A ferry service between Reykjavík and the town of Akranes to the north of the capital recommenced yesterday evening after a 19-year break, reports Vísir . Ferry Akranes, operated by Seatours, set off on its maiden journey across Faxaflói Bay at around 7 pm Thursday evening, with many on board, including Reykjavík Mayor Dagur B. Eggertsson, who posted on Facebook about the 24-mile (38.5-km), 25-minute journey. The ferry service is being operated in a six-month pilot project.
Heimir Már Pétursson, a reporter for Stöð 2 TV station, was present for the maiden journey and talked with Dagur and Akranes town councilor Rakel Óskarsdóttir, who were both very pleased with the project.
“A lot of people who live on the Akranes peninsula but work in Reykjavík are looking forward to this now, because it takes an hour to drive to Reykjavík, but only 25 minutes by the ferry,” stated Rakel. She also commented that it provides an ideal opportunity for tourists to visit Akranes.
Asked about the possibility of the ferry service becoming permanent after the end of the six-month trial period, Dagur said that it depends on demand.
“We encourage people to take advantage of this. Then something exciting could come out of the experiment, and maybe the future is to connect neighborhoods within the city or other places by boat.”
Ferry services between Akranes and Reykjavík were discontinued in 1998 with the opening of the Hvalfjörður Tunnel, an undersea road tunnel that connects Reykjavík with the north. Up until that point, ships including the famous Akraborg, which was the last of the fleet, had ferried passengers between the towns and been highly popular.
The pilot project is being jointly funded by Reykjavík City Council and the municipality of Akranes, according to RÚV. The ferry is over 7.5-m (25-ft) wide and 22.5-m (74-ft) long, and seats 112 people but is not a vehicle ferry. Regularly scheduled runs are set to start next Monday, and will continue into October.