church is East Iceland. The area around this church was claimed by one of the first settlers to the area and over the years has been disputed by the local diocese as to who it belongs to. The current church was built in 1845 at the personal expense of the pastor Rev. Hóseas Árnason and was renovated to its current state in the 1960’s.

 
 

Photography Notes

This little church is pretty from all angles. However, in dry weather it is worth exploring the churchyard and the hill behind as this will give spectacular views towards Bakkafjörður and the bay as well as allowing you to photograph the latticed blue and brown door. However do remember that this is sacred ground and respect is needed.

 
 

Finding Skeggjastaðakirkja

This small church is on the land side of route 85 just to the north of the turning for the road to Bakkafjörður. There is a small parking area and information board.

It is on the Arctic Coast Way.