Seydisfjordur, Iceland

Iceland’s eastern coast was the first area to be settled, and the very ancient site of Thorrarinstadr is the earliest community yet discovered. Your Ventures team archaeologist will escort an optional tour to the site. The pretty, multicolored houses of Seydusfjordur are gathered on a narrow alluvial shelf at the base of a jaw-dropping mountain wall beside the fjord that gives it its name. Today it is a magnet for artists, musicians and other creative types inspired by the Icelandic grandeur. The Blue Church is a local icon, an early wooden structure that has been moved three times in its checkered history. There are a number of old wooden buildings dating from the immigration of Norwegian fishermen who settled here in 1848 to exploit the vast seasonal populations of herring. Vestdalseyri is a ghost town further along the fjord, where the first industrial whaling operation once thrived. A former farm at Skalanes has been converted to a nature and culture center experimenting with sustainable tourism for Iceland. On a mountain above town, the German artist Lukas Kuhne has created Tvisongur, a “sound sculpture” of five connected concrete domes which resonate with the frequencies of the five tones in traditional Icelandic music. The Ventures by Seabourn naturalists will also host optional hikes along the fjord and among the many photogenic waterfalls lacings its slopes.