What Is The Story Behind the World’s Loneliest House on a secluded Island?
Homes come in all shapes, sizes, and in a myriad of locations that defy conventional architectural norms. Humans have created homes on the sides of sheer cliffs, over water, on stilts, and even underground. There is one home that rivals all of these in its unique location – the single structure on Elliðaey (Ellidaey) island. Dubbed the world’s loneliest house, the tiny white structure is the only known building on the 110-acre island of Elliðaey. Who built this abode and the reason behind its construction are some of the most common questions that crop up. Let’s take a trip off the coast of Iceland near the Vestmannaeyjar Archipelago and find out a bit more about this mysterious home.
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Intriguing Rumors Surround the House on Elliðaey Island
Ever since the first photo of the world’s loneliest house on Elliðaey Island surfaced on social media, rumors and speculations have been rampant. Some claim that the government gifted the island to the world-renowned Icelandic singer-songwriter Björk. This rumor stems from the statement by Iceland’s former prime minister, Davíð Oddsson, offering Björk exclusive use of an island named Elliðaey in 2000. However, the Elliðaey in question is another island located in the bay of Breiðafjörður, west of the Icelandic mainland.
Another fantastical rumor claims that a billionaire built the house as a haven in the event of a zombie outbreak. However, there is no news of transferring the ownership of the island to any billionaire or individual yet. Only one entity has held the ownership rights to the structure on the island, and it has made this “home” for a very specific reason.
However, the Truth Is Far More Tame but No Less Interesting
Setting aside all the rumors surrounding the world’s loneliest house, the structure was built by the Elliðaey Hunting Association in 1953. Originally intended as a lodge, hunters reportedly used the house on the island for puffin-hunting stays. However, there is no current indication that hunting activities still happen on the island, and the main attraction of this location is now just tourism.
Other reports state that in the 18th century, five families called the island home. They were engaged in fishing, hunting puffins, and raising cattle. The last resident left the island by 1930, and it has remained unpopulated ever since. The lack of people is not surprising as reaching the island is not just a long process but also a dangerous one!
Staying in the World’s Loneliest House Requires Undertaking a Very Difficult Journey
The lodge on Elliðaey has earned the title of the world’s loneliest house for all the correct reasons. It is not a journey for the faint of heart. It begins with a freezing boat ride tackling terrifying waves, but that’s the easy part. Intrepid travelers will need to jump from the boat to the steep side of the island to catch a rope. Missing the rope will ensure a quick dip into the frigid waters. Once caught, travelers must then ascend the near vertical cliff face very carefully while carrying all of their luggage.
Modern comforts during the stay will be sparse as the lodge lacks electricity, indoor plumbing, and heating. However, it does feature a sauna fed by a natural rainwater collection system. Food would need to be carried aboard the ship from the mainland, along with any other necessary resources. People staying on the island would also be at the mercy of the weather conditions over the sea, so sunny days may be few and far between.
Elliðaey is officially listed as a protected area by the Icelandic government. While accessing the island via boat is legal, it would be best to enlist the aid of a local professional to navigate the freezing waters and legal challenges one might face. A stay here would require careful planning and strong commitment, but could prove to be an unforgettable experience!
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