Heimaey is an island located approximately 5 mi/8 km off the coast of Iceland that is home to about 4,500 people, and 8 million puffins during the summer. The island is well known for the 1973 eruption of the volcano Eldfell, which destroyed half the town and almost closed the harbor, which is the island's main source of income. The townspeople were able to curb the destruction by cooling the lava with seawater. The eruption resulted in a 15%-20% increase of the island's landmass, and the locals have since harnessed the warmth of the new area to heat their buildings.
While in Heimaey, sample the excellent seafood and peruse the local shops for wool knitwear, such as sweaters and mittens. Also check out the eruption site or take a boat trip around Heimaey.
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